The 247-square-kilometre municipality is the 306th largest by area out of the 426 municipalities in Norway. Jondal is the 390th most populous municipality in Norway with a population of 1,108. The municipality's population density is 4.7 inhabitants per square kilometre and its population has increased by 4.9% over the last decade.
In 2016, the chief of police for Vestlandet formally suggested a reconfiguration of police districts and stations. He proposed that the police station in Jondal be closed.
The municipality of Jondal was established on 1 January 1863 when it was separated from the large municipality of Strandebarm. Initially, Jondal had a population of 1,663.
During the 1960s, there were many municipal mergers across Norway due to the work of the Schei Committee. On 1 January 1965, there were two changes that effected Jondal municipality: the part of Jondal located on the northwestern side of the Hardangerfjorden (population: 515) was transferred to Kvam municipality and the Kysnesstranda area of Strandebarm municipality (population: 100) was transferred to Jondal.
Then on 1 January 2013, the southwestern part of the Folgefonna peninsula (south of Kysnesstranda) was transferred to Jondal from Kvinnherad municipality. This added forty new residents and 37.1 square kilometres (14.3 sq mi) of land area to the municipality.
On 1 January 2020, the three neighboring municipalities of Jondal, Odda, and Ullensvang are going to be merged. The new municipality will be called Ullensvang and its administrative centre will be the town of Odda.
The municipality is named after the Jondalen valley in which the village of Jondal sits. The Old Norse form of the name was Jónardalr. The first element is an old rivername Jón (now called Jondalselvi) and the last element is dalr which means "valley" or "dale". The meaning of the rivername is unknown.
The coat-of-arms is from modern times; they were granted on 27 November 1987. The arms are red with three gold-colored boat hooks. This design was chosen to symbolise the importance of sailing and shipping along the Hardangerfjord. Historically, Jondal has been known for its shipyards and sailing college.
The Church of Norway has one parish (sokn) within the municipality of Jondal. It is part of the Hardanger og Voss deanery in the Diocese of Bjørgvin.
Jondal is located on the southeast side of the Hardangerfjorden on the Folgefonna peninsula. It is bounded by the large Folgefonna glacier to the southeast (inside Folgefonna National Park). The lake Juklavatnet is located on the municipal border with Kvinnherad. The 10-kilometre (6.2 mi) long tunnel runs under the glacier from Jondal to Mauranger in Kvinnherad.
All municipalities in Norway, including Jondal, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.
The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Jondal is made up of 17 representatives that are elected to four year terms