14 Awesome Facts about Iceland

  1. Safest Place In The World

    Iceland is officially the safest place in the world the murder rate is 20 times lower than the world average which is impressive. Violent crime is practically non-existent, the police don’t carry guns and Iceland is so safe the Police have nothing to do. The Icelandic police have an Instagram account full of pictures with them posing with cats they have helped from trees. Iceland has no army, no navy or no air force so it doesn’t get involved with wars like other nations.

  2. Books

    Per Capita Iceland has the highest number of books and magazine publications and 10% of the country’s population have published a book. Iceland has a wonderful tradition called  Jolabokaflod (Christmas book flood) which is the yearly boom in book sales between October and November in preparation for the yearly Icelandic tradition of giving books to each other on Christmas eve and then spending the night reading.

  3. Glaciers and Volcanoes

    Iceland is naturally beautiful and large sections of Iceland is covered in Glaciers and Volcanoes. There are over 125 volcanic mountains and some are still active. Iceland experiences a volcanic eruption about once every four years. Does anyone remember Eyjafjallajokull which stopped air travel in europe?   

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  4. Elves and Trolls

    According to many surveys the majority of present day Icelanders believe in the existence of Elves and Trolls. Icelanders go as far as postponing and altering building projects if it’s believed that it is to be built where elves currently live. There are museums, elf schools and walking tours all around Iceland to educate tourists on Elves and Trolls.

  5. Absence of Commercialism

    Iceland absence of commercialism is one of the biggest reasons why I love Iceland. When you come across some of the beauties of Iceland you won’t see the large multinational shops that you usually see all around the world. They do not have a Starbucks or a McDonald’s and only offer their own unique brands which is definitely a good thing.

  6. Eco-Friendly

    Iceland is one of the most eco-friendly countries, as the country is alive with all its volcanic activity around 25% of its energy is produced through geothermally. 100% of Iceland’s electricity comes from renewable sources like wind and hydro-power. In 2016 Yale’s Environmental performance Index ranked Iceland as the no.2 as the best performing country environmentally.

  7. The Financial Crisis

    The 2009 world financial crisis affected many countries in many different ways. Iceland was also affected but they seemed to handle it in a different way. Icelandic people were concerned about the country’s economy so they protest every day by banging pots and pans outside parliament. It concluded by the toppling of the government, fresh elections, arresting the bankers and putting the ex prime minister on trial. Don’t you wish our government did that!

  8. Beer

    The country is renowned for loving their alcohol it surprised me that beer was banned in Iceland up until 1st March 1989, people celebrate on 1st of March each year by drinking many pints. There is still restrictions on alcohol now and anything that is over 2.5% ABV can only be purchased in special vinbudin stores.  

  9. Icelandic Language

    The Icelandic language is very close to Danish and Norwegian but is unique in other ways. Unlike most languages where it has changed over the centuries Icelandic has been very well preserved. A bible written the early 1500’s can still be understood by Icelanders today. Icelandic names are also unique as families have no surnames so Icelandic phone directories are in alphabetical order of first names.

  10. Weird and Wonderful food

    I have had great fun trying all the weird and wonderful selection of foods they have in Iceland. Whale, Puffin, dried fish, sheep’s head, fermented shark and pickled ram’s testicles can all be found on the menu.

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  11. Feminism

    Iceland takes feminism very seriously so much so there is a laws put in place ensuring men and women are equal, strip clubs are banned, prostitution is banned, companies boards must include at least 40% women and the world’s first openly gay woman was elected as prime minister in Iceland

  12. Iceland and the EU

    Iceland is not part of the EU it applied to join in 2009 but suspended its application in 2013 as both parties disagreed over fishing issues. Fishing is Iceland’s main industry and the nation remains one of just a few in the world that still allows whaling. Iceland is however part of European Economic area.

  13. World First Parliament

    Iceland is home to the site of the very first parliament in the world it was established in 930 AD and it  met in Pingvellir National Park which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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  14. Population

    Iceland has a population of 332,252 in 2016 which is an incredibly small amount for a country, in comparison the city of Cardiff has a higher population. There is such a small population Icelanders use an app to ensure they are not about to date anyone they are related to.

     

     

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