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Short-term Rentals, Long-term Effects

Reykjavík from above, housing crisis Iceland

As the Reykjavík peninsula rumbles with volcanic activity, the world’s eyes are once again drawn to Iceland’s nature. This free publicity and the uptick in tourist visits it generates come with a price – and local renters are footing the bill.By now, Icelanders know what to expect in the aftermath of volcanic activity. When Eyjafjallajökull […]

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Wall of Fire

Reykjanes peninsula eruptions

Sunday, bloody Sunday On Sunday morning, January 14, around 4:30 AM, Ari Guðmundsson’s phone rang. The Reykjanes peninsula was trembling. Three and a half hours later, it rang again. This time it was Víðir Reynisson, the head of Iceland’s Civil Protection Department. A fissure had opened and an eruption had begun.The long, earthen lava barriers […]

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A Different Story

Karitas Hrundar Palsdottir

It’s early Saturday morning and normally I would have slept through the few hours of scarce brightness that bless us this time of year. During winter, it is far too easy to hibernate through the gloominess of Iceland’s longest season. But this Saturday was different.  Let’s read and chat The sun was slowly creeping its […]

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Artist on the Run

Sölvi helgason

October 1843. Staðarsveit farmstead in Snæfellsnes, West Iceland. It was early evening, and an odd yet highly entertaining young visitor had just finished regaling the appreciative farmhands with his witty remarks and amusing anecdotes. He clearly enjoyed telling them his tall tales as well as sharing his vivid descriptions of Iceland’s natural wonders and deadly […]

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In Pursuit of Ptarmigan

ptarmigan hunt iceland

It’s 6:00 AM and the obsidian darkness lingers outside my windshield. I arrive in the Kársnes neighbourhood of Kópavogur, park my car, and hop into Kristján Andri Einarsson’s black Jimny. The hunter greets me with a boyish smirk, ready for today’s adventure. He is wearing a camouflage cap on his greying auburn hair. Until this […]

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The Christmas Craftsman

laufabrauð christmas iceland

In the weeks leading up to Christmas, families and friends in Iceland come together to make the traditional fried and decorated wafer known as laufabrauð (leaf bread). Rolled out thin, decorated, and fried, the preparation of these treats is an event that brings together families, often with multiple generations taking part. But you won’t find […]

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Making Space

Ninna Pálmadóttir film director

Scene: A grey, Icelandic country road on a grey, Icelandic day. A middle-aged, bearded farmer drives a middle-aged, dusty jeep down the turn-off leading to his farm. After a short distance, the gravel road submerges into a lagoon half a metre deep. The farmer drives on without a second thought. He only stops when he […]

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The Night Before Admittance

ármann jakobsson short fiction

Ármann Jakobsson is an Icelandic author and academic who has written about paranormal activity, class distinction, the brutality of romantic longing, miscellaneous fears, and the generation gap, mainly in the Middle Ages. When he was ten, Mum read him the Moomin books, even though he was more than capable of reading them himself. But he […]

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Out of Harm’s Way

grindavík evacuation

I’ve been a photographer and photojournalist for 33 years. It’s an incredible job and I think I’m good at it. Like any job, it can sometimes be difficult, even lousy. But it’s not just a matter of going to a particular spot to take pictures. The magic of the profession lies in capturing connections – […]

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Skeletons in the Closet

björn sveinsson

Saturday, May 18, 1946 was a pleasant spring morning in Denmark’s capital, Copenhagen. The war, with all its horror, had ended a year previously and western Europe was gradually moving toward a civil society based on human rights, justice, and democracy while simultaneously rebuilding and ridding itself of the last vestiges of Nazi occupation. At […]

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