Beautiful Iceland

A pair of Icelandic horses greet each other in a pasture near Lake Myvatn in Iceland. In the background is the cone of Hverfjall (Hverfell) Volcano, which last erupted about 2,300 years ago.

An Icelandic Male Sheep strikes a pose, showing off his beautiful curved horns. Most sheep in Iceland roam freely. This sheep and his buddies graze in the willow woodlands and meadows in northern Iceland, near Husavik. This area has many areas of lava, where moss, lichen and plants cover the rocks and grass grows among the rocks. Descended from the same stock as the Norwegian Spelsau, Icelander sheep were brought to Iceland by the first settlers. They’ve been bred for a thousand years in a very harsh environment. The fleece of the Icelandic sheep is dual-coated and occurs in white and a variety of other colors, including a range of browns, grays, and blacks. A sheep farmer told us that they round up the sheep in late fall, usually on horseback or on a vehicle. The sheep are then sorted in a circular corral with pie-shaped segments for each farmer, and each sheep farmer takes his flock to his farm. The sheep are then shorn of their fleece and spend the winter in a sheep house or barn. In March they are shorn again, and in May are released to graze as free rangers in the mountains and meadows.

The current Silfrastadakirkja Church was built in 1896, replacing the old church from 1842 that now is in Arbaejarsafn Museum in Reykjavik. The “new” church is special in many ways. It is one of the smallest if not the smallest church in Iceland. It is also octagonal. It sits next to a farm house. . Like many of the small churches in Iceland, Silfrastadakirkja is white with a red roof. Blue is also a popular roof color. Each Icelandic church has unique features.


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