Nature in Abundance
The Hornstrandir nature reserve is a place of majestic,
natural beauty with an abundance of wild life. This adventure is the perfect
choice for travelers that want to experience as much they can in a short time.
Using our sailboat Aurora, we can cover a lot of ground and make shore landings
wherever we want. Here we include three unique locations for hiking, sea
kayaking and wildlife: the bird island Vigur, the abandoned village of Hesteyri
and Lónafjörður fjord.
The island of Vigur is a very unique place where man and nature have coexisted in balance and harmony and where thousands of birds such as Puffins, Arctic Terns and Black Guillemots come ashore to breed during the short summer. Hesteyri has rich history and it's like time has stopped when last inhabitants left around 70 years ago. We will cruise the Jökulfirðir (Glacier Fjords) bay, sail past the Drangajökull icecap and anchor in the lovely Lónafjörður fjord. Here are great options for hiking and kayaking and to quietly observe the Seals and Arctic Foxes playing or the rare White Tailed Eagle soaring above.
Hornstrandir is a captivating place leaving you with fabulous memories and the dream of returning once again.
Check out a list of all birds and mammals that are local to the West Fjords.
We start our journey departing from Ísafjörður at 7pm on the expedition sailing yacht Aurora. Heading to Seyðisfjörður Fjord which will take 1-2 hours, we will anchor either at Eyri or Folafótur.
Onshore we will take a short walk with the opportunity to observe the many different species of birds found on the Hornstandir such as: Puffin, Black Guillemot, Whooper Swan, Eider, Fulmar, Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover, Golden Plover, Common Snipe, Common Redshank, Glaucous Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Arctic Tern, Pied Wagtail, Redwing, Raven, Cormorant, Shag and many others.
After a short sail we will arrive at the small island of Vigur with an excursion ashore. This is a very unique place where man and nature have coexisted in balance and harmony. Here, thousands of seabirds come ashore to breed during the short summer.Vigur is home to large colonies of Eiders, Puffins, Arctic Terns and Black Guillemots. Along with these birds there are a number of passerine species such as Snow Bunting, Pied Wagtail and Meadow Pipits. With luck, we will catch sight of a White Tailed Eagle or Gyrfalcon. It may also be possible to spot King Eiders. They often pair with common Eider females, producing exquisite looking hybrids.
The island also has a cultural and architectural history worth exploring. Here, the only windmill in Iceland can be found. Vigurbreiður is a rowing boat for eight people, over 200 years old and the oldest house on the island is the recently renovated Viktoría House, which was built in 1860. We will spend a few hours walking around the island and stop for coffee and freshly baked cakes in the Viktoría house.
In the afternoon we will sail towards the Jökulfirðir Fjords (Glacier Fjords). Our passage takes us along the coast of Snæfjallaströnd and around the headland of Bjarnanúpur. Sailing in close proximity to the towering cliffs with large Fulmar colonies, we will also observe ocean birds such as Kittiwake, Arctic Tern and Guillemots.There is an option to hike across the mountain to Grunnavík Bay to meet up with Aurora.
Continuing our journey we´ll enter Jökulfirðir Bay and sail to the abandoned settlement of Hesteyri where we will anchor for the night. The last residents of Hesteyri moved away in the 1950´s but many of them maintain their old residence and use them as summerhouses. We will explore the old village and take a short walk along the exquisite sandy beaches.We will be watchful for Harlequin Ducks, which are both beautiful and engaging to observe. Iceland is their only breeding ground in Europe.
We also hope to see Purple Sandpipers, Ringed Plovers, Golden Plovers, Common Snipe, Oystercatcher and Long Tailed Ducks and with this rich profusion of bird life we expect to see the Arctic Foxes that inhabit this area.
We are now in the Hornstrandir Nature Reserve where flora and fauna rule unchallenged. The last permanent residents moved away in 1952 and now there are only summer houses. There are no roads in this area and the only access is by boat.The vegetation is surprisingly lush. Over two meter high Angelica grows down to the coast and the lowlands and slopes are decorated by spreading patches of Wood Crane's-bill, Fleabanes, Cotton Grass, Lady Smock and a profusion of other wildflowers. In the rocky and sandy areas we also have flowers such as Wild Thyme, Oysterplant, Arctic Poppy, Roseroot, Moss Campion and Thrift. In the hills we can find Crowberries (Blackberries) and Blueberries (Billberries) later in the summer.
During the morning we have several options for wonderful walks/hikes. We can walk to the ruins of the old whaling station where Norwegians processed around 12,000 barrels of whale-oil between 1894 and 1915 when the Icelandic government passed a law on the protection of whales in Icelandic waters. Subsequently, Icelandic companies processed herring in the same plant until it was finally shut down around 1940.
We continue our journey sailing further into the Glacier Fjords where we have further options of hiking. Our passage will take us past the glaciers of Drangajökull ice-cap and into Lónafjörður Fjord. Here we will anchor at Rangali. At this sheltered anchorage there are options to kayak on the tranquil waters and observe the seals in their natural habitat.
We will sail from Lónafjörður and around the cliffs of Bjarnanúpur. If conditions suit, we may stop and go ashore to the abandoned Kvíar farm where Borea Adventures have a base.After approximately 4-5 hours of sailing we will conclude our journey in Ísafjörður, arriving around 4pm.
|2013160 Full||Jul. 07 - Jul. 10, 2013||4||690 EUR||BOOK!|
|2013170||Jul. 13 - Jul. 16, 2013||4||690 EUR||BOOK!|
|2013180||Jul. 18 - Jul. 21, 2013||4||690 EUR||BOOK!|
- Expert wildlife guidance
- All food onboard and during day activities, except alcohol
- Accommodation onboard
- Use of sailing clothing ( Gore-Tex jacket and pants), safety harness and life jacket
- Kayaking gear (boat, paddle, dry-suit top and life jacket)
- Travel to and from Ísafjörður, Iceland unless specifically mentioned in itinerary.
- Food the first day until boarding the yacht in Ísafjörður
- Personal medical insurance
- Personal equipment as pr recommended equipment list.
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Terms and conditions
The Borea Adventures trips/voyages are of an adventurous nature and to relatively remote locations in Iceland, Greenland and other places. Borea Adventures makes best effort to stick to the planned itinerary but participants must appreciate and acknowledge that the trip/voyage requires considerable flexibility. The company and captain of the vessel reserve the right to adjust the itinerary without notice for reasons beyond their control such as weather, ice-conditions or other unpredictable or unforeseeable circumstances. Once departed on the voyage the captain will have final say on all decisions affecting safety etc and this must be accepted by all participants.
Download full version of "terms and conditions" here.