After yesterday’s disappointment of not sailing out for the whale watching tour due to really bad weather (and I have to admit the sea looked rough in the bay yesterday so I can only imagine what it would have been like on the open ocean) I found out after breakfast this morning the tour today was ON!
I have to hand it to Elding (the tour company); they did their best to make sure everyone who booked a tour was able to go. They moved the boat to another harbour and even arranged buses to take people there! I got picked up from the hotel and after getting my ticket validated at the Reykjavik docks we were all put on buses to drive us to the harbour in Hafnarfjordur about 20 minutes away.
We got warned beforehand that things could get rough and rocky as the ocean was still pretty wild, but I have to admit, when I found a good spot on the top deck I didn’t think it was as bad as they made it out to be. Boy was I going to regret thinking that a little while later 😉
We slowly moved out of the docks and it started to get pretty cold immediately, which made me extra happy with my newly purchased mittens and hat. As soon as we were off one of the crew took the microphone. She would be our guide for today and she expressed once again it was going to be a rough sail. They even provided us with warm suits and blankets if we wanted to and our guide suggested we also take one of the pills they handed out against seasickness, hunting she would get one herself too.
You know when a crew member tells you they’ll go get one of those seasickness pills you’re in for a ride, but I was still under the assumption I’d be fine; WRONG!
I did decide right away I was going to get one of those warm suits and as I got up to try and walk downstairs I already felt sick! The boat was moving left and right and everyone had trouble walking or keeping upright.
I managed to get downstairs and got myself a suit and a pill. Which I’m really happy about that I did. I made my way back upstairs now in a lovely red suit and slightly turning green. The pills don’t work until after about 30 minutes…
I once again found myself a seat on the upper deck and waited for the pill to start working. Let me tell you that 30 minutes takes forever when you’re feeling really sick and want to just enjoy the sail. I’m just glad I wasn’t the only one feeling sick and looking around most people seemed to have a little green hue around them 😉
Once the pill kicked in I instantly felt better, it felt like I hadn’t been feeling sick at all. Now I was finally able to enjoy being on the open ocean, seeing Iceland from the sea. The boat was still rocking and walking was difficult but I was now able to enjoy it.
The views are stunning and the wildlife information provided by the crew was really interesting, but we unfortunately didn’t come across a pod of whales.
Or at least, most people on the boat didn’t see any whales. When I moved to the other side of the boat earlier, I had a feeling I needed to stay there for the entire sail. And I was right! Just before we started to turn back to the harbour, me and a few people sitting beside me, saw something huge jump out of the water and disappear again in the distance, a big whale! It was only a split second and at first I doubted what I had seen but when I heard others respond in the same way I knew what I saw was what I came for; a whale in it’s natural habitat. My day could not have ended better, even though it was just one whale and it wasn’t up close. As a nature lover and environmentalist seeing a beautiful creature like that in it’s natural surroundings is amazing.
Elding offered everyone on the tour a free ticket valid for 2 years for a new tour, because we officially didn’t see any whales. They saw plenty of whales during the morning tour but unfortunately for most none on the noon tour. I guess that’s how it works, you can’t train them to just show up. I took the ticket and who knows, maybe I’ll be back within 2 years to take another tour.