Petra is our wonderful chef at Viking Rafting and she has quickly become the guide’s favorite employee. There is nothing like coming off an exciting day on the river to find a plate of amazing food waiting for you. Petra came to us from Czech Republic for the summer, but we all hope she will be around for years to come. She has a unique ability to surprise us every day with something new. If you think we are exaggerating, check out her reviews on Trip Advisor!
Name: Petra Holuvová
Home Town: Prague, Czech Republic
It would take much more than a paragraph to truly describe our lovely transportation specialist, Bjorg. From Iceland, Bjorg brings the spirituality of a shaman and the instincts of a rally car driver to each trip. Bjorg has many different jobs around the country including trekking and glacier guiding. For some reason she really likes hanging out at the Viking base so we put her to work! Chat to Bjorg about anything related to Iceland and she will give you a truly unique perspective.
Name: Björg Fríður Freyja
Home Town: Reykjavík, Iceland
Tryggvi is basically a person every single company should have. He is our "HANDY MAN". One of the reason things runs smooth in this company is because he can basically jump into any job, troubleshoot and make it work before we need them again.
Name: Tryggvi Pálsson.
Home Town: Selfoss, Iceland
Michael Kandel has been guiding for six seasons and is one of four Nepalese guides on the Viking Rafting team. His constant smile and good humor makes him a favorite at the rafting base, unless you meet him on the foosball table. If you see Michael on the river he will either be shouting paddling commands from a raft, or helping swimmers enjoy their time in the water from a Kayak. Watching Michael kayak a 9 meter waterfall can only be compared to a ballet dancer leaping through the air. After a long day on the river, Michael enjoys relaxing with friends in the local hot springs and more kayaking. Many clients have noted on how closely he resembles in the R&B singer Usher. Michael has been quickly learning as many songs as possible.
Name: Michael Kandel
Home Town: Benighat, Nepal
Steve joined the Viking Rafting Team this year after guiding the previous seven seasons in Alaska. At his core, Steve is a cold water boater. His biggest complaint about Alaska was the summer heat, which inspired the change of location. Like many of our guides, Steve has a solid background in multi-day, expedition boating. If you are interested in hearing about Alaska and Canada’s Wilderness Rivers, just wait a few minutes after meeting him, he will probably tell you. Steve has become famous around the base for his excellent choice of pre-trip music and his IN-DEPTH knowledge of “Green Room” rapid on the East.
Name: Steve Merrow
Home Town: Alaska, USA
Viktor is one of two Native Icelanders working for Viking Rafting. Born in the Capitol city Reykjavik, Viktor moved north to Akureyri five years ago to pursue his passion of family and outdoor sports. Viktor takes pride in his beautiful back yard and is eager to share it with anyone visiting. He can best be described as a little kid trapped in man’s body. Full of goofy energy and years of experience on the water, he is the glue that holds the guide team together. When not on the river, Viktor can be found either with his beautiful family, or Snowboarding the massive peaks surrounding Akureyri.
Name: Viktor Thor Jorgensson
Home Town: Akureyri, Iceland
As the youngest member of the team, Viking Rafting has given Surjan an 11pm base curfew. What he does with his time outside the base however, is truly impressive. In his four years at Viking, Surjan has built up a lot of good karma rescuing rafters on the East. He uses that good karma in his free time to push his boundaries on Iceland’s most challenging whitewater. The brief moments Surjan spends off the river are dominated by long, romantic conversations on the phone.
Name: Surjan Tamang
Home Town: Bhote Khosi, Nepal
Chris begins his ninth season guiding in Iceland as one of two owners at Viking Rafting. Before stepping into an ownership role four years ago, Chris guided in eight different countries on five continents. Choosing this place and these rivers speaks volumes to the quality of whitewater and people found in our sliver of Northern paradise. He pushes the Viking guide team to provide the best experience on each trip. Take your fun seriously is our company slogan and Chris’ personal mantra. Of his more impressive accomplishments; a first descent of a 20m waterfall in Kenya and the world record for highest rope swing in a Kayak (160m).
Name: Chris Doyle-Kelly
Home Town: Montreal, Canada
Anup is the most senior guide and co-owner at Viking Rafting. 16 summers on local rivers has given him an intimate understanding of Iceland’s whitewater. Traveling back and forth to his home country of Nepal has given Anup the opportunity to recruit Nepal’s best young kayakers and raft guides. A likely descendent of Ghengis Khan, Anup brings charismatic and tough leadership to the river. Paddle well and you will many big smiles. Paddle poorly and you will see an upside raft. No joke, Anup holds the record for most flips on the East River trip; 17(on purpose). Of all the massive rapids on the East, the waffle stop is by far his favorite.
Name: Anup Gurung
Home Town: Kathmandu, Nepal
Levente “Levi” has filled our Viking Rafting quota of one Hungarian per season; no more, no less. Even in his first season, Levi’s skills in rafting, kayaking, and photography have been a great addition. At a young age, Levi has already guided in Slovenia, the mighty Futalafu in Chile, and now Iceland. His favorite rapid on the East is Grade 4 “Commitment,” which he finds to be much less scary than real life commitment.
Name: Levente Peto
Home Town: Miskolc, Hungary
Mark is from the UK but now claims Finland as his permanent residence. Permanent might be an overstatement as Mark claims to have rafting ADD, forcing him to travel around the world every few months to guide and instruct in a new place. This gives him an incredible wealth of knowledge and experience that has benefited everyone at Viking Rafting. Mark is entering his eighth season guiding on the East and West Glacial Rivers. One would think in eight years Mark could come up with some new jokes, but that is not the case. Originality aside, Mark is as entertaining of a guide you will meet. Regardless of your age or nationality, you will leave Mark’s boat smiling from all his cheeky sense of humor.
Name: Mark Hirst
Home Town: Man.Utd, UK
Michael is from the Netherlands and has been with Viking Rafting for two seasons. The Netherlands is not known for its whitewater, so Michael has always been keen to travel and find other places to get on the river. Here at Viking, he is eager to get out on our two rivers as a guide or kayaker as often as possible. The other country that has inspired Michael is Nepal. He traveled there last fall to kayak and plans on returning at the end of this season. Look to Michael for big smiles and a love of moving water.
Name: Michael Herijgers
Home Town: Holland
Originally from Nepal, Jahks has become a staple of rafting and kayaking in Iceland. A full time resident of Iceland for nearly ten years, it is difficult to find someone with more whitewater experience. Jahks began his guiding career on the multi-day scene in Nepal. He brought many of those skills with him and continues to wow everyone on the river and in the kitchen. If you don’t get the chance to see him on the river, you may be lucky enough to sample some of his famous Dahl Bhat after the trip. Jahk’s only mistake this season was choosing a hair style that resembles Donald Trump.
Name: Jhaks Tamang
Home Town: Mugling Chitwan, Nepal