3 Days In Tasiilaq | East Greenland
Come experience the true culture of the Greenlandic people in the land of the polar bears on this 3 day tour from Reykjavik! Because of the geographical location of East Greenland, the villages of Kulusuk and Tasiilaq, also known as Ammassalik, have been relatively isolated in relation to the rest of Greenland and the world in general. Here a unique dialect is spoken and the original native "drum dance" is still performed. In fact the area was only "discovered" by Europeans a little over 100 years ago. The savage mountains, spectacular icebergs and picturesque villages will amaze even the most experienced travelers. This trip is a must for those looking for something new!
- Available: Jun. - Sep.
- Duration: 3 days
- Activities: Sightseeing, Culture
- Difficulty: Easy
- Languages: English
A beautiful scenic landscape resembling a painting with very sharp colors creating a beautiful background, regardless of the weather conditions. With the fog overlaying the mountain tins, it creates a mystical appeal to the landscape. Explore the mystic lands of Tasiilaq and the surrounding fjord system, holding treasures deep within its veins.
East Greenland is known for these beautiful and breathtaking mountains surrounding the lands and especially in Tasiilaq town. Tasiilaq is well known for it's steep hills inside and outside of town, which also makes it so unique.
Tasiilaq is the biggest town on the east coast and is situated approximately 102 km south of the Arctic Circle, with a population of 2000 people. The town is located on an island called Angmagssalik, and inherited the name due to the large amount of the chapelin fish in the area. Tasiilaq is translated to “like a lake”, because of the many rivers surrounding the island.
Originating from Tasiilaq are the best artists, found in the country. Enroute to the local hotel, it is inevitable to not come across Skæven & Stunk. The souvenir shop displays greenlandic handicrafts and enchant every explorer, with its mystical Tupilaks, telling stories as old as man.
The museum is established in an old church, with a characteristic and well known potato house. The buildings tell a story of their own, as the cores display the unforgiving nature of the east coast, on their trite walls. Explore the authentic pea hut. Tasiilaq preserves ancient history, with its peat hut, manifesting the living conditions of inuit families dating back to before the colonization of Greenland.
The museum is famous for its unusual, yet artistically beautiful shape and interior. The pentagonal church was constructed in 1986 and the inside-interior is designed by the famous greenlandic artist, Aka Høegh. The alter carefully decorated with east greenlandic motives and made of sealskin. Hanging from the ceiling is the well known women’s boat also made of sealskin and wood.
Action packed helicopter tours are promised, on the journey to remote glaciers. Stand in the reflection of crystal blue nuances and explore the ice, that hides vanished ages within its deep. Join a helicopter tour to the astonishing Johan Petersen Fjord and fly among the snow covered mountains, resting on the mainland near the breathtaking glacier, while watching the packice move across the water.
Fly close to the Helheim Glacier, that covers 200 kilometer of land. It is the most active glacier generating icebergs from the Greenland ice sheet.
Fjords of Tasiilaq
The surrounding fjords, has great conditions for adventure. With small settlements, sky high mountains and glaciers, the mesmerizing lands will enchant every explorer with its beauty.
When venturing into the fjord, Tinit (Tiniteqilaaq) is an excellent place to start. With its 100 inhabitants, the small settlement is famous for its breathtaking views. Passing icebergs, rest on the neighbouring sea, resembling the Ilulissat icefjord. A piece of modern history, hides between Ammassalik island and Tasiilaq. Dominated by peacefulness, lies the village Ikateq abandoned. It is an insight rarely accounted, providing balm for passing adventurers.
Nature & Hikes
For the active explorers, there are great conditions for climbing, both adored by local and professionals. The in town adrenalin rushes, can be found at the seamen’s- and priest mountain. Seamen’s mountain, is often conquered by the locals of Tasiilaq. With it steep mountain sides, the mountain provides exercise for the body. When conquering the summit, a well-deserved view overlooking the town and fjord, to be enjoyed.
For the less experienced hiker, the Priest Mountain contributes with great views over the town, fjords and backdrop of Tasiilaq. Travel the bumpy road towards the hydroelectric power plant, and you will find the Priest Mountain. From start to end of the adventure, there is stunning and untouched nature to be found.
Between these two mountains, the flower valley is a must to explore. A place for all ages, lies 3 lakes with outstanding herb- and flower life, known for the breathtaking views and peaceful atmosphere. Pleasurable strolls alongside the lakes, decorates all visitors with beauty.
For the more experienced climbers, the hallmark of the town, Polheim mountain is great provider for adrenalin rush. With its high mountain tin, the summit can only be reached by rope climbing and action is promised from the start, as the remote mountain can only be accessed by boat. The summits holds confronting clouds and a view over the veins of the fjord.
Winter activities consist of snowmobiling and dogsledding. The snow, allows the vehicles to travel places, almost unreachable by man and imagination. It is a unique way of travelling, when sitting on a sled venturing into the wilderness. Explore inuit culture, in traditional winter attire, and see how man and dog has sufficed each other for survival.
Tasiilaq is treasure, found nowhere else on the coast of Greenland, with its charming inhabitants and its mesmerizing lands.
What to see & what to do in Tasiilaq
- Boat tours
- Helicopter tours
- Mittivakat Glacier
- Johan Petersen Fjord
- Helheim Glacier
- Flower Valley
- Dog sledding
Reykjavik Domestic Airport
Flight: Reykjavik - Kulusuk - Reykjavik including airport tax
Helicopter transfer Kulusuk - Ammassalik/Tasiilaq - Kulusuk
Two nights at Hotel Angmagssalik in double room with shower/wc and full board (starting with dinner first night and ending with breakfast last day)
Transfer between hotel and airport in Greenland
Any services that not listed under 'included'
Transfer to/from airport in Reykjavik
Optional tours & activities in Greenland (only bookable and payable in Greenland)
What to bring:
Warm clothing and footwear
Hiking clothes and footwear
Mosquito net & repellent
Good to know:
Trips to Greenland are always subject to weather conditions. Delays and flight cancellations can happen. Therefore we strongly recommend you to buy a travel insurance in the country of residence that would cover any additional travel expenses, should your flights be delayed or cancelled due to weather. We recommend not to book any international flight directly after a trip from East Greenland.
Airport transfer in Tasiilaq takes about 2 minutes and is included in the package price. Airport transfer in Reykjavik is not included in the package.
Depending on availability flight supplements up to DKK 3700 per person might apply.
Important to bring Danish Krona to East Greenland. Foreign currency is in general not accepted. Credit cards are accepted only at few locations. i.e. at the hotels and at the local store in Kulusuk. Using credit and debit card, a PIN-code is required.
Excursions can only be ordered and paid for during your stay and operate based on weather and capacity restrictions. The front desk staff are on hand to assist you at your hotel with information on the excursions.
Shops are in general closed on Sundays in East Greenland.
Please note that there is a two-hour time difference between Iceland and Greenland.
NOTICE: Terms and conditions can be found in the supplier description.
Day 1 - Reykjavik - Kulusuk - Tasiilaq
You will take the flight from Reykjavik Domestic Airport where you will be flown to the beautiful village of Kulusuk. When coming close to Greenland, you will slowly begin to see the ice from the Ice cap and melting ice sheet before being able to view the magnificent mountains still with some snow from the winter. Upon arrival you will see the small airport probably packed with locals waiting for members of the family to arrive. This airport is very small and is nothing compared to airports other places in the world. You will then be transported by the helicopter to Tasiilaq. WHen flying a helicopter, you will be able to see the mountains and water underneath you, a very scenic ride, giving you plenty of opportunity to take pictures. Slowly you will be able to spot the first houses from town and then be landing at the heliport. There a hotel representative will be driving you to the hotel. Hotel Angmagssalik is placed on top of a hill overviewing the beautiful and colorful town, with water and mountains in the background. When you have settled in, in your room, you should take the opportunity to walk downhill and get a sense of what the town is all about.
Just down the hill from the hotel you will be able to visit the handicraft workshop "Stunk". Here some of the creative locals make their many hand made crafts where you will be able to find tupilaks, earrings and necklaces, keychains and what other things they have in mind. You can even ask for a specific motive you would like and they will do their best to tend to your wishes. When you have agreed upon a price they will start making your order, payment is done on delivery.
While you are waiting for your purchase take a walk downtown to the end of the hill and over to where the post office and small grocery store are placed almost beside each other. Take a look inside the store and see what they have to offer, and then head up the hill towards the tourist office "Skæven" which also is a sourvinir shop. The building is red with a white picked fence in front and is quite small, but it also gives the shop it's charm. Go inside and hear what you maybe can do for your free day tomorrow, and take a look at their very broad collection of handicrafts made by the east greenlanders. They can also tell you the stories behind the tupilaks and the east greenlandic "Tsakker", which was used by the women to smoothly peel of the sealskin from the seal. The "Tsakker" was used by the women only and the weapons by men, the "Tsakker" is a special knife with a special design for it's use. In west Greenland the knife looks a little different and is called an "Ulo".
Head back up the steep hill or take the milder route heading up towards the football field and take the road to your right and go back to the workshop for you purchase. The time will be right for you to eat dinner at the hotel overviewing the beautiful landscape under the midnight sun.
It's time to head to your room and get a good nights sleep.
Day 2 - Tasiilaq
Today is a new day for new adventure in the great town of Tasiilaq. Your Destination Guide will assist you in choosing among the various optional excursions available that are only bookable and payable in East Greenland. Lunch and dinner are at the hotel. The following activities are examples of what you could do on this free day;
Take one of the boat rides operated by the hotel with their closed boat with comfortable seats and wide windows and sun deck. Cruise between the massive icebergs and scout for some arctic sea life. It is likely you will be able to see the whales feed for krill and schools of fish. These magnificent sea creatures are a breathtaking sight. If not whales you might be able to spot seals taking a sneak peak of what is going on, seals are very curious animals, and the captain of the boat will be scouting for sea life with binoculars for bigger chance for you to witness life in the east greenlandic waters.
You can also go back to the tourist office and ask for longer tours, such as a boat ride to the Mittivakat Glacier. Or go sown to the harbor and see if you might be able to join some of the locals for a boat ride down to the end of the fjord and fish for Cod or the funny looking Culpin, which many of the locals find very delicious.
If a boatride isn't enough or just not to your liking, take a self guided walk to the Flower Valley. Head towards the cemetery, behind it you will be able to follow the path in the rocky terrain and walk beside the two lakes before arriving at the third lake. The view from the lake is so calming, hearing the waterfall beside you, which you also should try and taste the purest and ice cold melt water. The water comes from the melting ice sheet.
Take an optional route back, heading up on the hills towards the town. When on the hill, you will be able to see the cain. When arriving at the cain you will have a spectacular view of the town and the mountains surrounding with icebergs. The color play is mesmerizing, giving you a sense of time standing still. The walk to and from the flower valley takes approximately 2 hours.
If you find hiking fun, the Seaman's mountain behind the hotel is a demanding hike, but the achievement of reaching the top and view is worth the effort. The hike takes approximately 4-5 hours so make sure you have a water bottle with you, filling up the bottle should be possible from the small streams of water going sown the mountain. When going out in the nature of Tasiilaq, make sure you have mosquito repellent and mosquito net with you along with a hat and sunglasses for the sun. When the sun is out, the temperature feels extremely hot if there is no wind, so your clothing should be something resembling sports jackets and something you can take of if it gets too hot.
After hopefully a day full of great adventure you have deserved a cold greenlandic beer or a glass of whine after your liking at the hotel and eat dinner.
If you still feel like you have energy, go down to the local pub called "Krostuen". When in the pub you will be sure people will come and talk to you, not many are good in the english language but they will do their very best to communicate with you any way possible.
Day 3 - Tasiilaq - Kulusuk - Reykjavik
Today is you very last chance to take the last pictures of the view from the hotel and take a last look in their souvenir shop before it's time to head down to the heliport. Take the same trip as the one you took when arriving and enjoy the helicopter ride back to Kulusuk. Before heading into security, and breathe in the last breath of greenlandic air.
The journey is at it's end and it's time to head back to Reykjavik.