Capital Region of Iceland
Puffin Watching

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Our most recommended Capital Region of Iceland Puffin Watching

Reykjavik: Whale Watching & Puffin Luxury Yacht Cruise

1. Reykjavik: Whale Watching & Puffin Luxury Yacht Cruise

Your tour begins with you traveling along the beautiful coastline of Reykjavik, before you head out to Faxafloi Bay in search of whales. The minke whale and humpback whale are the main goal of this tour, the giants of the ocean. With a bit of luck you may even spot a group of white-beaked dolphins and harbor porpoises. There's also a good chance that you will observe different sea birds and puffins throughout the summer. Throughout the summer you can visit one of the puffin islands to see the puffins, with the view of the landscape making a magnificent backdrop behind the wild animals you might spot. This activity enables you to escape the crowds and benefit from a luxury yacht cruise, with fewer passengers and more personal service on board. The yacht is stable and the crew aim to assist you by adjusting your camera to capture the best possible photos. On board you can discover information and educational material about the whales and birds, and your crew is always on the watch for whales and birds, informing you as soon as they catch sight of them. If it gets chilly, you can wrap up in the warm blankets provided or sit inside for a bit in the comfortable inside area.

From Reykjavik: Express Whale Watching Tour by RIB

2. From Reykjavik: Express Whale Watching Tour by RIB

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 and take great photos before you arrive on land.

Reykjavik: Half–Day Whales and Puffins Combo Tour

3. Reykjavik: Half–Day Whales and Puffins Combo Tour

See the adorable puffins living only a short boat ride away from the Old Harbor in Reykjavík. Travel by a small boat named Skúlaskeið (Old Skúli), perfect for puffin watching, since it has a shallow draught, and therefore can get really close to the small islands where the puffins live. The guides are very knowledgeable about the thriving bird life in Reykjavík's surroundings. Benefit from this combo tour's included classic whale watching tour, operated on the Andrea boat, lasting 3 to 3.5 hours. The Andrea is the biggest whale watching boat in Iceland, and has an educational and interactive focus. It is also family friendly and spacious with a cafeteria on-board. If you choose to, you can switch to the express tour leaving 1 hour later on a faster boat that gets you out to the whale watching area quicker than the other whale watching boats, but still allows you to have plenty of time. Most common whale sights in Faxaflói Bay are minke whales, humpback whales, white-beaked dolphins and harbor porpoises. Note that these are two separate tours and you don't have to do them on the same day.

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.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by Speedboat

5. 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: Puffin Watching Boat Tour

6. Reykjavik: Puffin Watching Boat Tour

Step aboard the Puffin Express for a charming bird-watching adventure in Reykjavik. Enjoy a 100% guarantee of puffin sightings, and learn about these and other local birds from an expert guide. Head out from the Old Harbour of Reykjavik to the surrounding Faxaflói Bay and onto two nearby islands, Lundey and Akurey, covered in small hills and slopes and known for their colorful birdlife. Once arriving at the islands, observe the native birds and picturesque surroundings with the boat's engine turned off. Enjoy seeing puffins as well as other birds, such as northern fulmars, gulls, Arctic terns, and black guillemots. All of this takes place on an old wooden boat, Skúlaskeið, which is fondly referred to as "Old Skuli." It is spacious enough to hold 33 passengers but not too big, in order to ensure that your tour is personal and comfortable.

Reykjavik: Premium Whale and Puffin Watching Evening Tour

7. Reykjavik: Premium Whale and Puffin Watching Evening Tour

During bright Icelandic summer nights the Nordic midnight sun just seems endless. Therefore, an evening cruise is the ideal way to make the most of your day in Reykjavík while enjoying close-up views of whales, dolphins, puffins and more. As the whales never fully sleep, you can expect encountering the same wildlife on this express whale watching tour as on regular day tours. Just off the coast of Reykjavík, you can encounter some of the best whale watching in the world and during the summer time whales are seen in over 95% of the tours.  This unique whale watching tour is conducted in small RIB speedboats which are extremely stable boats with high performance abilities. The small yet powerful vessel is capable of reaching high speeds, allowing you to cover a larger area and get closer to the Faxaflói bay wildlife than you would in a classic boat. Hold on tight while your captain zips you out of the harbor and look out for some of the wildlife Iceland is famous for. Loop around the wind-beaten islands of the bay to see puffins in their natural habitat and then head out on the open water to scout out whales and dolphins and, hopefully, get some close-up views. After the tour, return to Reykjavík by ending the tour with a unique ride along the city’s shoreline offering magnificent views of the Sun Voyager sculpture and the glittering Harpa Concert Hall. Colorful fishing huts and bustling restaurants make up the cityscape in this part of town, alongside some thought-provoking attractions. If you were unlucky enough to not spot any whales, worry not, your captain will give you a complimentary ticket for another ride on the larger boats before you leave.

Reykjavik: 1.5-Hour Puffin Watching Tour

8. Reykjavik: 1.5-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.

Reykjavík: RIB Speed-Boat Puffin Watching Tour

9. Reykjavík: RIB Speed-Boat Puffin Watching Tour

Experience the natural wonders of puffins out in the wild. Throughout this 1-hour tour, adorn yourself in a full body suit to keep you warm and dry, with goggles and scarfs also provided. From there you are taken out to the Bay of Reykjavik on a custom-built speed boat with suspension seats. Travel towards the puffin-populated islands, which are home to approximately 40,000 puffins. Iceland has the biggest puffin colony in the world, with approximately 60% of the world's puffins. This tour allows you to get up close and personal to these colonies, providing you with perfect photo opportunities. Aboard your speed boat you can get much closer to the islands than with bigger boats. This mobility helps in providing you with a more unique experience. At the conclusion of your hour out on the water, your boat returns you to your tour starting point.

Express Whale and Puffin Watching Tour from Reykjavik

10. Express Whale and Puffin Watching Tour from Reykjavik

See whales and puffins in season on an express whale-watching tour from Reykjavik. Marvel at the fauna of Iceland in its natural environment. Travel aboard a stable boat to search larger areas. Available from 15 May to 30 September, the whale-watching express tour departs from the old harbor in Reykjavík. The specially-engineered RIB boats get you closer and faster to the whales and puffins than bigger boats, and can search bigger areas to increase your likelihood of viewing the wildlife. Ride out to the islands to see puffins in their natural surroundings (not available after mid-August), and then head out further in search of whales and dolphins. Get as up-close as you can without disturbing the magnificent creatures. Specially-trained guides will enhance your experience and increase the chance of some viewings. Return to Reykjavík to sail along the city’s shore line. View the skyline of Reykjavik from the ocean, and stop at the harbor side of the mesmerizing Harpa Concert Hall to admire Iceland´s most famous building.


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What people are saying about Capital Region of Iceland

It was so much fun! We were well equipped with warm overalls, protective vests, gloves and glasses. The trip took a full two hours and we saw various dolphins and several humpback whales. The guide and captain were personable and went out of their way to ensure that we would see whales. Be careful if you have a sensitive stomach! The boat is fast and jumps over the waves, and it can rock quite a bit.

The best whale sightseeing tour of them all. The speedboats themselves are great fun jumping all over the waves. The equipment we were given kept us warm and dry. As the boats are smaller than the big ship, we could get closer to the whales. Iga, the tour guide was the best of the best. Top recommended

Excellent tour! Our guide Siggy shared so much fun information about puffins with us and made sure everyone was comfortable. Captain Frederic made sure that we had a fun ride on the speed boat. Nice fun, quick trip close to town. Definitely recommend for a nice afternoon activity during puffin season.

Amazing experience, highly recommend the fast boat even though the tour is shorter than with a regular boat. The small boat I s many times faster, so you get to cover a bigger area and have a bigger chance of seeing the whales from up close. It’s worth the extra money!

Iga and Jon made the trip exciting and unforgettable. You can tell right away that Iga loves the whales, she can tell a lot about them. Jon steered the boat safely, we had a lot of fun driving! And the best: we saw 2 humpback whales!