The town Gardabaer received its municipal rights in 1976 and has been one of the fastest growing communities of the country. It has good schools, among them one of the comprehensive schools. On the outskirts of the town is a hospital for patients suffering from respiratory ailments was built in 1909 to fight the widespread disease TB. Nowadays about one case of TB occurs annually. Later it was used to take care of patients suffering from lung diseases. Near the hospital is a nice trout and char lake and a golf course. The town enjoys a very interesting cultural life and many prominent artists and authors live there. There are three golf courses within its boundaries and quite a few interesting hiking trails in the uninhabited areas around it. The site of Gardabaer was a part of the Alftanes County until1878. The Alftanes County included Alftanes and Bessastadir, the presidential residence of Iceland.
In 1878 the ancient Alftanes County was divided into Bessastadir County and Gardar County and in 1907, the Gardar County was separated from the neighbouring town Hafnarfiord. The inhabited area of Gardar County progressed rapidly in the 1960s. The first plan for the development of an urban area dates back to 1955.
During the next decades the population of the Gardar County grew very rapidly. In 1960 the population counted 1000 and in 1976 more than 4000. The distance from the capital is about 9 km.