Farm Svinafell in the Oraefi County was among the largest and most important estates of Eastern Iceland in the Past. The Njal’s Saga has one of its stages of events there, when Flosi Thordarson lived there shortly after the year 1000. Hildigunnur, the wife of Hoskuldur the chieftain of Hvitanes, was his niece and Hoskuldur was the foster brother of the sons of Njall, who raised him with them. Njal’s sons killed Hoskuldur and Flosi was obliged to carry out the revenge. This event resulted in the burning of Njal’s farm, Bergthorshvoll, and his family’s death.
A man named Ormur Ormsson (1241-1270), who lived at Svinafell, was the last of the chieftains in Iceland to acknowledge Norwegian sovereignty in Iceland. Later he and Hrafn Oddsson were delegated commissioners of the Norwegian king in Iceland. Ormur never served as one, because he drowned off the coast of Norway.
The Oraefi Area usually enjoys mild weather, but sometimes tremendous gusts of wind come rushing down the mountain passes and sweep everything lying loose away and sometimes caused property damage, accidents and losses of lives. The glacier snout Svinafellsjokull stretches its paw close to the farm, which is only sheltered by a low hill and a high moraine. Svinafell offers the travellers a nice outdoor swimming pool heated by the garbage incinerator of the area and nice camping grounds.