Best Places to Visit in Greenland
Greenland is an autonomous country that can truly be said to be worlds apart from the Kingdom of Denmark. With a population of just under 60,000, the country is the most sparsely populated country and the largest non-continental island in the world.
Icebergs and glaciers are the most famous features of the environment and the most impressive sights for tourists. Huge dreamy shapes of blue and white float in the deepest azure ocean. The mile-thick interior ice appears stagnant, but cracks and creaks as it moves and expands.
Lush mountains and waters, beautiful wildflowers, breathtaking fjords, steep cliffs, hot springs, clear skies, and fresh air are waiting for you to explore. Animals thrive in the sea and on land: seals, whales, polar bears and reindeer to name a few.
The traffic here is a bit unusual considering the climate. There are few roads between towns, so if you want to explore, take a boat, plane, sled or snowmobile. In fact, you’ll find some of the best activities to be active in Greenland: dog sledding, snowmobiling, hiking, glacier walking, and boating on the waters.
Have a look at our list of the Best Places to Visit in Greenland and make your trip enjoyable.
10 Best Places to Visit in Greenland
Let’s explore the top 10 Most Beautiful and Best Places to Visit in Greenland:
1. Whale watching
One of the most important things for tourists who come to Greenland is to get up close with the whales. Most fjords melt in May, so June and July are often the best months for iceberg excursions and whale watching on the stunning coastline.
Tours usually depart from cities such as Qeqertarsuaq, Nuuk and Aasiaat and are offered by operators such as Disco Line and Greenland Adventures. Typical encounters are humpback, minke, and fin whales, but occasionally blue, killer, narwhal, beluga, sperm, and pilot whales are also encountered. Patience is required, but the rewards are rich.
2. Nuuk and the Greenland National Museum
Nuuk is the capital and administrative center of Greenland with a population of around 16,000, and the Greenland National Museum is particularly popular with tourists. Its collection of hunting gear, canoes, carvings and Viking finds paints a vivid picture of the earliest life here.
Discovered in 1978, the 500-year-old mummies of women and children are well preserved, and some facial tattoos and clothing items can still be seen in a variety of colors. The museum also hosts regular geological and art exhibitions.
Nuuk is the starting point for excursions to one of Greenland’s most beautiful areas, the Gottharbfjord, and the atmospheric architecture of the old colonial port is worth seeing.
Address: Hans Egedes Vej 8, Nuuk
Official website: www.natmus.gl
3. Northern Lights
The Northern Lights are often referred to as “the world’s greatest light show” and you should not miss this incredible natural wonder if possible during your visit to Greenland. If you plan to visit the Northern Lights for visiting purposes only, be sure to travel in the winter.
It’s possible to see the Northern Lights anytime between November and March, but December through February are the best months for clearer nights. The Northern Lights can be seen in Greenland. Qaqortoq (South), Ittoqqortoormiit (East) and Kangerlussuaq (West) offer the best views.
4. Uunartoq Hot Springs
Greenland has hot springs everywhere, but on the uninhabited island of Unatok, the hot springs are the perfect temperature for bathing. Here, three naturally heated hot springs converge in a small pool where you can immerse yourself in the middle of icebergs and majestic peaks.
Uunartoq is a short boat ride from the town of Ilulissat. Elsewhere in Greenland, especially on Disko Island, there are literally thousands of resources, and there are about a hundred more in the eastern part of the country.
5. Qaqortoq Museum
Qaqortoq is a rocky fishing village with brightly colored houses climbing the hillside above the harbor. Housed in an 1804 building that was once the residence of Julianehåb’s colonial ruler, the Qaqortoq Museum displays artifacts from Dorset, Thule and Scandinavian cultures, each with its own separate exhibits and interpretations.
Artifacts such as harpoons and canoes and authentic replicas of peat huts represent particularly Scandinavian history. There is also a replica of a umiac, a traditional Greenland boat.
The top floor is the meticulously remodeled “Blue House” and “Red House”, where explorer Knud Rasmussen and pilot Charles Lindbergh stay respectively. Lindbergh was here when searching for the location of the Pan Am stopover airport.
Address: Torvevej B 29 3920, Qaqortoq, Greenland
6. Viking Ruins
One of the most popular attractions in Southern Greenland is the remnants of Eric Red’s millennial Scandinavian colony. At its peak, it is estimated that there are about 5,000 Scandinavians living in Greenland. Why the settlement died out remains a mystery.
Visiting the ruined area is a fascinating journey into the lives of these dogged hunter-gatherers. There are several Viking ruins in the area, including Hvalsey Fjord Church (Greenland’s oldest church, highly recommended) and Brattahlid (20 minutes by boat from Narsarsuaq International Airport) near the town of Qassiarsuk.
7. Sermermiut Eskimo Settlement
About 2 kilometers from the town of Ilulissat, you’ll find this ancient Eskimo settlement that was first excavated in the early 20th century and is home to the best preserved remains of indigenous Eskimo culture in the Arctic. The old village is abandoned, but you can still see the artifacts of the inhabitants who lived here more than 2000 years ago.
It takes about an hour to walk to Sermermiut. From the center of Ilulissat, walk south to the old helipad, then follow the boardwalk 1.2 km further south towards the Icefjord shore. The site’s finds are on display at the Ilulissat Museum.
8. Boat and Ferries
Boats are the best way to get to know much of Greenland, whether you’re taking a short afternoon excursion to the glaciers between icebergs or taking a multi-day cruise through the bays and fjords. Many of these mighty ice walls are only visible from the sea, and boats are such an important part of Greenland life that there are opportunities for sea excursions wherever you go.
The advantage of a small excursion boat is that there is no fixed itinerary, so you can see icebergs and glaciers, as well as waterfalls and wildlife such as an eagle guarding its nest.
You can also take a longer, multi-day cruise to see more of Greenland’s wonders, or join the Greenlanders and get a taste of local life with the many ferries to and from small coastal ports. Ferries operated by Sarfaq Ittuk are local transport, so unlike cruise ships designed for tourists, these ferries give you the opportunity to meet and mingle with Greenlanders.
9. Dog sled and Snowmobile
Undoubtedly, wilderness exploration is one of Greenland’s top activities, and dog sledding or snowmobile excursions are the best way to experience the country’s unique natural environment on snow.
Naturally, winter is the time for dog sledding and snowmobiling. Some of the most popular areas to explore are Disko Bay, Tasiusaq fjord, Qaanaaq, and Thule. You will find numerous tour operators throughout Greenland offering tours to suit different budgets.
10. Tasiilaq, East Greenland
Despite only 2,000 inhabitants, Tasiilaq is East Greenland’s largest city. It is located on Ammassalik Island, about 100 kilometers south of the Arctic Circle. With breathtaking views of the fjord, surrounded by towering mountains and bisected by a small river, Tasiilaq should be a top priority for any visitor.
The Valley of Flowers behind the town is a popular spot for short or long hikes. Popular winter activities are ski tours and dog sledding tours. Activities in the summer include hiking, mountaineering, helicopter flights over glaciers and glaciers, canoeing between icebergs in the fjords, whale watching and fishing. As Tasiilaq remains one of the most remote settlements in the world, you can expect an experience like no other.
Hope you like our choice of the best places to visit in Greenland. If you think there are some more beautiful places to visit in Greenland, we should cover them. Write us below in the comment box.