Þingeyrar and Þingeyrarkirkja church

  • Þingeyrarkirkja in Húnavatnssýsla

In most regions in Iceland, you will find places and farms that played a significant role from times of settlement up until the 20th century. Areas that were homes of chieftains and housed regional assemblies. Place of worship at pagan times, a great farm with good soil to harvest, a place that had a church, a place that had easy access from all directions, a place with various natural perquisites, a learning center in medieval times and  a home of a monastery when Catholicism was the official religion in Iceland.  And sometimes, as was the case of Þingeyrar, all the above.  For the north-west region, Þingeyrar was always one of the most important places in the region. It is a place of immense historical importance.  So when you visit Þingeyrar, you are getting in touch with Icelandic history from the times of settlement. And when you are standing on the small hill, you will have a good idea why Þingeyrar was important.

The beautiful church ÞIngeyrarkirkja

The beautiful church ÞIngeyrarkirkja

Learning center

In medieval times in Iceland, interest in education and learning was quite prevalent. Places that wrote stories gathered information and taught religion, science, history and other classics at that time, following contemporary knowledge.  In those learning centers, Icelanders created their most valuable historical assets, the Sagas.  In Þingeyrar some of the most crucial Sagas were written as ÞIngeyri was one of the most creative and active learning centers.  The monastery was, of course, crucial and was the first one that was established in Iceland after the conversion from heathenism to Christianity in the year 1000.  From its founding in 1133, the monastery was one of the most critical institutions in Iceland and a small hamlet placed on the hill until its abolition in 1554, around the time Iceland converted to Lutheranism.

Þingeyrarkirkja church in Húnavatnssýsla

The beautiful church ÞIngeyrarkirkja

The beautiful stone church at Þingeyrar

Quite noticeable from the main road Nr. 1 the Ring Road in Iceland is the beautiful stone church that now stands on the hill at Þingeyrar.  Not only is the church noticeable but also one of the more interesting buildings in Iceland. It took 14 years to build and was consecrated in 1878.  The church is also one of the first stone buildings in Iceland and took a considerable effort to bring the stones to the hill and also to finance the project in the middle of the 19th century.  The church is exceptionally well maintained on the outside as well as the surrounding area.  On the inside, it is almost sensational with its many historical artifacts and items that are traced back to the monastery. A beautiful small service center is by the church dedicated to the history of Vatnsdalur and the surrounding area. Of course about the Saga Vatnsdælasaga that was written probably in the 12th century at Þingeyrar.

Finding your way to Þingeyrar

For anyone traveling on the Ring Road in the north-west region, a visit to Þingeyrar and the church Þingeyrarkirkja is worth it.  It is also quite simple.  After you drive through the small town of Blönduós, you drive about 18 kilometers or about 11 miles.  There you take a turn left, or north, on the road Nr. 721 Þingeyrarvegur.