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Best Hiking Trails in Greenland

Overview

Greenland, the world’s largest island, is an autonomous territory of Denmark. Almost all of it is covered in ice sheet but the habited regions (mainly along the coast) offer up some spectacular hiking.  There are many day hikes and multi-day treks (including the popular 160 km Arctic Circle Trail) on offer from several of the coastal towns.  Discover where to hike near Nuuk, the capital city in West Greenland, as well as the high peaks of East Greenland, and the ‘warmer’ climes of South Greenland.  The best months to hike are June – August.  Read more about where and when to hike in Greenland.

Capital: Nuuk (Godthåb)

When To Hike in Greenland?

Mid-June – August: Warmest, driest period. Bugs are highly annoying
Early June – September
October – May
Climate: Arctic – cold, windy, cloudy.  Temperatures don’t get very high and there is little difference between day and night, and also between summer & winter. Unstable weather is common. 

Accessibility of Hiking

Medium: Some trails are marked, there are maps and written guides available. However, many trails (particularly long distance ones) are best with a guide. Since hiking is one of the prime activities here, there are a lot of guiding companies and people with knowledge. Also, it is quite remote and so have to be prepared if venturing out on a trek.

Transportation: There aren’t many roads between towns so one gets around by boat, plane, sled, snowmobile

Where to stay:

  • Nuuk
  • Sisimiut
  • Narsaq
  • Tasiilaq

Most popular hikes in Greenland

The main hiking areas are South, East and West Greenland, close to coastal areas. Highest Peak is Gunnbjørn Fjeld (3694m).

Filter out hiking places of Greenland by month

Click on the red map pointers to see more info.

East Greenland

  • Steeper mountains, more remote, seems that more treks happen here
  • Schweizerland Alps Traverse
  • Alpine East
  • Around Tasiilaq (largest town in East Greenland)

South Greenland

  • Climate is the ‘warmest’
  • Around Narsaq 

West Greenland

  • Around Nuuk such as Quassussuaq
  • Arctic Circle towns such as Sisimiut, Kangerlussuaq

Long Distance Trails of Greenland

  • Arctic Circle Trail: 160 km that runs east – west from Kangerlussuaq and Sisimiut – Arctic Circle Trail: The Go-To Guide – list of chapters
  • Kilaarsarfik to Kapisillit – 25 km through mountains
  • Narsaq to Narsarsuaq – various multi-day options
  • Qaqortoq to Igalikii – 3 to 4 day trek
  • Schweizerland Alps Traverse – multi-day trek

Greenland's Walking & Hiking Resources

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Greenland Hiking Books:

  • Trekking in Greenland – The Arctic Circle Trail: From Kangerlussuaq and Sisimiut, by Paddy Dillon, 2019, Cicerone Guide – https://amzn.to/3PleLwO
  • Trekking Around Nuuk: 36 Tours in the Wild Mountains of West Greenland, by Jakob Abermann, 2018, Eigenverlag Jakob Abermann 

 

Greenland Hiking Associations:

 

Best Hiking Trails in Greenland:

  • Palasip Qaqqaa (Priest Mountain) – Arctic Circle
  • Nasaasaaq – Arctic Circle
  • Quassussuaq (Little Malene) – Nuuk
  • Big Malene – Nuuk
  • Igaliku hike
  • KangNuuk
  • Tasiilaq hikes – East Greenland

Easy Hiking Trails in Greenland:

  • Sermermiut Valley
  • Valley of the Flowers – in Tasiilaq
  • Hike to Santa Claus summer residence

Greenland Hiking Websites:

 

Greenland Weather Website: 

 

Greenland Official Tourism Site:

Greenland Hiking Companies:

Greenland Hiking Apps: 

 

Greenland Hiking Maps: 

What Else To Do

  • Illulissat Ice-fjord; also other icebergs
  • Glaciers
  • Whale-watching
  • Other wildlife (polar bears, reindeer, etc)
  • Dog sledding
  • Northern lights
  • Hot springs
  • Museums

Other Important Points

  • Places often have two names (Greenlandic and Danish)
  • Least densely populated place on Earth