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A Deeper Look into Icelandic Society with Alda Sigmundsdóttir: Part 1 – Ep12

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to chat with Alda Sigmundsdóttir, an Icelandic author and journalist that has her thumb on the pulse of Icelandic society. Even though Alda was born in Iceland, she grew up in Canada and lived in a few different countries. The insight that she shared with me about Iceland and its people was enlightening and sometimes surprising. We had such a great time chatting, that we ended up talking for an hour. In order to keep these episodes relatively short, I...


The Rise of Yoga in Iceland – A Conversation with Baddý Hinriksdóttir – Ep.11

I had the pleasure of chatting with Bjarney "Baddý" Hinriksdóttir, a yoga instructor and yoga studio owner in downtown Reykjavík about yoga in Iceland. Like many Western countries, Iceland has seen a significant rise in the number of people practicing yoga. With just a quick Google search you can easily find 4 or 5 studios in the Reykjavík area. What makes Baddý’s studio unique is that her classes are only taught in English and it is smack dab in the middle of the downtown area. When I first...


The State of Mental Health Care in Iceland with Dr. Gunnar Ingólfsson – Ep.10

For episode 10 of the All Things Iceland podcast, I had the pleasure of chatting with Dr. Gunnar Örn Ingólfsson, a practicing psychologist in Iceland. We spoke about the state of mental health care in the country. Even though Iceland has consistently ranked as one of the happiest countries in the world, according to The World Happiness Report, the country ranks as the fourth most depressed nation in Europe. I find that quite shocking and I wanted to get better insight into why there is such...


Fascinating Birds Found in Iceland with Dr. Mummi Gudmundsson – Ep.9

Show Notes I had the opportunity to chat with Dr. Guðmundur A Guðmundsson, who has a MSc and PhD degree in Ecology and is a researcher at the Icelandic Institute of Natural History. During the interview you will hear me say Mummi when I speak to Dr. Guðmundsson. It is a nickname commonly used in Iceland for men with the name Guðmundur. Some of the topics I discussed with Mummi during our interview for the All Things Iceland podcast include the fascinating birds that can be found in Iceland,...


Is the South Coast of Iceland Worth Visiting? Ep.8

Show Notes Besides the Reykjavík area, the South Coast of Iceland is by far the most popular part of the country that is featured on social media, blogs and in one of Justin Bieber’s music videos. People from around the world are flocking there in droves. According to the Icelandic Tourism Board’s statistics for 2017, during the winter 55% of the travelers that come to Iceland traveled to the South and in the summer, a whopping 71% of travelers to the country went to that region. It is...


Derek Allen: Hyper-polyglot Living in Iceland – Ep7

Show Notes I had the pleasure of chatting with Derek Allen, a hyper-polyglot from the United States who is studying Icelandic and lives in Reykjavík. During this lively interview, you will hear about how many languages Derek speaks, how he maintains the languages that he has learned, his tips for language learners, what it is like living in Iceland, particularly as a person of color. You will also hear some other random facts about him. Just to give you an example of a random fact, Derek...


Summer in Iceland: All You Need To Know – Ep6

Show Notes When does summer in Iceland start? While most Icelandic people agree that the weather is more "summery" in June, the beginning of summer in Iceland is officially celebrated on the first Thursday after April 18th. In Icelandic, this day is called Sumardagurinn Fyrsti and it is an official holiday. The ironic part is that, historically, the weather is not very good on that day. If you had the opportunity to listen to Episode 5 of the All Things Iceland podcast, which is titled -...


How to Survive an Icelandic Winter – Ep5

Show Notes During this episode of All Things Iceland, I give you the low down on what you can expect during an Icelandic winter. While long, dark winter nights can sound awful, you can easily survive it by knowing what to expect and by using some of the coping mechanisms I share in this episode. How long is an Icelandic winter? According to the Old Norse calendar, which was split up into two seasons (winter and summer), winter in Iceland is 26 weeks long. The first day of summer is the first...


6 Reasons Why is Iceland So Popular – Part 2 – Ep 4

Show Notes As I mentioned in part one of the "6 Reasons Why Iceland is so Popular" episode, this amazing country has many reasons for why people are flocking to it. In this episode, I share my final three out of six reasons. Make sure you check out the first three reasons I shared in the last episode of the All Things Iceland podcast. 4. Iceland is a Convenient Place To Catch a Connecting Flight If you are traveling from North America to mainland Europe and vice versa, Iceland is in the...


6 Reasons Why is Iceland so Popular – Part 1 – EP3

Show Notes Iceland's popularity has been booming over the last 10 years. In fact, it is hard to find a "must-see" destination list without this amazing country being featured. While there are many reasons why this small, island nation located in the Atlantic ocean is so popular, I am sharing my top six. I split this list into two parts to keep the episodes relatively short. Also, the list is in no particular order because I believe that each of the reasons that I share continue to have a...


History of the Icelandic Language: A Brief Overview – EP2

Show Notes How the Icelandic Language Came to Be The history of the Icelandic language dates all the way back to the 9th century, when settlers, mostly from Norway, came to live in Iceland. What was spoken at that time was Old Norse and this eventually evolved into Old Icelandic. Like many cultures, the language was passed on through spoken word before being preserved in the form of text. Impressively, the oldest preserved text in Icelandic was written around 1100. If you are interested in...


Jesse Byock Interview: Author of the Viking Language Series – EP1

Interview Show Notes I had the pleasure of interviewing Jesse Byock, professor of Old Norse and Medieval Scandinavian Studies at UCLA and Háskóli Íslands for the All Things Iceland Podcast. We sat down in his lovely apartment in Reykjavík to chat about his book “Viking Language 1: Learn Old Norse, Runes, and Icelandic Sagas”. I met Jesse at the 2017 Polyglot Conference in Reykjavík, Iceland after seeing the captivating cover of his book (below) that was laying on the table. I ended up having...