Whale Watching Tour

by thrandur

Húsavík Iceland, June 2007

Whale watching is great way to experience the largest animals on Earth. Just off the north coast of Iceland are regions where whales are plenty. We got invited to take a trip with a company that specialize in whale watching tours.

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Gentle Giants are located in the friendly town of Húsavík where only a couple thousand people live. The ticket sale office is just a few steps from the harbor with a great view of the bay.

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Right at the entrance you can see that the business is blooming and well organized. You can easily see when the next tour is and can use the time to eat out at a local restaurant or shop for souvenirs.

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Faldur is the boat that will carry us out on the sea. It is built of oak in Vestmannaeyjar in 1972 and looks charming and romantic and completely unlike the modern fiberglass high speed fishing boats of today.

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As soon as we get on board we are offered a warm overall along with hats and gloves. This is really a nice touch as getting cold out on the ocean is not very pleasant.

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Sverrir and his wife Sigga and two boys look excited.

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As we start sailing out the harbor I take a look back at the harbor with other whale watching boats and the charming old church of Húsavík. The church is considered by many to be the most beautiful church in Iceland.

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Our guide for the tour explains all the security measures and tells us about the species of whales we might get to see. The tours have a 98% success rate of spotting whales!

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We sail past the island Lundey (Puffin Island) – where 200.000 puffins find their home.

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After about an hours sailing the first whale is spotted. This is a humpback whale and we carefully sail closer.

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There are many humpback whales. Today they seem to be on the move and hard to get close to…

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…still we get some nice pictures.

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Since we spotted the whales another whale watching boat comes closer. Bjössi Sör is a similar oak built boat that we are also using.

Humpback Whale

Humpback Whale

Getting this close we can clearly hear the sounds of the whale. It is a strange kind of hissing noise.

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The front cabin is just as it was when it was built in 1972 with the old oil stove on the left and sleeping for two.

Whale watching captain

Whale watching captain

The captain in the steering room enjoys “hunting” for the large animals.

Hot chocolate and "kleina"

Hot chocolate and "kleina"

On the way back everyone is given a hot cup of chocolate and some home baked “kleinur” (similar to doughnuts).

We also see some white beaked dolphins – unfortunately they where too quick for me to get a shot of them this time.

Gentle Giant Whale Pictures

Here are a couple of pictures from the Gentle Giants Whale watching company.

Whale Jumping

Whale Jumping

Occasionally the whales like to jump out of the ocean. Not this time – but last year there was one that kept on jumping in front of the boat.

Whale

Whale

Another picture from last year. What a sight!

Thanks to the crew and captain for a great whale watching trip!

For more information about the whale watching you can visit the Gentle Giants home page:

Gentle Giants Whale Watching

Gentle Giants Whale Watching

Thrandur Arnthorsson
Boat2Fish.net

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