Picture by Pétur Bjarni Gíslason

Skjálfandi Flói

Húsavík itself absolutely is an amazing place to explore. Its position is gorgeous but all the surroundings can be more than just a frame for a beautiful picture. Skjálfandi Flói, or “Shaky Bay”, is the bay where Húsavík lies on the eastern shores and it’s worldwide famous for the rich wildlife, especially whales. A whale-watching trip is an excellent way to explore the area, indeed. Of course the main highlights of the tour are the giants of the sea but the landscapes all around are magnificent and contribute to an unforgettable experience.

The western side of the bay is where the mountains of Flateyjarskagi stand, remote and wonderful location for trekkers. At the southern shore you would find a long black beach cut by two freshwater rivers that bring into the bay the nutrients which make of Skjálfandi Flói a unique location for whale-watching. The nutrients and the tectonic activity of the bay (it is shaky because of it, not because of the cold) are what create planktons and other micro organisms that attract whales here where they can be spotted. The northern side of Skjálfandi Flói is open to the north Atlantic Ocean and, in clear days, is possible to see Grimsey in the distance. But two more little islands are within the bay: Lundey in the East and Flatey in the West, both of them excellent spots for bird-watching.

Picture by Sergii

It’s not possible to land on the round shaped Lundey, the “Puffin Island”, but some whale-watching tours include a stop nearby to enjoy the sight of the funny, clumsy and sweet Puffins. During the nesting season, May to August, 200.000 of them are here. After eight to nine months spent in the open ocean one far from the other the same couple reunites and comes back to the same nest every year, to lay a single egg each year. How romantic!

Flatey, the “Flat Island”, makes justice to its name with its highest point measuring only 22mt above sea level. Inhabited during the winter, this is a truly calm place where charming summer cottages can be the perfect chance for an absolute relaxing time in very close contact with nature, within a great scenery.

How to get here:
To reach the islands of Lundey and Flatey please check the scheduled tours of the whale-watching companies of Húsavík or contact them.
To reach the southern shores of Skjálfandi Flói you need to reach Eidarfoss.
To reach the western shores of Skjálfandi Flói you need to reach Flateyjarskagi.
To reach the eastern shores of Skjálfandi Flói you need to reach Húsavík.

 

Text by Francesco Perini
Heading picture by Pétur Bjarni Gíslason
Mid text picture by Sergii

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