Guðriður Þorbjarnardóttir: The Far Traveller

Guðriður Þorbjarnardóttir was among Iceland’s most celebrated explorers, and surely earned her nickname the 'Far Traveller'. Born in Hellnar before the year 1000 (a small sculpture marks the site of her family’s farm at Laugarbrekka), Guðriður had a serious case of wanderlust. Not only was she one of the first Europeans to reach Vinland (thought to be Canada’s Newfoundland), she bore a child while she was there: the first European born in North America! Later, Guðriður converted to Christianity and embarked on an epic pilgrimage to Rome, where some say she met the pope and recounted her experiences.

For more about Guðriður, read Saga of Erik the Red and Saga of the Greenlanders, or The Far Traveler by Nancy Marie Brown and The Sea Road by Margaret Elphinstone.