7 independent reviews for Northern Lights & orca photography holiday, Iceland

Reviews for Northern Lights & orca photography holiday, Iceland

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review 20 Feb 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The views

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Make sure you know exactly what you are getting into and exactly what you will be doing

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

I was disappointed in the amount of money spent for this vacation. I do not feel like we were informed well on what clothes, shoes, etc to bring. the main focus was on the killer whales and northern lights in which we did not see whales as we only went out once and not twice on the boat. We only saw a very small glimpse of northern lights approx. 10 minutes and it was not seen by naked eye. The food most of the trip consisted of gas station sandwiches in which were not good. The hotel accommodations were less than to be desired as well! This was the most I have spent on a vacation and it was the least desired once over. yes, we saw some beautiful sights however not worth the cost along with everything else we experienced while there. The vehicles were freezing even while driving for hours. There is no reason to not have a little heat going but instead we froze to the point of fingers and toes completely numb. I feel like the whole trip was very disorganized as well we never knew what was going on, seemed as if a few people would be told then we all just had to figure out from others what was happening. we did not get to experience many of the things listed on the brochure ie glaciers of any kind. The tour guides were very friendly.

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Danielle, I hope you are well? Thank you for taking the time to write a review for Uneasy no settle regarding your recent photographic trip with our company. I am very sorry to hear that certain aspects of the trip did not live up to your expectations. Most of the feedback on our own website or through Uneasy no settle is very positive and generally with 4-5 star ratings. I was concerned upon reading your review. Before responding I took time to talk with Kirk and Fran who were the photographic guides/organisers for your particular trip. My understanding from them is that you seemed unaware that this was a dedicated photography trip? Our company specialises in small-group photographic tours and workshops offering individual tuition in all aspects of the photographic process from composition and capture to the development (post-processing) of your images. Full and precise information regarding the nature of our trips is given to all guests prior to booking both on the Uneasy no settle and our own website. Iceland in the winter time can be a challenging place to photograph, the weather can be extreme. A correct clothing and equipment list is essential, we ensure that all our guests have access to this information in the specific trip PDF on our website. All guests are asked to download and read this information prior to embarking on one of our trips. I believe that we sent a copy of this PDF by email following your questions to us regarding the clothing that you would need to bring. As is our normal practice, we sent out a final mail two weeks prior the departure date of your trip indicating the importance of reading about the itinerary, the clothing and photographic equipment requirements. I believe that one of our guides kindly gave you her own waterproof boots to wear for the duration of the trip, hopefully these at least kept your feet warm! During a trip our guides continue to impart information each day with several regular briefings regarding weather, clothing, weather conditions, timings, meeting places and what to expect during the day. It is the responsibility of guests to take this freely given information on board and to ask questions if elements of the briefing are not understood. It is fair to say that your particular group did not enjoy the best weather during the trip. It was just not possible or safe to send your group out on the boat for a second Whale watching trip. On several occasions high winds caused roads to close and cars to be blown from the road. It is true that due to the poor weather conditions the group were unable to see the Snæfellsjökull Glacier. Our guides always make super human efforts to see the northern lights if/when they manifest, it is always a highlight for them too. In truth, we are always at the hands of Mother Nature when it comes to the weather, Whales and the northern lights. I am sorry that this trip not considered to give value for money. Iceland is currently one of the most expensive countries in the world. We include everything in the price of our trips, airport transfers, all accommodation, transport, three meals a day and professional photography tuition. We believe that all of our inclusive trips to Iceland are competitive and offer excellent value for money. I understand that all breakfast and evening meals were taken together either at the hotel or local restaurants. The sandwiches referred to were packed lunches, this is normal practice when photographers are out in the field during the daytime. Thanks once again for taking the time to write this review, all the feedback that we receive is reviewed by us and is considered seriously. Once again I am truly sorry that our trip did not meet your expectations. I hope that you will return to beautiful Iceland sometime in the future and maybe this time Mother Nature will be kinder to you. All the best Gary Beff

review 26 Mar 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Got to see a pod of eight orca whales including a baby on a whale watching cruise from grundurfordur.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take plenty of warm clothes, especially for northern lights shooting at night. Hand and foot warmers are a good idea if you have bad circulation or feel the cold in your extremities.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We ate in local cafes and restauraunts, and went out on the whale watching cruise twice, so I'm sure the tour is a benefit to the local community.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Really good tour, photography tutor had extensive knowledge of best locations to see in prevailing weather conditions.

review 22 Mar 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

We had a 24hr period where everything just went right. Killer Whales, dolphins and a surprise display of a fantastic Aurora.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be prepared for it to be very cold and windy at times.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes we used local business run by local people throughout the vacation.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

A lot of what we saw was by chance which is natures way but it certainly helped that our guides had done their homework. It was a fantastic vacation.

review 9 Mar 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Seeing the Orca swim under the bridge we were standing on and the grade 5 Aurora Borealis - painting the sky in technicolour! For the photographers Geraldine, Stuart & Tesio made the itinerary fluid enough that they could make the most of the light available.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Wrap up warm - the wind is bitterly cold in February.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

This is a family run company and Geraldine and Martin live in Iceland so we used small locally-run hotels and eateries.The food was excellent and the showers wonderful! Driving was inevitable but we did this in as few vehicles as possible.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Good itinerary, but Iceland is geologically so interesting that the coastal scenery could have been replicated elsewhere, e.g. west coast of Scotland! More uniquely Icelandic were the lava fields and glaciers. However, we are planning to return to the south-east coast with Geraldine et al where we will get the chance to see the glaciers very close up!

review 19 Feb 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Seeing the northern lights and the glacier ice cave.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take lots of warm clothing and layers. No need to take out lots of cash as can pay by card. Add a day or two in Reyjavik onto your vacation.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I think so

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Good vacation. The emphasis is on photography (all levels) and there is enough time at each stop. Experienced photographers to help you and you also get to see some lovely places in Iceland.

review 16 Feb 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The whole trip was excellent.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Read/bring your camera manual with you ! make sure your outer clothing is wind proof

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Used local cafes

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent

review 11 Jun 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

All parts were memorable.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Small groups better

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very Good. Martin provides excellent knowledge on photography and on Lightroom. Geraldine provides excellent service in ensuring all aspects to the trip were good and no difficulties.

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