With icebergs the size of skyscrapers and an Ice Sheet taking up about 80% of the total landmass, Greenland offers a world of Arctic adventures.
The country is the world’s largest island with a size of 2.166.086 square kilometers and a population of no more than 56,483 inhabitants. The first people to set foot in Greenland arrived more than 4000 years ago from the North American continent, and no less than six different Inuit cultures have immigrated in several waves.
Today, Greenland is considered as “The Land of People”, as the unique Inuit culture shines through in every corner of the amazing country. Each year the white country impresses thousands of tourists, but as the country often is associated with nothing but snow and ice, many travelers find individual travel planning a challenge.
But with the right information and help from Greenlandic travel agencies, you will be able to plan an amazing journey of discovering the world of Greenland.
Plan your trip to Greenland, the world’s largest island
The nature of travel logistics in Greenland can make individual travel planning a challenge for some people. That, combined with the fact that commercial airlines are the only way for travelers to get to Greenland, served by airports in Denmark, Iceland, and Nunavut, makes Greenland a travel destination many travelers skip. But the country holds a variety of unique Arctic adventures, that everyone should experience before it is too late.
As a result of the rising temperatures and the threat of global warming, Greenland is at danger of melting. Therefore, you should plan your trip to the world’s largest island, before it is too late.
How to get to Greenland?
If you want to get to Greenland, you can either choose to do it by air or by sea. The Greenlandic airline Air Greenland flies from Copenhagen in Denmark to Kangerlussuaq in West Greenland all year around. During summer, the flights also take you to Narsarsuaq in South Greenland. Furthermore, the Icelandic airline Air Iceland has an all year around-service of bringing people from Reykjavik in Iceland to Kulusuk on Greenland’s east coast. If you want to go by sea to Greenland, more and more cruise shipping companies – like for instance Arctic Cruises – are choosing to include Greenland on their itineraries.
How to get around in Greenland?
As a result of the wild nature and the ice-covered landscape, no roads are combining any towns or communities in Greenland. This means that you have to get around by boats, helicopters, and planes.
This makes the journey of discovering Greenland a unique experience, as you will see the beautiful country from land, air, and sea if you travel from town to town. But do not get frightened of the alternative ways of traveling around. Both large and small scale operators, locals, and Greenland’s national airline help in tying the country together in a web of sea and air connections.
What to see in Greenland?
If you are wondering if the world’s largest island is more than just ice and snow, you should come to see for yourself!
But what should you see, and what should you do when visiting Greenland?
Even though you should wear a lot of warm clothes, the question is hard to answer. The country has something for every taste, satisfying everyone from the active traveler to the traveler interested in cultural affairs. Whether you wish the see the amazing creatures underneath the surface of the dark ocean, immerse yourself in the charming and local culture or discover the Arctic world from the perspective of a dog sled, this country has it all.
Even though this magnificent country has quite several things to see, some attractions stand out. Keep on reading for a journey through the Top 6 Arctic Attractions of Greenland.
6 Greenland Top Arctic Attractions
1. Discover life underneath the surface
Greenland prides itself on having only free and wild animals in its waters, so the amazing marine animals of Greenland are free to swim wherever the cold and dark ocean lead them. That being said, some of the mighty creatures favor certain fjords, making Greenland a unique place for watching whales, seals, and walruses. Especially the whales tend to steal the attention when it comes to marine animals of Greenland.
The enormous creatures are easy to spot and whether it is the killer whales on hunting sprees or the fast narwhals zipping in between cracks in the sea ice. Watching these amazing creatures is an experience you will never forget.
2. Light up your journey
When the night falls and your day is about to end, you might be lucky that magic is about to happen. Greenland has a bonus in the night sky – a bonus you are only able to experience a few other places in the world.
The Northern Lights is a phenomenon lighting up the dark with magical lights dancing across the sky. Especially one local area is mentioned repeatedly as one of the best destinations in Greenland to view the Northern Lights.
The airport settlement of Kangerlussuaq is a uniquely located destination with more than 300 clear nights a year, making it a unique observation post for experiencing the magical lights. As the Northern Lights reaches down from space, it will fill up the night with a sense of magic.
3. Greenland from the perspective of a dog sled
If you want to experience the majestic landscapes of Greenland, dog sledding is a unique way of doing it and yet another one of Greenland top arctic attractions. Dog sledding is a classic way to experience the Arctic nature where a dose of Inuit culture comes along for the ride.
As you ride across the inland ice while the sun reflects its beams in the bright sheet of ice, you will have plenty of time to take in all the impressions of nature and the Arctic world. There is nothing like enjoying the unique experience of watching the dogs work their way through the white landscape.
There is something about experiencing Greenland from the perspective of a dog sled that other attractions simply cannot match.
4. On the top of Greenland
Due to the domineering ice cap taking up more than 80% of the total landmass, Greenland consists of wild and rough nature. This makes Greenland a unique place for climbers and mountaineers to face a challenge.
There are no official guidebooks showing climbing routes in Greenland, but that just provides active travelers with a feeling of being the first ones there. Climbing and mountaineering in Greenland will give you the possibility of experiencing some of the world’s most beautiful views. Not many countries can boast of a coast-to-coast ice sheet and a unique Arctic fauna.
The mountains of Greenland offer a wild nature, and if you are lucky you will be exposed to some of the unique creatures of the Arctic animal kingdom.
5. The Inuit Culture
The Greenlandic word for Greenland is “Kalaallit Nunaat”, which means “The Land of the People”. But the land of people is almost without any people, as the world’s largest island has no more than 56,500 inhabitants.
However, the people of Greenland are the core of your experience. You will meet these warm, kind and hospitable people in every corner of your journey. The unique Inuit culture will shine through in every place you visit, and you will discover the uniqueness of Greenland through your meeting with the locals.
They are your local backcountry guides when discovering the Arctic world, your boat skippers when searching for unique creatures underneath the waters and your dog sled drivers when you ride across the inland ice.
6. The Arctic world of ice and snow
Even though Greenland is much more than just ice and snow, the Arctic world is primarily built of the majestic icebergs. With the Greenland Ice Sheet as its claim to fame, Greenland has something of a different nature.
The white island is nothing but uncharted territory and the unexpected terrain makes trips through the ice and snow an amazing and wild experience. Enjoy a picnic in the white and majestic landscapes or fly high in the Greenland airspace and see the gleaming surface from above.
The Greenland Ice Sheet has been present for more than 18 million years, and currently, it reaches a thickness of 3 kilometers. When visiting Greenland, the Arctic world of ice and snow needs to be explored!
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Article by Kirstine Dinesen – www.Greenland.com