On June 17, 1944, the Republic of Iceland was formally established and Iceland became independent after being under Danish rule. The day has been celebrated as the Icelandic National Day ever since.
June 17 was chosen because it is the birthday of Jón Sigurðsson (1811-1879), the leader of Iceland’s independence movement.
Usually, the National Day is celebrated across the country with parades led by marching bands and scouts following as color guard.
Ceremonies often include an address or poetry reading by a woman dressed as fjallkonan ('The Mountain Woman'), wearing Iceland’s national dress.
Fjallkonan represents the Icelandic spirit and nature and became a symbolic figure in Iceland’s fight for independence.