Fridheimar Tomato Farm: Dining Among the Tomato Plants in a Greenhouse at Iceland's Golden Circle

While waterfalls, geysers, fissures, and hot springs make enticing destinations along the Golden Circle, you can also toss in an all-year round tomato farm and restaurant as a stop along the route. Fridheimar is Iceland's most unique tomato farm because the dining room is set right inside the greenhouse where tomato plants are nursed all year round. Its location along the route of the Golden Circle makes it the perfect stopover in the area for a relaxing "green" lunch of food and drinks that are made with their home-grown tomatoes and freshly-baked bread.

Friedheimar is close to a lot of natural sites of the Golden Circle
such as: Secret Lagoon - 15 minutes away; Geysir and Strokkur geysers - 20 minutes away; Kerid Crater - 25 minutes away; Laugarvatn Fontana Thermal Spa - 25 minutes away; Gullfoss - 30 minutes away; and Thingvellir National Park - 40 minutes away. If you are not doing the Golden Circle route, it can also be reached from Reykjavik with a distance of 100 kilometers, which takes an hour and a half road trip.

How Do the Tomatoes Live All Year Round?

Being located in the Arctic Circle, the country experiences harsh winters with extremely limited daylight, but in summer, it is drenched in daylight with much more hours than the rest of the world. With this particular climatic conditions, the complex of 9 greenhouses which covers an area of 11,000 square meters, makes use of modern technology and green energy. The greenhouses are equipped with a climate-control computer systems for temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, lighting and irrigation. So while the weather outside makes it impossible to grow anything because of the bitter cold, rains, strong winds and little sunlight (winter months get only an average of 5 hours), the tomato plants, along with their basil and cucumbers inside the greenhouses thrive well all year round because of the replication the Mediterranean conditions.

The heat is obtained from the abundant supply of geothermal water, thanks to the proximity of the borehole from the greenhouse. For pollination, they have the industrious bumblebees that do the busy work of pollinating up to 2,000 flowers a day ensuring an abundant and steady supply of tomatoes. A short note on bumblebees: they rarely sting and they are not aggressive unless of course you are threatening or bothering them.

With this system, Fridheimar actually defies the odds Icelandic winters and with their almost 30,000 tomato plants, they are able to yield over a ton of tomatoes daily or over 370 tons of tomatoes annually, making it about 40% of the country's entire supply of tomatoes. So with the latest technology, green energy, organic pest control, and pure water from the glaciers, Fridheimar is able to produce fresh and healthy tomatoes all year round. With the work that they have dedicated in their tomato farm, they have received countless awards and recognition.

The Family Behind Fridheimar

Fridheimar is run by Knútur Rafn Ármann, an agronomist from Hólar University College in north Iceland, his wife Helena Hermundardóttir, a horticulturalist from Reykir Horticultural College and their five children: Dóróthea, Karítas, Matthías Jens, Tómas Ingi, and Arnaldur, who are all actively involved in the development of the company. Knútur and Helena bought Fridheimar in 1995 with the aim of combining their horse and horticulture knowledge. Prior to their takeover, horticulture using natural hot water, had already been practiced Fridheimar from 1946. Starting work immediately in 1995, they have successfully developed the farm with a fully-equipped technologically advanced greenhouses for their tomato plants, an equestrian center for their horses and an outdoor arena with a stand for 120 spectators. Because apart from their greenhouse, they also breed horses and hold an annual horse show that has gained so much popularity in the country.

The Menu

You will find tomatoes in all the entries in the menu including in some drinks like the tomato beer and homemade marys, between €9 to €13 (1,280 Sk to 1,950 Sk). There's a buffet table of hot tomato soup, freshly baked bread, sour cream and cucumber salsa, at around €19 (12,790 Sk). For à la carte, the entries, between €14 to €31 (2,050 Sk to 4,600 Sk) to are simple, light and refreshing such as the salad with fresh vegetables grown in the greenhouses; homemade ravioli with tomato sauce and pesto; stone baked tortillas with tomatoes and mozzarella cheese or pesto and fresh vegetables; heirloom tomatoes with handmade Icelandic burrata cheese and fresh mussels cooked in tomato seafood sauce. The desserts, at €12 (1,660 Sk) have an interesting twist of tomatoes as well like the tomato ice cream served with sauces made with green tomatoes and vanilla sauce or piccolo tomatoes and strawberries; and the sorbets of cucumber with mint and lime; red tomatoes with basil and green tomatoes with rosemary. Pies and cheesecakes with tomatoes also sound delicious.

Behind the development of the menu and food products sold at the Little Tomato Shop is Chef Jón K.B. Sigfússon, a neighbor of the family. His vast number of years of experience were from working around the world, in addition, he has also cooked for many heads of state.


Address: Reykholti, Bláskógabyggð 806 Selfoss, Iceland
Tel: +354 486 8894
Opening hours: daily for lunch between 12:00 to 16:00