Ash Wednesday

Although Iceland converted from Catholicism to Lutheranism in 1550, almost 500 years ago, Ash Wednesday has survived here as a holiday. It is primarily a day of celebration for children, where they dress up in costumes, sing songs in businesses and shops and receive sweets as a reward. This year, almost four thousand children went to Kringlan shopping center to sing, knock the cat out of the barrel, which is a Danish custom that first came to Akureyri and then south to Reykjavík. The barrel, which is now actually a box full of sweets, took a few good hits before it broke, much to everyone’s delight. Of course, Icelandic Times / Land & Saga went to Kringlan to experience the atmosphere.

This one came all the way from Mexico

An heavenly angel

A North-American police officer patrolling Kringlan

Interesting creatures from all over the world


To beat the cat…..

Colourful Ash Wednesday

out of the barrel

Photographs & text: Páll Stefánsson
22/02/2023 : A7R III, A7RIV : FE 1.4/24mm GM, FE 1.2/50mm GM