The last day of our circumnavigation around Iceland started with ship cruising around the beautiful islands of Vestmannaeyjar. The weather was beautiful but a bit overcast. While ship cruising, quite a few fin whales were spotted feeding. Soon enough, they were joined by a few minke whales. After a great show with the whales, it was time to leave them and for guests aboard National Geographic Explorer to head to lunch.
After lunch, there was time for operations. The options were a hike to Eldfell, a volcano that erupted in 1973, or a panoramic tour around the island. Both options ended at the Volcanic Museum, with exhibits about the eruption on the 27th of January in 1973. The museum is in a way an excavation site where a few houses buried under lava were excavated. The Eldfell hike is a strenuous hike up to the top of the recent volcano. At the top, it is still possible to feel heat from the lava. The panoramic tour took guests around the whole island, showing them its greatest features, including bird cliffs and the famous Elephant Rock. Both were fantastic options to explore the island.
The day was nowhere near over! We enjoyed the Captain’s Farewell during cocktail hour along with the beautiful slideshow with guest contributions! After dinner, killer whales and a confused minke were spotted with Surtsey in the background. Surtsey is the most recent island in the world. It erupted in 1963, and the eruption continued for three years. It was a pleasant surprise to see the killer whales. The captain hinted about them during cocktail hour, and he delivered.
What a wonderful ending to a wonderful trip.