Skálholt and Its Cathedral in Iceland

Not far off of what is known as the Golden Circle in Iceland is Skálholt and a collection of buildings and artifacts, which includes Skálholt Cathedral. The current cathedral was opened in 1963 as the tenth church to open on the same site.

Skálholt and Its Cathedral in Iceland

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Skálholt was one of the most important places in Iceland from 1056 until 1785, as it was one of the two episcopal sees of Iceland — the other being Hólar. Additionally, the first official school in Iceland known as Skálholtsskóli was founded at Skálholt in 1056 to educate members of the clergy.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Because I visited towards the end of the day, I did not catch the sun shining through the stained glass windows on either side of the church, which fills the interior with vivid color.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

The mosaic altarpiece at the front of the church was created by Nína Tryggvadóttir, who is a female artist in Iceland.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Þorláksbúð is a controversial replica which was built on the ruins of the old Þorláksbúð; and its construction was completed in 2012.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

The old Þorláksbúð was a temporary chapel which was built after Árnakirkja church burnt down in 1527.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

From Skálholt, you can catch a breathtaking view of Hekla Volcano, which is one of the most active volcanoes in Iceland. It has erupted greater than 20 times since the year 874.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

You can also catch other views of the landscape from Skálholt, which includes the Ölfusá River.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Many choirs from both within and outside of Iceland perform in the Skálholt Cathedral because of its excellent acoustics and artistic surroundings.

Skálholt Cathedral Iceland

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Summary

Skálholt and its cathedral are located off of highway 31 approximately 92 kilometers east of the city center of Reykjavík. Driving time is approximately one hour and 14 minutes each way.

Skálholtskirkja is open daily from 9:00 in the morning through 6:00 in the evening. Besides services which are held every Sunday, morning and evening prayers occur on weekdays; and you can find out additional information by clicking here. Give yourself a minimum of 30 minutes to enjoy Skálholt and its cathedral.

All photographs ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

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