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Iceland Country

Iceland Explanation ::-- Iceland History||Iceland Geography||Iceland Administration||Iceland World Heritage Site||


Iceland described as the Republic of Iceland, is a European island country in the north Atlantic Ocean on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It has a population of about 320,000 and a total area of 103,000 km2. The capital and the largest city is Reykjavík with the surrounding areas in the southwestern region of the country being HOME to two-thirds of the country's population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior mainly consists of a plateau characterised by sand fields, mountains and glaciers, while many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle.

Republic of Iceland

According to Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in AD 874 when the chieftain Ingólfur Arnarson became the first permanent Norse settler on the island. Others had visited the island earlier and stayed over winter. Over the following centuries, Norsemen settled Iceland, bringing with them slaves of Gaelic origin. From 1262 to 1918 Iceland was part of the Norwegian and later the Danish monarchies. Until the 20th century, the Icelandic population relied largely on fisheries and agriculture. Industrialisation of the fisheries and Marshall Aid brought prosperity in the years after World War II. In 1994, Iceland became party to the European Economic Area, which made it possible for the economy to diversify into economic and financial services.
Iceland has a free market economy with relatively low taxes compared to other OECD countries while maintaining a Nordic welfare system providing universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens. In recent years, Iceland has been one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world. In 2010, it was ranked as the 17th most developed country in the world by the United Nations' Human Development Index and the fourth most productive country per capita. In 2008, political unrest occurred as the nation's entire banking system systematically failed.
Icelandic culture is founded upon the nation's Norse heritage. Most Icelanders are descendants of Norse (particularly from Western Norway) and Gaelic settlers. Icelandic, a North Germanic language, is closely related to Faroese and some West Norwegian dialects. The country's cultural heritage includes traditional Icelandic cuisine, poetry, and the medieval Icelanders' sagas. Currently, Iceland has the smallest population among NATO members and is the only one with no standing army.

There are around 1,300 known species of insects in Iceland, which is a rather low number compared with other countries (over one million species have been described worldwide). The only native land mammal when humans arrived was the Arctic Fox which came to the island at the end of the ice age, walking over the frozen sea. On rare occasions, bats which have been carried to the island with the winds can be seen, but they are not able to breed there. Polar bears have also shown up through the history, yet they are just visitors, and no Icelandic populations exist. There are no native or free living reptiles or amphibians on the island.


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How To Make Money In Iceland ??



Religion in Iceland

Icelanders enjoy freedom of religion under the constitution of Iceland, though the Church of Iceland, a Lutheran body, is the state church. The National Registry keeps account of the religious affiliation of every Icelandic citizen. In 2005, Icelanders were divided into religious groups as follows:

  • 80.7% members of the National Church of Iceland.
  • 6.2% members of unregistered religious organisations or with no specified religious affiliation.
  • 4.9% members of the Free Lutheran Churches of Reykjavík and Hafnarfjorður.
  • 2.8% not members of any religious group.
  • 2.5% members of the Roman Catholic Church, which has a Diocese of Reykjavík (see alsoBishop of Reykjavík (Catholic)).

The remaining 2.9% includes around 20–25 other Christian denominations while around 1% belong to non-Christian religious organisations. There are about 100 Jews Living in Iceland, they gather for holidays. The largest non-Christian denomination is Ásatrúarfélagið, a neopagan group.

Religious attendance is relatively low, as in the other Nordic countries. The above statistics represent administrative membership of religious organisations which does not necessarily closely reflect the belief demographics of the population of Iceland. According to a study published in 2001, 23% of the inhabitants are either atheist or agnostic.

iceland map

Iceland Tourist Destination

Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream, thermal heat from underground hot springs and by the people who call this Northern land HOME. Get ready for a warm welcome when you visit this land of sagas and surprises.

There are just a little more than a quarter of a million people who call this place their HOME (293.577 by the latest count). You'll find manyIcelandic names ending in -dottir or -son which means -daughter or son. The phone book lists people by first name and you'll find a HOME listing for the president - by first name as well! Imagine a family gathering where you introduce yourself as Louise, Richard's daughter or Joseph, Matthew's son and you'll have a good idea of the friendly way visitors are treated in Iceland.

For natives of Iceland, the entire country is a large extended family. Last names are based on the father's, and recently the mother's, first name. That helps to explain why, when you travel to Iceland, you are treated as a guest of the family!

Despite the name, Iceland is not all that cold and forbidding, especially in July and August when temperature averages climb to a balmy 11C or 50F with almost continuous daylight 24/7.

Iceland is just a few hours away from the east coast of North America and even closer to Western Europe. The short travel time makes it an ideal destination for a long weekend getaway. From the warm thermal pools of its southern capital,Reykjavik, to its pristine waters and pollution-free atmosphere - Iceland is the "cool", inexpensive place to travel for those seeking a quick and very interesting holiday.