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5 BEST CHURCHES TO VISIT IN ICELAND

Icelandic architecture embraces simplicity, blending modern innovation and cultural heritage and harmoniously merging the man-made with nature. A popular way to see and capture this is by searching for Iceland’s unique and picturesque churches. You will spot many churches all over the country, but there are a few notable ones worth planning your itinerary around.

Best Churches to visit in Iceland

 

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Reykjavic - Best Churches in Iceland

HALLGRÍMSKIRKJA, REYKJAVÍK

 

Let’s start in the capital city with Hallgrímskirkja, which translates to Church of Hallgrímur. The building was completed in 1986 and named after the Icelandic poet Hallgrímur Pétursson. Hallgrímskirkja, sitting on a hilltop in Reykjavík, is not only the tallest church in Iceland but also one of the tallest buildings in the country. The design resembles the unique landscape of Iceland, taking inspiration from the basalt columns, glaciers and mountains.

 



Black Church in Iceland - Búðakirkja, Snæfellsnes Peninsula

BÚÐAKIRKJA, SNÆFELLSNES PENINSULA

 

While Búðakirkja may be small in size, this little wooden church draws travellers from far and wide, mesmerised by its dark presence. The first church in this location was built in 1703 but later deconsecrated by royal decree from the King of Denmark. In the mid-1800s, a local woman, Steinunn Sveinsdóttir, lobbied to have the church rebuilt. After being denied by local church authorities, she appealed to the King, who approved the reconstruction. She engraved her victory on the door handle; “The church is raised with no subsidy from the spiritual fathers, by Steinunn Sveinsdóttir”.

 


Rainbow church in Iceland - Seyðisfjarðarkirkja in Seyðisfjörður

SEYÐISFJARÐARKIRKJA, SEYÐISFJÖRÐUR

 

Seyðisfjarðarkirkja is the centrepiece of a colourful, idyllic town in East Iceland, a slight detour from the popular Ring Road. However, despite being off the main tourist route, this church has become an iconic Iceland landmark, enticing visitors into the small, peaceful town. The timber church is painted light blue and situated at the end of the very photographable Rainbow Street.






Turf church in Iceland - Víðimýrarkirkja in Varmahlíð

VÍÐIMÝRARKIRKJA, VARMAHLÍÐ

 

A beautiful example of old Icelandic architecture can be found tucked away in the farmlands of Northern Iceland. Víðimýrarkirkja was built in 1834, but the church bells date back even further to 1630. However, it is believed that a church has stood on this spot since Christianity was adopted in Iceland around the year 1000. The little turf church is in the region of Skagafjörður, which is an area with a lot of significant Viking history. Since 1936, it has been owned by the National Museum of Iceland.

 


Best Churches in Iceland - Vik

VÍK Í MÝRDAL CHURCH, VÍK

 

The town of Vík is located in Southern Iceland, on the popular tourist route, the Ring Road. It is surrounded by some of the country’s most well-known natural attractions and is a good base for visitors exploring the area. Located high up on the hill in town is the Vík Í Mýrdal Church. It has a clean design, with white walls and a red roof, making it a striking feature against the backdrop of the mountain ranges, black sand beaches or rough ocean.




 

PLANNING A TRIP TO ICELAND?

 

If you are booking a trip to Iceland and want to visit these top 5 churches along with other iconic landmarks, then check out our 10-Day Iceland Road Trip Itinerary.

 

 

OUR GOOGLE MAPS

 

When planning our travel destinations, we pin our bucket list of sites to see and recommended places to eat and drink on Google Maps. We are then never lost for ideas when travelling, and can easily share these lists for our friends and family to use too.

 

Click here to see our Google Maps for 5 Best Churches to Visit in Iceland.


 

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