BY JANET STEINBERG
“People are always asking me about Eskimos,
but there are no Eskimos in Iceland.”
They shouldn't call Iceland “Iceland”. The misnomer of this Scandinavian island dates back more than a millennium (874 AD) to Ingolfur Arnarson, a Norwegian Viking frequently credited with discovering the island. By naming it Iceland, he hoped to discourage future voyagers from settling on this green and appealing island. Throughout the centuries, unsuccessful attempts have been made to rename the country.
Once thought to be a cold barren place sans people, this Arctic land that has no snow and ice in the summer has been ranked second on the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA) list of the ten hottest destinations for 2019. Berries, vegetables and flowers grow in many places and from March to September the sun shines on the entire region for at least part of the day. At the onset of summer, the sun never sets and white nights illuminate the annual Arctic Open Golf Championship that begins at midnight sometime during the month of June. To quote Jack Nicklaus: “There’s probably more golf played in Iceland than most places in the world. They play 24 hours a day in the summertime and the northern part is warmer than the southern part.”
Iceland, just 625-miles west of Norway, is a craggy land of fire and ice...where steam and snow are side by side...where erupting volcanoes, boiling geysers and bubbling hot springs lie next to glistening glaciers and ice fields. This land of pure untamed nature is etched with craters of slumbering volcanoes that pockmark an eerie landscape so lunar-like that America's moon-mission astronauts trained there.
ASTRONAUTS TRAINED ON ICELAND’S LUNAR-LIKE LANDSCAPE