News May 23, 2012

National Day Festivities on June 17

Since 1944, the National Day of Iceland has been celebrated annually on June 17th to commemorate when Iceland declared full independence from the Danish crown and formed the Republic of Iceland.  June 17th became the official day of the holiday because it was the birthday of Jon Sigurdsson, Iceland’s prominent leader in the Icelandic Independence Movement.  Each year Iceland celebrates on a bigger and better scale for the country’s national holiday.

Iceland’s capital, Reyjavik, hosts Independence Day parades, dances, street theater, and many other events throughout the day. Of course the day wouldn’t be complete without the infamous Fjallkonan, the woman of the mountain, who wears the national costume and recites a poem to the crowd. She represents the spirit and nature of Iceland and is a symbol of Iceland’s fight for independence. Following her are many other speeches, musical performances, and activities. After the formal celebrations are over, more informal parties are thrown in almost every town and village across the country.

To find out more about Iceland’s National Day click here.