For some people, it might seem odd to go to Iceland when it is as dark and gloomy as it gets, but wait until you see the mysterious tradition to light up the gravestones at cemeteries around the country, among many others—Lágafellskirkja church in Mosfellsbær, about 20 mins east of Reykjavik. The custom is a symbolic one when the days are the shortest in the year. You will see this during Christmas time and New Year, which is another reason to visit Iceland now!
The cemeteries in Iceland look stunning in the darkness, with candles and lights sparkling among snowy slopes. Check out the Hólavallagarður churchyard that dates back to 1832. The church is located at Suðurgata in western Reykjavik, not far from Tjörnin Lake.
Decorating gravestones with lights and paying respect to those who passed away is an important part of the Yuletide season in Iceland. During a few weeks in December, particularly on December 24 and New Year’s Day, families get together at cemeteries near the graves of their loved ones and light up candles or more modern electric Christmas lights. These lights symbolize that the dead ones are remembered and missed. This custom shows how important is the role of the family in the culture of Iceland.