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Reykjavik Cruises & boat tours

Our most recommended Reykjavik Cruises & boat tours

Reykjavík: Whale Watching from a Luxury Yacht

1. Reykjavík: Whale Watching from a Luxury Yacht

Come aboard a luxurious yacht and see the incredible wealth of marine wildlife that lives in the waters just off the shores of Reykjavík City. See some of Iceland's majestic whales, dolphins, and porpoises on this whale-watching tour.  Your ship sets sail from Reykjavík's Old Harbor and sails among the small islands in the Faxaflói Bay, as well as along the coast of Reykjavík, providing you with fantastic views of the city as you search for the wildlife in the water. Spot minke and humpback whales, dolphins, and porpoises. If you're lucky, you may even see a few orcas (also known as killer whales) as well as a wealth of other species. Make the most of three panoramic deck areas aboard the luxury yacht, moving about the decks to get the best views and take advantage of great photo opportunities. The outside decks are also partially covered, providing some shelter from wind and rain. The professional crew on board the Amelia Rose are very experienced in spotting whales and they are dedicated to making sure you leave with a smile.  Combine relaxation with education as you enjoy a personal and memorable experience. Amelia Rose is designed as an offshore vessel, making it better adapted to take on the turbulent waves of Iceland's waters, resulting in a smoother sail with less probability of passengers experiencing nausea or seasickness. There is no guarantee, however, that you will not get seasick.

Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour

2. Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour

Set sail from Reykjavik’s old harbor in style on the Andrea, the largest whale-watching ship in Iceland. Spot minke whales, white-beaked dolphins, harbor porpoises, humpback whales, and occasionally orcas with the help of an experienced guide. Enjoy a whale-watching experience with a special educational focus, and ask your guide any questions you have. Learn about the whales and other sea life from your guide's knowledge, an app available in 5 languages, and the microscope, baleens, and whale teeth on board. Move around the Andrea's spacious public viewing areas, and admire the fantastic 360-degree views of the environment from the deck. Stay warm with included overalls and heated indoor seating. In the summer, you can also join an express tour on a faster express whale watching boat. If you get cold or hungry, there’s also an onboard café serving a range of refreshments, as well as a souvenir shop. And should you fail to see any of the spectacular creatures from the deep, you'll receive a complimentary ticket to sail again.

Reykjavík: Whale Watching and Marine Life Cruise

3. Reykjavík: Whale Watching and Marine Life Cruise

Take a boat trip from Reykjavik’s harbor to discover Iceland’s rich marine life, which is one of this island country’s highlights. All year round you can spot a variety of whales and other marine animals in the Reykjavik area, including minke and humpback whales, harbor porpoises, and whale-beaked dolphins. Have an opportunity to see some of Iceland's most beautiful marine animals, along with the stunning scenery of the Icelandic coast. The peak season for whale watching runs from April to October, but of course, the ocean is always full of magical creatures, and you never know what you might see. Benefit from the services of specially-trained whale watching guides who are experts at spotting the animals. You will be free to listen as they tell you about the behavior of the whales, and answer any questions you may have. Enjoy the stunning scenery of the Icelandic coast as you spot local wildlife. Take a break and warm up in the heated indoor area. Relax on board the boat and enjoy the indoor and outdoor seating, and purchase drinks and snacks along the way from the onboard bar and cafeteria. You will experience a pleasant and comfortable ride, even at higher speeds, and will be able to share your adventure live on social media with the onboard WiFi.

Reykjavik: Whale Watching and Dolphin Luxury Yacht Cruise

4. Reykjavik: Whale Watching and Dolphin Luxury Yacht Cruise

The tour begins with a cruise along the beautiful coastline of Reykjavik before heading out to Faxafloi Bay in search of whales. The minke whales and humpback whales 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'll observe different sea birds and puffins throughout the summer. During the summer, the puffins are frequently seen sitting on the ocean and diving for food. This activity enables you to escape the crowds and benefit from a yacht cruise with fewer passengers and more personal service on board. Ride on a stable boat with an on-board bar and lounge and spacious outdoor deck areas for maximum comfort.

Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Tour

5. Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Tour

See the incredible northern lights from the panoramic decks of a luxurious yacht on this guided tour. This tour is perfect for those looking for an awe-inspiring experience watching the celestial display of the aurora borealis. Meet your captain and crew at Reykjavik's Old Harbor, where you'll board the luxury yacht. You will sail among the small islands in Faxafloi Bay and along the coast of Reykjavik before the yacht begins to sail away from the lights of the city. This will allow you to enjoy the beauty of the northern lights to the fullest. The panoramic triple deck area allows every passenger to enjoy the breathtaking colors of the aurora, and to capture some amazing photos of the green, pink, and white light. If you wish to stay inside during the trip, you will find a lovely bar and lounge area inside where you can relax in comfort.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour

6. From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour

Start the trip from a beautiful harbor in the city center and sail out to Kollafjöður, where you can see the island in the bay. Videy Island is known for the Lennon/One Peace tower, Richard Scerra's 'Milestones', and other attractions, along with great bird life. Continue on to Faxaflói Bay, popular for whale and bird watching, sea angling, and also great fishing grounds. The mountain ring seen from the bay, among which Snaefellsjökull Glacier may be spotted on clear days, is particularly beautiful.

Northern Lights by Boat in Reykjavik

7. Northern Lights by Boat in Reykjavik

Hunting the northern lights from the ocean is an amazing experience; sailing away from the coastline of Reykjavik and seeing the aurora borealis out on the North-Atlantic ocean, with beautiful mountains and the city lights in the backround, is something you won't ever forget. This unique tour takes about 2 hours, departing from Reykjavik´s old harbour in a luxurious boats, either Rósin or Andrea. Enjoy great views of the beautiful coastline of the capital on the way out to search for the northern lights. In only 15-30 minutes you will be at a prime location away from the city lights, perfect for viewing the auroras. Please remember that this tour is highly dependent on correct weather conditions. Cancellation may occur if the circumstances are not in your favour.  When the northern lights forecast looks good - but if it is too windy to go out on sea - guests will be taken out for a northern lights tour on a small private bus to hunt for the lights on land. They will be offered a spot on the next available northern lights cruise free of charge.

Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Cruise

8. Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Cruise

Sail along the beautiful coastline of Iceland from Reykjavik Old Harbor and then head out to Faxaflói Bay to experience the city lights from a different perspective. Step aboard a luxury yacht for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The main objective of your tour is to get away from the lights to get a glimpse of the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) in the darkness of the ocean! Climate conditions permitting, see the natural phenomenon caused when particles from the sun hit the earth’s atmosphere to create a stunning choreography of lights in the sky. Get your cameras ready for some spectacular photo opportunities - the vessel is very stable, making it very convenient when taking photos. Your experienced crew will keep an eye out for Aurora Borealis activity to find the best route to take. Sit back and enjoy the scenery from the vast darkness behind the small islands of Faxaflói Bay, including the island of Viðey where Yoko Ono's Imagine Peace Tower lights up the night sky from October 9 to December 8 (and on a few other days of the year). See the Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center with its distinctive colored glass façade inspired by the basalt landscape from a different angle. Marvel at The Sun Voyager ode to the sun statue by Jón Gunnar Árnason and the famous house of Höfði where an agreement was signed in 1986 to end the Cold War.   Escape the crowds and benefit from a comfortable yacht cruise with fewer passengers, as group sizes are limited to enhance customer satisfaction and create a more intimate experience. If it gets chilly, wrap up in the warm blankets provide and enjoy hot drinks or refreshments that can be bought from the bar while waiting for the Northern Lights to appear.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

9. 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: Whale Watching Tour, Whales of Iceland Exhibition

10. Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour, Whales of Iceland Exhibition

Board your boat in Reykjavík's Old Harbor and sail to Faxaflói Bay. Faxaflói has a rich variety of wildlife, but you'll most commonly spot minke whales, white-beaked dolphins, harbor porpoises and humpback whales. Ask your knowledgeable guide any questions you have throughout the tour and they'll be happy to answer.  You'll also visit the Whales of Iceland Exhibition. The exhibit features 23 life-size models of all the whale species found in Icelandic waters. Immerse yourself in the exhibit with virtual reality headsets, information stands, audio guides and videos. After the exhibition, grab a coffee and pastry at the café and relax in the exhibit's dreamy ambiance. Whales of Iceland offers two live-guided tours every day, available at 10:30 AM and 1:30 PM. This is free for all ticket holders. Note: You can choose the order in which you do these two activities.

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Frequently asked questions about Reykjavik

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What are the best day trips and excursions from Reykjavik?

The best day trips and excursions from Reykjavik are:

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Other Sightseeing Options in Reykjavik

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What people are saying about Reykjavik

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 1,126 reviews

The office and cruise was very easy to find. Every member of staff was so welcoming and helpful The guide pointed out lights as they happened, offered tips to get the best from your camera, took photos of groups when asked, and answered any and all questions with enthusiasm and openness. 2 hours out on the water gave plenty of opportunity to get your fill of The Lights. The refreshments area inside offered refuge from bitter cold. Wonderful!

A magnificent yacht, a warm welcome and it was the only time I could really see the aurora borealis, although small, but I was able to photograph them. I highly recommend thanks to the team to this young girl from the staff who came to chat with me in French as well. Thanks a lot! See you soon

Everything went well, the guide explained a lot to us and we were lucky enough to see a humpback whale. He even jumped out of the water for us and it was a lot of fun on the boat. Our children celebrated it very much and we would book it again and again.

It was wel organized and not too crampy on the boat! Great staff, enough snacks and drinks for very reasonable prices, and we got to see a humpback whale!!

An amazing trip to see the whales, would definitely recommend!