THE best bucketlist trip ever: Orca and whale safari in Northern Norway!
You really have to meet this guy, urban legend (our nickname for him), Marten Bril. This tough cool guy has been living and working in Vesteralen for about 20 years now. If you hear how he handles the whale safaris, you’ll never have it any other way. With respect for the animals and full of passion.
Orca meeting place
Nowadays the orca’s have left Lofoten and are situated more north in Vesteralen. All because of the overfishing of the herring (a whale’s favorite meal). So where the herring goes, the whales go. Like with hundreds of them. Hundreds! This makes it the perfect place to go whale watching.
Standing face to face with an orca
THE highlight of our trip. Out of nowhere they come up to the surface next to the boat, less than 5 meters away from me, and gently slide through the water. Amazing. I will remember this for the rest of my life. Half of the boat breaks down into tears with our first meeting with the orca’s. I can’t see anything with these watery eyes. Damn you arctic wind… What an awesome experience!
Swimming and snorkeling with the whales
Even I, a die-hard cold hater, a chronically frisky ice-person, who’s cold when it’s 20 ℃ but can still feel “there’s a slight breeze”, and gets so angry when the window is still open when going to bed at night, ABSOLUTELY want to go swimming with the orca’s! In January. And – 10 (with dry suit of course, don’t push it).
Nobody is sad about the fact that we we’re not able to snorkel with these beautiful animals today due to the rough sea. With other tours it’s likely that they will throw you into the water, but there’s a big chance you won’t see anything (but are paying). At Sea Safari Andenes they don’t stop until you’ve spotted the whales. Not today, well then tomorrow. So keep more than one day in mind for your stay here.
RIB-Boat = LOL
A trip with a RIB-boat can get rough. Real rough. We’re flying up in the air 4 meters and laughing our assess off. Just until… the first huge bang. So far for all the laughing… Wet and frozen faces, concussions, someone’s throwing up. This is amazing! We’re yelling and screaming but when 2 orca’s slide through the water just in front of the boat (!) we all hold our breaths. Like as if this wasn’t enough we also see a humpback and fin whale.
Bucketlist, check, done! But we’ll definitely come back!
Best seasons for whale watching:
May until September: Many sperm whales, but also some orca’s
November until mid February: LOTS of orca’s, fin whales and humpback whales
Check this video on the facebook page of Sea Safari Andenes. It was shot with a Go Pro on one of the tours. This could be you!
Sea Safari Andenes
How to get to Andenes in Northern Norway?
Option 1 is to book a flight from Amsterdam to Oslo and from Oslo to Andenes. Or you can book a direct flight from Amsterdam to Evenes (only a couple of times a year). At the airport you can easily rent a car. It’s a long but pleasant drive from Evenes to Andenes, the landscapes are just amazing. No wonder National Geographic filmed a part of the movie Oceans here.
Tip! Where to stay in Andenes? Book a room at the Sea Safari Andenes Brygga!
* Need more info on this beautiful country and all it has to offer?
You can find a lot of information, photos, videos and tips about Norway on the website of Visit Norway.
This is B.!
She loves to travel like a good YLBB correspondent should. The most beautiful and awesome places she wants to share with anyone who’s up for it.
30-something city girl who lived the dream in New York and is now back in Amsterdam!