Stunning 4-Day Kayaking Tour in Hornstrandir with Transfer from Isafjordur

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Description

Summary

Tour starts
Borea Adventures, Gear Storage and Meeting Point, Mávagarðsbrygg
Starting time
at 09:00
Duration
4 days
Ending place
Borea Adventures, Gear Storage and Meeting Point, Mávagarðsbrygg
Languages
English
Difficulty
Demanding
Available
June - Sept.
Minimum age
16 years old

Description

Discover the incredible beauty of the Hornstrandir nature reserve in the remote Westfjords region on this unforgettable four-day kayaking tour. Adventurous travelers looking to explore Hornstrandir at a slow pace while staying in comfortable accommodations will love this extraordinary trip.

The tour begins as you set off from the Westfjords region’s capital, Isafjordur. You’ll travel by ferry across the picturesque fjord, enjoying views of the surrounding seascape and mountains before arriving at the Hornstrandir nature reserve. 

You’ll then spend the next four days kayaking in the stunning fjords, photographing the plant and animal life, and sleeping in a comfortable farmhouse each night.

The few residents who lived in the Hornstrandir nature reserve abandoned it in the 1950s. The remote area is inaccessible by road, so the only way to reach it is by ferry. 

Its isolated location makes it a nature lover’s paradise and a perfect destination for a kayaking tour.

During the excursion, you’ll see an incredible wilderness of fjords, towering cliffs, and spectacular seascapes. It’s a fantastic opportunity to reconnect with nature. You’ll have the chance to see animals like Arctic foxes, seals, birds, and even whales.

The kayaking opportunities here are some of the best in the world. The secluded area means you’re unlikely to encounter other travelers and can enjoy the unspoiled views with your group.

Most overnight visitors to the Westfjords must camp, as there aren’t many hotels or other buildings. However, you’ll enjoy a comfortable night’s sleep each night in a luxurious farmhouse, complete with a sauna where you can relax in the evenings. 

Each day, your experienced Westfjords guide will lead your group on an exciting kayaking adventure through the beautiful waters around the Hornstrandir nature reserve. You’ll see stunning waterfalls, spectacular mountains, gorgeous fjords, and dramatic glaciers. 

Your guide will provide you with all the equipment for this tour, including a kayak, paddle, life vest, dry bags, and neoprene clothes to keep you warm. 

You don’t need to carry heavy camping or cooking gear, as you’ll stay in the farmhouse instead of setting up camp outdoors. All meals during the tour are included except for breakfast on the first day.

Please note that you must arrive at Isafjordur the day before this tour starts for your early ferry on day one. Your guides will welcome you at 17:00 the evening before the trip at the meeting point for a thorough briefing of the days ahead.

This fantastic journey through Hornstrandir involves spending four days kayaking through one of Iceland’s most breathtaking and awe-inspiring nature reserves. Check availability now by choosing a date. 

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Included

Expert, English-speaking guide
Three nights of accommodation in the Kviar farmhouse
Kayaking gear (kayak, paddle, neoprene pants, dry top, spray skirt, life vest, paddling boots, paddling gloves, and extra dry bags)
All meals, excluding breakfast on day 1 and dinner on day 4
Transfer by ferry from Hornstrandir

Activities

Kayaking

Daily itinerary

Day 1
A boat with kayaks strapped to it sails to Hornstrandir.

Day 1 - Arrival in Hornstrandir & Kayak to Veidileysufjordur

On day one of your kayaking tour of the Hornstrandir nature reserve, you’ll arrive in the Westfjords and kayak to your accommodation for the trip.

The tour begins the evening before day one when you’ll have a briefing with your guide and meet the other travelers.

On the morning of day one, you’ll head back to the meeting point to begin the tour. After some final checks, your group will walk to the harbor and board a ferry from Isafjordur into the Hornstrandir nature reserve.

You’ll arrive in Hesteyri, formerly the largest settlement in the Hornstrandir area. You’ll load your gear into the kayaks and receive a thorough safety briefing from your guide before setting off. Your total kayaking distance today is about 10 miles (17 kilometers).

The first leg of today’s route takes you along the fjord’s coast, either toward the lighthouse at Sletta or into the fjord to see the former whaling station. The whaling station dates back to the end of the 18th century but is no longer used.

You’ll enjoy lunch together, return to your kayak, and head across the Veidileysufjordur fjord. As you paddle, your guide will indicate points of interest, and you can take photos. 

Watch for birds and other wildlife. The Hornstrandir nature reserve is home to various sea birds and mammals.

Your guide will take you to a rest stop along a picturesque shoreline to stretch your legs before you continue your journey toward the Kviar farmhouse, your accommodation for the next three nights. It’s the only property in this valley and offers stunning coastal views.

On arrival, you can unload your gear and settle into your accommodation. The guide will prepare a delicious dinner for the group, and you can relax in the sauna or get to know the other guests. 

After a fantastic first day, you can settle in and rest before more kayaking tomorrow.

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Day 2
Kayaks in the fjord off the coast of the Hornstrandir Nature Reserve.

Day 2 - Lonafjordur Fjord

On the second day of your activity tour in the Westfjords, you'll kayak through the Lonafjordur fjord and enjoy the spectacular scenery.

After a restful night's sleep in the Kviar farmhouse, you'll wake up and enjoy a group breakfast. Wear your neoprene gear to keep dry and prepare your kayak for the day's journey. 

Today, as the group covers about 12.5 miles (20 kilometers), it's crucial to fuel up well. A hearty breakfast will provide the energy you need for this exciting day of kayaking.

Since your accommodation is the same today, you don't need to pack your belongings. However, you should bring a day pack with any provisions or supplies you need for the day. 

The guide will lead your group down into the water by the farmhouse, and you'll kayak toward the Lonafjordur fjord, a narrow body of water between the Hrafnfjordur and Veidileysufjordur fjords. 

This peaceful area has no signs of human presence. Locals often call this the most beautiful fjord in Iceland, so prepare for some magnificent scenery.

Thousands of sea birds nest here during the summer, soaring through the skies and gathering on the towering cliffs above. The guide will take you to the popular nesting points to increase your chances of seeing the birds that live here. 

During the tour, you'll have the opportunity to visit the hidden bay at Sopandi, home to a large seal colony. While wildlife sightings can never be guaranteed, this is a prime spot to catch a glimpse of these beautiful sea mammals in their natural habitat, adding an extra element of excitement to your journey. 

Today's journey covers a longer distance, but you'll take a leisurely pace and can stop for plenty of rest throughout the day, including a tasty lunch.

After an exciting day of kayaking, you'll return to the Kviar farmhouse for a group dinner and relaxation before bed. Sooth any aching muscles in the sauna before you turn in for a restful sleep.

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Day 3
A group of kayakers with their gear in Hornstrandir.

Day 3 - Leirufjordur & the Drangajokull Glacier

Day three of your kayaking tour of the Westfjords takes you into the Leirufjordur fjord to see the mighty Drangajokull glacier. 

Wake up in the morning and eat another hearty breakfast with the group. The guide will also prepare coffee for anyone who needs a cup to feel more energized. Once everyone is in their kayaking gear, it’s time to set off on another incredible day of kayaking in the Westfjords.

Today’s route takes you into the Leirufjordur fjord. You’ll cover approximately 12.5 miles (20 kilometers) again. Day three is the final day of kayaking, so make the most of it and enjoy all the magnificent views.

The Leirufjordur fjord is one of the smaller bays in the Jokulfjords area, a subregion of the Westfjords in the northern part of the Hornstrandir nature reserve. It’s a very picturesque area with sweeping views of the Drangajokull glacier. 

Measuring about 77 square miles (200 square kilometers), Drangajokull is one of Iceland’s smallest ice caps. Despite its small size, it’s a beautiful place, and you can enjoy the icy panorama in the distance as you kayak through the fjord.

The fjord waters here are milky from glacial sediment deposited in the bay. Your guide will explain more about the glacier and can answer any questions you have about the ice cap as you paddle.

If your group has the energy and weather conditions allow, you can land your kayaks and take a short hike around the area today. It’s an excellent way to stretch your legs and see more of Hornstrandir from land. 

After another excellent day out on the water, the group will return to the farmhouse for the final evening. By now, you’ll have bonded with the guide and the other group members and can spend the last night together, chatting and reminiscing about your shared experience. 

Eat a final dinner together and relax in the sauna before going to bed.

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Day 4
A seabird flies through the air over Hornstrandir.

Day 4 - Departure

Day four of your kayaking tour of the Westfjords is the last. Today, you’ll take the ferry back to Isafjordur and say goodbye to the other guests and your guide.

You’ll wake up at the Kviar farmhouse after a refreshing night’s sleep. You’ll enjoy a last breakfast together before packing up your belongings. You can relax at the farmhouse or explore the area on foot this morning. 

Keep an eye out for the Arctic foxes that live in the area. They’re pretty tame and aren’t afraid of humans. 

At about 11:00, the ferry will collect you and take you back across the Isafjardardjup fjord to Isafjordur town. The guide may need to stay behind to start another tour, but the ferry crew will take care of you.

Snap a few final photos as you sail across the bay, looking for sea birds and other wildlife. As you arrive in the harbor, say goodbye to the other guests on the tour. 

From here, you can continue your adventures in Iceland or head home.

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What to bring

Warm, waterproof clothes (avoid cotton, as it takes a long time to dry)
Warm gloves and a hat
Swimsuit and towel
Light shoes for wearing at the accommodation
Sunscreen and sunglasses
Two dry bags
Camera
Any medical supplies
Binoculars
Reusable water bottle

Good to know

All trips are weather dependent and may be amended for safety reasons.

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