Towns and Settlements
Visiting Towns and Settlements
We sail along the coast on both short trips to nearby towns and settlements and on long trips lasting several days. Maybe as far as Upernavik and Qaanaaq, maybe as far as Greenland's northernmost settlement.
Greenlandic cuisine is an important part of the experience. Along the way, we enjoy raw materials and dishes from both the sea and the mountains.
We also plan special theme tours where the focus is on local culture, fishing, photo safaris, Greenland's wildlife, geology and glaciology.
The Eqi Glacier
We sail to the Eqi glacier and stop close to the 100 meter high and 5 km wide glacier, which is one of the world's fastest calving glaciers. It rumbles and thunders and almost sounds like an explosion when the glacier calves and the air in the ice causes large pieces of ice to crash into the sea.
The boat trip to Ilimanaq lasts a good hour. A lot has happened in the small settlement in recent years. Several of the old colonial houses have been carefully renovated, and gastronomy in a special class has moved to the island with Restaurant KOKS, which has no less than two Michelin stars. The village has 90 inhabitants and gives a good insight into the 18th century colonial times and prisoner culture. On the return trip, we again sit on the first floor of the large icebergs when we pass the mouth of the icefjord.
We head south to Qasigiannguit in the south-eastern part of Disko Bay. The town is colorful with a green hinterland of mountains, valleys and tundra, and here is Greenland's oldest wooden house from 1734. In summer, the temperature can reach 27 degrees, and many plants benefit from this. In autumn, it teems with blueberries, lingonberries and blackberries plus a few hundred other plant species. On the sailing trip home, there are good chances of spotting whales, because this is precisely where they love to frolic.
Coffee with the locals and heather-roasted seal meat. Does that sound tempting? Then take the boat trip to Oqaatsut – Ilulissat's smallest settlement with just 30 people. We go ashore, get a tour and a wonderful lunch before the trip back to Ilulissat.
We sail to Disko Island, which is known for its flat basalt mountains with eternal snow, hot springs and lush valleys. At the top is the Lyngmark glacier at an altitude of 900 meters and stretches almost 10 km into the island. Experience, among other things, Vorherres Blækhus church, the waterfall in Blæsedalen, quails and a good old-fashioned coffee shop. The hot springs on the island mean that more than 500 plant species are found here. If you are into ghost towns, you can visit the disused coal mining town of Quillissat, which formerly housed more than 1,400 inhabitants.
Uummannaq - perhaps North Greenland's most beautiful town with its many colorful houses scattered over the hilly terrain - is located on a 12 square kilometer island at the foot of the 1,175 meter high heart-shaped mountain. Here we experience the whole of Greenland in one place: midnight sun, dogs and sleds, ice, whales, bird flocks and a friendly population. We visit the town with the beautiful church, take a trip to a disused settlement, take a closer look at one of the area's nine glaciers, get close to the steep cliff sides with lots of birds. If we are lucky, we will also meet Santa Claus. In any case, the trip goes past his cabin. Close to Uummannaq is an old winter settlement Qilakitsoq, where in 1972 the mummies of six adults and two children were found - the oldest known find of well-preserved people and costumes in the entire Arctic cultural circle.
Upernavik is Greenland's second most northerly city: 72 degrees north, narwhals, beluga whales, polar bears, the world's largest bird rock and summer with sun around the clock. As many as 100 islands can be found in the vicinity of Upernavik, and if we have enough time, it is worth trying a trip in a kayak in the mirror-clear water. No Greenlandic town is without a museum – so neither is Upernavik, which has the world's northernmost open-air museum. Narwhals, beluga whales, seals and polar bears are the prisoners' prey in Upernavik.
Qaanaaq by Thule is Greenland's northernmost town and from here it is only 30 km to Canada. It is unlike any other Greenlandic town, as it lies there and slopes flat down towards the sea. Here are winding roads where the small houses are lined up. Here we get very close to the Greenlandic Inuit culture. Further north lies the settlement of Siorapaluk - one of the world's northernmost settlements. Experience sea kings in their millions - the area is known for its bird migrations.