The new expedition port of Keflavik lies on the Reykjanes Peninsula, notably home to Iceland’s International Airport, the famous Blue Lagoon Spa and the Reykjanes UNESCO Global Geo Park – an area of international geological significance managed with a holistic concept of protection, education and sustainable development.
Eruption site access
The eruption site is accessible by foot, a 1.5-2 hour hike each way, and the starting point would require around 25 minutes transfer from Keflavik Harbour which has a 165mtr long berth.
Alongside the aptly named Bridge between Continents, which allows visitors to walk from Europe to North America, the area is also home to thousands of nesting seabirds during the summer months – most notably on the island of Eldéy, which boasts one of the world’s largest Northern Gannet colonies.
Whales and seals also frequent the surrounding seas and thus the area has huge potential for the expedition cruise market.
‘The Reykjanes peninsula is a treasure trove crammed with volcanic phenomena and natural wildlife. It really is wild Iceland in a nutshell – complete with thermal bathing opportunities and, as of last Friday, an active volcano that geologists are now predicting will continue erupting for the next 20 years,’ says creative cruise consultant and Seatrade Expedition Ambassador, Liz Gammon, who has joined forces with the Port of Reykjanes’ harbour master, Halldór Hermannsson, along with other local stakeholders in marketing the port and surroundings.
‘We are very much looking forward to introducing our port and surroundings to those itinerary planners and cruise executives looking to provide the ultimate Icelandic expedition cruise experience for their guests,’ says Halldór.
Overnight stays and turn-around operations are highly recommended for this port, notes Gammon, ‘especially in shoulder season, when it is possible to visit to the volcano in darkness in order to witness the glowing red lava flows along with the Aurora Borealis.’