Reykjavik Rings In the New Year 2013
It was amazing to watch on screen, when approximately 200,000 Icelanders started massive fireworks demonstration, to welcome 2013 in Reykjavik, Iceland.
The homepage of Mila Reykjavik, welcomed the New Year 2013, by sharing a live stream of Iceland’s unique fireworks display in the city of Reykjavik and allowed viewers from around the world to watch how the locals in Reykjavik celebrate New Year’s Eve.
At the stroke of midnight, Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík, night turns to day when hundreds of fireworks illuminate the city’s skyline. Viewers will get to experience the exploding rockets and dancing lights sparkle and shimmer as it happens.
Mila also maintains other incredible webcams, which are widespread across Iceland, and can all be viewed live 24/7 via its website. These webcam locations include the Blue Lagoon, Thingvellir, Akureyri, Hekla, Jökulsárlón, Reykjavik, Lake Tjörnin and Austurvöllur in Reykjavík
On the link below can you watch how Icelanders welcomed 2013 in Reykjavik, December 31. 2012
(This is a playback from New Year’s Eve December 31. 2012 webcam feed, overlooking the skyline of Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík. The webcam captured the attention of hundreds of thousands wishing to experience New Year’s Eve in Reykjavík, watching night turn to day as the fireworks light up the city’s skyline.)
Christmas and New Year
In Iceland, Christmas is a very important, family oriented holiday, celebrated everywhere in society. Families, friends and colleagues make the season special by having Christmas parties, baking cookies, drinking jólaglögg (mulled wine) and decorating their homes. The festive season starts late November but the main day of celebration for Icelanders is Christmas Eve, 24 December.
By late November, streets and buildings in Reykjavik are illuminated with Christmas lights and people start frequenting traditional Christmas buffets at the many restaurants in Reykjavík.
On the first Advent Sunday, a large Christmas tree at Austurvöllur square in the city centre of Reykjavik is illuminated, accompanied by music, choir singing and a visit by the 13 Icelandic Yule Lads to Reykjavik (like Door-slammer, Spoon-licker, Candle Beggar and others).
Starting from 12 December, Icelandic children lay a shoe on their window sill each night. Legend has it that, each night through to 23 December, one of the thirteen Christmas lads comes into town each evening and leaves a small gift in good children’s shoes (naughty children have to be content with a cold potato!). When all of the Christmas Lads have visited, it is time to start the actual Christmas celebrations
To give you a little insight to the true Christmas spirit in Reykjavik, please view the video below.
New Year’s Eve in Iceland is a spectacular celebration. Festivities traditionally start with a family dinner, followed by bonfires (brenna), where family, friends and neighbors gather to enjoy the warm fire and celebrate with music.
Majority of Icelanders watch to the New Year’s comedy (Áramótaskaupið) which is an annual Icelandic television comedy special, that is an important part of the New Year. It focuses satirically on the past year, and shows little mercy for its victims, especially politicians, artists, prominent business people and activists.
According to Icelandic folklore, there are several magical traditions that are supposed to happen on New Year’s Eve: cows are thought to be able to talk, seals take on human form, the dead rise from their graves and elves move from one house to the next.
At midnight, a brilliant display of fireworks is unleashed. Iceland does not have restrictions on fireworks that many other countries do, so the entire population of Reykjavik, approximately 200,000 people, creates their own fireworks show.
After midnight, the nightclubs and pubs in Reykjavik remain open for business, allowing the celebration to last well into the morning.
New Year’s Day (1 January) tends to be more quiet. Many families enjoy another festive dinner in the evening and it is quite popular to welcome in the New Year by attending a New Year’s ball.
For visitors in Reykjavik – What to do
There is plenty on offer for visitors at this charming time of year. Shop for some unique gifts in Reykjavík city centre, visit the Christmas markets, check out the Christmas-themed museum exhibitions and explore the winter landscape around Reykjavík – who knows perhaps you can catch a glimpse of the northern lights?
Enjoy celebrative dinners at some of the best restaurants in Reykjavik, tasting delicacies such as hangikjöt (smoked lamb served with potatoes and a white béchamel sauce) or laufabrauð (delicious thin and crispy “leaf bread”).
And party like never before on New Year’s Eve!
Scandinavia a way to go … wish you a Happy New Year