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Northeastern Region, Iceland

Puffin watching

Our most recommended Northeastern Region, Iceland Puffin Watching

Húsavík: Big Whales and Puffin Island Speedboat Tour

1. Húsavík: Big Whales and Puffin Island Speedboat Tour

Embark on a guided RIB speedboat tour around Puffin Island. See the thousands of puffins in their natural habitat before heading to Skjálfandi Bay to spot whales with frequent sightings of humpback and minke whales. After check-in at the ticket office, be escorted to the dressing room to receive warm water-resistant overalls and life vests. Sit back and peel your eyes across the rocking waves of the Atlantic, looking for any sign of life. Make sure to bring hats and gloves—it's always colder in the bay than in the town. When everybody is ready the guide will show the way to the boat where passengers will find their seats and get informed about safety regulations on board. During puffin season, the first pit-stop will be Puffin Island. Circle around the Island, enjoying the view of thousands of puffins during their breeding period. See Tjörnes peninsula, known for its fossil layers with the most ancient one being two million years old. The next destination is whale watching in Skjálfandi Bay, an area renowned for its rich wildlife, Víknafjöll and Kinnarfjöll mountain ranges. There are 20 different species of cetacean in Iceland, the most common being humpback and minke whales. There is a chance to spot rarer species like orcas, Harbour Porpoises, Blue Whales, and more. With a smaller vessel like a RIB, your captain can get much closer to where these animals swim as small boats make less noise, and are less likely to deter whales. After 2 hours of cruising the ocean, begin the return journey back to the harbor. On your way, you will likely pass one of the numerous nesting Puffin colonies that live in the area—just another fantastic reason to come aboard.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

2. From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

Climb aboard a rigid inflatable boat (RIB) equipped with special shock suspension seating for a smoother ride. Look for whales and other marine life in the wild. Travel aboard the 12-meter long boat to get extra close to whales in a way that is safe for passengers and the animals. Benefit from warm flotation suits, life vests, gloves and goggles to keep you cozy and safe, and avail of the services of an experienced guide who will provide information about the animals and bay in English.  Stop by the island of Akurey to look for adorable puffins during the summer. See their nests along the coast during their breeding season. Head out to the bay on a fast and thrilling ride with the wind in your hair. Reach a comfortable cruising speed of 32 knots and get plenty of time in the feeding grounds. Then, take a scenic route back along the coast of Reykjavik. After your tour, you can visit the Whales of Iceland Museum, located in the Grandi harbor district of Reykjavik. Here, you can discover more about the various whale species of the Atlantic, with exhibits on whale biology, migration, and conservation.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by Speedboat

3. From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by Speedboat

Get back to nature and look for whales off the coast of Iceland aboard a brand new RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) equipped with 12 suspension seats to enhance your comfort and safety. Make your way to the meeting point in the old harbor of Reykjavik and put on the provided warm waterproof overall, life jacket, googles and your own whale watching scarf. Depart from the harbor and pass the Harpa Concert Hall and Sun Voyager sculpture. Continue to Faxaflói Bay, where up to 23 species of whales, along with dolphins and seals can often be found. Look for the magnificent creatures in their natural environment and encounter sea birds of various species. Keep a look out for the puffins that come to lay their one egg on the many islands in Faxaflói Bay as you cruise up close. Ask your guide any questions you have and hear interesting facts about the whales and other wildlife.

Reykjavik: Premium Whale Watching with Flexible Ticket

4. Reykjavik: Premium Whale Watching with Flexible Ticket

Experience the whales and wildlife of Faxaflói bay on a small-group whale watching tour. Board a specially designed RIB speedboat so that you can enjoy up close and personal views of whales, dolphins, and more. The boats are small yet powerful and capable of covering a large area in search of wildlife during a 2-hour tour. The RIB boats are equipped with brand new high-quality suspension seats designed to increase safety and comfort during the adventure. During the summer months (May - August) this tour includes puffin watching as the colorful birds nest just outside the city's harbor. After the whale safari, head back to Reykjavík while enjoying a ride along the city's shoreline. Experience unique views of some of the cities most famous landmarks from the sea.

Reykjavik: Puffin Watching Tour

5. Reykjavik: Puffin Watching Tour

Discover the puffins of Iceland on a wildlife watching tour by RIB Boat, These boats cover a larger area and get closer to the puffins than on a conventional vessel. Watch the birds as they nest, dive and fly, and learn about their characteristics as you cruise around the rocks and cliffs. Make your own way to Reykjavik Old Harbour in the early morning and meet the captain of your RIB. Listen to a short safety briefing, put on your provided coveralls, climb aboard, and take hold of the grab rail as your boat sets off. Take in the views of Faxaflói Bay as your RIB zips out over the ice-cold waters. As you cruise, watch for Iceland’s wildlife, including the many species of sea birds that frequent the bay and its islands in summer. As well as puffins, gannets, auks, fulmars, and Arctic terns all visit the local waters. Bump over the waves toward the rocky islands and sea cliffs, and sail up close to the rocks and inlets to view the puffins that nest here between May and August. As you watch the puffins, listen to interesting facts about the species from the expert guide and captain. Hear about their natural behaviors and diet, and snap photos of them nesting, diving, and flying as you sail around the little inlets.  After about an hour on the sea, arrive back at Reykjavik harbor where your puffin watching cruise ends.

Reykjavik: 1-Hour Puffin Watching Tour

6. Reykjavik: 1-Hour Puffin Watching Tour

The charismatic puffin has attracted local and tourist attention around Iceland for many years. It is their prismatic appearance and curious behavior that gives rise to this intrigue. Their most obvious characteristic during the breeding season is their brightly colored bill which, added to their striking piebald plumage, has given rise to nicknames such as “clown of the ocean” or “sea parrot.” Depending on tides and weather conditions, you will head to Akurey, Engey or Lundey on a 1.5-hour cruise. These islands are well known for their plentiful birdlife, and in addition to puffins you will have the opportunity to view other birds, such as eider ducks, arctic terns, guillemots, cormorants, fulmars, geese and oystercatchers. The islands' shores are rocky, but the captains know the best spots to get close to the puffins in their natural habitat. If the weather is right he might even turn off the engines so that you can listen to the birds' calls. Luckily the puffins usually stay put for a while, so they are easy to photograph. Although you get close to the islands, the puffins are comparatively small birds and the free use of binoculars on board comes in handy. You can also borrow a rain jacket to keep your dry, and sip authentic seaman's coffee to keep warm.

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What people are saying about Northeastern Region, Iceland

We were well prepared for the trip. You get warm suits and gloves are ready if you don't have your own. The captain already knew before the trip where it is likely to see a whale, which is why we went there right at the beginning. We not only saw a humpback whale (he dived up and down several times) but also several dolphins. You just have to keep in mind that from September there are no more puffins and it can get very cold on the boat. Although almost 140€ is a lot of money, it is definitely worth it and better compared to the huge cutters that go out and where several dozen people crowd the railing to try to see a whale. On this boat you are at most +2 with 12 passengers.

Although it was a beautiful day, the sea was quite rough. Very kindly the Husavik Adventures staff gave everyone the opportunity to join the tour or choose another date. We chose to participate given the impossibility of being able to repeat the experience at another time. It was an excellent decision: we had a lot of fun aboard the motorboat, which plowed the waves in the open sea and we had the opportunity, despite the rough sea, to spot 4 whales, one of which very close ... and then do a stop at puffin island. If you don't have any problems getting in the mood, we recommend it ... fun and sighting expectations guaranteed.

We got lucky with a perfect morning in Reykjavik and this tour did not disappoint! Our guide and boat captain were excellent in giving us information on what we were seeing and spending a little extra time on the lookout for whales to observe. Wonderful experience!

Incredible release! Extraordinary and passionate guide. We favored the fast boat, which is smaller (therefore there are fewer of us on it) and which allows us to go to the puffin island and get closer very quickly and be at the same level as the whales.

Very happy we booked this speedboat tour! Saw 2 whales and the boat ride itself was a lot of fun