Blast from the past


Recently the Icelandic Civil Aviation Administration published their forecast for travelers in Iceland for 2018.

By the end of this year we´ll have had 8.8 million travelers visiting Iceland. The forecast for 2018 is 10 million visitors!

To put these numbers in perspective, we looked up some numbers in the book of tourism in Iceland*. 

Seventy-two years ago, on July 11 1945, the first international flight from Iceland took place.The first flight took off from Iceland to Scotland with only 4 passengers. In the year after Loftleiðir (now Icelandair) started flying to Copenhagen and Prestwick on a regular basis. Loftleiðir started flying to North America in 1948. The flights to the USA were not regular, but they simply flew as soon as they had enough people to fill the plane!
In 1952 air travel passengers to Iceland were 1.696. In 1956 they were 22.000. It´s amazing to think how far we’ve come.
 
*Það er komin gestur, author:Sigurveig Jónsdóttir og Helga Guðrún Johnson

Never as many Icelanders on our tours!

Even though our service is aimed for international travelers we are seeing more and more Icelanders using our services.

This summer we saw an increase in Icelanders for around 35%! We are very pleased that our fellow countrymen choose our services and like to have greater number in the future 🙂

“Iceland’s leading helicopter tour operator” by World Travel Awards 2017

We are so proud to announce our win in the World Travel Awards this fall! Norðurflug Helicopter Tours was selected Iceland’s leading helicopter tour operator.

As the name implies this is a world wide award that celebrates excellence in tourism. We where so humbled to be chosen by voters across the globe.

From the bottom of our hearts: Thank you!

Dramatic changes in the setting of the first Hollywood movie filmed in Iceland

There is no question about it, Hollywood definitely has had a very big part of the booming tourism in Iceland.

In the 1985 James Bond movie “A view to a kill” the opening seen is set on the (now) famous Glacier Lagoon.  At this point in time there was very little tourism in Iceland but the movie sparked an interest in this area that resulted in the first lagoon boat rides. In the years to come the growth in tourism was small but in 2001 the blockbuster film Lara Croft:Tomb Raider was partly filmed in Iceland and in the following years movies like Die Another Day, Batman Begins, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Prometheus, Oblivion, Star Trek Into Darkeness, Walter Mitty, Thor and Interstellar where filmed here and in the same time tourism exploded with yearly visitors increasing from 300.000 to 2 million (estimated) in 2017.

It is remarkable how popular culture can influence societies.

The Glacier Lagoon in 1984 (still from “A view to a kill”)

 

The Glacier Lagoon in 2017 (pic by Stöð 2)

Another remarkable thing you might have noticed is the changes in the lagoon itself. In this story from Iceland’s channel 2 (Stöð 2) you can track the changes year by year!

 

The lagoon only started forming around 1930 and has been growing larger (and deeper) every year. The graph in this story shows the changes in the  glacier as it climbs higher inland every year. Which means the lagoon you visit is UNIQUE and will not be the same a year from now.

 

UNLEASH ICELAND

We are happy to announce our collaboration with Reykjavík Excursions and Trip Advisor on their new campaign #unleashiceland

From left, Sif marketing manager for RE, Eva marketing manager for Norðurflug and Birgir CEO of Norðurflug

Unleash Iceland is a brand new tour with Reykjavík Excursions. To promote this tour RE have launched a sweapstake and the prizes are to die for!

  • A flight to Iceland
  • 4 nights in a hotel
  • Exclusive Lava tunnel tour
  • A VIP visit to the Blue Lagoon
  • …and the cherry on top! A PRIVATE helicopter tour around the highlands of Iceland with yours truly!

Click here to read the full description and list of prices

 

Here are some pictures from the highlands and glaciers to get you excited.

River deltas from a helicopter in Iceland

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Our new tour “stuck on ground”!

Winter is coming! It sounds like a cliche after Game of Thrones coined the phrase but I’d like to believe this is a classic Icelandic way of thinking. Because in Iceland, winter is always coming 😉

In September we start getting more and more windy and rainy days. Autumn is often a difficult time for flying since the visibility on our landing spots can come and go so tours end up getting delayed or moved onto different dates. This is why we have decided to offer this fantastic “plan B” tour: Stuck On Ground.  This is a sightseeing tour over Reykjavík via helicopter but excluding the landing. After the helicopter ride you simply walk over to the Sóley Spa next tour and relax in the lovely hot tub or swimming pool.

It´s not often you can say you’ve flown on a helicopter AND went to the spa on the very same day!

 

 

 

We are featured in Nat Geo Travellers: Luxury Collection!

We are so proud to be included in this gorgeous book that every years covers interesting destinations all over the world.

In our mind “luxury” isn´t just about doing something extravagant and “over -the – top”. It´s about doing something valuable with your time! Making precious memories. And we think our customers might agree 🙂

 

Picture of the week!

As you can imagine we have ENDLESS access of amazing pictures and videos 🙂

We try our best to be active on Instagram and share some of the moments and memories that are created during our tours. This week we shared a picture sent to us from a customer. A gentleman planned a proposal on a private helicopter tour and brought a photographer to capture the moment.

This sweet snapshot of a moment in life shows the (just!) engaged couple taking their first steps towards a happy life together. How sweet!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BYq692jlB7Q/?taken-by=nordurflug

 

 

 

Responsible Tourism: Norðurflug’s goals

Norðurflug Helicopter Tours belongs to the Responsible Tourism foundation since January of this year. We have set ourselves a number of goals to become more responsible when it comes to nature, tourism and our local community.

Our goals are set up by genre:

The environment

  •  To recycle paper, plastic, organic waste, bottles and batteries at the office/base
  •  To minimize the use of plastic at the office and during our tours.
  •  To purchase environmentally friendly products whenever possible
  •   To only use recycled paper for our brochure

Our guests

  • Ensure the safety and comfort of our guests
  • To treat our guests with courtesy

Our staff

  • To prepare a manual for all staff members
  • To make Norðurflug Helicopter Tours an enjoyable workplace where people enjoy coming to work and would recommend to others as a good employer.
  • Being a family friendly company

Our community

  •  To prepare a yearly plan of charities we support.

 

 

From left: CEO Birgir, marketing manager Eva and Mr. Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, president of Iceland and protector of the Responsible Tourism initiative

The Norðurflug Team on a Buggy tour with one of our partner companies. In the yellow jacket is pilot Sólveig’s daughter, Unnur, an honorary member of the Norðurflug Family 🙂

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