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Iceland is a great hub for nautical based activities, many sea creatures make its coastal waters and bays their home. The most notable of these animals perhaps is the variety of whales that either regularly visit the island or even make the area their home.
For whale watching fans this means you will never have to travel too far in order to see these magnificent and curious creatures in the wild.
The most common cetacean in the area are the Minke whales, White-beaked dolphins and Harbour porpoises. Occasionally we spot other species including Humpback whales, Killer whales/Orcas, Fin whales and Blue whales to name but a few.
Whale watching tour from Reykjavik’s ‘old harbour’
Spacious well equipped boat
Informative and friendly guides.
The old harbour is one of the key defining areas of Reykjavik, housing a number of surprises for both tourists and locals to enjoy. Here you will find the Harpa concert hall which has regular musical performances and plays, the Kolaportið indoor flea market which can house a treasure trove of Reykjavik’s past and of course the harbour itself which is home to a number of boats from commercial to military.
Your adventure will begin down at the Elding office in the Old Harbour in downtown Reykjavik where you can exchange your pre-paid voucher for your ticket onto the boat. Only a few short steps away from the office is our Visitor Centre, which sits on board a converted fishing vessel permanently placed by the pier. Here is where you will meet our crew for the day.
Before (or after, there is no rush!) the tour you can stroll through our souvenir shop, have a drink at the Whale Café or enjoy the onboard whale exhibition located in the hull of the boat. The show includes multimedia images and videos of whales as well as fun facts about the cetaceans and other marine animals we are likely to come across on the tour. From that point you will be guided to our whale watching vessel where the tour takes place.
Once on board the tour boat you will find several outdoor viewing platforms, a large indoor saloon with an on board café where you can buy light refreshments, basic bathroom facilities and a cloak room where you can borrow one of our blankets or overalls on colder days. You can either stay outside in the fresh air but you are also welcome to stay inside the heated lounge and observe the views from within, through our large panoramic windows. One of our excellent guides will commentate on the sights and views at hand through the intercom system on board and will be available to you and happy to answer any questions you may have throughout the tour.
Whale watching is a year round activity here in Iceland, but there are some small differences between the summer season and winter season which we detail below:
Summer season (1 April - 31 October) is great for whale watching, as the wildlife in the bay is at it's highest peak! This is the time when the Minke whales are at their most abundant, along with White-beaked dolphins, Harbour porpoises and the occasional Humpback whales, giving us the chance to enjoy and understand them in their natural environment.
Winter season (1 November - 31 March) is a whole other experience and adventure compared to our summer tours. Each year continues to surprise us with the wildlife it offers. The winter low lying sun is also something not to be missed, as it casts a warm glow over the white-capped mountains surrounding the bay and to breathe in the winter's fresh and crisp air is just incredible.
As the weather in Iceland can be quite unpredictable, we advise you to plan ahead and dress accordingly. In case of unfavourable conditions in the bay, the itinerary may be altered (often resulting in a slightly longer tour) or the tour could get cancelled altogether. You will be notified of any changes as soon as possible, but we suggest that you have a look at our online whale diary to check for updates on your departure.
Since this is a wildlife tour we can never predict or guarantee sightings of any kind. Additionally, abide by a Code of Conduct for responsible whale watching and thus each encounter is on the animal's terms. This means that we may manoeuvre the boat in a certain way or keep our distance to minimise potential disturbance. In the event that we don't encounter any whales or dolphins, we do not offer refunds, but instead give our passengers a complimentary ticket to use another day.
Click here for more information on the whales and dolphins you can expect to see on the tour.
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