IcelandSummer Study Tour

The Study Tour to Iceland gives you insight into the religion and worldview of the pre-Christian Scandinavians, as reflected in primary medieval texts and poems from the Viking Age (793-1066). Our pre-departure course allows us to build a foundational idea of the identity of  Viking women before launching into our on-site investigation of our subject matter’s source.

On this Study Tour, we visit Viking landmarks and historical sites to get a glimpse into the culture and value of the Viking Age. We experience the amazing nature of Iceland with its glaciers, spouting geysers, volcanoes, and magnificent waterfalls, a multitude of birds and cavorting whales just offshore. These signature natural phenomena serve as our point of departure in examining the Icelandic Sagas. We build an understanding of their meaning and authorship from the inside out, as we cultivate a relationship with the land in which they are set, the time in which they were written, and the landscapes that lend visual substance to their poetry.

Tour Objectives

  • Gain insight into the social, cultural, and historical world of leading ladies in the sagas, and the general status and power of women in Iceland during the Viking Age
  • Develop an understanding of Viking Age religion and culture
  • Identify the role of the Viking Age in contemporary Icelandic consciousness

Possible Activities

  • Visiting the National Museum, Manuscript Museum, and Saga Museum
  • Excursions to lava fields, massive waterfalls, geyser parks, and other natural spectacles
  • Following the path of the Laxdaela and Vinland Sagas and the Golden Circle through Western Iceland
  • A geothermal bathing experience at the Blue Lagoon