Sailing is a way of life for Greenlanders, and we are proud to share with you one of our most favorite activities. Sailing expands our world past the city limits we know well and connects us to the incredible nature we love to explore. On the sunniest summer days, we will always choose sailing to a tried-and-true fishing spot or to a small hut in the fjord over staying on land!
The real beauty of taking a tourist boat trip in Greenland is the feeling that you are getting a bespoke experience. As there is no defined route that boat tours must follow, a detour to a rushing waterfall or the area where an eagle’s nest was recently spotted is not out of the ordinary. Your boat trip driver knows these Greenlandic waters from extensive experience sailing, and he wants you to experience the best.
But remember that Greenland's nature can sometimes show its brutal side. As tempting as it might sound to hire a private boat owner for a boat tour, always opt instead for passenger-approved boats and companies, that comply with the strictest regulations about sailing in Arctic conditions.
“Sailing was nice. I definitely got to see some parts of the area that I would not be able to see without a guided trip. And I got to learn about the history of Greenland at the same time!”
“The best was sailing along the icebergs and seeing the boat try to squeeze its way through. I could have stayed outside on the deck for 2-3 more hours. It was freezing cold, but I just could not go inside! It was amazing!”
SAILING THROUGH THE SEASONS
If there is open water, then a boat trip is possible! In spring, flexibility is a must as weather and iceberg conditions change from day to day, and so is a warm jacket. If a boat trip in Greenlandic spring sounds chilly, we won’t lie to you - it is! But how exceptional it is to be one of the few taking in the crisp Arctic air from the front deck. A hot cup of tea and the brilliant view take care of the rest.
Summer is truly the prime season for boat tours in Greenland. Winding through the intricate maze of islands and small canals while the warm sun energizes you from overhead, a boat trip can be reminiscent of sailing in the Italian Riviera. But catch sight of a humpback whale or the colorful wooden houses along the coast and realize that, in fact, you are sailing at the top of the world in spectacular Greenland.
A boat trip in Greenland for the sake of sailing is delightful, but often the boat tour comes packaged with another experience, under the guise of transportation. With many islands along the coast and no roads outside of town, many of Greenland’s greatest places like calving glaciers, mountain hiking trails, and Norse culture sites are only accessible by water. Think of the aquatic transportation more like an extra boat tour!
In South Greenland, for example, boat tours connect an elaborate route of Viking ruins and modern day sheep farms, and in every town in Greenland, a short boat trip can open up a whole world of village life. Don’t forget that sailing takes place in the same waters that whales call their summer paradise. The cherry on top of a perfect boat trip in Greenland is spotting a humpback and getting an impromptu whale watching tour just before heading home.
Boat tours are available in Greenland year-round. Summer is the primary sailing season, but spring boat tours are possible depending on ice conditions.
Boat tours can last between 2-8 hours. Be sure to pack extra warm clothes, including waterproof layers, and accessories like a hat and gloves.
Boat tours typically accommodate a maximum of 12 persons per boat. There may be a minimum passenger limit.
- Many boat tours offer a meal or snack on board. Check with your boat trip description for details.
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