Iceland

Volcanoes and geysers, glaciers, Northern Lights, whale watching ... it is known as the land of fire and ice as there are 32 volcanic systems with 130 active and inactive volcanoes. Glaciers cover about 11% of the island, Vatnajokull is Europe's largest glacier and the largest ice cap being the size of Rhode Island in the USA.

FIVE things we did not know about Iceland:

  1. Iceland is the smallest nation ever to qualify for the world cup in football.
  2. Icelanders talk while they are breathing in.
  3. Family names do not exist: Women don’t take up their husband’s last name when they get married. Instead, they keep their last name throughout their lives. However, their last names usually come from their father’s first name. Their “family name” is therefore made of the name of their father followed by the word “son” or “dottir” (daughter).
  4. Population in Iceland is very small so everybody is related, more or less. To avoid genetic problems, people can check on a website if they are too genetically close to someone before having kids.
  5. Gender equality facts: Since the year 2018, it has actually been illegal to pay women less than men for the same job (which is, of course, how it should be). Iceland had the first democratically elected female president in the world, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir. As well as the first only gay Prime Minister, Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir. 

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