Established in 1863, the National Museum ofIceland has been located in a spacious buildingon Suðurgata since the 1950s. The museum’scollection counts more than two million photographsand 60 thousand objects from differentperiods of Icelandic history, used to documentthe development through the centuries andpreserve the country’s heritage.
The museum was closed for renovationin 1998 and reopened in 2004, completelyrestructured. Today, it offers a permanent exhibitionas well as temporary educational exhibitions.The permanent exhibition, “Makingof a Nation – Heritage and History in Iceland”is focused on Iceland’s history. Divided intodifferent periods, the exhibition’s theme is ajourney through time and gives a good insightinto the country’s culture by displaying a largecollection of unique artefacts from the 9thcentury and onwards. To make the exhibitionmore appealing and informative, various formsof multimedia are used to explain importantmatters and enrich the overall experience. Byemphasising how the past meets the present,the exhibition puts the Icelandic society in ahistorical context and examines how the nationhas developed and how the local lifestylehas changed immensely since the early settlerssailed to the country in the 800s.
In addition to the permanent exhibition, themuseum also plays host to numerous temporaryphotography and detailed research exhibitionsfeaturing items from its large collection.After an instructive walk through history, youcan relax with a cup of coffee at café Kaffitáron the ground floor or visit the museum shop,which stocks souvenirs, books, toy replicas andunique designs by art students, inspired by theitems on display at the museum.Sudurgata 41, 101 ReykjavíkOpen daily from 10:00–17:00Admission on Wednesdays is free
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