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“Worth the wait” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Special Tours

Special Tours
Book In Advance
More Info
$91.73*
and up
Northern Lights Viewing Cruise from Reykjavik
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Hunting the northern lights from the ocean is an amazing experience; sailing away from the coastline of Reykjavik, seeing the aurora borealis on the North-Atlantic Ocean with beautiful mountains and the city lights in the background is something you won't forget. Free pick-up, warm overalls and free hot drinks are provided. This tour is highly dependent on correct weather conditions and therefore we reserve the right to cancel if the circumstances are not favorable.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator, Activities for older children, Food available for purchase, Activities for young children
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Worth the wait”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2013

We decided to go to Iceland on a bit of a whim. Over all a fabulous trip. The one thing I did want to see was the norhtern lights. The tour that we picked was the Norther Lights by Boat. The first night was cancelled due to weather conditione. We ad one opportunity left. The days was overcast so we were doubtful that we would see anything. Fortuntaley the sky cleared up and we had a wonderful view of the lights. Apparently it was a good show (I had nothing to compare it against!!).

I would recommend going out by boat to anyone. There was no long bus trip plus you had the advantage of seeing the city rom the harbour by night. There was a cold wind off the sea but the boat was equipped with warm overalls which made it cozy. Over all it was fun and of course the major draw was the lights and fortunately for us they were out in great form.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank aka_skippy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whalewatchingexpress, Manager at Special Tours, responded to this review, July 6, 2013
We thank you for your kind review and are very happy that you got a chance to join us on the Northern Lights boat tour from Reykjavik Harbour.

We sure have had lots of comments like these, where people are happy to go out on the boat where they can stay inside or outside however they like during the whole tour. Its not easy to predict far in advance when the skies will clear and show us the lights, but with help from the weather and aurora forecast we try and keep our customers up to date and find the best possible day to go out - happy that you got a chance to see them during your stay:)

Hope you enjoyed your stay in Iceland and hope to see you again in the future!

Kind regards,
Special Tours Crew
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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264 reviews from our community

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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Nice to see on the boat, guide could be more enthusiastic”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 13, 2013

We booked this via the viatour. Then rang through to the Special Tours guys to ensure our pick up would be OK as we booked about 8 hours before the tour started. We arrived at the harbour having been picked up in a minibus, and boarded the whaler boat (which we later learnt was bigger than the one normally used due to demand).

It was very chaotic presenting tickets and e-vouchers, and took a while to get onto the boat - you're not guided very clearly about where you can and can't go to sit (everyone was bundling up to the middle deck and it was very squashed - when I asked, I was told anywhere on any deck was actually OK, so we retired to teh lower deck by the foulies gear).

We set off after a short while, and Claudia (I hope I have spelt that correctly, my apologies if not) was our guide over the tannoy system. The tannoy system was somewhat unreliable and would for brief seconds randomly through the evening cut her off. She also soudned a little un-prepared, the talks she gave were very jumpy and random.

She did however through that give some top tips on what to find, how the camera can some times see them starting before our eyes, and waht to look for.

We did quite well on our first go - first night out, and we saw a medium quality show - greenish lights floating across the sky. We'd have loved to have seen more colour - but only Mother Nature can help with that!

We were out for nearly 3 hours, and the tour guys ensured we got as much as we could out of the trip to see as much as possible of them, before they naturally quiesced and we headed back to harbour.

If you take a camera - you'll need a tripod, and even then as the boat rocks you'll struggle to get a stable picture. SLRs are the best for this - we had a good quality semi-compact job, and it struggled immensely even when controlling exposure etc in full manual - mainly due to stability. If you are taking pictures go for it - but do try not to blind other people on the boat with repetitive flashes and bright LCD screens please (this did get rather annoying, although I can understand everyone's eagerness!)

Overall, a reasonable trip - the boat boarding organisation and guide-talk could do with a little more work to turn this into a well polished tour. If I return to Iceland again for more northern lights chasing, I'd probably look at super jeep tour of some sort to go in-land instead.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Chris B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whalewatchingexpress, Manager at Special Tours, responded to this review, July 6, 2013
We thank you for your kind review and are very happy that you got a chance to join us on the Northern Lights boat tour from Reykjavik Harbour.

We appreciate your comments and we are continuously working on improving our tours and customer service as we are very passionate about providing the best possible experience for our customers. Great that you go to see the northern lights, they are quite spectacular:)

A lot of people that join our tours also go on land to get the pictures and then join our boat tours to get the experience and cozy evening cruise with a great view over the sparkling city lights:)

Hope you enjoyed your stay in Iceland and hope to see you again in the future!

Kind regards,
Special Tours Crew
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
61 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Perfect end to a fantastic weekend!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 12, 2013 via mobile

We booked the Northern Lights by Boat trip for the first of our 3 night stay in Reykjavik, but arrived in freezing temperatures and biting winds. Special Tours called that afternoon and rearranged (weather permitting) to go out on our last night, having told us the next night wouldn't be any good night for possible sightings. How right they were, as the next night was cloudy and windy too. We arrived at the Harbour not hopeful of seeing anything, but within 10 minutes of being out, our guide (Chloe?) called us up on deck to view the lights. I still can't quite believe the spectacle!! Totally awesome, heightened by being out a sea. I would definitely recommend doing a boat trip over a coach trip, and can't recommend Special Tours highly enough! Free hot drinks on board, big cosy all-in-ones to keep out the chill, and friendly staff that keep you well informed. Don't hesitate, just book it! Thanks Special Tours!!

Helpful?
1 Thank JollyHols38
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whalewatchingexpress, Manager at Special Tours, responded to this review, July 6, 2013
We thank you for your kind review and are very happy that you got a chance to join us on the Northern Lights boat tour from Reykjavik Harbour.

We are glad that you got such a spectacular show, and worth the wait I bet:) We try and keep our customers well informed on our tours as we do rely on the skies being quite clear and the lights active - the weather can change quickly here in Iceland so sometimes it can clear up in only few minutes!:)

Hope you had a lovely time in Iceland - and hope to see you again in the future!

Kind regards,
Special Tours Crew
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Finally-the Northern Lights by boat!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 14, 2013

Special Tours were brilliant-we arrived in Iceland on Friday night in pouring rain, not expecting to see the Lights anytime soon, although we had booked on the Northern Lights by boat tour that night. Special Tours allowed us to defer our tour until the weather was good, keeping us well-informed by email throughout our stay. Finally, last night, on our last night in the country, we went out on the boat and were treated to a spectacular display. The overalls provided kept us snuggly so we could just enjoy the show. It was AMAZING! To end the trip, Capt Magnus opened the throttle for an adrenaline-fueled trip back to Reykjavik. Brilliant!

Helpful?
4 Thank salwilms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whalewatchingexpress, Manager at Special Tours, responded to this review, February 25, 2013
Many thanks for your review and for joining our tour.

Im am happy to hear that it cleared up for the northern lights during your stay:) - We always try and make sure to keep our customers up to date every night regarding the weather conditions, as the Northern lights are very dependent on the right conditions, especially having clear skies!

We hope you had a very nice time in Iceland and hope you will visit again!

Greetings
Special Tours Crew
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bayside, New York
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“I Saw the Lights!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 22, 2012

It is an hour drive but worth the trip if the lights come out. When I got there I was worried because my night was rated a "one" for visability....luckly I was not disappointed. We were there for 2 hours standing in the cold (in and out of the cafe to warm up) then all of a sudden the sky filled with green lights and they starting dancing. Either way, I am from NYC so just seeing all the stars would have been enough for me!

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank ComeTravelWithMe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whalewatchingexpress, Manager at Special Tours, responded to this review, November 29, 2012
Many thanks for your review.

Special Tours only operate Northern Lights tours by Boat - therefore we can not comment on behalf of other tour operators offering bus tours. We are glad that you had such a nice experience:)

We hope you had a lovely time in Iceland and will visit us again in the future!

Kind regards,
Special Tours Crew
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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