Beer in Iceland


From 1915 to 1989, beer was banned in Iceland. However, since then country has made up for lost time and now has many excellent, locally brewed beers, including a great selection of my favorites, porters and stouts.

(For more information on why beer was banned for so long in Iceland – while wine and hard liquor were prohibited for only six years and twenty years, respectively – check out this article.)


Not Quite Lost in a Forest

When the Vikings arrived in Iceland, the country is reputed to have been fairly green, with around 60% of the land covered in grass, trees, and bushes. In the centuries that followed, most of the trees disappeared due to deforestation and nibbling sheep, resulting in the country’s well-known moon-like landscape. There have been efforts at reforestation, but because of the poor soil quality, the trees are still pretty tiny.

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Harpa Music Hall


Reykjavik’s Harpa music hall and conference center is right on the water and stunning, inside and out. According to the guide of this walking tour of Reykjavik, there was some controversy about whether to finish the partially-constructed hall after the banking collapse in 2008. However, now that the building is finished and acknowledged as lovely, she says that pretty much everyone claims to have been in support of it.

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