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Situatied only 100 km (62mi) from the Arctic Circle, Akureyri is known for some of the best summer weather in Iceland. The midnight sun provides 24-hour daylight during June and July. In addition to the northernmost botanical garden and 18-hole golf course in the world, Akureyri offers interesting museums and shopping opportunities.
The Akureyri Cultural Center Listagil Arts Centre
In Kaupvangsstr├Žti, a street extending downhill through Gr├│fargil into the centre of Akureyri-town, is Akureyri Arts Centre in everyday language is known as "Listagil". There you can find e.g.: The Akureyri Art Museum, The Akureyri School of Visual Arts, Punkturinn, a handcraft centre, the multifunctional art- and performance halls of Deiglan and Ketilhouse, and Caf├ę Kar├│l├şna which also accommodates exhibitions.
One aspect of the enhancement of the cultural life of the town is Listasumar or the Summer Arts Festival which is a joint project by all those who are engaged in promoting cultural activities in Akureyri during the summer.
Akureyri Drama Society
The Akureyri Drama Society was established in 1917 and has been run as a professional company since 1973. The company's permanent locale is the well known "Samkomuh├║s" (community centre) which was built in 1906 and has always played an important part in the town\'s social activities. Each winter season 4-5 plays are performed which attract a large number of enthusiastic theatre-goers both from the town itself and from other parts of the country, thus playing a large part in the cultural life of Akureyri.
Akureyri Intercultural Centre
Akureyri intercultural centre is intended as a service point for people of foreign origin, citizens of other countries and those who have recently made their homes in Iceland. The centre specialises in services and issues relating to people from abroad and looks after their interests.
The intercultural centre is operated by Akureyri Municipality in co-operation with a large number of other parties and agencies in Akureyri, and in the whole of Iceland, in relation to specific topics and issues.
District Archives Museum
The objective of the archives is the collection and preservation of documents and other recorded sources from the history of the district, for use by administration, organisations and individuals. This is done to safeguard their interest and rights and as an aid to scientific and academic research. The jurisdiction of the archives spans all districts in Eyjafj├Âr├░ur, with the exception of the district of Dalv├şk. The archives offer advice on the use of recorded sources, visitors to the reading room receive assistance and instruction and there is information and data search service on offer for administrative departments and the public.
The Aviation Museum
At the Aviation Museum in Akureyri, founded on 1 May 1999 and formally opened 24 June 2000, the story of aviation in Iceland is traced right up to the present time. Numerous photographs and detailed text present a realistic and interesting account of pilots in their everyday activities. And where pictures and imagination end, concrete reality takes over. The museum contains many types of aircraft; for example, a plane of the same kind as the first aircraft in the possession of Loftlei├░ir Airline as well as Iceland's oldest ambulance aeroplane and the first glider built in Akureyri 1937.
The Hlidarfjall Ski Center
The ski slopes of Hl├ş├░arfjall are a paradise for skiers; and if you are staying in Akureyri they are right on your doorstep. The environment is of the best and the ski lifts can carry 2930 persons per hour to the slopes above. The difference in altitude from lowest point to highest is about 500 meters.
The Ski Centre was built up during the years 1955-1964 but formal operations began in 1962. The ski lodge stands at a height of 506 meters above sea level and can provide sleeping accommodation in twin rooms for 22 persons, besides having a communal sleeping area which can take 70 persons. The ski hut Str├Żta lies at an altitude of 700 meters above sea level and has a shop and toilet facilities for the use of visitors to Hl├ş├░arfjall
The new ski lift, which has been given the name Fjarkinn, is the pride of the Hl├ş├░arfjall Ski Centre. It is 1000 meters long and carries 4 persons per seat. Fjarkinn replaced the oldest ski lift in the country and its capacity is many times that of its predecessor; 2000 persons an hour instead of a mere 450. It is now but a 61/2 minute ride to Str├Żta!!
The Winter Sports Centre is located at Hl├ş├░arfjall Ski Centre and was established in Akureyri with the signing of an agreement between the Ministry of Education, The Akureyri Municipal Council, The Sports and Olympic Society of Iceland and the Akureyri Sports Association. This agreement was formalised 18 March 1998 and in the directive issued by the Minister of Education can be found the following:
The Icelandic Winter Sports Centre, VM├Ź, is a public service association which has as its main aim the promotion of winter sports, sports instruction and outdoor activities, thus lending support to a public awareness of a healthy lifestyle and the need to nourish this through the pursuit of healthy outdoor activities, to encourage students of all ages, handicapped people, sports competitors and those high achievers in the world of sports to look on winter sports, sports instruction and outdoor recreation as a guiding light.
Akureyri Swimming Pool
Great improvements have been made to the Akureyri Swimming Pool recently and it has become a veritable water paradise on a world scale for all the family. There are two pools and two water chutes, a splash pool, an indoor pool, four hotpots, a steam bath, a sauna, a solarium, and a family play area with popular games and equipment which is open during the summer months. The pool is highly popular both with the locals and with those who are just visiting the town. The pool guests during 2001 were 357,000 and this year the total number of visitors is anticipated at half a million!
An attractive wooded area with possibilities for a variety of recreational activities. The area is owned by Akureyri Municipal Council but is under the guardianship of the Eyjafj├Âr├░ur Forestry Commission. There are floodlit walking paths and jogging tracks and when winter snow invades these, it is compressed and prepared for the cross country skier. There is a variety of gym equipment here and there in the wood and benches where one can rest before carrying on round the circuit. There is also a small wooden house with toilets and facilities for heating a cup of coffee and attending to ones skis. There are two volley ball courts for the use of the general public and play equipment for both children and adults. Good facilities for barbequing can also be found and it is a popular outing for families to gather in Kjarnask├│gur, grill some good food, play and browse through all the delights of that natural environment.
The aim of Akureyri Museum is the collection, preservation and study of objects and records relating to cultural history, especially such as may throw light upon the daily lives of people in the Eyjafj├Âr├░ur district and their industries. In its exhibitions, the museum should provide insight into the history and culture of the area and it has the obligation to supply instruction and education for the public as well as for schools located in the district. In their work, the staff of Akureyri Museum make an effort to improve the knowledge of people in Eyjafj├Âr├░ur of their history and origin. The museum helps to make the Eyjafj├Âr├░ur district a better option for those who might wish to set up their homes here and more attractive to tourists.
Akureyri Art Museum
Akureyri Art Museum makes a special effort to encourage the active participation of the public in its operations, provide education within the field of visual art and stimulate debate on society, culture and art. This is done to a large extent by teaching sessions and lectures within the museum. There is also emphasis on co-operation with agencies abroad, especially in the Scandinavian countries. The museum aims at setting up several ambitious exhibitions every year in order to strengthen the foundations of the town┬┤s cultural life, improve cultural and artistic awareness and increase the understanding and appreciation of visual art among the public.
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