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Capital Region of Iceland

Puffin Watching

Our most recommended Capital Region of Iceland Puffin Watching

Reykjavik: Puffin Watching Tour

1. 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

2. 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.

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.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

4. 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.

Reykjavik: Puffin Tour by RIB Speedboat

5. Reykjavik: Puffin Tour by RIB Speedboat

Enjoy the incredible opportunity to see puffin colonies while taking in the extraordinary backdrop of majestic Mount Esja and the city’s colorful skyline. Depending on the time of your visit, the mountains may be capped with ice and snow or colored bright purple with a blanket of summer lupin. At any time of the year, Reykjavík is always a stunning city to see from the water. During the summer months, these voyages will pass close to the famous puffin colonies of Faxaflói Bay. If that isn't enough, you'll get the opportunity to see whales in their natural habitat from a boat for small groups, so you won't have to worry about overcrowding or not getting the right spot to see these amazing creatures.

Reykjavik: Premium Whale Watching with Flexible Ticket

6. 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.

Reykjavík: RIB Speed-Boat Puffin Watching Tour

7. 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.

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What people are saying about Capital Region of Iceland

We were there 40 minutes before and everyone else was already putting on their suits. We recommend wearing two layers and definitely taking a hat and gloves with you. Gloves and glasses are available on site. Luckily we sat in the back, so it wasn't quite as stormy for us. First we saw puffins and later a humpback whale, a minke whale and many white-beaked dolphins that even had babies with them. Rebekka (guide) always told us something when we stopped to look out. We would have liked it if she had spoken louder. The captain, she and the other staff were very friendly. Unfortunately, while waiting for the whales, we kept getting nauseous because the boat then rocked a lot. We had taken travel pills, but they didn't help us and only caused us more problems because of the tiredness. We also recommend the rib boat tour because of the ticket for the museum :)

This was a last minute decision to do a boat tour in Reykjavik, I booked all my tours in Iceland through Get Your Guide. The RIB boat was so much fun, not too choppy but still thrilling. Our guides on the boat we’re very knowledgeable and super friendly. We did this late in the afternoon and only 2 other people were on our boat. We saw a lot of puffins and did 2 different stops. I would highly recommend this especially if you are unsure about being on a RIB boat. The tour provider has coverall for everyone which really helps with blocking the wind.

We saw lots of puffins plus other birds including skuas stealing fish from the puffins mouth. Mike was very knowledgeable. We got close enough to shoot video and got great photos. Would love to stay longer!! The boat ride was fun. Not too fast.

We were very lucky and got to see the whales lunge feeding which isn't common. The captain did a terrific job ensuring we were in the right place at the right time and the guide was very knowledgeable. Also really liked being a smaller boat.

Loved it! The RIB boat was a supper fun ride, the guide gave us lots of interesting information (both about Puffins and about Iceland) and we saw thousands of Puffins!! I highly recommed this tour.!