If you visit Iceland during the Christmas time, you must have to feel the atmosphere with Icelandic people.
In Iceland, there are 13 “Santa Clauses”, they call them Yule lads. A white Christmas is almost guaranteed, and it lasts for 26 days (from December 11th until January 6th i.e., almost every day Christmas in December!). According to Icelandic folklore, the Christmas begin when the first Yule Lad comes to town (13 days before Christmas Eve), and end when the last one leaves. These guys all have their own names which have interesting meaning in English translation, such as Pot-Scraper, Door-Slammer, Sausage-Swiper, Window-Peeper, and Candle-Stealer (Yeh, that’s what they will do when they come to town.) (Find more here)
During this time, you can find the Christmas theme every where in Reykjavík. I saw that on Icelandair when I departed from US.
The Yule-themed airport.
There is also a postbox that you can send a mail or postcard to the Santa Clause.
One thing you should keep in mind is: there are only a few stores and restaurants open during December 24-25. Prepare some foods before that to ensure you have something to eat during Christmas Eve! I saw many foreigner tourists wandering on the street to find something to eat during that time. Although the 10-11 (a 24hr open store) and some restaurants still open, you will need to wait for a long time because there are so many people in line.
The lovely Reykjavík
There are always surprises on the Laugavegur (the main street).
See a Viking guy playing guitar on the street or buy Viking things in gift stores.
An interesting and creative product.
I found many interesting books in the bookstores.
A black comedy cartoon book by Hugleikur Dagsson, an Icelandic artist. He also creates a book Where’s God, which reminded me the one I’ve read when I was a child, Where’s Waldo.
And even a magic book! This book teaches you the meaning of magic spells and how to use it.
You can also find many street arts in Reykjavík. Or buy some beautiful art works.
Caution Unicorns. Very Icelandic!
Bónus is your best friend if you want to save costs during the trip.
And buy some toys to have some fun when you sit on the toilet (seriously).
The hot water in Reykjavík is from the hot spring (that’s why it has a sulfur smell), so you can enjoy the hot spring even at home. Sounds good, huh?
Don’t forget to send the northern light back home! (Notice: the northern night stamps are only available for people live in Europe, but you can use more stamps to send it to other countries (although you’ll pay more)).