The Ultimate 8-day Arctic Winter Adventure | Ilulissat | Disko Bay
Are you looking for the ultimate winter experience of the famous UNESCO World Heritage-listed Ilulissat Icefjord? Embark on the journey of a lifetime on this 8-day Arctic adventure that also includes a night in an igloo! This tour immerses you in a true Arctic winter experience where you will travel via dogsled, snowmobile, snowshoe and boat to explore the highlights of the Ilulissat area.
Never snowshoed before? Never been on a snowmobile? Never been on a dogsled? No worries! It is not difficult and we are there to assist you. Over the course of your journey, you will visit the incredible Ilulissat Icefjord, sail around the massive icebergs as they make their way into Disko Bay, spend a night in a small settlement where only 27 people live year-round, experience traditional Greenlandic food, travel as the Inuit do via dog sledge, sleep in an igloo made from snow, have the chance to see the magical Northern Lights, and learn about many aspects of Greenlandic culture and modern life from your guide and local people.
Do not let this extraordinary possibility of exploring the Arctic go. Click on the Itinerary tab to read more information about each day of the tour, and then reserve your place on this exploration of Ilulissat by clicking on Book Now.
Even before you land at Ilulissat airport, we have a hot tip for you. Look out the window of the plane as you approach the city. If the weather cooperates (and depending on which side of the plane you are on), you will have a spectacular view of the Ilulissat glacier and/or Icefjord from above. Have your camera ready for some amazing pictures! Once you have collected your luggage, take a taxi to “Ilulissat Guesthouse” and settle in.
We will meet you there to take you out on the first excursion of this 8-day odyssey - a City walk through Ilulissat. This tour will allow you to become familiar with the town and learn a little about both its history and modern operation. We’ll take you past several places that you will want to come back to and explore in more detail later in the trip when you have free time.
In the evening, we will go out and chase the Northern lights on snow shoes! We will start from Ilulissat Guesthouse and hike with snow shoes to the UNESCO area. If conditions allow, we will hike up the hills getting a beautiful view over the amazing icefjord and the pitch-black sky. Here, you will get some hot beverages while looking for the beautiful Northern light - duration 2,5 hours.
After breakfast, our exploration of the Ilulissat Icefjord will begin by snowshoe. We will head out to the Icefjord through the Sermermiut Valley – a fairly short and easy hike that will take us past old Inuit settlements and deliver us to some of the best views of this remarkable natural wonder. The glacier that feeds the Icefjord (Sermeq Kujalleq in the Greenlandic language) is one of the fastest moving glaciers in Greenland and produces around 10% of all of Greenland’s icebergs. It is thought that the iceberg that sank the Titanic probably originated here!
In the afternoon, we will take to our own boat (don’t worry, the Greenlandic captains are very experienced and the boats are designed for the Arctic environment) and sail at slow speed among the enormous icebergs that have made their way out into Disko Bay. Make sure you bring plenty of layers of clothing, as it can get quite cold. Also, remember to bring extra batteries for your camera, as the cold weather will drain them faster than usual.
Today we head to Oqaatsut – a small settlement located about 20km North of Ilulissat –
by snowmobile. We will drive along the shore of Disko Bay and, if ice conditions permit, do part of the trip on the sea ice itself.
Once in Oqaatsut, we will walk around the settlement to witness daily life during winter in one of Greenland’s small villages before heading into a warm restaurant to have lunch.
In the afternoon, we will meet our Greenlandic sled dog team and musher for a 2-hour journey through the backcountry. Dog sledge is a very traditional method of transportation in Greenland and is still used today by locals to go hunting and to generally get from place to place during winter.
The day finishes back at the restaurant where you will learn more about Greenlandic culture and life in a small settlement and have the opportunity to try several different Greenlandic delicacies. Afterward, dinner is the last part of the program and then you can simply relax and enjoy the incredible view of the harbour and bay area from the comfort of the hotel.
NB. if there is no sea ice, you will do the trip by boat.
Today we will return to Ilulissat via snowmobile and you have the rest of the day to explore the city for yourself. You may like to re-visit one of the places we saw on the City Walk, and you should check out the Ultimate Guide to Ilulissat for other ideas.
During the afternoon, we also invite you to join our fantastic Arctic wellness sauna with a panoramic view over the Disko bay.
For the second-last night of our 8-day Arctic expedition, we have something very special. We will venture out once more by snowmobile into the back-country around Ilulissat – heading through the mountains towards our accommodation at Igloo Lodge. Yes, we will spend the night sleeping in igloos made of snow! Don’t worry, the igloos are equipped with super-warm sleeping bags, and we will spend most of our relaxation time in a cosily heated wooden country hut.
Once we arrive, the lodge manager will explain the program for the next 24 hours. No matter what is scheduled – it will be an amazing experience. In the afternoon, you are going on a short snowshoe hike out to a viewpoint looking over the icefjord and ice cap. Keep your fingers crossed for clear weather and a solar storm so we can make the most of our front-row seats to the most amazing Arctic light show – the Northern Lights.
Igloo Lodge is comprised of 6 spacious igloos, each with room for 2 persons. They are complete with reindeer skin, warm winter sleeping bags on the beds, and a petroleum lamp on the night table. A focal point for everything is our cozily heated wooden country hut, where we enjoy meals protected from the cold outside - which can be as low as minus 40° C! The temperature inside the igloos will be around the freezing point.
After a very slow and relaxed start to the day, we will return to Ilulissat by snowmobile. There is no program for this afternoon, so the time is yours to finish visiting the various attractions of Ilulissat, do some souvenir shopping, and/or chill in one of the restaurants or cafes around town.
- 5 nights in Ilulissat Guesthouse in double room with shared facilites
- 1 night in the settlement, Oqaatsut (Full board)
- 1 night in Iglo Lodge (Full board)
- Snow shoe hike to view point, where you on a clear day can spot glacier and ice cap - 1 hour
- Cultural City Walk in Ilulissat 1-2 hours
- Guided hike to the Sermermiut Valley (UNESCO site) 2-3 hours
- Icefiord Cruise - 2 hours
- Snow mobile trip to the settlement Oqaatsut or boat
- Dogsled trip in the backcountry of Oqaatsut - 2 hours
- Cultural talk and tasting and Greenlandic specialities
- Returning from Oqaatsut-Ilulissat by snow mobile or boat
- Snow mobile out and return from the Iglo Lodge
- Northern light snow shoe hike - 2,5 hours
- Arctic Sauna - 1 hour
- Airline tickets
- Food when staying in guesthouse
- Taxi from and to the airport
- Single supplement DKK 4450,-
- Upgrade to private sauna when two persons price per person DKK 400,-
What to bring
- Warm winter wear. Ideally, you should dress in layers: at least one thermal underwear layer (top and bottom), activity layer (e.g. hiking pants and shirt), and insulation layer (e.g. fleece or down jacket). The outer layer must be proper winter gear which typically has lots of insulation and is windproof. Think ski jacket and pants if you come from a warmer climate.
- Warm hat, thick windproof gloves, buff or scarf
- Insulated winter boots
- Sunglasses and sunscreen - snow is very bright and even the winter sun can cause sunburn
- Camera with extra batteries (the cold drains the batteries faster)
- Day pack
- Water bottle
- Please note that this tour does not include flight to and from Ilulissat, or meals during your stay at our guesthouse.
- It is mandatory for all solo-travellers to select the Single Room Supplement in the booking process. If this is not done, you will be charged an extra fee, after booking.
Our customers are the foundation of Guide to Greenland so we make great efforts to provide you with the best possible service.
We are located in Greenland and cooperate with everyone involved in the Greenlandic tourism industry. We are therefore perfectly placed to quickly react to changes or new wishes you may have to ensure you have the trip of a lifetime.
The earlier you book your trip, the better the prices will be, and the more likely you will be able to book the tour you want for the dates/times you want.
Package tours can be sold out more than half a year in advance (note that Guide to Greenland does not include international flights in packages, except where indicated from Iceland or Denmark). Day trips may sell out closer to your arrival date, but for popular destinations, certain dates/times can also sell out months in advance. We recommend that you secure all of your experiences by booking them well in advance of your trip.
All cancellations must be made via e-mail.
Although Guide to Greenland is committed to ensuring the best protection and service for our customers in the event of a cancellation, we are obliged to charge cancellation fees. This is in accordance with Greenland travel industry business practices. Details can be found in our general cancellation policy
Note: Due to COVID-19, a temporary cancellation policy applies. You can find it in the footer of the website under the “Terms & Conditions”.