Continue your Saga at the 134th Islendingadagurinn

Celebrate the 134th Icelandic Festival of Manitoba in Gimli on August long weekend, August 4th to 7th, 2023.

Click here for a complete event schedule 

The theme for this year’s festival, "Continue your Saga / Haltu Sögu þinni áfram,” is inspired by the rich cultural history of Iceland’s sagas and stories.

“After a very successful festival in 2022 we’re pleased to welcome back all of our festival events in 2023, with the addition of a few new ones,” says Icelandic Festival of Manitoba President, Marilyn Valgardson.  

Among the new events this year are farm tours and a petting zoo at local Icelandic sheep farm, Luckystone Acres on Saturday and Sunday. Crowd favourite Islendingadunk returns to Gimli Harbour on Saturday with a splash, the event features two combatants battling with a sack containing a wet sponge on a soap-lubricated pole suspended over the water.

The Magnús Ver Magnússon strongman competition also returns, hosted by 4x World’s Strongest Man and legendary Icelander, Magnús Ver Magnússon. Strongman athletes compete in a series of events that showcase traditional Icelandic strength and culture on Saturday at the Viking Statue.

The popular Icelandic Fashion Show event moves to Sunday at the Gimli theatre to accommodate Annríki, special guests from Iceland who will model and display over 200 years of Icelandic traditional dress, with replications from the 18th century and beyond. Tickets are available for purchase online and at the Festival Gift Shop. The Art Show celebrates its 54th year with entries showcasing Icelandic culture and heritage from local artists on display Saturday through Monday at the Lakeview Gimli Resort in Darren Hall. 

The Icelandic Culture and Heritage Pavilion will continue to host interactive workshops at the Gimli Park Pavilion on Sunday and Monday such as painting a Huldufólk house, making pönnukökur (Icelandic pancakes), Viking ship building and more. While there make sure to visit Amma’s Kitchen for traditional Icelandic / New Iceland treats such as Vínarterta and Rullupylsa.

Get your fill of culture on Sunday with music and poetry at Gimli Park and a presentation at the New Iceland Heritage Museum on Icelander’s emigration to New Iceland. 

Vingólf Beverage Gardens is at the Gimli Harbour Friday to Sunday, and festival-goers can enjoy cold drinks and cocktails featuring the infamous Icelandic spirit, Brennivín, and locally produced Crown Royal.

The food truck and vendor areas are close by, offering many opportunities to shop local. 

‘Get Dinged’ on Saturday at Vingólf Beverage Gardens by dressing up in a traditional Viking costume, eating a piece of Harðfiskur (dried fish), drinking a shot of Brennivín, chanting "Islendingadagurinn," and giving your best Viking roar! Stick around until late to see the fireworks over Gimli Harbour.

Those wanting to show their Icelandic pride can decorate their lawns and submit photo entries for the Lawn Parade contest from anywhere in the world. Take part in person at one of Manitoba’s largest and longest running parades Monday morning, led by Parade Marshal, hometown hero and curling champion, Kerri Einarson.

50/50 draws take place daily and support partner organization – Hailey’s Way. Tickets can be purchased online at and from festival volunteers on the weekend.

The Icelandic Festival of Manitoba is pleased to welcome Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation of Iceland, Áslaug Arna Sigurbjörnsdóttir, who will be presenting the Toast to Canada during the Traditional Program at Gimli Park on Monday. Jeannette Menzies, Ambassador of Canada to Iceland, Hlynur Guðjónsson, Ambassador of the Embassy of Iceland in Canada and Vilhjálmur Wiium, Consul General of Iceland in Winnipeg will also be attending the festival.

Carly Welham will present the Toast to Iceland at the Traditional program and we are honored to hear greetings from the lovely Fjallkona, Tammy Axelsson.

Enjoy live music all weekend long at Friday Night at the Harbour, Saturday Night at the Harbour and Sunday’s Alternative Folk Festival which includes performances by Alex Southey, Amos the Kid, Dr Henry Band, Goody Grace and Icelandic musicians - Teitur Magnússon and Leifur Björns. Those looking for an intimate evening of music can purchase tickets to Music on the Rooftop on Saturday night featuring Daniel Jordan with Sol James and Daniel Peloquin Hopfner performing “Songs from the Inland Sea.”

Participate in the Sandcastle contest – virtually or in-person on Saturday at Gimli Beach. Families can also take part in the Scavenger Hunt around Gimli, BIG Games – Oversized Board Games Saturday and Sunday at Gimli Harbour, and Family Sports Monday at Gimli Park. Wonder Shows Midway and Rides returns to Gimli Park Friday through Monday.

If you’re looking to stay active, participants can still register for the annual 1 mile, 5 kilometre and 55th 10-mile race (almost sold out) – virtually or in-person on Sunday. Fris-Nok is at Gimli Park on Saturday and Beach Volleyball is back at Gimli Beach.

Islendingadagurinn wouldn’t be complete without the Viking Village. Re-enactors live like authentic 800 A.D. period Vikings by the Harbour Park Hill during the festival and host combat demonstrations each day. The Village is open Friday to Monday to visitors interested in demonstrations of authentic Viking life.

Those interested in cutting the lines, crowds and costs can take advantage of Odin’s Festival Pass. The festival offers affordable events thanks to the support of all its sponsors, including the Government of Canada, the Government of Iceland, the Province of Manitoba, the RM of Gimli, platinum sponsor: Mackenzie Investments and Gold sponsors: Dairy Farmers of Canada, Diageo, Honest Agency, Inspired by Iceland, Red River Co-op and PlayNow