Best of Iceland May 30 - June 6
Best of Iceland This Week is a guide for those who are curious about what's going on across Iceland and want local recommendations about events, activities and places of interest. This is the only Icelandic guide of its kind. New every week.
Festival of the Sea
The first Sunday in June is annually celebrated in Iceland to honor fishermen, their work, and those who have lost their lives at sea. Reykjavík does this a little differently, and uses the weekend to celebrate the sea in its entirety. The celebrations serve as a reminder of how important the sea and sailors are to Iceland’s history, its economy, and its people and culture. A fun-packed schedule for the whole family is in effect both days at Grandagarður, Reykjavik’s West Harbour.
Hiking around Mount Kirkjufell
Kirkjufell is a beautifully strange mountain just west of Grundarfjörður fjord and town. While relatively experienced hikers can climb the mountain, stories have been told of men falling to their death from the top of the mountain. A hike around the base of the mountain is a better option, and takes approximately 3 hours.
The Herring Era Museum is one of Iceland's most impressive museums
The Herring Era Museum is located in the town of Siglufjörður in the North of Iceland. It celebrates the “glory days” of Iceland’s herring industry which began in the 1930’s and lasted well into the 50’s. The museum is a recreation of a typical herring factory and consists of three buildings, each showing a different aspect of the herring industry. The museum was awarded the Icelandic Museum Award in 2000 and the European Museum Award in 2004.
Oh, and you can take a local bus from Akureyri to Siglufjörður.
‘Majesty in Skaftafell’ is the title of an exhibit that was opened in March this year in the town of Seyðisfjörður in East Iceland. The exhibit closes on June 2nd, making this weekend your very last chance to see the works. The graduating class at the Iceland Academy of the Arts put the exhibition together, but in preparing for the exhibit the students spent two weeks in Seyðisfjörður getting to know its people and its culture.
A video from the opening of the show is available on YouTube, but the students created a volcanic eruption.
Iceland rocks, literally
Being a volcanic rock and all, it’s no wonder that a number of Icelanders are avid rock collectors. Huldusteinn Rock Museum at the village Höfn í Hornafirði is worth the visit, recommended by a Höfn local, Ásdís Erna Halldórsdóttir.
A married couple privately owns the museum, but they have been passionately collecting rocks for over three decades! The museum is located in what used to be Höfn’s swimming pool, but when the building was put up for sale in 2009, they seized the opportunity to turn it into a museum. The name of the museum, Huldusteinn, refers to a rock, or rocks, that are the homes of the hidden folk. Icelandic folktales tell the stories of hidden folk (or elves) living in rocks and some Icelanders have both seen and spoken to those magical creatures.
Joy run close by Kirkjubæjarklaustur
For those interested in participating in a challenge competition surrounded by the amazing beauty of Iceland, sign-up for Slóðahlaup on May 31st. The 10 KM race route leads you up onto a moor, just north of Skaftá river. During the run you can enjoy a magnificent view, including the beautiful and historical Eldmessutangi. Those who choose the 6 km run, will start approximately 500 meters before Skaftárrétt sheep pen and will also participate in a similar challenge competition.
Find more information on www.slodir.is
The Harbour House is open after years of restorations
Five new exhibitions opended on May 29 at the Duus Culture Centre in the town of Reykjanesbær in addition to its permanent collections. The centre is formed of several old and historic buildings. The oldest and most remarkable is the Harbour house that opened this week after years of restoration. It is made of wood and was built in 187. The youngest is a concrete structure finished in 1954. The complex includes four exhibition centres and the Reykjanes Maritime Centre, the Museum of Art and the Museum of Heritage. Admission is free. Open weekdays 12 PM- 5 PM, weekends 1 PM - 5 PM
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Beautiful video of the Aurora dancing over the Westfjords
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“Jæja” The many meanings of the most important all-purpose Icelandic word you’ll learn
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