The black-sand beaches, sea cliffs, and fjords of the Icelandic coastline host a diverse cast of creatures, from dolphins and whales to throngs of orange-billed puffins. Here’s what you need to know about Reykjavik-based RIB (rigid inflatable boat) cruises, which allow you to get close to coastal wildlife during exhilarating high-speed tours.
Admire the Reykjavik skyline and spot noteworthy landmarks, such as Harpa Concert Hall and the Sólfar (Sun Voyager) sculpture, from the water.
Cruise through Faxaflói Bay, stopping at Lundey Island or Akurey Island to see nesting birds during a puffin tour.
Scan the water for sightings of surfacing minke and humpback whales.
Enjoy the excitement of whizzing across the water at high speed.
Learn about the behavioral patterns of seabirds, such as auks and gannets, from your guide.
Things to Know
Most RIB tours depart from Reykjavik’s Old Harbour.
Puffins are most visible during the breeding season, May to August. You can spot whales and dolphins in Iceland year-round, but more species are present during the summer months.
Speedboats generally accommodate small groups of 15 people or fewer, guaranteeing an intimate experience.
Most RIB tours provide warm waterproof overalls and life jackets.
Many whale-watching tours offer complimentary tickets for another speedboat cruise if you don’t spot any whales the first time around.
RIB speedboat tours typically last one to two hours.
Boat engines can be switched off so as not to alarm wildlife and to allow you to appreciate the sounds of nature.