From Iceland — Word Of The Issue: Farfuglaheimili

Word Of The Issue: Farfuglaheimili

Published July 14, 2017

Word Of The Issue: Farfuglaheimili
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Iceland may be on everyone’s bucket list, but did you know that it’s also a firm favourite with migratory birds? Each year, thousands of species stop off en route to sunnier climes. Enter “farfuglaheimi,” directly translated as “home of migratory birds.” In Iceland, the word has much more poetic meaning, describing the country’s youth hostels. The word is as likely old as the hosteling movement, which began in Germany more than 100 years ago. You’ll be hard-pressed to find our feathered friends in your typical Icelandic hostel, though—instead you’ll be greeted by a mix of ethnicities and cultures, as expertly captured by this unlikely metaphor.

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