Wild life of the Westfjords

High mountains, beautiful beaches and colourful sandy creeks; Mother Nature provides the wonders; rich flora and fauna makes the area even more memorable. You are in the footsteps of Viking Flóki, Iceland’s name giver. You enjoy the unique birdlife, magnificent unspoiled nature and nature´s tranquility, the real „sound of silence“.

Arctic Fox

Arctic fox

The Arctic Fox (vulpes lagopus), is the only land mammal natvie to Iceland. Arriving in the isolated island at the end of the last ice age, ca. 10.000 years ago by the icebergs across the frozen sea.

The Arctic Fox is widely found in Iceland, not the least in the Westfjords, by the seaside and near seabird colonies.

Seals & Whales

Humback whale

Common seal sanctuaries have been identified at Rauðasandur, where seals are often seen relaxing on the reef with their pups. The sanctuary is only accessible by a special vehicle under the guidance of Westfjords Adventures.

Whales are frequently seen in Patreksfjörður bay, which is an impressive sight from the windows of Hotel West. Humpbacks are increasingly seen in the ocean of Patreksfjörður in the early summer and all year round in Arnarfjörður. Whalewatching tours are offered by Westfjords Adventures. Minke whales are frequently seen in the ocean just outside of Hotel West during the summer.

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Puffins & Other Seabirds

Puffins

Látrabjarg is the largest seabird colony in the Northern Atlantic. Many other species are found in Látrabjarg cliff such as razorbills, the Brunnich´s and Common guillemots, Northern gannets and fulmars, just to name a few.

The nesting season begins in April, with May and June offering the best opportunity of seeing the widest variety of species.

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Natural Herbs

Herbs

In the valley of Sauðlauksdalur and Rauðasandur, the flora is diverse with broad variety of natural herbs used for medical and culinary purposes.

An Icelandic priest was the first person in Iceland to cultivate potatoes and vegetables in the year 1758. He published a book which is still used as a guide for utilizing herbs, both for healing purposes and for flavouring food.

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