The starting point for many whale safaris from Andoy is the Whale Center (Hvalscenteret) in Andenes. Venture out to sea on an expedition to spot sperm whales and stop by the center’s museum to learn about the biology of whales and the ecosystem they live in.
Start your visit with a self-guided or guided tour of the museum. See the large skeleton of a sperm whale and view the skulls of other cetaceans. Go to the section of the museum that focuses on the threats to whales and their environment. Step inside the dark room to learn how marine mammals communicate and search for food in the depths of the ocean. Many of the whale center’s guides are biologists and they all speak several languages.
After your tour, embark on a whale-watching trip. Each vessel is equipped with underwater microphones to listen to the noises that sperm whales make when they are communicating, navigating and hunting prey. Other species that you might see on your expedition are orcas, humpback whales and pilot whales.
Due to the abundance of the large marine mammals in this part of the world, the center offers a whale guarantee. If you don’t see one on your trip, you’ll receive either a complimentary boat trip or a refund.
Back at the center, visit the restaurant which has panoramic views of Andenes harbor and the ocean. This is also a good spot to observe the midnight sun in summer and the northern lights, best seen between September and March.
The Whale Center is situated by the waterfront, close to the Andenes Lighthouse. Free parking spaces are available nearby. The center’s museum is open from May to September, while the number of boat departures varies according to the season. In good weather, the typical duration of a whale safari will be between 2 and 4.5 hours. Museum admission is included with the price of a safari, but it can also be visited independently.