12 days / 11 nights in West & South Greenland
Day 1, Tuesday: Welcome to Ilulissat in West Greenland
Flight from Reykjavik to Ilulissat, where the tour guide welcomes us in the airport. In the afternoon the tour guide takes us on a town walk in Ilulissat and introduces modern town life in contrast to the still thriving traditional hunting trade. Welcome dinner at Hotel Arctic in the evening.
Day 2-3, Wednesday & Thursday: Eqi Glacier
Sailing northwards to one of Greenland’s unique places: Ice Camp Eqi, located on the first row directly to the calving and impressive glacier Eqi which is 4 km wide and 80 feet high. From the terrace outside your own cabin (shared facilities) you automatically feel very small in the large breathtaking landscape. It must be one of the world’s best views! The calving glacier breaks the silence when the ice breaks off and fall into the sea. Nature lives here its very own life. The tour guide organizes hiking trips in the area, including the lagoon and the moraine, which has a great view to the Eqi glacier.
Day 4, Friday: Eqi-Ilulissat
The morning is your own. Time can be used on hiking or meditation in the harsh, desolate and beautiful landscape – perhaps in a chair out on the cabin terrace. Mid-day we sail back to Ilulissat. Look out for whales! Fin whales, humpback whales and various small toothed whales are often seen in this area! Overnight at Hotel Arctic in Ilulissat.
Day 5, Saturday: Ilulissat
The day at your own disposal and there are plenty of options whether you want to hike in the mountains, feel the atmosphere of the town or want to go on organized excursions.
Day 6, Sunday: Sermermiut settlement, ice fjord and Disko Bay
Today’s program offers a lot of icebergs. We will hike to the former settlement Sermermiut which is beautifully situated at the mouth of the ice fjord. Because of the fine hunting conditions this has been the preferred settlement in the area for several thousand years. From Sermermiut we continue into the country along the ice fjord. The ice fjord can take the breath away even from the you that have traveled the world and it is difficult not to be impressed when seeing the fjord packed with ice. Late afternoon the coastal ship Sarfaq Ittuk departs southwards in the Disko Bay. Short calls in some coastal towns offer a snapshot of the Greenlandic culture, and in between the towns you can experience the remarkable changes in the landscape. Greenland must – also – be seen from the sea!
Day 7, Monday: Sailing Tour along the West Coast
Landing in Greenland’s second largest town Sisimiut, where the ship docks for a few hours in the morning. The tour guide takes you on a small town tour with a visit to the old colonial port, which houses the local museum and the workshop of handicraft. The journey continues south towards Greenland’s capital Nuuk, so there is plenty of time to relax, enjoy the fresh sea air and look for whales and seals. En route we get an impression of life along the west coast of Greenland with a brief stop at the settlement Kangaamiut and the town Maniitsoq.
Day 8, Tuesday: Nuuk, West Greenland
Arrival in Nuuk early morning, which with its just over 15,000 inhabitants is a city in comparison with the other Greenlandic towns. On a guided bus trip we pass the old colonial harbour. After a couple of hours on land we continue southwards.
Day 9, Wednesday: Igaliku Fjord and settlement
Today we arrive to Qaqortoq and after a town walk we continue on a small charter boat to th sheep settlement Igaliku amazingly located in the bottom of Igaliku Fjord surrounded by green fields with steep, bare hills in the background. Here the Norsemen had their Gardar bishopric. The remnants of the tiny cathedral is now visible between the houses of the settlement and kitchen gardens. Today approx. 40 people live in Igaliku, mostly by sheep farming.
Day 10, Thursday: Hiking in South Iceland
The day is used for a day hike with the tour guide. The most obvious trip goes north of Igaliku to a vantage point over Qooroq glacier and the ice cap in the background. On the way we pass a small lake, where there are good opportunities to find moonstones. There are also other good hiking trips for example to the waterfalls or the Nuluk hill.
Day 11, Friday: Viking History
We walk back to Itilleq and sails over Skovfjorden (the forest fjord) to the settlement Qassiarsuk that also live from sheeping. We visit the ruins of Erik the Red’s settlement Brattahlid and the reconstruction of his longhouse and his wife Thorhildur’s church. There is a guided tour including a description of the Norse period. This gives you a good impression of life in South Greenland 1000 years ago. We sail on to Narsarsuaq for accommodation on the last night.
Day 12, Saturday: Narsarsuaq – Reykjavik
We begin the day with checking in luggage at the airport. Then there is time to visit the museum, which both shows the history of Narsarsuaq as an American air base and gives a description of Norse life in the area. Flight to Reykjavik, Iceland.