Located in central 101 Reykjavík, this public park is considered the midmost point of the downtown and a public gathering place since 1930. During warm, sunny weather Austurvollur square becomes particularly lively as the outdoor cafes lining the square fill. On sunny days locals will flock to Austurvöllur Public Park for a picnic, a beer with friends and bathing in the sun. Some choose to sit on the grass, while others have no other options since the cafés surrounding the square are completely packed. In December, a Christmas tree arrives, a gift from fellow Scandinavians in Oslo.
But Austurvöllur has also played an important role in Iceland's history. In the park you will find a statue of the leader of Iceland’s independence movement, Jon Sigurdsson. Iceland’s Independence Day is held on June 17th, Jon Sigurdsson’s birthday, and morning ceremonies in Reykjavik begin in Austurvollur square. Jón is Iceland's National Hero, every year on June 17th, which happens to be his birthday, Icelanders pay their respect to him. In December the mayor of Reykjavík lights up the Oslo Christmas Tree, a ceremony which marks the beginning of the Christmas season for many Reykjavíkans.
Located by the square is Alþingi, Iceland's parliament. Every year, politicians and ministers walk from Dómkirkjan Church as a ceremonial "opening" of the parliament. This has often been the stage for mostly peaceful protest. After the financial crash of 2008, Austurvöllur was the main location for "Pots and Pans Revolution".
Austurvöllur is often featured in walking tours of Reykjavík, where visitors can dig deeper into Icelandic history and culture. Austurvöllur Square and Public Park Add to favorites"
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