Anyone been to Greenland?

A paddling partner and I are headed to Greenland this summer. We are debating between a trip to the southern fjords, then a flight up to Disko Bay or spending the entire time in Disko Bay area and paddling north for a circumnav around Arve Prinsens Ejland and back. We only have a bit over 3 weeks on the water so are debating whether we want to spend a day or 2 negotiating travel from South to West. Any first hand advice would be appreciated.


Do you need a Danish translator?

I’ve never been on the ground but have flown over Greenland several times, it’s on my list of places to visit. Please post some trip reports when you get back.

I remember a few years ago someone here made a trip but I don’t remember who, it may have been Wendy K, I don’t think she posts here anymore.

Dutch trip report

It’s written in Dutch, but you get the big picture.

Try posting here, you might even get a reply from native Greenlanders

I’ve been to the southern fjords a couple of times and also paddled around Disko. Easier to get to the southern fjords, and easiest to paddle north out of Nuuk toward Kapishasleet (sp?) and then back south to Nuuk and along the coast if weather holds. Should still be able to get a couple of kayaks in Nuuk, unless you are bringing your own. The ferry to Disko is regular, but you could put a lot of effort and money into this trip and end up with ice blocking your route. Wonderful place to paddle.

Might also want to look at Baffin around Pond Inlet as a less expensive alternative.

still considering
other options but we’re leaning heavily towards Disko Bay, and saving the southern fjords and/or Nuuk for a later trip when I have more time. What we are really interested in is large icebergs and crunchy water.

Did you visit any settlements? I’m interested in your experience, I’m looking forward to my first paddle in a completely different culture.


We have met a number of people at Outposts and fish camps, and have always enjoyed those conversations. In that sense it is not unlike the trips we do here in Alaska – with the added benefit that the Yupik language of western Alaska is similar to the Inuit dialect, so I can at least ask the right questions, if not always completely understand the answer. Get a phrase book and learn the rudiments for greeting, directions and thanks.

Settlements are a bit different, but if you stop in for supplies you will be asked to have coffee. This may sound silly but I have found that carrying a supply of small “gifts” such as lapel pins, patches or other items that have some connection to where you are from can come in handy when thanking a host after coffee, or on the beach at your camp.

Two examples of chance meetings. A family at their summer camp where the 9 year old daughter told the story of having caught her first polar bear the previous spring, “ shot it in the butt, then shot it in the head when it turned around” And a few days out of Nuuk when a skiff pulled onto our beach and offloaded an elderly couple and a young woman, who spoke Inuk, Danish, French and English. She said they were going to stop for lunch and thought it would be fun to eat with us. She built an oven using four flat rocks within which she cooked fish for everyone.

You might want to take the suggestion of an earlier post and see if you will be passing through any communities having kayak competitions. We stumbled on one back in the early 90s that was a lot of fun, and got one of our group a round of applause in a rolling demonstration.

Enjoy your travels

great ideas
I just ordered a used Inuktitut-English dictionary but the words are so long, with so few vowels, that I think I’ll make good entertainment if I try to use it.

Finding a kayak competition would be quite special. I queried the Qajaqusa folks.

Thanks very much!