Þingvellir: Where History and Nature Meet in Iceland!

One of the key stops along the Golden Circle in Iceland (a nice day trip from Reykjavik) is Þingvellir (or “Thingvellir”, as the first letter is a “th”-ish sound), in the Þingvellir National Park.  It is a site of great importance both because of historic and geological reasons.  It was here than in the 10th century, Iceland’s parliament was set up less than 100 years after the island was populated by settlers from what is Norway today  And it stayed there until the very end of the 18th century!  Setting up this parliament was key in creating a unique Icelandic sense of nation.

The park is also the home of the largest lake in Iceland and it contains the crest of the rift valley in the mid-Atlantic.  As you walk in down a paved path, a large cliff wall on your left frames the scene.  It is an imposing wall!

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, Samsung Galaxy

As you walk down on it, you are shown to the spot where parliament was founded.  It is barely noticeable except for the flag pole and the framing put in place on the actual site – oh, and all the tourists!

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, Samsung Galaxy

See the flagpole in the distance?

Standing on the spot gives one a great view down to the valley.  But walk down to the water, perhaps the church and admire the cliff walls from below.

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, Canon EOS Rebel

Looking up to the site of the first parliament!

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, church

Church below the parliament site

But stop and admire the natural beauty of the site!Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, nature

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, nature

Awesome land!

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, nature

Beautiful!

Þingvellir, Parliament, Iceland, Golden Circle, history, signficant, travel, photo, nature, lava, rocks

The strata of lava point to the incredible geological uniqueness of Iceland

It was one of the first “sights” I visited in Iceland (after the Blue Lagoon) and it definitely help frame the country for me by marrying its history with its incredible landscapes!

Comments

  1. Lourdes says:

    Bellisimo pais! Beautiful country! Awesome pictures!

  2. I went to Iceland last year and did the Golden circle when I saw this park too – isn’t the scenery just magnificent?! I loved the geyser as well – had never seen one before and was just amazed!
    Shikha (whywasteannualleave) recently posted..Why I started Travel Blogging – Reflections One Year OnMy Profile

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