Alas there is only so much coolness you can cram into an oval weekend in Iceland. I am very happy with what we did see:
But what haven’t I covered in this series? Quite a bit actually, and here are some awesome Icelanders I feel is worth a mention:
- served as the fourth President of Iceland from 1980 to 1996.
- was both Iceland’s and Europe’s first female president
- the world’s first democratically elected female president
- remains the longest-serving, elected female head of state of any country to date (16 years)
Jón Páll Sigmarsson
- Icelandic strongman, powerlifter and bodybuilder
- the first man to win World’s Strongest Man contest 4 times
Magnús Ver Magnússon
- Icelandic former powerlifter and strongman competitor
- has also won the title of World’s Strongest Man four times
Björgólfur Thor Björgólfsson
- Icelandic businessman and entrepreneur
- the first Icelander to join Forbes magazine’s list of the world’s richest people in 2005
- “Iceland’s first billionaire”
Halldór Kiljan Laxness (born Halldór Guðjónsson)
- writer (poetry, newspaper articles, plays, travelogues, short stories, and novels)
- Nobel Prize in Literature in 1955
- the only Icelandic Nobel laureate
Magnús Örn Eyjólfsson Scheving
- writer, actor, producer, entrepreneur, and athlete
- creator and co-star of the children’s television show LazyTown (Sportacus)
- received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Icelandic 2006 Edda Award ceremonies for his work as founder and creator of the LazyTown franchise.
- starred in the 2010 film The Spy Next Door in which he portrayed a Russian villain
- instrumental jazz-funk fusion band, formed in 1977
- biggest hit single “Garden Party” (1983)
Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson
- musician, art director, and allsherjargoði (chief goði) of Ásatrúarfélagið (“the Ásatrú Association”)
- pioneer in the use of computers when composing music and cleared the path for new ideas in recording and arrangements
- singer-songwriter (experimental, electronic, trip-hop, art pop, underground dance, classical, and avant-garde)
- 30 singles on Top 40 on pop charts around the world
- five BRIT Awards, four MTV Video Music Awards, one MOJO Award, three UK Music Video Awards, 21 Icelandic Music Awards and, in 2010, the Polar Music Prize from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music in recognition of her “deeply personal music and lyrics
- This quote shows why I love Björk: “Come on, I’m from Iceland; I don’t do hip-hop.”
Hafþór Júlíus “Thor” Björnsson
- professional strongman, actor, and former professional basketball player
- also known for his role as Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane in the HBO series Game of Thrones
Food and drink:
Reykjavik is the home of several fantastic restaurants, and I especially recommend lamb and seafood. There is, however, one Icelandic specialty that you might want to avoid, unless you are feeling particularly adventurous: Kæstur hákarl. This is fermented Greenland Shark. You cannot eat the shark fresh, as it is poisonous. Allowing the shark to fully decay and cure, removes the toxins from the flesh, making it edible. Well, edible might be a tad strong. It won’t kill you in the fermented state – but whether or not you can get it past your uvula is a different discussion.
Perhaps if you chase it with Brennivín, Iceland’s signature distilled beverage. It is an aquavit, made from fermented grain or potato mash and flavored with caraway. After the prohibition ended in 1935 this product was introduced. In order to warn against consumption, the label was black picturing a skull in white, and it was therefore nicknamed “svarti dauði” (Black Death).
And with that, this series from Iceland is done. I hope I get to make another one someday.
I’ve been nominated for “The Quote Challenge” by the lovely AutumnChocolateBooks over on isawithoughtiwrote: Thank you for this challenge, which I am happy to bring forward. And who doesn’t like a good quote anyways?
- For three consecutive days, you have to post a quote.
- Acknowledge the blogger who has nominated you.
- Each day you have to nominate three different bloggers.
- Let the bloggers know you have nominated them.
I will now nominate three of my fav bloggers, hope you are up for it! (And if you are not, then that is perfectly fine, I still love you guys!)