Iceland is known for fluffy lopi wool blankets, coats, jackets, hats and wool sweaters. Hand-made clay pots in natural colors are popular souvenirs. Ground lava gives the glaze of the pottery its special character. These items are available from, among others, the duty-free shop at Keflavík Airport and the souvenir shop at the Reykjavík Tourist Board. Shop opening hours: Mon-Fri 9am-6pm, Sat 10am-4pm (sometimes only until 2pm/3pm). Some supermarkets and shops are open until 10 p.m. on Fridays. Almost all shops are closed on Sundays, and many shops remain closed on Saturdays in the summer.
- Searchforpublicschools: Offers schooling information of Iceland in each level – compulsory, technical and higher education programs.
Fish and lamb are the main dishes of Icelandic cuisine. European gastronomy, particularly that of the other Scandinavian countries, has had a major influence on Icelandic cuisine. Icelandic salmon is a special delicacy and is prepared in a variety of ways. Graflax (salmon marinated with herbs) or Sild (pickled herring) are very popular. Vegetables are grown in greenhouses heated by geyser steam. Special treats on the Icelandic menu include hangikjöt (smoked lamb) and hardfiskur (dried fish). Skyr (quark) also tastes very good. Drinks: In cafes you can drink as much as you want for the price of a cup of coffee. european beers, Wines and spirits are available in restaurants and bars and government liquor stores, but not in supermarkets. The local Brennivin is distilled from potatoes and is similar to Aquavit.
Hotel categories correspond to the international standard. 1 to 5 stars. In most hotels, rooms with a bath/shower, telephone, radio and television are available on request. In the expensive hotels there are shops, hairdressers and beauty salons. Discounts for children are common. Private accommodation can also be arranged via the Icelandic Tourist Board (see addresses). Information is also available from the Iceland Travel Industry Association, Borgartúni 35, IS-105 Reykjavík. Tel: 511 80 00. (Web: http://www.saf.is/)
There are around 170 registered campsites in Iceland. It is forbidden to stay overnight in a mobile home or camper outside of campsites. One-time camping is allowed outside of campgrounds if there is no campground nearby. Before setting up your tent on private land, however, you should ask the owner’s permission first. The best campsites are in Reykjavík, Húsafell, Isafjördur, Varmahlid, Akureyri, Myvatn, Egilsstadir, Laugarvatn, Thingvellir, Jökulsargljufur and Skaftafell. Information from the Icelandic Tourist Board or regional tourist information centers.
Other accommodation options
There are 30 youth hostels in Iceland, including in Reykjavík, Leirubakki, Fljótsdalur, Reynisbrekka, Höfn, Stafafell, Berunes, Seydisfjördur, Húsey, Akureyri, Bakkaf Jördur, Fosshóll, Hamar, Hafnarf J., Hveragerdi, Lónkot, Lónsá, Mosfellsbaer, Njardvik, Ósar, Patreksfjördur, Reydarf Jördur, Reykholt, Runnar Stykkishölmur, Saeberg, Pingvellir and Vestmannaeyjar; many are only open in the summer. There is no age limit. Sleeping with your own sleeping bag costs less. The Icelandic Hiking Association has numerous cabins inland where you can stay overnight. You have to bring your own groceries and sleeping bags. Hiking groups of the association have priority. More information from the Icelandic Youth Hostel Association, Borgartun 6, IS-105 Reykjavik. Tel: 575 67 00. (Internet: www.hostel.is) and The Icelandic Touring Club, Mörkinni 6, IS-108 Reykjavík. Tel: 568 25 33. (Internet: www.fi.is) The Tourist Office has a directory of farms that offer rooms for holidaymakers. Discounts for children. Information from Icelandic Farm Holidays, Sidumula 13, IS-108 Reykjavík, among others. Tel: 570 27 00. (Web: www.farmholidays.is) by Icelandic Farm Holidays, Sidumula 13, IS-108 Reykjavík. Tel: 570 27 00. (Web: www.farmholidays.is) by Icelandic Farm Holidays, Sidumula 13, IS-108 Reykjavík. Tel: 570 27 00. (Web: www.farmholidays.is)
80.7% Lutheran; 4% other Protestants; 2.5% Catholics.
Social Rules of Conduct
Iceland presents itself to the visitor as a classless society. Manners: When greeting someone shakes hands. People address each other by their first names, the surnames are made up of the father’s first name and the suffix Son (son) or Dóttir (daughter). Jón Magnússon is ‘Jón son of Magnus’ and Sigrid Magnúsdóttir ‘Sigrid daughter of Magnus’. Visitors are often invited home. Small gifts are welcome. Icelanders like to dress up; However, casual wear is common. Smoking: Smoking is banned in Iceland in all restaurants and cafes, as well as in public buildings and on public transport. Tip: A service charge is included in almost all bills, including taxis. Although an extra tip is not expected, the service providers are still pleased.
Best travel time
The Gulf Stream ensures a temperate maritime climate. Overall temperatures are lower than in Central Europe. Summer relatively cool with frequent rains. Mild winters, but occasionally cold. At the end of August, the colorful Northern Lights can be seen. In late May – early August there is almost 24 hours of daylight in the north. In Reykjavík, there are two hours between sunset and sunrise. Winter storms are common, inland sandstorms are not uncommon. Snowfall is not that common, snow rarely stays in Reykjavík. The weather is generally very changeable, so those who don’t like the weather are sometimes advised to wait five minutes. The weather is usually the most pleasant from May to September.
Area (sq km)
103,000 sq km
341,243 (Source: homosociety)
Population density (per square km)
Population statistics year
Member of the EU
Main emergency number