WORK/PROJECT: SEEDS volunteers in this project will have the unique opportunity to join one of the most exciting archaeological projects in Iceland! We will be working at the archaeological project at Skriðuklaustur (e. The monastery at Skriða), which started in 2002 and its aim is to investigate, through an archaeological excavation, the monastery that was operated on the farmstead Skriða in Fljótsdalur Valley, East Iceland, during the period from 1493 to the Reformation in 1550.
Our tasks in this project will be mainly connected with construction and renovation of the walls of the 16th century monastery. We will also be involved on making and fixing walking paths nearby the monastery and the place where we will be accommodated.
The working plan will be very flexible and it will depend on the needs of our local hosts and of course on the weather conditions.
ACCOMMODATION: We will be lodged in 14 single rooms. A sleeping bag is needed. There is a kitchen and living room in the building; which is located approximately 5 km from our working site (monastery excavations). We will have breakfast at the accommodation; while lunch and dinner will be served at the café in Skriðuklaustur on working days. The kitchen will be available for us to cater ourselves on weekends. Food ingredients will be provided; we will share the duties of preparing and cooking meals.
LOCATION: We will stay in Skriðuklaustur at Fljótsdalur, located 40 km from the biggest town in the East of Iceland, Egilsstaðir (pop. 2,300) and about 650 km from Reykjavík. It is part of Fljótsdalshérað, (pop. of 3.700) at 8.884 km² is the largest Icelandic municipality.
The monastery at Skriða, named Skriðuklaustur, was the youngest of the seven monasteries and two nunneries in operation in Iceland during the medieval period, but within a short time, it became one of the richest. It is thought that this increase in material wealth was due to Skriðuklaustur having been the only monastery in East Iceland.
Nowadays, Skriðuklaustur has a local centre of culture and history. The house was built in 1939 and is one of Iceland's most important buildings. There is a museum about the writer Gunnar Gunnarsson in the house. It is also a residence for artists, writers and scholars, both Icelandic and foreign. At Skriðuklaustur there are as well exhibitions available for visitors and many events organised concerning local culture and the nature of East Iceland. The ruins of the 16th century monastery with archaeological excavation are located nearby.
The East Fjords is a region of a special landscape, dominated by long, narrow fjords and steep mountains. This is one of the oldest regions of Iceland shaped by glaciers in the Ice Age. The biggest forest in Iceland and also wild reindeers are found in Fljótsdalur.
LANGUAGE: English will be the language in the camp, but high proficiency is not a requirement.
TERMINAL: Closest International Airports: Keflavík/Reykjavík (KEF); nearest domestic airport Egilsstaðir (EGS). Nearest bus stop with some connecting lines to Akureyri and Reykjavík is also located in Egilsstaðir. The docking port for the Norröna ferry connecting Iceland with the Faroe Islands, Denmark and Europe is located in the town of Seyðisfjörður, 30 Km from Egilsstaðir.
SEEDS organises the “minibus option”, a shared transport from Reykjavík to the camps and vice-versa, which apart from being cheaper and more convenient, allows volunteers to meet fellow campers and have a relaxed trip, while stopping on the way for interesting and tourist sites.
SPECIAL REMARKS / EXTRAS: Participation fee EUR 160,- (Euros).
SEEDS and the local host will try to organise several free-time activities to explore and discover the area as: excursions, horse-back riding, fishing for trout and a highland trip/mountain hike.
AGE: 18 +