A guided photo tour by a professional photo guide through North Iceland, the richest birding area in Iceland, both in terms of number of species and the abundance of birds. The best time for bird watching is from middle of May to middle of June. Most of the breeding birds can still be found in the area in July, although many of them are then rather reclusive because of the moulting period.
This tour will probably yield between 70 and 75 species of birds. We will see Brunnich’s Guillemots, Barrow’s Goldeneyes and Harlequins. We can almost promise Gyr Falcon on the way and most likely some surprise birds will be found in the trip, to name some quite likely would be Steller’s Eider, American Wigeon and King Eider.
Small groups – maximum 8 participants
21 – 26 May 2017
11 – 16 June 2017
Duration: 6 days / 5 nights.
Minimum number of participants 4, maximum 8
Day 1, Sunday: Arrival
Arrival at Keflavík airport, where you board an airport shuttle taking you to your accommodation in Reykjavík.
Day 2, Monday: Flight to the North – Tjörnes peninsula
Flight to Húsavík or Akureyri in North Iceland. We leave Húsavík through the Tjörnes peninsula and Kelduhverfi area out to Melrakkaslétta plateau. We search for birds on the way through this wonderful area and the day should yield more than 60 species of birds. A stop at Tjörnes will show a prospecting Puffin colony.
Another stop at Víkingavatn in Kelduhverfi would present us to extremely rich wetlands with many grebes and ducks. A hike in the Icelandic Birch woodland in Ásbyrgi will hopefully result in Icelandic Winter Wrens and Redpolls beside the unique scenery.
Several stopovers are planned at Melrakkaslétta on the way from Kópasker to Raufarhöfn will add interesting birds all the way. A tour at Melrakkaslétta is always likely to yield a Gyr Falcon or two. The Melrakkaslétta-area never ceases to surprise birdwatchers with rarities. We will search for two well known long-staying rarities, a female Steller’s Eider and a drake American Black. Dinner and overnight in Raufarhöfn.
Day 3, Tuesday: Bird Cliffs of Langanes
A drive from Raufarhöfn to the bird-cliffs at Skoruvíkurbjarg on Langanes peninsula. Skoruvíkurbjarg is one of the best places in Iceland to see Guillemots at nesting site. The cliffs at Langanes host hundreds of thousands of the auks and guillemots of Iceland, including the uncommon Brunnich’s Guillemot.
At Skoruvíkurbjarg, we will also find a fine colony of Northern Gannets. We stop several times on the drive to and from Langanes and will certainly find interesting birds. Dinner and overnight in Ytra Lón on Langanes peninsula.
Day 4, Wednesday: Birdwatchers Paradise Lake Mývatn
We drive from Ytra Lón to Lake Mývatn, crossing Melrakkaslétta and follow the glacier river Jökulsá á Fjöllum, through a National Park to Mývatn. A few stops in the National Park for scenery, including a stop at the mightiest waterfall of Europe, Dettifoss. Hopefully we will see some of the nesting Pink-footed Geese of the highlands before arriving at Lake Mývatn.
A possible stop in the volcanic area of Krafla/Leirhnjúkur to see active geothermal hot mud springs with some of the newest lava found in Iceland. A short bird watching at Lake Mývatn will yield specialities such as Barrow’s Goldeneyes and Harlequin Ducks. We will also visit the privately owned bird museum on the north shore of the lake. Dinner and overnight.
Day 5, Thursday: Reykjavík
Morning flight from Akureyri to Reykjavík. After arrival at the Reykjavík domestic airport, we drive to the lava fields of Reykjanes peninsula. More then half of the peninsula is covered with lava flows and you will see lava cones and craters of different sizes and shapes. We will walk where the Atlantic ridge rises from the ocean and head for the lighthouse on the westernmost tip of the peninsula. We continue to the small fishing village Grindavík and end in the Blue Lagoon, for a relaxing dip in 38°C therapeutic geothermal water. The Blue Lagoon is surrounded by a moss-covered lava field dating back to 1226. Overnight in Reykjavík.
Day 6, Friday: Departure
Departure transfer to Keflavík Airport or prolong your stay in Reykjavík.
Price per person sharing a double room EUR 3.540
Price per person in a single room EUR 3.925
- 5 nights including breakfast in rooms with private facilities.
- Breakfast, lunch and dinners outside Reykjavík
- Professional English speaking guide and professional photographer.
- Return Flybus airport transfers.
- Return flight from Reykjavík to Húsavík/Akureyri, including airport taxes.
- Private bus during the tour in the North.
- Entrance fee:
- Bird museum in Mývatn.
- Lodging Tax.