Þingvellir þing = parliament, vellir = fields Parliament Fields
The most important place in icelandic history. The birthplace of a nation. In the year 930 AD Alþingi, the oldest parliamentary institution in the world, was founded. The Alþingi met yearly at the summer solstice, where the laws of Iceland were recited to all of the gathered people, and where disputes were decided. In the year 1000 the lawspeaker Þorgeir Ljósvetningagoði made Christianity the official religion of Iceland.
At Þingvellir the independence of the Republic of Iceland was proclaimed on June 17, 1944.
More than 60,000 people celebrated the 1100th anniversary of the first settement in Iceland, at Þingvellir in 1974.
Beside the old church at Þingvellir is the national burial ground.
Þingvellir has also been a National Park since 1928, because of the special tectonic and volcanic environment. The continental drift can clearly be seen in the cracks and faults which are traversing the region, the biggest one Almannagjá. This also causes the often measurable earthquakes in the area.