Seems there is an endless array of tiny little festivals in every minuscule place in Iceland by the looks of it. Quite a number of them are hastily assembled festivals to get a piece of the tourist crowds but one weekend in particular is bona fide regarding festivals in Iceland.
Verslunarmannahelgi is the Icelandic version of a bank holiday but with a twist; it is supposed to be about people in the service sectors taking the whole weekend off and letting off steam. Except that is not happening. In fact, salespeople are more likely to be working than not.
But it is a fabulous weekend to stay in Iceland for visitors. First off you have a variety of different outdoors festivals to choose from all across the country. Most are pretty basic stuff. Tent, loads of booze and younger crowds trying to enjoy the wind and the rain that more often than not accompany these festivals. And you get to listen to the hottest bands in Iceland each time although this is not always something to brag about.[blockquote type=”blockquote_line” align=”right”]a fabulous weekend to stay in Iceland for visitors[/blockquote]
Sadly there is no overview of festivals taking place each year since they change a lot. However, a few have been held for long enough to recommend as a given. Thus, if you are planning a stay in Iceland over the first weekend in August make room for a party.
Take note Verslunarmannahelgin can on occasion also happen the last weekend in July.
- Tjodhatið in Westman Islands – The biggest one by far each year with loads of musicians, giant bonfire and takes place in a fantastic old volcanic crater. Homepage.
- Mudball festival in Isafjordur – Not really a festival but a giant party. It revolves around a soccer competition taking place in a mud field and makes for a messy but fantastic show which you can partake in. Homepage.
- Braedslan in Eastern Borgarfjordur – Keep in mind there are two Borgarfjordur in Iceland. This one takes place in the East part of the country in a village of 100 people. Seeing over a thousand people gather for a weekend of music, dancing and drinking is a sight indeed. Homepage.
- Ein med ollu in Akureyri – Ein med ollu translates as “one with everything” and takes place in the town of Akureyri. It is marketed as a family friendly festival but is not really much fun although the town is nice. Homepage.