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  • Writer's pictureJosé-Carlos García-Rosell

Responsible Whale Watching - Iceland

Salka Whale Watching


In 2017, I visited Salka Whale Watching in Húsavík, Iceland. Salka Whale Watching is a family owned tourism company founded in 2012. In 2022. the company became part of North Sailing, another local whale watching company. Salka takes visitors to see whales, puffins and other wildlife on traditional oak boats. The company is strongly committed to sustainability and responsible tourism practices. Indeed, Salka is one of the 12 IceWhale operators operating in Iceland. As an IceWhale operator Salka follows IceWhale code of conduct for responsible whale watching. The company has also been a key supporter of the “Meet Us Don´t Eat Us” campaign which has aimed to take whale meat off the menu for tourists. As a joint project between IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare) and IceWhale (the Association of Icelandic Whale Watchers), the campaign “Meet Us Don´t Eat Us”, has been around since summer 2010. As a result of this campaign, no restaurant in Húsavík serves whale meat nowadays.


Photo: José-Carlos García-Rosell.


Húsavík


Húsavík is well-known for being one of the best places in the world to see whales. Indeed, Skjálfandi Bay, where Húsavík is located, is a plankton- rich area. No wonder why whale watching in Iceland started in this small town. Due to this long history and high percentage of whales, Húsavík deserves to be called "the whale capital of Iceland". During my visit, I was able to learn more about Salka's operations and their responsible approach to whale watching. The visit was crowned with a whale watching tour on Salka's oat boat "Fanney". The tour was a great opportunity for experiencing Salka's whale watching practices in action.


In the video below, Loes de Heus from Salka tells more about their services, customers and responsible whale watching practices.


Video: José-Carlos García-Rosell


This post was originally published on August 17, 2017 at the Animal Tourism Finland Blog, which was closed in 2022.

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