Tag Archives: Iceland

23 Reasons Iceland Is The Best Country On The Planet

Iceland is a place of surreal beauty.

The incredible landscape of the island is staggering. Most of the country is an uninhabited moonscape of craters, bright green moss, towering glaciers, volcanoes, hot springs, and fields of lava rock.

It is so other-worldly that it is often the backdrop in sci-fi films. Iceland was the inspiration for Tolkien’s stories and is sometimes even used as practice for moon-landings.

Plus, the people are really, really nice — and I should know since I’m from there.

Here are just a few reasons why Iceland is the most wonderful country on Earth.

1. Because in the mid-1970s Iceland built a geothermal power plant, and accidentally created one of the most visited places in the world: the Blue Lagoon.

Iceland Blue Lagoon

Spillover water from the geothermal power plant created pools in the surrounding lava fields, and when people began to swim in those waters they found that it would heal skin ailments, so they opened it to the public.

2. Because “The Journey To The Center Of The Earth” begins in Iceland. It might be a fictional Jules Verne novel, but you can go to the actual place — it’s called Snæfellsjökull.

Iceland

3. Because Icelandic children save Puffins.

Iceland

Every August, millions of newborn puffins leave the cliffs of the Westman Island to fly over the north Atlantic. But many will get distracted by the lights of the town of Heimaey and wind up on the streets, so people of the town will scoop them up and take them to the seashore to put them back on the right track. Over the years, it has become a special activity for children.

4. Because Icelanders believe in “hidden people” that live underneath rocks.

Iceland

It is said that the often-harsh landscape of Iceland inspired the stories of hidden people. While this may seem like a strange belief, it is actually used most often to halt new construction developments, which helps to conserve the natural landscape of the country (seriously!).

5. Because there are thousands of waterfalls throughout the country. Iceland is home to the most powerful waterfall and the largest waterfall complex in Europe.

Iceland

6. Because the most famous restaurant in the country is a small hot dog stand in downtown Reykjavik.

Iceland

Hot dogs from Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur are basically the national dish of Iceland — not fermented shark.

7. Because it is the land of the midnight sun.

Iceland

To celebrate the summer’s midnight sun, Iceland holds a music festival in Reykjavik called Secret Solstice. The sun doesn’t set during the three day festival.

8. Because downtown Reykjavik looks like a wonderland of different candy-colored houses.

Iceland

9. Because Iceland is ranked as one of “the happiest places on earth,” by the World Happiness Report. It is also ranked as the world’s friendliest country.

Iceland

10. Because it is so safe that the Icelandic police publicly apologized last year for killing someone for the first time in its history.

Iceland

11. Because Iceland is a volcanic island that is constantly growing.

Iceland volcanic ash images

12. Because the terrain of Iceland is so different and vast that it also has the largest desert in Europe.

Iceland

13. Because they still speak Icelandic, which is a language that has been largely unchanged for over a thousand years. In fact, Icelanders today can still read the ancient Sagas.

Iceland

14. Because it is called the best country in the world for women. For six years in a row, Iceland has been rated as the country with the world’s smallest gender gap.

RTXNQYJ

15. Because this is the only traffic you will run into.

Iceland

16. Because Iceland is the only place in the world where you can take an elevator directly into a volcano’s magma chamber.

Iceland

17. Because Iceland has never had a military, or entered into a conflict (expect for a brief conflict that was literally called the “Cod War,” and yes it was about fish).

Iceland

18.Because it is one of the best places to catch the Northern Lights.

Iceland

19. Because comedian Jon Gnarr ran for Mayor of Reykjavik, the capital city, on a joke campaign called the “Best Party” — and actually won. One of his promises was to put a polar bear in the local zoo.

Jon Gnarr

Plus, he dresses in drag to support the pride parade in Iceland:

Jon Gnarr

20. Because nearly all of the homes are heated by geothermal energy.

Iceland

21. Because Iceland has a higher percentage of writers in its population than any other country in the world. Icelanders also published the most books per capita. In 2011, Reykjavik became a UNESCO City of Literature.

Iceland

22. Because Icelanders understand that their country is dark and cold for a lot of the year, so they have outdoor geothermal heated pools open all year round, regardless of the weather.

Iceland

The custom of bathing in hot springs dates back to the Vikings, but today you can find heated outdoor pools scattered all throughout the cities. Icelanders basically treat the outdoor pools like bars — a place where people meet and gossip after work.

23. Because the landscape of Iceland is so lunar-like that both Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong practiced for the moon landing there.

Iceland

(Recognize this place? You may have seen it in Interstellar).

Advertisements

An Ultra-marathon along Iceland’s most famous hiking trail

The trek along Iceland’s most famous hiking trail is called Laugavegur and lies between Landmannalaugar and the Þórsmörk nature reserve. It is usually done in three to five days but annually a bunch of hardcore runners do it only in a matter of hours.

Continue reading An Ultra-marathon along Iceland’s most famous hiking trail

Drone Footage Captures Iceland’s Picture-Perfect Landscapes

The sweeping majesty of Greenland’s neighbor to the east comes alive in photographer Garðar Ólafsson‘s breathtaking compilation of nature footage, Powerful Iceland.

Spanning just shy of five minutes time, the video takes viewers to 13 separate locations throughout Björk’s homeland, over sherbet-hued seas and cascading waterfalls, and into rolling fog banks.

Ólafsson has been shooting around Iceland for the last few months, using a DJI Phantom 3 Professional drone, a Canon EOS 6D, a Sony a7S, and a GoPro. In his video description, he explains, “It’s such an amazing country that everyone should witness with their own eyes.”

And given our track record of Icelandic wanderlusting, from Mount Kirkjufell to Vatnsnes, it’s clear we couldn’t agree more. Check it out below:

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Hvitserkur Rock

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Gullfoss at dusk

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Turquoise Falls, Bruarfoss

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Black Falls, Skaftafell

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Blue Storm, Jokulsarlon

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Blue Ice, Jokulsarlon

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
The mighty Dettifoss

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Sacred Water, Godafoss

Stunning Views of Iceland Captured by Jerome Berbigier landscapes Iceland
Svartifoss, infrared processing

Photographer Jérôme Berbigier moved from France to Australia in 2007 and soon after took up photography. Inspired by a childhood spent near the Atlantic Ocean and the natural beauty of areas surrounding Sydney, it wasn’t long before he was capturing stunning landscapes up and down the Australian coast.

A 2012 trip took him to Iceland where he captured these amazing views of the country’s waterfalls, rivers, and seascapes, some of which he didn’t publish until just this year. You can see much more of his photography on Flickr and over onFacebook. Prints of all his work are available upon request.

A photographer has spent 3 years taking pictures of women to see how beauty is defined around the world

In 2013, 30-year-old photographer Mihaela Noroc quit her job in Romania to backpack around the world full time.

Since then, she has visited every continent except for Antarctica and a total of about 50 countries, photographing hundreds of women along the way for her project, dubbed Atlas of Beauty.

And she’s still going.

More than ever, I think our world needs an Atlas of Beauty to show that diversity is something beautiful, not a reason for conflict,” Noroc explains to Tech Insider. “I hope that the portraits from The Atlas of Beauty can challenge many misconceptions that exist around the world.”

Noroc’s proficiency in five languages helps her speak with subjects either on the street or in their homes, but sometimes she relies on translators or body language alone to communicate.

Currently, she’s looking for funding to continue her journey, and hopes by 2017 to have enough images to publish a book.

You can follow Noroc’s trip and view more work on her Facebook, Instagram and Tumblraccounts. Keep scrolling to see more of her amazing images.

This is Mihaela Noroc posing in Bogotá, Colombia. The 30-year-old photographer travels the world taking photographs of women from different cultures.

Noroc has spent three years traveling for her “Atlas of Beauty” series. This woman was photographed on the streets of Moldova.

Noroc has spent three years traveling for her "Atlas of Beauty" series. This woman was photographed on the streets of Moldova.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“I walk hours every day, in very different environments and I try to find relevant faces and stories for each place,” Noroc tells Tech Insider. This woman was in Peru.

"I walk hours every day, in very different environments and I try to find relevant faces and stories for each place," Noroc tells Tech Insider. This woman was in Peru.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

She also finds subjects online. Sometimes she’s invited back to their homes. Here, an Ecuadorian woman in her living room.

She also finds subjects online. Sometimes she's invited back to their homes. Here, an Ecuadorian woman in her living room.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

This woman is a market seller from Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

This woman is a market seller from Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc photographed women in the Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan. “Although they live in a rough and isolated environment, Wakhi people are amazingly welcoming and friendly,” Noroc says.

Noroc photographed women in the Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan. "Although they live in a rough and isolated environment, Wakhi people are amazingly welcoming and friendly," Noroc says.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

So far, Noroc has been to around 50 countries. Here, a woman smiles in Omo Valley, Ethiopia.

So far, Noroc has been to around 50 countries. Here, a woman smiles in Omo Valley, Ethiopia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

She tries to capture each woman in her surroundings. This woman was snapped in Thorunn, Iceland.

She tries to capture each woman in her surroundings. This woman was snapped in Thorunn, Iceland.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“I prefer to photograph natural faces, without a lot of make-up,” Noroc says. Here, a woman sits at a tea house in Istanbul, Turkey.

"I prefer to photograph natural faces, without a lot of make-up," Noroc says. Here, a woman sits at a tea house in Istanbul, Turkey.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc says this Ethiopian woman is a Muslim, but her best friend is Christian. “While traveling in Ethiopia in February, I admired the way Christians and Muslims got along,” she says. “But in the same country, there are dozens of terrible ethnic conflicts.”

Noroc says this Ethiopian woman is a Muslim, but her best friend is Christian. "While traveling in Ethiopia in February, I admired the way Christians and Muslims got along," she says. "But in the same country, there are dozens of terrible ethnic conflicts."

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc visited Kichwa, Ecuador in the Amazon Rainforest and took pictures of the women there.

Noroc visited Kichwa, Ecuador in the Amazon Rainforest and took pictures of the women there.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

She has been expanding her project to include a wider range and diversity of subjects, both old and young. This picture was taken in Bukhara, Uzbekistan.

She has been expanding her project to include a wider range and diversity of subjects, both old and young. This picture was taken in Bukhara, Uzbekistan.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“In some countries I approach 10 women and maybe only one accepts,” she says. “In other places, everybody accepts.” This was in Maori, New Zealand.

"In some countries I approach 10 women and maybe only one accepts," she says. "In other places, everybody accepts." This was in Maori, New Zealand.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“Usually, in Western countries, I’m never refused [when I ask to take a picture],” Noroc says. This woman poses in Harlem, New York.

"Usually, in Western countries, I'm never refused [when I ask to take a picture]," Noroc says. This woman poses in Harlem, New York.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

An Uzbek woman in Kyrgyzstan.

An Uzbek woman in Kyrgyzstan.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Here, a Buddhist nun poses in Kathmandu, Nepal.

 Here, a Buddhist nun poses in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc photographed this woman in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

Noroc photographed this woman in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

This woman is a computer engineer from Cairo, Egypt.

This woman is a computer engineer from Cairo, Egypt.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Traveling across the Java Sea in Indonesia.

Traveling across the Java Sea in Indonesia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Going to North Korea was like “stepping [onto] a totally different planet, with different rules,” Noroc says. This woman was photographed in Pyongyang, North Korea.

Going to North Korea was like "stepping [onto] a totally different planet, with different rules," Noroc says. This woman was photographed in Pyongyang, North Korea.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

This woman was spotted in Sofia, Bulgaria.

This woman was spotted in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc says this woman in Guangzhou, China, was on her way to the hospital with her mother and husband to give birth.

Noroc says this woman in Guangzhou, China, was on her way to the hospital with her mother and husband to give birth.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A woman standing on a pier in the Baltic Sea, Finland.

A woman standing on a pier in the Baltic Sea, Finland.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A painter, in her studio in Valparaiso, Chile.

A painter, in her studio in Valparaiso, Chile.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A woman poses on the streets of Havana, Cuba.

A woman poses on the streets of Havana, Cuba.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A ballerina displays her talent in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

 A ballerina displays her talent in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“For me, beauty is diversity, [it’s] what makes us unique,” Noroc says. “I also believe that beauty can teach us to be more tolerant.” Below, a woman in the streets of Iran.

"For me, beauty is diversity, [it's] what makes us unique," Noroc says. "I also believe that beauty can teach us to be more tolerant." Below, a woman in the streets of Iran.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A young woman in Cape Town, South Africa.

A young woman in Cape Town, South Africa.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A woman in Oxford, UK.

A woman in Oxford, UK.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Wearing traditional dress in Otavalo, Ecuador.

Wearing traditional dress in Otavalo, Ecuador.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“[In India] I photographed subjects from very different environments,” Noroc tells Tech Insider. “From poor women living in slums to Sonam Kapoor, one of the most popular Indian actresses.” Here, an Indian woman poses at a train station.

"[In India] I photographed subjects from very different environments," Noroc tells Tech Insider. "From poor women living in slums to Sonam Kapoor, one of the most popular Indian actresses." Here, an Indian woman poses at a train station.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A young woman in Medellin, Colombia.

A young woman in Medellin, Colombia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“Many people tell me how the project changed the way they see beauty and diversity,” Noroc tells Tech Insider. A woman on the streets of Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

"Many people tell me how the project changed the way they see beauty and diversity," Noroc tells Tech Insider. A woman on the streets of Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

But her project has received criticism for showing a narrow a definition of beauty. “There is also negative feedback sometimes, but you have to accept it, even if you find it unfair,” she says. Below, a redheaded woman posing in San Francisco, USA.

But her project has received criticism for showing a narrow a definition of beauty. "There is also negative feedback sometimes, but you have to accept it, even if you find it unfair," she says. Below, a redheaded woman posing in San Francisco, USA.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“The internet can make you very popular but also very exposed to different opinions,” she says. “Which is not bad, in the end.” A blond woman outside a home in Latvia.

"The internet can make you very popular but also very exposed to different opinions," she says. "Which is not bad, in the end." A blond woman outside a home in Latvia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A Tibetan woman in the Sichuan Province, China.

A Tibetan woman in the Sichuan Province, China.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

A mother and her son pose in Australia.

A mother and her son pose in Australia.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc hopes to publish an Atlas of Beauty book after another year of traveling. This woman was photographed in Rio de Janeiro.

Noroc hopes to publish an Atlas of Beauty book after another year of traveling. This woman was photographed in Rio de Janeiro.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

“There is much more diversity in the world, waiting for me, and I love to discover it. It’s an infinite treasure,” she says. Below, a woman in Myanmar.

"There is much more diversity in the world, waiting for me, and I love to discover it. It's an infinite treasure," she says. Below, a woman in Myanmar.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc also traveled around her home country of Romania. Here, a ceramic art student in a workshop in Cluj, Romania.

Noroc also traveled around her home country of Romania. Here, a ceramic art student in a workshop in Cluj, Romania.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

Noroc plans to continue to travel the world with just her backpack and camera. Her next stop? Greece.

Noroc plans to continue to travel the world with just her backpack and camera. Her next stop? Greece.

Courtesy of Mihaela Noroc

You can follow her journey and view more of her work on her Facebook page as well as herInstagram and Tumblr accounts.

Advertisements
Lauren's Lip Glossary

Los Angeles. Esthetician. Beauty Enthusiast.

DC Elseworlds

Live your fantasy here

My Life as an Artist (2)

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Green lights ahead

If you could go anywhere you wanted, where would you be headed right now?

Minttea

In the end,we'll all become stories. Write and live a good one.

Live Your Truth

Inspiring positive change via my writing, photography and travel from around the globe.

Chinese Characters Decomposition

Chinese, language, learn, speak, write, textbook, contract, beginner, advanced, intermediate, commercial, marketing, correspondence, characters, radicals, decomposition, business, numbers, numerals, contract, email

Mobile Photography Tips

“Mobile Photography Tips” is the blog run by Alex Markovich. It is so obvious that our smartphones have become, first and foremost, instruments for taking pictures and surfing the net, rather than tools for making calls.

tripx713

A new and Improved Trip!

Flash 365

"Oh! Take a shit, read a story" - My Mother on Flash Fiction

Food for Poetryy

eat, sip, travel, click, pen down poetry = Helps best reflect on life !

Shafa Home

feeling the healing, healing the feeling

The World According to Keitho

Just another WordPress.com weblog

malimachhindra11

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

WiseDrugged

Share Wisdom. Live Abundantly.

Nevada State Personnel WATCH

Exposing the rampant wholesale corruption

subsenergy.wordpress.com/

Wild Wells Ecology

%d bloggers like this: