THE WORLD’S MOST BREATHTAKING LANDSCAPES
Greenland a primordial place. From the ancient period, Greenland is ruled by ancient ice, soaring mountains, and the world’s most romantic and colorful sky. Here, the midnight sun basks the iceberg-choked fjords in an elemental glow, shining down on Greenland’s timeless landscape just as it was a thousand years ago. This is a unique culture seeded in myths and legends, where the spirit of adventure lives
Greenland, an autonomous nation within the Kingdom of Denmark, can truly be said to be a world apart. The population numbers less than 60,000 in this, the most sparsely populated country and the largest non-continental island on Earth.
Icebergs and glaciers are the most famous features of the environment and its most impressive attractions for tourists. Colossal fantastic shapes of blue and white float on a sea of deepest azure. The inland ice, kilometers thick, appears static, but cracks and creaks as it shifts and expands.
Green mountains with beautiful wildflowers, breathtaking fjords, precipitous cliffs, hot springs, crystal clear skies, and clean air are all waiting to be discovered. Animals flourish in the sea and on land-seals, whales, polar bears, and reindeer to name but a few.
Explore this fascinating land with the help of our list of the top tourist attractions in Greenland.
this amazing berg-strewn section of coast in Disko Bay is where huge glaciers “calve,” an expression meaning that icebergs break off from the glaciers and float out into the coastal waters. This is a perfect place, to witness this awe-inspiring natural spectacle, which-unlike other ice-fjords in Greenland-can be watched from land.
The immense glacier Sermeq Kujalleq, more than five kilometers wide and one kilometer thick, feeds into the bay and flows at a rate of about 25 meters (82 feet) a day.
One of the top things to do for visitors in Greenland is to experience an up-close encounter with whales. Most of the fjords melt by May, so June and July are usually the best months for cruising among icebergs and whale watching along the breathtaking coastline.
Typical encounters are with humpback, minke, and fin whales, but occasionally also blue whales, killer whales, narwhals, beluga whales, sperm whales, and pilot whales. Patience is required but richly rewarded.
Nuuk and the Greenland National Museum :
Nuuk, the capital and administrative center of Greenland, has a population of around 16,000 and is especially popular with visitors for the Greenland National Museum. Its collections of hunting equipment, kayaks, carvings, and Viking finds paint a vivid picture of life here from the earliest times.
The 500-year-old mummies of women and children (discovered in 1978) are so well preserved that some of the facial tattoos and various colors of the clothing material are still recognizable. The museum also hosts regular exhibitions of geology and the arts.
Uunartoq Hot Springs :
Hot springs are found throughout Greenland, but on the uninhabited island of Uunartoq, the springs are the perfect temperature for bathing. Here, three naturally heated springs merge into a small pool, where you can immerse yourself surrounded by icebergs and stunning mountain peaks.
Uunartoq is a short boat ride from the town of Ilulissat. There are literally thousands of springs elsewhere in Greenland, most notably on Disko Island, whilst on the easterly side of the country, there are around a hundred more.
Qaqortoq Museum :
Qaqortoq is a rock-bound fishing village of brightly painted houses climbing a hillside above the harbor. Set in an 1804 building that was once the Julianehåb colony manager’s house, the Qaqortoq Museum displays artifacts from the Dorset, Thule, and Norse cultures, each with its separate exhibits and interpretation.
The Norse history is especially well represented with artifacts that include harpoons and kayaks, along with an authentic replica of a peat hut. There is also a replica umiac, a traditional Greenland boat.
On the top floor are the beautifully reconstructed “Blue Room” and “Red Room,” where the explorer Knud Rasmussen and aviator Charles Lindbergh respectively stayed. Lindbergh was here when he was scouting sites for a Pan Am stopover airport.
Exploring by Boat and Ferries :
Most of these mighty walls of ice are visible only from the sea, and boats are such a vital part of Greenland life that wherever you go there will be opportunities for sea excursions.
Small excursion boats have the advantage of no set itinerary, so in addition to the icebergs and glaciers, you may see waterfalls and wildlife, like an eagle guarding her nest.
You can also take a longer multi-day cruise to see more of Greenland’s wonders or get a feel for local life by joining Greenlanders on one of the many ferries that ply the small coastal ports. Sarfaq Ittuk operates ferries that are the local transport, so unlike the cruises designed especially for tourists, these ferries give you a chance to meet and mingle with Greenlanders.
Dog Sledding and Snowmobile Tours :
the wild landscape is one of the top things to do in Greenland, and the best way to experience the country’s unique natural environment when snow is on the ground is on a tour by dog sled or a snowmobile excursion.
Naturally, the winter months are the time for dog sled tours and snowmobile trips. Some of the most popular areas to explore are Disko Bay, Tasiusaq fjord, Qaanaaq, and Thule. You’ll find numerous tour operators all over Greenland offering trips to suit different budgets.
Walking on the Ice Cap from Kangerlussuaq :
This is one of the few places the ice cap can be reached without a helicopter. It’s like no other experience-ice stretching to the horizon, cut by blue rivers of meltwater. Hikers looking for something shorter and less demanding than the Arctic Circle Trail can climb the nearby Sugarloaf Mountain for sweeping views that include the ice cap.