Theory of Everything film poster

Icelandic Composer Nominated for BAFTA

Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson has been nominated for a BAFTA for the music he wrote to the film The Theory of Everything. This is Jóhann’s second nomination for a major award—last month he was nominated for a Golden Globe.

New Year's Eve in Reykjavík

Icelanders Bid Farewell to Christmas

January 6 is known as Þrettándinn or ‘the Thirteenth’ in Iceland. According to the Icelandic calendar, it marks the 13th and last day of Christmas—the first being Christmas Day—and also the day when the last of the 13 Yule Lad brothers returns to his cave.

Páll Stefánsson at Holuhraun eruption

IR Editor Named Sony Ambassador

Iceland Review editor and photographer Páll Stefánsson has been named Sony Country Imaging Ambassador for Iceland, made official on Sony’s website in the last few days. He is one of 17 Country Ambassadors and 11 Global Ambassadors for Sony worldwide.

Art Museum Claims Public Toilet

Reykjavík City Council agreed in a meeting last month to grant the Living Art Museum free usage of the public women’s bathroom on Bankastræti in the city center as an exhibition space. The public bathrooms were closed seven years ago.


Top 10 Columns of 2014

As in past years, the topics covered by Iceland Review Online’s columnists in 2014 were diverse and while four of the top ten news stories of 2014 were about volcanic eruptions, only two of last year’s Top 10 columns were eruption-related.

Bonfire New Year's Eve Reykjavík

Bonfires Prepared for New Year’s Eve

Sixteen bonfires are being prepared for New Year’s Eve in Iceland’s capital region, of which ten will be in Reykjavík. The largest will be at Gufunes in Grafarvogur, Geirsnef by the mouth of Elliðaár river, Ægisíða in Vesturbær and Rauðavatn in Norðlingaholt.

IR0115 cover

New Issue of Iceland Review Magazine Out

The January-March issue of Iceland Review magazine is out. The spectacular ongoing eruption at Holuhraun is again on the magazine’s cover with the issue including a feature about our trip to the site in mid-October by Zoë Robert, accompanied by images by Iceland Review editor and photographer...

The Christmas tree in downtown Reykjavík

The Day of Relaxation

Today is Annar í jólum, or the ‘Second Day of Christmas.’ in Iceland After eating to excess on December 24 and 25, many families have leftovers for lunch, enjoy their gifts and relax on December 26.

Christmas in Reykjavík.

Smoked Pork and Christmas Presents

Tonight is Christmas Eve. Christmas in Iceland officially begins when the bells of the Reykjavík Cathedral chime at 6 pm. By then families have gathered around the dinner table and afterwards they open presents and Christmas cards.

Stinking Skate and Shopping Fury

Today is the last day before Christmas, known as Þorláksmessa (‘The Mass of St. Þorlákur,’ Iceland’s patron saint). The day is celebrated by eating skata, putrefied (or fermented) skate and buying the last Christmas presents.

Traditional Icelandic food

Winter Solstice Celebrated in Iceland

The longest night of the year was last night, the winter solstice beginning at nightfall yesterday, at 3:30 pm in Reykjavík, and ending at sunrise at 11:23 am today. Ásatrúarfélagið, followers of the old Norse religion, will celebrate the event tonight.


Icelandic Author’s Book Best French Translation

Icelandic author Hallgrímur Helgason’s 2011 novel Konan við þúsund gráður (La femme à 1.000°; ‘The Woman at 1000°’) was named the best literary translation by the association of translators in France (Syndicat national des traducteurs professionnels) on Saturday.

Spoon Licker

Spoon Licker Arrives in Town

Spoon Licker (Þvörusleikir in Icelandic), the forth of the Yule Lads, arrives in town today. He is notorious for stealing Þvörur (a type of a wooden spoon with a long handle) to lick.

Skyr Gobbler

First Yule Lads Arrive

The Yule Lads, the Icelandic version of Santa Claus, one of the differences being that there are 13 of them, have started coming down from the mountains one by one to treat well-behaved children to presents.

Icelandic flag

Embassy Staff Twist Tongues

The American Embassy in Iceland has released a video of some of its staff trying out a few select Icelandic phrases and tongue twisters.

Candle Beggar

Find out About Icelandic Christmas Today

Today at 12.00 Dr. Terry Gunnell, professor of Folklore at the University of Iceland, will give an illustrated presentation in English on the beliefs and traditions surrounding Icelandic Christmas, past and present.

a director shooting a film

Icelander up for Golden Globe

Icelander Jóhann Jóhannsson has been nominated for A Golden Globe award for his music in the film The Theory of Everything. He says it is very pleasing that his work with the film’s director should have led to such an honor. The film has been nominated for four Golden Globes.