Thingvellir National Park, Iceland

May 27, 2002


Provided by: Jim Foster, NASA/GSFC
Summary authors & editors: Jim Foster

The above photograph was taken in east-central Iceland, in an area referred to as Thingvellir, or the assembly plains. This is where the first Norse settlers arrived in Iceland in 890 and about 40 years later organized their first parliament, called "Althing." Thingvellir lies on the Mid Atlantic Ridge, which is the meeting point of two tectonic plates, the North Atlantic Plate and the Eurasian Plate. On the picture above, a portion of a graben, or sunken land between two plates, is shown. Even though Iceland is known as the "land of fire an ice," be advised that fog and rain may very well accompany you on your travels through this beautiful country.

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