Monday, 17 June 2024

Monday, 17 June 2024


Today we will be operating our Classic Whale Watching on our lovely vessel Eldey at 9:00, 13:00, 17:00, 20:30 and our just as lovely catamaran Hafsúlan at 11:00, 15:00. Our Premium Whale Watching tour will operate on Þruma I-V at 10:00, 12:00, 14:00 and 16:00


Report from Eldey: Sailing out this morning, all the crew had a hunch this was going to be a good day. Though the swell was tricky and bumpy, just enough for some to experience their first seasickness, we made the most of our 3 hours. Quite quickly, we encountered 2 pods of 20 white beaked dolphins, with a lot of them jumping out, spy hoping in front of us. This was followed by about 8 minke whales all around us, as we realised we had finally found the feeding ground. With minkes and dolphins feeding all around, joined by the puffins and the gannets, we also completed our species checklist with 2 other sightings: a large pod of 10 harbour porpoises passed in our way, a are sighting to say the least. A bit later, to our very surprise a humpback whale joined the party, closely followed by a minke individual. This last shy sighting left us all very content of a job well done and a boat fully entertained as we headed back home. 


- Alexandre Paumier


Report from Elding: Our ship, Elding I, started it´s 1st tour of the day with a big number of passengers from all around the world, who were all excited to find some whales in the untamed Icelandic seas. We set sail into the beautiful Faxafloi bay, with the weather being quite better than in the day before. About an hour after we started searching for the cetaceans, we spotted our 1st species, a pod of white-beaked dolphins ahead of us, who seemed to be playing with a rib boat in the area. Only when we approached the pod, that we saw it's true size. What initially seemed like a group of 20, turned out to be more than 60, maybe even close to 100 dolphins, divided into multiple groups in the area. The experience was phenomenal, with multiple dolphins approaching our boat, breaching in what looked like choreographed sequence, and a young baby dolphin, who tried to imitate it's older companions, by doing some clumsy (but cute!) jumps. Besides the dolphins, multiple minke whales appeared throughout the tour, surfacing and dissapearing rapidly, allowing only some lucky passengers to see them. In conclusion, an amazing tour.

-Ricardo Mendes


Report from Eldey: We started this afternoon very excited after a really good start to the day. The sea had calmed a little bit but the swell was still big at times. We had to wait a while before we spotted some splashes followed by lots of dorsal fins. We had found a very compact pod of 20-25 white beaked dolphins. They performed all sorts of behaviours including the most exciting of bow-riding and jumping! They then seemed to split off into two pods and so we left them and came across a lot of minke whales feeding over a large area. There was 8/9 of them and some even came really close to our boat. Whilst watching the minkes we also noticed another 2 pods of dolphins, both having about 10 individuals. One of these pods was porpoising really quickly, perhaps travelling to an area abundant with food. On our way back we came across another pod of toothed whales, this time it was about 8 harbour porpoises. It was a really nice sighting of this usually shy species, meaning everyone got a good look at them.

- Rob Hyman


Report from Elding : Our second tour of the day started under a cloudy, dramatic sky. Conditions at sea were rather calm with no wind and a mild swell. After sailing for almost an hour to the center of Faxafloi bay, we oticed our first minke whale and approached slowly. Soon we realized that there were not one, not two, but three of them, actively feeding, sometimes coming quite close to our boat. After admiring them for a little while, we continued our way just to encounter white-beaked dolphins just half a mile away. And oh! these dolphins... instants later there were too many to even try to count them. Several pods (ten ?) were sharing the area, jumping, feeding, playing... they were behing us, to our left, to our right, bow riding before us, or just cruising in a distance. It is hard to even start to describe the joy of that whole scene, only enhanced by the many flocks of birds present (northern gannets, seagulls, puffins, guillemots, skuas...), probably getting their share of the feast taking place underwater. Soon enough, there were two more minke whales quietly feeding in a distance. We spent the rest of the tour enjoying that whole scene, until it was finally time to star heading back to the harbour. We spotted yet another minke whale and a pod of harbour porpoises on our way back, and that was the perfect way to end simply the most entertaining tour. 

- Olivia Garcia


Report from Eldey: Following a streak of multiple high-quality tours, we went out one last time hoping again for the best. After sailing out for an hour, we first encountered 3 pods of 20 white beaked dolphins, many of which were jumping all around our boat. This first amazing sighting was just the tip of the iceberg: following this group of dolphins, we came across a humpback whale, feeding calmly and surrounded with another pod of 5 dolphins and 3 minke whales, which seemed to tease it. All around us, the black-back gulls dived down and fought for fish, as more and more minkes appeared, totalling 30 individuals by the end of the tour. As the dolphins, disappeared, so did the humpback. Enjoying the multiple smaller whales feeding, we were not ready for the next event: seemingly unhappy with the other cetaceans bothering it, this humpback whale breached meters away from us, in sight of all passengers ! It then went on to fluke dive over ten times, again surrounded by all the minke whales. As this jumping whale slowly left our surroundings, more and more minkes appeared, closer and closer to our ship. Soon enough, we had to return home, but we were all mesmerised by this fantastic end of the day.


- Alex Paumier 


Report from Elding : Our last tour of the day started with similar conditions than the afternoon, cloudy skies and dramatic views but a calm sea and no wind. As we arrived to the center of the bay, we spotted our first minke whale in the distance, gently feeding at the surface. As we were approaching, we realized that were feeding in a distance at least five or six more minke whales. We noticed the blow of a humpback whale and decided to have a closer look. Just as we approached the humpback disappeared from our view and we decided to follow a pod of a dozen playful white-beaked dolphins jumping in a distance. To our greatest pleasure, they approached us and entertained us with the most acrobatic behavior, jumping and spinning all around. Similarly to the afternoon, we were soon surrounded by numerous small pods of dolphins, some cruising, others jumping around, accompanied by big flocks of birds. After observing the whole scene for a little while, we slowly got back to where the minke whales were feeding and spent the rest of the tour watching them pop up in every direction. It was hard to apprehend their exact number, but they must have been at least ten or twelve. The humpback whale surprised us and came back right before our boat to delight our passengers with the view of several impressive close-up fluke dives. We finally headed back to the harbour with stars in our eyes, memories for years and very happy passengers. 

- Olivia Garcia

Birds species encountered today include:

Atlantic Puffin, Artic skua, lesser black backed gull, greater black backed gull, Northern fulmar, Northern gannet, Arctic tern, black legged kittiwake, herring gull, common guillemot, black guillemot, manx shearwater, black headed gull