We headed to the Westmann Islands to get a glimpse of Little Grey and Little white, two Beluga Whales which were rescued from Shanghai water park and shipped to Iceland in a plane to give them a retirement in a habitat closer to the natural wild life of a Beluga. The sadly have spent to much time in captivity around humans for a full release into the wild to be safe for them.
The Westmann Islands (or Vestmannaeyjar in Icelandic) are a group of Islands off the south coast of mainland Iceland and you need to take a electric ferry ride to visit them. When docking in the main Island Heimaey the Beluga Sanctuary is about a 5 min. walk from the terminal. As you enter the sanctuary you learn all about Iceland´s underwater and coastal wildlife, you even get a glimpse of some puffins and pufflings (baby puffins) in the puffin rescue center inside. Walking further in you learn all about the Belugas journey to get to the sanctuary and how Belugas would live in the wild.
We then got a glimpse of the Belugas as they were in their inside pen. We sat watching them for so long as they are so fun to watch with their agile bodies twisting and turning. Their outside larger sea pen was under repair. As you sail into the islands you get a great view of the pen and when the Belugas are outside they run boat trips to visit them.
Beluga whales’ dives may last up to 25 minutes and can reach depths of 800 meters