Theme Week Iceland

Monday, 24 October 2016 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Theme Weeks

Cheers! © flickr.com - Christine Zenino/cc-by-2.0

Cheers! © flickr.com – Christine Zenino/cc-by-2.0

Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic Ocean. It has a population of 332,529 and an area of 103,000 km2 (40,000 sq mi), making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe. The capital and largest city is Reykjavík. Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country are home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava 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. Its high latitude and marine influence still keeps summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate. Icelandic culture is founded upon the nation’s Scandinavian heritage. Most Icelanders are descendants of Germanic and Gaelic (Celtic) settlers. Icelandic, a North Germanic language, is descended from Old Norse and is closely related to Faroese and West Norwegian dialects. The country’s cultural heritage includes traditional Icelandic cuisine, Icelandic literature and medieval sagas.

Swedish Viking explorer Garðar Svavarsson was the first to circumnavigate Iceland in 870 and establish that it was an island. He stayed over winter and built a house in Húsavík. Garðar departed the following summer but one of his men, Náttfari, decided to stay behind with two slaves. Náttfari settled in what is now known as Náttfaravík and he and his slaves became the first permanent residents of Iceland.

Cabinet of Iceland and Prime Minister's Office in Reykjavik © Guðmundur D. Haraldsson/cc-by-sa-3.0 Parliament of Iceland in Reykjavik © Cicero85/cc-by-2.5 Bridge over continents © Reykjanes/cc-by-sa-3.0 Harpa Reykjavík Concert Hall and Conference Centre © flickr.com - Rob Young/cc-by-2.0 Grindavík - Blue Lagoon Main Building © Ivan Sabljak/cc-by-sa-3.0 Cheers! © flickr.com - Christine Zenino/cc-by-2.0
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Cabinet of Iceland and Prime Minister's Office in Reykjavik © Guðmundur D. Haraldsson/cc-by-sa-3.0
The economy of Iceland is small and subject to high volatility. Iceland has a mixed economy with high levels of free trade and government intervention. However, government consumption is less than other Nordic countries. Geothermal power is the primary source of home and industrial energy in Iceland. Fisheries and related sectors—in recent years labelled “the ocean cluster”—are the single most important part of the Icelandic economy, representing an overall contribution to GDP of 27%. Iceland is the second biggest fisheries nation in the North East Atlantic behind Norway, having overtaken the United Kingdom in the early 1990s. In the years 2003–2007, following the privatization of the banking sector under the government of Davíð Oddsson, Iceland moved toward having an economy based on international investment banking and financial services. It was quickly becoming one of the most prosperous countries in the world but was hit hard by a major financial crisis. The crisis resulted in the greatest migration from Iceland since 1887, with a net emigration of 5,000 people in 2009. Iceland’s economy stabilised under the government of Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, and grew by 1.6% in 2012.

Iceland’s economy has been diversifying into manufacturing and service industries in the last decade, including software production, biotechnology, and finance; industry accounts for around a quarter of economic activity, while services comprise close to 70%. The tourism sector is expanding, especially in ecotourism and whale-watching. On average, Iceland receives around 1.1 million visitors annually, which is more than three times the native population.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on Guide to Island, VisitIceland.com, Icelandic cuisine, whale watching, The Greatest Vending Machine in the World!, Wikivoyage Island, Wikitravel Island and Wikipedia Island. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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