12 Fun Facts About Iceland That You Didn’t Know

Can you ever answer the question, “Where is the best travel destination that you have ever gone to?” If you would ask me this, perhaps I can be entirely confused. Choosing only one travel destination that I would love going back to over and over again is definitely hard. I just love to travel. I love to explore different places with the different people in my life.

But if answering the question would be a life and death scenario, then I must be truthful to my response. The most heavenly place for me is Iceland! Not only is it beautiful, there’s lots of things about Iceland that I didn’t know before traveling.

Iceland is among the countries that made my heart melt and created happy memories in my mind. When I visited the place a few years ago, I discovered that there is indeed a paradise on earth. The mystic landscapes and the amazing culture just gave me the best travel memories ever and learned lots of fun facts about Iceland. The sprinkling snow in October also let me feel a perfect weather that is cool but bearable.

If you are a bit curious why I am in love with this place, let me give you reasons by stating some trivia about Iceland. These are really wonderful information for you to keep and remember once you decide to fly to the country. Here’s some of the things that you didn’t know about Iceland.
 

12 Fun Facts About Iceland That You Didn’t Know

Schools Have A Knitting Subject

Knitting is very seldom included in the curriculum of schools across the globe. However, Icelandic schools give high importance to knitting as a skill that must be learned by every student. Knitting promotes the creativity of the mind, patience of the soul, mental peace and relaxation, and appreciation for local products.

They normally use local wool for all their knitted products. Among the gorgeous wool products that I have seen is a jumper. Your family would certainly appreciate if you bring home one of these woolen crafts.

Despite the price of these woolen products, I am pretty sure that they will serve you long. Remember that you are paying for a remarkable piece that would allow you to reminisce majestic moments in this country. This is a really cool fact about Iceland that many consider interesting.
 

You May Not Really Need Cash In Iceland

Not that I am saying that you won’t need to have anything of value. Not that everything is free. It’s just that Iceland relies heavily on card transactions.

The locals have long been used to pay using a card for almost everything that they purchase. But tourists, definitely, can still pay using their cash most especially if he or she is traveling without a credit card. It’s a great thing that many don’t know about Iceland, this will help you save some money in avoid having to pay fees when exchange for Icelandic currency.

 

You Can’t Just Name A Baby Any Way You Like

If you are thinking that only parents have the authority to give names to their children, then your thoughts are definitely wrong. The people of Iceland have their own strange rules in giving names to babies. This is a fun fact about Iceland that many people didn’t know.

As a matter of fact, their government has an Icelandic Naming Committee that sets guidelines on which names are only allowed to be used for certain individuals. You cannot name your newborn with any name that you love. You have to make sure that it is in the list released by the committee and that it gets approved by the government.

Babies cannot also be called using their own names immediately. They have to be christened first before anyone is permitted to call them with a particular name. Once the baby is christened, then he or she follows the name of his or her father. If the baby is a girl, her surname will have a suffix dottir. If the baby is a boy, he will have a suffix son. Because of this very unusual rule in naming, people just normally call you on a first name basis.

 

The People Are Addicted To Coffee

Yup, they are addicted to caffeine. If you would look at the statistics of the Coca-Cola company, this country has the greatest consumption of the particular soda. They are just definitely in love with coffee and soda. Don’t forget to include alcohol as well as something you didn’t know about Iceland.

 

There Is Peace All-Over Iceland

If you are tired of hearing news of crimes in your country, then try visiting Iceland to witness how peace could actually be sustained by a nation. According to the Global Peace Index done in 2012, Iceland was considered to be the most peaceful country in the entire global arena.

Do not look bad at locals whenever they leave their own children without chaperone outside of establishments. It’s just the culture in Iceland. Everybody feels safe because peace and discipline are remarkable. The country is very small, with two thirds of population living in Reykjavik, this is a fun fact about Iceland that most don’t know.

 

Iceland’s Pony Is Really A Horse

Don’t be deceived into thinking that Icelandic ponies are really the usual ponies that you picture in your mind right now. Well, the ponies of Iceland are genetically horses. They are, however, of a different breed than the normal horses that we see in farms and in equestrian races. The Icelandic ponies or more appropriately, the Icelandic horses, were brought to the land a thousand years ago by the Vikings.

If you are aware of how certain physical characteristics change in order to adapt to the environment, that’s what happened to these horses. They naturally evolved smaller for better heat retention.

 

They Do Have A Burning Wine

The Icelandic people love to drink a kind of alcohol that they call Brennivin. This is a really strong drink that is not sweetened and is colored bright green. Brennivin may be translated to Burning Wine and is also popularly called Black Death. Make sure to have this drink to get some heat during a cold winter night.

 

Whales Are Legal To Eat And Catch In Iceland

Iceland is among the countries that still legally allow whaling, this is something that must don’t know about Iceland. Despite a hiatus, the commercial whaling activities were permitted again in 2006. There are different groups that push for either the banning or the legalization of whaling depending on where they are coming from. A lot of locals favor whaling because they think that it would cause for the other fish to thrive in the ocean. Environmentalists in the Icelandic Whale Association, however, push for the total prohibition on whaling.

Where do the catches go? The common consumers of these whales are tourists. The other catches are brought to other countries for export.

 

They Celebrate Beer

Maybe, Iceland is not among the conservative countries that prevent alcohol consumption. They even have a Beer Day that is celebrated every March 1.

To give you a history, beer was actually prohibited for three-quarters of a century. It was only on the 1st of March in 1989 that beer drinking had been legally permitted. What great way to celebrate your vacation with beer overflowing! You may want to visit Reykjavik on March 1 to taste their delicious craft beers and see how the locals conduct this festival.

 

Women Empowerment Is Natural In Iceland

Iceland holds the world record of gender equality for having the first female president ever. The democratic nation of Iceland got to successfully elect a woman leader in 1980. Their government and society see men and women as naturally equal.

 

Books Are Heavenly Items

Iceland gives utmost importance to literacy. As they say, they could lose every material thing except for their books. Their literacy rate is actually 100% because education is prioritized not just by the government but also their very culture. In 2011, UNESCO declared Reykjavik as a City of Literature.

We could presume that the love for books stems from their extremely cold weather. Winter days and nights are spent indoors which only means that they have lots of time to read. There are also other cultural wonders in Iceland such as the depth of musical knowledge of every Icelander.

 

Wives Celebrate The Day Of Their Husbands

Whoever heard that only women can be spoiled by their partners? Iceland is a very favorable country for gender advocates. They even celebrate Husband’s Day in this nation! Every January 31, wives treat their husbands to wonderful dinners and other experiences. This is a fun fact about Iceland that many don’t know about.

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