The country with the most wrong name, or 10 interesting facts about Iceland
1. Paradoxical name
The name of the island translates as “ice country”. Ironically, the name of neighboring Greenland means “green land”. These names would change, and there would be a complete correspondence to the climate of each island. And so it turns out that a country where glaciers occupy only 11% of the territory is called icy, and Greenland, in which greenery grows on barely 15% of the entire territory, is called green.
2. Even climate
The climate of Iceland is what is called “winter and summer in the same color”. Icelanders can wear the same clothes all year round. And all because winter is warm here (the temperature rarely drops below -5 ° C), and summer, on the contrary, is cold (the maximum you can count on is +22 ° C). But you won’t feel the heat in any case – the wind on the island is incredibly strong and blows all year round. Therefore, a hat on the head is an indispensable part of every Icelander’s clothing.
3. Only a quarter of the territory is habitable
Iceland is the largest volcanic island in the world. Active, dormant and extinct volcanoes occupy more than half of the territory. The entire middle of the island is a deserted and uninhabitable area. People are settled only along the coast and the valleys of the mountains adjacent to the coastline.
4. There are no mosquitoes and trees in Iceland
The reason for the absence of mosquitoes on the island is extremely simple – mosquitoes simply do not have time to complete their life cycle in conditions of sharp and frequent weather changes. Well, what is not a paradise for a typical middle-class Russian.
And as for the trees, there are very, very few of them. In the middle of the island, they do not grow due to volcanic activity and the specific composition of the soil. And there are no trees in the relatively rich and fertile coastal part because they were cut down by the Vikings in the Middle Ages, so they still cannot grow. The Government of the country is, of course, making every effort to restore the forest cover, but so far without success.
5. Unique nature
Nature is the main treasure of Iceland. Everyone has heard about geysers. The most famous of them, the Great Geysir, just gave the name to all the hot springs of the planet. The concentration of volcanoes per unit of the island’s territory is impressive. And what names do these volcanoes have! Eyjafjallajekull alone, who caused a stir throughout Europe in 2010, is worth it. The pride of the country and the dream of any tourist is also a unique geothermal lake “Blue Lagoon”, a huge pool of hot water in the middle of a lava field, the temperature in which is +37 ° C all year round.
6. High life rate
Icelanders, along with the Japanese, are the main centenarians of the planet. 83.2 years is the average life expectancy in Iceland, and this is a very decent result. Only the Japanese live longer – 84.4 years. Interestingly, the Icelanders themselves cannot explain the reason for their longevity. But scientists are inclined to two factors that are the same in Japan as in Iceland. The first is the climate due to the fact that it is an island. The second is a fish–rich diet.