The natural divisions and places of tourist interests are further indicated in the Iceland map. The exciting and thrilling Iceland vacation presents the tourists with a unique opportunity to explore the vast expanse of unexplored terrains of Iceland. Iceland is famous for its adventurous sporting events of snowmobile and angling.
Independence, Republic and Government:
Althing, the parliament of Iceland, incorporated in the year 1845 was initially acted as advisory body to the Danish King. At present, it comprises 63 members, elected every four years by the people. In Iceland the Presidential office is a ceremonial office, serving as a diplomat, figure head and head of the state all together. However, the President of Iceland can cancel a law of the parliament and place it for a national voting.
The Prime Minister of Iceland is the head of the government. He and his cabinet are responsible for the executive part of the government. The cabinet, which is appointed after the general elections by the president, is usually done by the political party leaders. However, when there is indecision among the party leaders the president himself appoints the cabinet. After a plebiscite, with the help of America Iceland became independent on June 17th, 1944. In 1942 Sveinn Björnsson appointed non parliamentary government and he became the first President of Iceland in 1944. In the republic period the government of Iceland had always been coalition government. In 1980 Iceland elected the first female president Vigdís Finnbogadóttir who continued to hold the office till 1996. All the elections regarding the town council, parliament and presidency are conducted every four years; so the next election will be due in 2008. The current government of Iceland is a coalition between the right wing Independence Party and the social democratic Alliance after the elections of May 2007. It is led by the Prime Minister Geir Haarde of the Independence Party
Culture and Heritage:
Iceland has been the birth place of rich culture and heritage. Musical bands like Sigur Rós, Quarashi, múm, The Sugarcubes and so forth have created an indigenous music for the country and her neighboring nations. Iceland takes pride in harboring a Nobel Prize winner in literature called Halldór Laxness. The countrymen did enormous progress in other spheres like painting, woodcarving and manuscript illumination. Sports have always been a passion for the Icelanders. Inhabitants take pleasure in swimming, angling and hunting, horse riding, river rafting and so forth. Eiður Guðjohnsen is the most renowned football player of Iceland.
Traditional cuisines play a major role in the culture and heritage of Iceland. Apart from the ‘Þorramatur’ (the national dish of Iceland), other popular dishes among the locals is singed sheep head jam, pickled ram's testicles, singed sheep heads, liver sausage, putrefied shark, dried fish with butter and so on. In the entertainment world too Iceland has made her own name. There are opera houses, Ballet Company, orchestra and ample performers who are carrying the culture of the country on their shoulder. The monuments, ancient structures and churches enhance the heritage and culture of Iceland.