Puffins in Reykjavik; best puffin trip between islands in Iceland

Atlantic puffins sits on the water in Iceland. It is viewed from a boat on a puffin watching trip from Reykjavik harbor, Iceland. The puffin is in full breeding plumage with a very colorful beak.

A wonderful day out to look for the puffins in Reykjavik – from the Old Harbor on our beloved yacht Axel Rose. We took our lovely customers all around the fascinating islands that provide nesting grounds for the Atlantic Puffins every summer.

by Lucky Byfleet

We are based in the city of the old town in Reykjavik, easy walking distance to everything! Today we took our smaller yacht out, which gets us really close into the islands where the puffins make their burrows. The weather was gorgeous, and it is light almost all the time now, the short dark days of winter are behind us! Though we look forward to seeing the stunning Northern Lights again one day soon.

The first island we visited, Akurey, often overlooked as it’s much smaller than the other more popular islands of Engey and Videy. We often visit it in the summer to look for the puffins in Reykjavik and other sea birds who nest there, safe on its craggy shoreline. Sometimes we see seals over here too. Their gorgeous big puppy-eyed heads above the water level as they come up to breathe and look around. This isn’t one of the biggest colonies, but it is always worth checking out multiple ones on different islands because you will never know what you will see!

Puffin in mid flight - photo taken from a puffin trip in Reykjavik harbor
A puffin in flight, taken on our puffin trip

Carrying on with our trip, we went to the island of Engey, the second largest island in the bay. Some puffins have their burrows here, but not as many as the other islands so we continued on our trip. Good to see some friendly ducks here too though!

The next island we came to was Lundey – or Puffin Island. It is very well known because, as its name suggests, it is home in the summer months to a huge colony of Atlantic Puffins, we have 60% of the world’s population here in Iceland and despite not being our national bird – that’s the gyrfalcon – it holds a special place in all of our hearts with its jolly colors and clumsy antics! We stayed here a while and enjoyed the antics of this funny and adorable bird.

Puffins in Reykjavik - puffin sitting on the water in reykjavik harbor
Puffins reykjavik; What a pretty puffin! Beautiful in its breeding plumage.

The last island we pass on our puffins Reykjavik trip is Videy. During the day, from the yacht, you can see pieces of art around the island, designed by Richard Serra. However, we were on the hunt for puffins! And we knew exactly where to go. All along one side, there is a huge colony, there are hundreds of them all around us and they are such a joy to watch!

After all of this the puffins trip takes us home, along the coastline of our beloved Reykjavik City itself. Along it you’ll see the famous Hofdi House where the meeting between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbatsjov happened, effectively bringing an end to the Cold War, the Sun Voyager sculpture, and the cultural center Harpa.

Many people doubt that you can see puffins in Reykjavik but it’s very possible. You just need to get on a boat and sail out of the harbour for a few minutes. You don’t have to drive for hours away from reykjavik to see puffins, although that can be a great experience as well. If you have a short stop and you don’t have much time to see the puffins this is your chance.

We made it back safely after a beautiful day enjoying the best weather Iceland could possibly have given us! Everyone got great photos of puffins as well as so many other seabirds, what a wonderful puffins Reykjavik trip! We offer all sorts of tours on different types of vessels.


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