Culture in Iceland
It was the love of freedom and adventure that inspired many Vikings to make their homes in Iceland in the ninth century AD. Icelanders are of Scandinavian origin, with some early mixing of Celtic blood. Freedom and respect for the individual are still at the heart of twentieth-century Iceland - a parliamentary democracy and a showcase of political stability.
Visitors will find that Iceland is largely a classless society and that it has a strong literary tradition. A deep interest in Iceland's cultural heritage has been an inseparable part of the Icelandic character and identity for generations. It stretches as far back as the Icelandic sagas - medieval literary works which are regarded as classics in world literature. Creative and performing arts are flourishing in Iceland and it is remarkable to see such a thriving cultural scene in a country of only 300,000.
Icelandic culture is just as diverse as the landscape. There is far more to Iceland than just unspoiled nature. Iceland is also famous for its writers, composers, actors, and artists and musicians - some of which include Halldor Laxness, Jón Leifs, Kristján Jóhannson, Sigur Rós and Björk. Attractions like the Reykjavik Art Festival, the museums and the first-class restuarants draw visitors from all around the globe.
Icelanders harvest a lot of their food directly from the surrounding nature. This includes seafood, mushrooms, berries, reindeer, lamb and all sorts of other game and wildlife. In recent years Icelandic cooks have learned how to turn the countries basic edible resources into delicious gastronomic dishes. Chefs have picked up international trends of combining excellent local raw ingredients with modern techniques and recipes. The results are astounding, with Icelandic restaurants picking up international awards every year.