Showing posts from January, 2024

Winter in Iceland

The higher the latitude, the greater the difference between summer and winter. Iceland is only just below the Arctic Circle, so in midwinter it is dark nearly all the time. Daylight is only a few hours. In practice dawn turns into dusk at lunchtime.  As you can imagine, this has a depressing effect on locals. They go to work in the dark; they come home in the dark. It was even worse in the old days when most Icelanders lived on isolated farms. They essentially stayed indoors all winter in their living quarters above the animals whose heat kept them warm. They knitted, they read, they milked the cow, they moved hay about. They hibernated. Because of its proximity to the Arctic Circle, in theory, the sun is visible for a short period every day in Iceland, even at midwinter. But that is not true for the town of Ísafjördur in the West Fjords, which is wedged between high mountains. There they last see the sun on 16 November and it returns on 25 January. They have sólarkaffi - coffee and