Best whale-watching tours from Reykjavik, prices, requirements
If you wonder what you can do in Reykjavik during summer, whale watching is a really interesting activity. The summer season is great for whale watching, as the wildlife in the bay is at its highest peak. This is the time when the minke whales are at their most abundant, along with the white-beaked dolphins, harbor porpoises, and humpback whales, giving us the chance to enjoy and understand them in their natural environment.
Here are some whale watching tours are starting from Reykjavik:
The Classic Whale-Watching tour is about 3 hours long and the trip is in Faxaflói bay. While on a whale watching tour you will also see the birds that are on the bay during the summer. On this tour, kids under 6 years old have free entrance. For this tour is included: Use of warm overalls and blankets; Excellent live guidance in English; Complimentary Wi-Fi onboard; Access to our Wildlife Exhibition; Heated indoor saloon; Large viewing windows; Whale guarantee (or try again for free); Pictures taken by the crew (if any).
The starting point is at the ticket office by the Old Harbor in downtown Reykjavík where you will exchange your pre-paid voucher for boarding tickets. Before the tour starts you can go a few steps down the pier you will find a Visitor Centre that is made on a fishing vessel that is permanently placed by the pier. At Visitor Centre, you can stroll through a unique floating wildlife exhibition to learn more about the animals you may come across on tour.
On the tour, you will be guided by marine biologists who will explain to you everything about marine life around Reykjavik and respond to your questions.
All you need to do for this tour is to take your curiosity with you, check the weather, and dress accordingly and because the weather may change the plans for whale-watching you should check the online whale diary to check for updates on your departure.
Take notice that seeing the whales cannot be guaranteed as the whales are observed in their natural environment, but if the tour is not successful you will not get a refund but a ticket for a second try another day.
The prices for this tour can be checked here.
For the Whale Watching tour in Midnight sun, you have to go to the ticket office by the Old Harbor in downtown Reykjavík in the evening. The schedule for this tour is 15 June – 31 July at 20:30 and 1 August – 31 August at 19:00. The tour will be around 2,5-3,5 hours and as the name says will take you on an unforgettable journey to the Faxaflói bay under a golden sky. The mystical midnight sun often casts a beautiful orange and pink glow to the mountains surrounding the bay and together with the wildlife it provides quite a unique experience.
Like for the Classic Whale-Watching tour, no one can guarantee that you will see whales during the tour but if the tour is not successful you will receive a complimentary ticket to try again another day.
The prices for this tour can be checked here.
For this tour, you should check the weather and dress accordingly. And because the weather may change the plans for whale-watching you should check the online whale diary to check for updates on your departure.
If you want a more intense experience you can try the Premium Whale-Watching tour. This is a tour for a smaller group of people (maximum 12 persons) on a RIB boat. On this tour, you will be able to see the whales closer as the boat will sail in larger areas where a big boat could not sail. Also, on this tour you will be guided by a specially trained guide and the boat will be sailed by a certified RIB boat captain.
The starting point for this private tour is also the Old Harbor in Reykjavík, it has a moderate difficulty and is about 2h long. This Private Whale-Watching tour has some different requirements:
This tour has a minimum of 2 passengers. If the minimum is not met, we will offer you to reschedule or get a full refund.
Tour may not be suitable for seniors (65+ years), pregnant women, or those with a history of heart or back problems.
You need to be able to stand in your seat (minimum height of 145 cm.) and fit into one of our overalls to participate (maximum size 3XL).
Participants will need to sign a waiver upon arrival to join the tour.
Please make your own way to the Old Harbor at least 30 min. before scheduled tour departure as the pickup is not available for this tour.
If no whales or dolphins are seen on the tour, we do not refund the tour price, but instead offer a complimentary ticket valid on our Classic Whale Watching tour. The ticket is valid for 2 years, for returning passengers only, and is non-transferable between tours.
On the way back to Reykjavik, the captain will sail along the coastline of the city for beautiful sightseeing. The price for this premium tour can be checked here. The departure time for the tour is at 10:00 for summer 2021. Note that for this tour the pick-up is not available.
You should be careful and dress accordingly in warm and waterproof clothes.
Because in this tour the boat will get closer to the whales, you will also get to see puffins as on the way back, the boat will sail along the shoreline where usually the puffins are nesting.
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