Today only five turf churches remain standing in Iceland, more or less in their original form: Víðimýri Church in Skagafjörður is regarded as the finest; Gröf Church is the oldest; the largest is Saurbær Church in Eyjafjörður; Hof Church in Öræfi is the most recent; and Núpsstaður Chapel is by far the smallest. A sixth church, at the Árbær Museum in Reykjavík, was constructed from the timbers of an old church at Silfrastaðir in Skagafjörður. Of the six, four are of the north, two of the south.
In 2000, on the millennium of Iceland's adoption of the Christian religion, a replica of a turf church of stave construction was built in Þjórsárdalur, adjacent to Þjóðveldisbærinn, a replica of the medieval longhouse at Stöng. Iceland's turf-building tradition is under consideration for the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Author: Björn G. Björnsson