Viking World museum

Viking World (Icelandic: Víkingaheimar) is a museum in Njarðvík, Reykjanesbær, Iceland.

The museum opened on 8 May 2009,[1][2] followed by a formal opening on Icelandic National Day, 17 June.[3][4] The director was Elisabeth Ward;[5] the building was designed by Guðmundur Jónsson.[1][2]

Viking World has on permanent display the Íslendingur, the replica of the Gokstad Viking ship which in 2000 was sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to L'Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland, for the celebrations of the millennium of Leif Ericsson's voyage and then to New York. The ship was returned to Iceland and placed on exhibit in the open air until being transferred to the new museum in autumn 2008.[6] She is suspended one and a half metres in the air so that visitors can walk underneath her hull and see the workmanship.[7] There are also stairs and a walkway into the ship, enabling visitors to climb aboard and sit or walk around.

The museum also houses the exhibition Vikings — The North Atlantic Saga from the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C..[2][3][6] On 1 December 2010, a 2-year temporary exhibition with materials on loan from the National Museum of Iceland opened with a heathen reburial ceremony for a body excavated at Hafurbjarnarstaðir in 1868.[5] The exhibits include materials from recent archaeological excavations.[8]

The museum came under new ownership in June 2015, with Sveinn V. Björgvinsson as managing director[8] and Björn Jónasson as business manager.[9] The museum at that time had four employees, two full-time; the new management hoped to expand it to attract travelling exhibitions and possibly to add a café.[8]


  1. Víkingaheimar - Viking World to be opened,, April 2009.
  2. Víkingaheimar opna á morgun, Víkurfréttir 7 May 2009 (in Icelandic)
  3. Kremena Nikolova-Fontaine, Visiting the World of Vikings, Iceland Review 13 July 2009.
  4. "Víkingaheimar formlega opnaðir á þjóðhátíðardaginn", Vísir 18 June 2009 (in Icelandic)
  5. "Heathen Buried in Iceland, 1,100 Years Post-Mortem", Iceland Review, 2 December 2010.
  6. Jeff Blumenfeld, You Want to Go Where?: How to Get Someone to Pay for the Trip of Your Dreams, New York: Skyhorse, 2009, ISBN 978-1-60239-647-0, p. 29.
  7. Skipið Archived March 4, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, (in Icelandic)
  8. "'Víkingaskipið Íslendingur einhver fegursti hlutur á Íslandi'—segir Sveinn V. Björgvinsson framkvæmdastjóri Víkingaheima", Víkurfréttir, 20 July 2015 (in Icelandic).
  9. Ágúst Borgþór Sverrisson, "Heillandi Víkingaheimar suður með sjó", Dagblaðið Vísir, 2 October 2015, (in Icelandic), archived at the Wayback Machine on 4 March 2016.

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