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12 Amazing Facts About Iceland [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2018-5-14 12:33:26 |Display all floors
(By Vinodk Via Oddee)


From its harsh cold weather to fiery volcanoes, Iceland is one place you need to put on your bucket list. Check out 12 fascinating facts from "the land of ice and fire."

1. Iceland has no mosquitoes (Image Source: Newspapertown)

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There are no mosquitoes in Iceland. Amazing, considering that they breed in places like Antarctica and Greenland. All these countries have similar climatic conditions—there shouldn’t be any reason why Iceland shouldn’t have mosquitoes, either.

But strangely, it is the Icelandic climate that prevents mosquitoes from surviving. In colder countries, they breed by hibernating in the winter and hatching in the spring. However, the weather in Iceland is so unpredictable that mosquitoes are unable to make it. (Hey, no Chikungunya!)

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2. Iceland has the largest number of internet users per population (Image Source: Wtfintheworld)

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100% of Iceland’s population had access to the Internet in 2016. Even advanced countries like the U.S. and the UK don’t have that—in fact, their numbers don’t even come close!

In mid-2000, only 89% of the population had access to the interwebs, but by 2016, every single citizen of Iceland had internet. Perhaps it’s time people call Iceland the land of ice, fire, and the World Wide Web.
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3. They believe in the existence of Elves over there (Image Source: Meetupstatic)

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Elves are undeniably cool characters and are also a race created from the imagination of great minds. But you'd be hard-pressed to meet an Icelandic native who doesn’t believe in their existence.

Stories about their mischievous antics are a standard part of the day to day lives of the people there. Most of the people think that while elves are peaceful, they become threatened when you try to disturb their home.

According to Icelandic mythology, elves live in rocky areas and possess magical powers. Belief in these fictional characters is encouraged there—more opportunities open up for you especially if you are a musician, according to the famous Icelandic singer Bjork.

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4. The comedian who became the mayor of Reykjavik (Image Source: Independent)

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When Jon Gnarr ran for mayor, some thought that he might have a chance but his ingenious campaign won the hearts and minds everyone. The comedian created his own political party, and one of his campaign promises was to break every single campaign promise he made. He came, he saw, he conquered and led the city for four years. After his term, his party was disbanded, and when asked about its future, he said that it was a surprise party and never a political one. Gotta love this guy!
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Post time 2018-5-14 12:37:50 |Display all floors
5. The first Parliament in Europe was formed in Iceland (Image Source: Wikimedia)

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The oldest Parliament in the world belongs to the land of ice and fire. It was held as an outdoor assembly called Althing in Þingvellir, Reykjavik in 930 AD. The country's most powerful leaders met there to discuss their plans and serve justice to any who needed it. In the beginning, everyone was invited to attend the event.

From the date of its inception, the assembly has been held there every single year until the country fell under the monarchy of Denmark. During this time, Icelanders had to give up their right to create and change laws.

The assembly was disbanded, but the tradition didn’t disappear. The Althing gave way to the High Court which continued to hold regular sessions for upholding justice in Icelandic society.

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6. There are almost no natural forests in Iceland (Image Source: Glzy8)

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Though the country has extremely fluctuating harsh climates, Iceland is one of the most deforested countries in the world. It’s not that trees never grew there, but when the Vikings made Iceland their home, they cut them down like nobody’s business.

It is said that in the 9th-century almost 25% of Iceland had birch woodlands, but today that number has shrunk to 1%. Though a lot of organized forestry is occurring, it’s still weird to see a country with very little natural foliage.

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7. Names are very important in Iceland (Image Source: Dichvuhangkhong.biz)

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Icelandic people don’t have ancestral surnames, as their names only reflect the fact that they are the son/daughter of their parents.

While most countries place significance on the family name of an individual, in Iceland, your first name is the important one. There are some strict laws on the types of names one can choose in Iceland. This is done to p  reserve the culture and traditions of the country. If a name is not officially accepted, an appeal must be made to the Icelandic Naming Committee which will review the situation and grant their approval or disapproval.

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