Top Things to do in Greenland
Vast and remote with incredible landscapes and ancient cultures, Greenland is an off the beaten track destination which is a fascinating place to explore in its own right, or in combination with some time in Iceland. Here are our most recommended things to do while you’re there.
1. Go on an active Arctic safari
Immerse yourself in the cultural traditions and spectacular scenery of East Greenland with a stay in a brand new luxury eco-lodge on the edge of the Greenland ice sheet. Cruise or paddle amongst mighty icebergs in search of whales and other wildlife, hike through wildflower meadows, over glaciers and alongside deep fjords, and sleep in an Arctic safari-camp for a true sense of life in the wilderness.
2. Marvel at the icebergs
If there’s one thing that Greenland is famous for, it’s ice. An incredible 85% of Greenland lies below an ice sheet which is 14 times the size of England; and where one of the world’s most active glaciers meets the sea at the UNESCO World Heritage Disko Bay, icebergs can be several kilometres long. Sail amongst the huge icebergs in the bay for an experience you’ll never forget.
Suggested itinerary: Essential West Greenland
3. Go off the beaten path, hiking in East Greenland
The Ammassalik district of East Greenland, home to some of the most isolated communities in the world, is a hiker’s paradise. Set out to explore the dramatic landscape on a series of well-paced day walks, and see the natural magnificence as you hover above it all on your helicopter transfer between Kulusuk and Tasiilaq. There’s an escorted small group option, led by our expert guide Cathy Harlow, or a self-guided alternative.
Suggested itineraries: Hiking in East Greenland
4. Discover the Vikings
Follow in the footsteps of a famous Viking, Erik the Red, and explore the lush green lands of South Greenland where he built his ancient settlement. This area is only lightly touched by human habitation, so as you explore rugged glaciers and soft pebble beaches, hills and heath you’ll be able to imagine yourself there a thousand years ago…
Suggested itinerary: South Greenland Explorer
5. Search for the northern lights
Take a voyage of discovery along Greenland’s extensive coastline as the Arctic summer turns into autumn, and – as it’s the start of the aurora season – there’s a good chance that the northern lights will appear. By day there’s the chance to spend plenty of time ashore, with a variety of walking, hiking, and trekking excursions available.
Suggested itinerary: Spitsbergen to East Greenland
6. Cruise Scoresby Sund
Explore is the world’s longest and widest fjord, Scoresby Sund in East Greenland. The fjord extends 350km inland and boasts truly spectacular scenery and is best explored on a small ship expedition cruise. Watch out for musk ox and visit the tiny village of Ittoqqortoormiit, the most northerly settlement on the East coast.
Suggested itinerary: Scoresby Sund Explorer
7. Go husky sledding
Husky teams are still a vital part of the daily routine in East Greenland, and are used both as a means of transport and for hunting expeditions. Explore the snowy wilderness by husky sledge and learn about a way of life that is unique to the Arctic region.
Suggested itinerary: Tailor made holiday in spring
8. Watch for whales under the midnight sun
Over the summer months, Disko Bay attracts large pods of humpback whales to its waters. Enjoy first-class whale watching encounters at close range as these cetaceans circle your vessel, feed undisturbed by your presence, or play together in the chilly waters. (Please note, as with all wildlife watching, whale sightings can’t be guaranteed.)
Suggested excursion: Whale Safari on Disko Bay
9. Experience Inuit culture
Uncover the fascinating history of the Inuit, which dates back over 4000 years, as you journey far north to Qaanaaq. Learn about the Saqqaq, Dorset and Thule cultures and meet the descendants of these early settlers, who retain many traditions as they continue a subsistence lifestyle in the wild landscapes of Greenland’s west coast.
10. Voyage high into the Arctic
Discover the wider Arctic on an expedition voyage between the Canadian High Arctic and West Greenland’s striking coastline. Visit remote communities, spectacular fjords and historic sites as you cruise under the glow of the midnight sun in search of bowhead whales and a wealth of marine birds.