Discover West Greenland

Live like an Inuit in one of the most isolated and captivating destinations in the world. This action packed trip includes a mini wilderness camping adventure, hiking, kayaking, whale watching and walking on the ice cap! A complete discovery of West Greenland, suitable for anyone with a flair for adventure and an interest in Inuit culture - a simply unforgettable family holiday!

Itinerary

  • Day 1 Ilulissat - Oqaatsut

    Ilulissat - Oqaatsut Meeting at Ilulissat. Short but amazing boat trip to transport you to the small typical settlement of Oqaatsut. First hike to discover this amazing place, home to only around 30 habitants who live here year round in coloured wooden houses.

    Accommodation: Hut

  • Days 2 to 3 Into the wilderness

    Into the wilderness Get ready for a real adventure! This morning, we will learn how to paddle with our kayak with our experienced guide in order to discover the scenic and protected bay of Oqaatsut to approach icebergs and enjoy wildlife.
    We will set up camp for the next two nights in a sheltered cove with views of the sea and its drifting icebergs. Discover the local culture and learn traditional Inuit bushcraft skills like shelter building, mushroom foraging and animal tracking. Each day we will explore the fascinating wilderness around us by going sea-kayaking or hiking. We will paddle to a nearby traditional village with colourful wooden houses and friendly locals and depending on the conditions we may get the chance to kayak out of the bay and try to observe the majestic whales who frequent here...

    Activities: 3-5 hours of walking / 3-4 hours of sea-kayaking
    Transport: Local boat trip (price included)
    Accommodation: Camping

  • Day 4 Hiking Disko Bay

    Hiking Disko Bay This morning is a chance to embark on a truly enchanting hike, starting from our campsite we can explore secret coves, summit distinctive granite hills and search the valleys for traces of reindeer. Disko Bay is a magical place to go hiking; discover the hidden gems of the area as well discussing the history and geology of the features we see as we look for reindeer and summit peaks. This afternoon it is time to pack up camp and take the boat back across the bay to Oqaatsut settlement, ready for the next adventure!

    Activities: 3-4 hours of walking (+310m/-310m)
    Transport: Local boat trip (price included)
    Accommodation: Hut

  • Day 5 Whale Watching and UNESCO Icefjord hike

    Whale Watching and UNESCO Icefjord hike Disko Bay is known as a sea of ice but in the summer it is said that there are more whales than icebergs!
    Today we will take a boat trip in search of the enormous marine animals - keep your eyes and ears open - humpback, minke and fin whales all frequent in this area! Our boat trip will be led by a local marine conservation enthusiast, an expert at predicting when and where these marine giants will surface. Afterwards, we can stretch our legs with a walk in the UNESCO World Heritage Site to see the largest icebergs in the Northern Hemisphere in Ilullisat Icefjord. Night in Ilulissat.

    Activities: 2 hour whale watching boat trip and 4 hours hike
    Accommodation: Youth hostel

  • Day 6 Glacier walking in the footsteps of polar explorers

    Glacier walking in the footsteps of polar explorers This morning we will fly south to Kangerlussuaq, a short scenic flight in a small local aircraft designed for harsh arctic winter conditions. The largest expanse of ice in the northern hemisphere is found in Kangerlussuaq and today we have the unique opportunity to walk on this ice sheet! At the beginning of the afternoon, an all-terrain vehicle will take us across the tundra towards the polar ice cap. Keep watch for reindeer and muskox as we hike in this second to none location and walk on the polar ice cap! After a final day in Greenlandic wilderness, surrounded by stunning views and curious wildlife it is time to head to Kangerlussuaq for our final evening. Here we can enjoy an evening at leisure and discover the culinary specialties of Greenland with a meal in a traditional local restaurant.

    Activities: 1 hour of Glacier Walking (+150m/-150m)
    Transport: Flight and 4 hours in an all-terrain vehicle (prices included)
    Accommodation: Youth hostel

  • Day 7 Kangerlussuaq and transfer

    Kangerlussuaq and transfer Today we can enjoy a free morning in Kangerlussuaq before flying home. This could be your final opportunity to walk with rivers of cast irons in the tundra and hills where muskox and reindeer roam. Or perhaps you want to embark on a muskox safari or visit the city museum? We have lots of suggestions for your final morning in Greenland.

    Activities: Various optional activities

Please note that this itinerary, including walking distances and times, is indicative. Our guides aim to provide the adventure that is best suited to the weather, your interests and the demands of the group. Please be aware that in order to achieve this, changes to the program may be made.

Other trips you may like

sea kayaking in Greenland
The Greenlandic Wilderness Adventure: Go sea kayaking near whales - the 8 day adventure includes a mini kayaking expedition into the wilderness. A true Greenlandic wilderness experience, hiking and sea-kayaking with our professional guides...

Dates & prices

Departures for English-speaking groups:

From To Price per person Guaranteed Booking
€1,990 No Book now!
€1,990 No Book now!
€1,990 No Book now!
€1,990 No Book now!
€1,990 No Book now!

Trip code: GROFAM

Included

  • All in country transfers (except the flights)
  • Accommodation
  • Full board (except the first and final evening meals)
  • Full supervision by a qualified Altaï Guide
  • A whale watching boat tour
  • Guided hikes in some of the most remote destinations in the world
  • Sea kayaking adventures with a professional guide and all equipment provided
  • Walking on Greenlands ice cap
  • A free walking tour of Ilulissat
  • All technical camping and sea kayaking equipment

Not included

  • International and domestic flights 
  • Registration fee €18 (free for under 12s)
  • First and final evening meals

Additional Options
Please let us know if you would like to reserve any of the following optional activities:
  • Kangerlussuaq muskox safari: from  €50

Notes

Comfort: 3/5 Various

Some of our trips involve a mixture of accommodation options. These trips often include several nights of camping interspaced by guesthouse stays and often with hotel accommodation for the first and last nights. This trip includes guesthouse, youth hostel, communal house and camping accommodation options.

Level: 1/5 Easy

Our ‘easy’ trips involve less than 6 hours of activity per day, no previous experience in the activity/activities is required and time to relax and unwind is included - accessible to all people in fair health with a sense of adventure and a positive attitude. Please note that our difficulty ratings may vary depending on the weather. 

International flights

Please add two days to the trip duration to include international flights with over night stops in Denmark or Iceland.

Terms and conditions

Booking conditions

Booking a trip with us implies acceptance of the terms and conditions of sale. Each customer is required to complete a registration form and, subject to availability at the time of registration, travellers are expected to pay a deposit of 30% of the total price to complete their booking. Payments can be made online or by bank transfer. You will receive an e-mail with your booking confirmation.

Invoice procedure

Once your booking is confirmed you will receive an invoice by e-mail. The full balance of the trip must be received at least 35 days before your departure date.

For Polar Cruises, we require a deposit on the day of registration, 30% of the balance 3 months before departure and the full amount at least 45 days before departure. If registration is less than 35 days before departure then an invoice will be attached to this travel contract and the full amount must be paid upon registration. If registration is less than 15 days before departure, payment is only accepted by credit card or cash. If registration is less than 8 days before departure you may be charged an additional free for sending your ticket. If the full balance of the trip has not arrived 35 days before departure, Altaï Greenland reserves the right to cancel your registration without compensation.

Cancellation policy

If for any reason you have to cancel your trip we require a written confirmation of your decision so please contact us by e-mail, fax or letter.The money you have paid will then be refunded according to the following deductions:
  • Cancellation received more than 30 days before the departure date: 15% of trip price will be retained
  • Cancellation received 30 to 21 days before the departure date: 45% of trip price will be retained
  • Cancellation  received within 20 days of the departure date: 100% of trip price will be retained
If we have to cancel a departure due to an insufficient number of participants, you will be informed no later than 21 days before departure and a full refund will be issued, you will not be entitled to further compensation. We reserve the rights to cancel departures due to exceptional circumstances which may impact the safety of participants. Such circumstances may include those amounting to 'force majeure' in which case participants will receive a full refund but they will not be entitled to any compensation.

Changes to travel contract

If you wish to make a change to your booking please contact us in writing. If your change is requested after our confirmation has been issued and more than 30 days prior to the departure date, your change will be subject to an amendment fee of 45€. If you request a change within 30 days of departure it will be treated as a cancellation of the original booking and will be subject to cancellation charges.

Pricing

The prices on our website are updated regularly and all of the prices we advertise are accurate when published. We reserve the rights to make changes to any of these prices. Before you make a booking we will give you the up-to-date price of your chosen holiday including any supplements, upgrades or additional activities you may have requested. If the number of travellers is fewer than the indicated number of participants on the website, a small group surcharge may be applied. For all of our trips we include details of services, prices and what is/is not included but please be aware that changes to the prices may be necessary in accordance with exchange rates or price changes of various components of the journey.

Contract transfer

If you are unable to travel for any reason, you can transfer your booking to another person, subject to the following conditions:
a) you must notify us in writing
b) the transferee must fulfil any conditions that apply to the booking
c) Change and cancellation fees apply
Both the transferor and transferee will be jointly and severally liable for payment of the total holiday price and other associated expenses. Some airline carriers treat name changes as cancellations and you may be required to pay for the cost of a new ticket.

Insurance

We strongly recommend that you take out personal travel insurance for your trip with Altaï Greenland as soon as your booking is confirmed. We advice you to purchase a travel insurance policy which covers flight cancellations, luggage loss and emergency health care. Please look carefully at which activities are covered by your insurer and do not forget to bring all necessary documents and information with you (name of the company, name of the contract, insurance policy number, telephone number...)

Practical info

Staff

You will be welcomed at the airport by a representative from our friendly team and accompanied for the duration of your holiday. Armed with an abundance of experience and a wealth of knowledge our professional Greenland team know the country inside out. All activities are lead by our qualified guides who are all English speaking outdoor practitioners with a passion for everything Greenlandic. Please note that this adventure takes place in an isolated polar environment which can be hostile - your guide will explain safety rules which must be followed.

Food

This trip includes full board - we are proud of the varied, fresh and frankly delicious food we provide even when camping. Meals are based on a selection of local products and you will have the opportunity to try Greenlandic delicacies such as cod, arctic char and mussels.

Each day will start with a hearty breakfast accompanied by plenty of tea and coffee. Then you will prepare your own picnic lunch for the day from a buffet style array of options - everyday there will definitely be sandwiches, hot drinks and cakes among the other options. Each evening meal will include three courses- we try to offer fresh fruit and vegetables everyday but this is not always possible in Greenland!


Your help in the kitchen is expected and much appreciated, particularly in the evenings. We like when the whole group work as a team to cook dinner, it creates a pleasant atmosphere as we reflect on the days adventures together.

Please let us know about any dietary requirements when you book the trip and we will work with you to cater for your needs.

Accommodation

During this trip you will have the chance to stay in a range of different traditional style accomodation including youth hostel, guesthouse and communal house options. In this isolated place, running water and hot shower are not usual so you will have to adapt yourself. This adventure includes two nights camping in Greenlands remote wilderness. We will provide you with state of the art 3 man tents, 1 per 2 people for maximum space and comfort plus a spacious mess tent for meals.

Transportation

In Greenland we use local boats, specially adapted for ice navigation, to cross fjords.

Budget & exchange

The currency in Greenland is the Danish Krone (DKK)
Please budget for two evening meals: from €25 / 200DKK per person. Alcohol is very expensive in Greenland, if you want to enjoy an evening drink after your days adventures, we recommend buying Duty Free alcohol in the airport.

Supplied equipment

We provide you with the technical equipment you will need for this adventure - all you need to bring are your hiking boots.
We will provide everything else including:
  • 3 man dome tents (1 per 2 people for maximum space and comfort)
  • Self-inflating sleeping matt
  • A mess tent with table, stools and cooking equipment
  • Tandem sea kayak with directional rudder
  • A Gore-tex dry suit with integrated warm  fleece liner
  • A spray deck
  • A life jacket

Vital equipment

  • Sleeping bag (comfortable at 0°C for maximum warmth)
  • Walking boots
  • Waterproof jacket (with a hood)
  • Waterproof trousers
  • A warm jumper or two
  • Suitable underwear, t-shirts and walking trousers
  • Thermals - top & long johns
  • A swimsuit
  • Warm gloves and hat (even in the summer - evenings can be chilly)
  • Sunhat and sun cream
  • Sunglasses (UV 400)
  • Any personal medication
  • Towel & toiletries
  • Water bottle(s) min 2L
  • A small rucksack to use as a day bag
  • Warm pyjamas
  • Head torch & spare batteries (although it is nearly always light in the summer months)

Material

We prefer that you do not wear cotton clothing, including underwear, when participating in activities. When cotton gets wet from water or sweat it ceases to insulate and it does not dry fast. The best materials for outdoor activities are fast drying materials like polyester or materials which are warm when wet like wool. The most powerful materials against the wind and rain are 'breathable' materials like Gore-Tex or Nikwax.

Our advice for keeping warm
Winter in Greenland can be very cold, please think carefully about what clothes you bring, although we will provide warm outer layers, the layers you wear next to your skin make the biggest difference. We recommend:
  • No cotton
  • Bring dry spares of everything, even underwear and gloves
  • Wear multiple layers including:
    1. A warm breathable base layer
    2. A second thermal layer
    3. Wind and waterproof protective out layer (we provide a quality jacket and over trousers for when you are dog-sledding)

Helpful equipment

You may also consider packing
  • Your camera
  • Binoculars
  • A notepad and pencil
  • A thermos flask
  • Plastic bags for wet/dirty clothing
  • A comfortable evening outfit
  • Walking poles
  • Inflatable pillow
  • Insect repellant

Luggage

Please bring a small rucksack to use as a day bag. You can bring this as hand luggage on the aeroplane. You will carry your lunch, water, spare layers and any personal medication with you each day in this bag. You will also need a larger bag to store your other clothes and belongings in, please ensure that this is a soft bag like a ruckack or holdall rather than a hard cased suitcase because it is more practical. We recommend packing all of your clothes in plastic bags so that they stay dry in the event of bad weather.

Medicine

Your guide is a trained first-aider and will carry a full first aid kit at all times during the trip. We recommend that you bring a small personal first aid kit containing any medication you may need such as inhalers, plasters, antiseptic and painkillers.

Passport

Most travellers require a passport that is valid for at least three months after the return date. It is your responsibility to confirm your specific passport requirements and please be aware that proof of onwards travel may be required.

Visa

Most travellers do not need a VISA to travel to Greenland but proof of onwards travel may be required. It is your responsibility to confirm your specific visa requirements.

Mandatory vaccines

There are no specific health risks.

Health information & recommendations

It is your responsibility to check that your personal health insurance covers everything in this trip. A consultation with your doctor is a prerequisite for any trip.

Weather

Year round the temperatures in Greenland can range from -25°C to more than 20°C (-13°F to +68°F). The air is low in humidity which means that the temperatures do not feel as cold as you might imagine and that the views are amazing, it appears that you can see further. Generally speaking Greenland is not very windy and the warmest months are June - August.

The length of the day varies significantly throughout the year. The shortest day of the year is 21st December with no sunlight! The longest day, with 24 hours of sunlight, is 20th June. You can see the midnight sun from May - July and the Northern Lights in the darker months.

Electricity

Greenland uses Northern European electrical standards (50Hz/220 volts)  and the standard Europlug socket with two round prongs.

Local time

Most of Greenland uses Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)/ Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) -3; most areas use Daylight Saving Time (DST).

Topography

Area: 836,300 mi²
Population: 56,186 inhabitants (2016)
Capital: Nuuk
Languages: Kalaallisut or West Greenlandic, Danish is also widely used
Regime: Part of the Kingdom of Denmark but politically autonomous

Part of the continent of North America, Greenland is the largest island on Earth and it is covered by the largest ice sheet in the world outside of antarctica.

Sustainable tourism

As adventure and wilderness travel experts who run trips to some of the most remote parts of the world, we take responsible tourism very seriously.

We respect the ‘Leave No Trace’ outdoor ethical code and try to explore this beautiful location whilst causing minimal environmental damage.

The Leave No Trace policy can be summarized in 7 simple steps which we hope you will follow during ourtrip...
  1. Be prepared
  2. Stick to trails and camp overnight right
  3. Stash your trash and pick up waste
  4. Leave it as you find it
  5. Be careful with fire
  6. Respect wildlife
  7. Be considerate of other visitors

Over the years we have built up good relations with our local suppliers and we are keen to support local businesses as much as possible. We are a small company and we pay our local partners and suppliers directly insuring fair rates.

Our small group sizes not only provide a more intimate adventure but also cause less impact on the environment and local communities.

We expect all who travel with us to support and uphold our Sustainable Tourism philosophies.
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Isabelle

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Isabelle

  • Outdoor activities enthusiast
  • Adventure travel expert
  • Graduated with a UK First Class Honours Degree in Outdoor Leadership
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Region
Disko Bay Polar circle
Activity
Hiking Kayaking Summer Whale Watching
Duration
7 days
Group
5 to 12 people
Code
GROFAM
Price
From €1,990
Level
1/5
Comfort
2/5
Language(s)
English

Strengths

  • Go whale-watching, sea kayaking and hiking
  • Visit Ilulissat, Kangerlussuaq & Disko Bay
  • Learn Inuit Bushcraft skills, explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site and walk on Greenlands ice cap

Required level

This trip is accessible to anyone over the age of 15 in fair health with a sense of adventure and a positive attitude. We will do 2-5 hours of activity per day, our hikes are not technically difficult but may venture off-trail. For sea kayaking it is essential that you can swim at least 100m, no previous kayaking experience is needed. This trip involves camping and please note that your help with tasks like cooking is much appreciated and expected - we want you to be a part of our team; not just a sheep!
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