The Journey to Sanctuary

The complex logistical challenge of transporting two beluga whales by air, land and sea is being carefully planned by a team of global experts with experience in transporting marine mammals. The 6,000-miles journey will take around 30 hours to complete - from the time Little Grey and Little White leave Changfeng Ocean World in Shanghai and arrive at the sanctuary on Heimaey Island.

The journey will begin at Changfeng Ocean World in Shanghai.

  • Each beluga will be individually lifted on to specially designed stretchers measured to their physical requirements and carefully placed into specially built transportation tanks before lifted out of the aquarium by crane and loaded into two lorries
  • Little Grey and Little White will then travel by road, from Changfeng Ocean World to Pu Dong International airport, where a specially chartered cargo plane will be waiting on the runway to fly them to Reykjavik Airport in Iceland
  • Following the flight, Little Grey and Little White will be transferred on to two individual lorries and driven to catch a ferry from Landeyjahöfn to Heimaey Island, which takes around 35 minutes to complete
  • Once the ferry has docked on Heimaey Island, the lorries will drive a short distance to Klettsvik Bay where Little Grey and Little White will be transferred to the beluga sanctuary landside facility and placed into a special care pool to be assessed following their journey.

The Journey to the Sanctuary