International days and localized traditions

All around the world there are traditions and customs, in some countries there are their own traditions. In Iceland there are e.g: June 17th, seaman’s day, and Þorrablót.  Some festive days are related to the christian religion such as Bolludagur, Sprengidagur, Öskudagur, Easter and Whitsunday. Below will be classified by international days.


Bun Monday

Bolludagur is one of the last days before lent.  It is an old tradition to eat much before the fast.  This is the day the people of Iceland eat cream puffs with jam in large amount.  Traditionally children all over Iceland arm themselves with a ,,Bolludagsvöndur’’ a paper paddle specially made for the occasion, spank their parents with a stick while saying, bolla, bolla, and are given one such roll for every bolla.

On a bursting day – sprengidagur – people eat salted meat and yellow peas, pea soup.  Big portion of meat and soup.

Ash wednesday – öskudagur – is  on Wednesday and is the last day in the three celebration days.. This is  the Icelandic version of Halloween. Children dress in costumes and walk from store to store, seeking candy and they are expected to earn their candy by singing a song.

During  easter it is a tradition in Iceland to eat a chocolate egg stuffed with candy, but sometimes the eggs are hidden and  there is organized orienteering and the kids have to find the eggs.

Pentecost is a religious holiday, celebrated on the seventh Sunday after Easter. Monday after whitsunday is a bank holiday in Iceland, In Iceland it is common for children to have their confirmation  on pentecost, with Easter being another important date for confirmations.

On new year is Icelandic people go very crazy in shopping fireworks and celebrating new year. Eating a dinner and going to Bonfires is also very common. Áramótaskaupið, The New Year’s comedy, is an annual Icelandic television comedy special, which is an important part of the New Year celebration for most.

Localized traditions in Iceland


Þorrablót food

Today þorrablót are common events among Icelanders everywhere and can be anything from an informal dinner with friends and family to large organised events with stage performances and an after-dinner dance.

Sumardagurinn fyrsti is called the first day of summer because it was the official beginning of the summer but it was also to celebrate, that the long, dark and cold winter night were over. Kids are given gifts on this day.

Sjómannadagurinn. Iceland is one of the biggest fishing nation in the world and fishery has always been a big part of our economy.  That’s why we celebrate the Fisherman’s day.  This day is also celebrated in small fishing villages around the country. People come together and have fun.

17th of June – national day. This day was the birthday of Jón Sigurðsson who was the leader of the 19th century Icelandic independence movement


Lobester festival is held in Höfn

Town festivals. All around Iceland there are local town festivals.  One of them is the lobster festival in Höfn.  It’s a weekend carnival of preparing and eating lobster in different ways. There is a lot of happening for people, a lot of fun for the children.

Verslunarmannahelgi – Bank Holiday. Thousands of people attend large outdoors festivals, people do a lot of camping and enjoy the summer vibes and listening to a lot of live music. This is the most known weekend for family’s to go on a trip.

Þorláksmessa is on December 23rd. We are honoring Þorlákur Þórhallson the bishop of Skálholt. People finish to buy christmas presents and decorating the christmas tree.


Written by Björk and Patrycja

Presenation about International days and localized traditions


Árni Björnsson. 1932 saga daganna. Mál og menning Reykjavík