Illugastaðir

Area closes when the eiders are nesting in April and May

Illugastaðir (pronounced ITL-uga-stathir) is an active farm with a large parcel of land along the ocean. This site has been developed to accommodate seal watching tourism in that there is a large parking lot, a bathroom (please drop 200 krónur in to the box on the wall outside if you use it), and a well-maintained path out to the seal watching position. The path is about 800 m long but does not slope much. At the end of the wide wheelchair-accessible path is a shelter called a blind, from which visitors can watch the seals. Binoculars are provided there. Illugastaðir is one of the largest haul-out areas on Vatnsnes. The path is also designed to bring visitors through some of the beautiful coastal landscape, where the birdlife is usually quite interesting to watch. From the blind, there are three skerries that are clearly visible and in the right conditions there are usually many seals there. To the south (left, if you are standing there facing the sea), there is a cove where seals are very often seen as well.

If visitors are quiet and move slowly (or stay still), seals in the water at this site will often approach very closely. They are very curious. This allows some excellent picture opportunities.

Please do not try to scare the seals into the water by shouting, throwing things at them, or flying drones. We want them to continue to feel comfortable hauling out here. If they are disturbed too often, they will eventually stop coming. Seals are quite afraid of drones, as are all of the local birds.