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Exploring Greenland: An Exciting Adventure for Families with Children

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This article was written by Kimberly Bloom, who went on our Great Greenland Roundtrip along with her daughter in 2023. 

Greenland is often overlooked when planning a family vacation. However, this stunning Arctic destination offers breathtaking natural beauty and unique experiences, making it a fantastic choice for an unforgettable family adventure. My 10-year-old daughter and I recently traveled to the world’s biggest island joining the 15 day Great Greenland Roundtrip tour with Greenland Travel. We loved every moment of our trip and hope to return to visit again soon. It was truly the trip of a lifetime and I’m eager to share the reasons why Greenland is an exceptional destination to visit with children and why it should be the choice for your next family getaway.

Untouched Natural Beauty

Greenland is a land of vast, untamed wilderness. For years, I had been intrigued by the idea of visiting this unique location, attracted not only to the pristine natural beauty but also to the fact that the country is 80% covered in ice and inhabited by fewer than 60,000 people. Greenland did not disappoint. Majestic glaciers, towering icebergs, rugged mountains, and wide open vistas create a surreal landscape that captivates both children and adults. We saw some of the most beautiful views we have ever seen exploring Greenland. Imagine viewing a 200 meter tall wall of ice as huge chunks break off and crash into the water as we did visiting Eqi Glacier.

Read more about Eqi Glacier

Kimberly Bloom
Kimberly Bloom

Envision being surrounded by gigantic pieces of floating ice — dramatic sculptures that range in color from pure white to stunning shades of blue and green as we did cruising through Disko Bay to the tiny village of Illimanaq. Picture hiking through golden fields to reach a remote sheep farming settlement surrounded by mountains and facing stunning turquoise waters as we did exploring the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Igaliku.  The diverse, majestic beauty and spectacular natural wonders of Greenland are mesmerizing and will leave a lasting impression on the entire family.

Read more about icebergs

Outdoor Adventures

Greenland is a paradise for children who enjoy exploring the great outdoors. From hiking and horseback riding through scenic valleys to kayaking amidst icebergs, dog sledding across the frozen tundra, and trekking across glaciers, there’s no shortage of kid-friendly activities. Immersed in nature, children can disconnect from screens and embark on thrilling adventures to create lifelong memories. My daughter particularly cherished our hike to the Qooroq glacier. The scenery transformed dramatically along the way, ranging from wide open fields and rushing streams to picturesque lakes, rugged outcrops, and surreal moon-like landscapes. She found joy in the simple pleasures of crossing streams along the way, skipping stones on the lake, identifying flora and fauna, meeting a friendly ram, and learning about the glacier.

The highlight was a lovely lunch overlooking the glacier and the icebergs adrift in the striking turquoise waters. Another favorite activity was “Fish and Dish”. Taking a water taxi into the Nuuk fjord, we spent an hour fishing for redfish and cod and my 10-year-old was overjoyed to catch her first fish! Afterwards, we headed to Restaurant Nuan in Qooqqut for dinner where the chef skillfully prepared our catch in various ways. One of the most memorable meals we had in Greenland. Reaching out of a boat to touch an iceberg, enjoying a local beverage made with glacial ice, exploring diverse locations and terrains, the adventures are endless.

Wildlife Encounters

Greenland offers an extraordinary opportunity for nature-loving children to witness diverse Arctic wildlife. Join whale-watching tours to spot majestic whales, observe seals basking on ice floes, witness seabirds in their natural habitat, and glimpse arctic hare, fox, and sheep. These encounters contribute not only to a fun-filled journey but also to an educational exploration for children. On the way to Eqi Glacier, we encountered a remarkable congregation of birds on the ice and in the surrounding waters. The number of birds in one location was astonishing! Our whale watching tour was an extraordinary experience, leaving my daughter speechless. Witnessing not just one or two, but many majestic whales gracefully navigating the waters against the dramatic backdrop of towering icebergs was truly awe-inspiring. The sight of several groups of mother whales accompanied by their playful babies added to the magic of the moment. In just two hours, the sheer abundance of these magnificent creatures was astounding. We were deeply moved by the experience. 

Read more about the wildlife of Greenland

Unique Cultural Experiences

Greenland is home to the Inuit people, who have a rich and vibrant culture deeply rooted in their Arctic surroundings. Visiting traditional settlements, engaging in cultural events, and interacting with local communities provides an opportunity for children to learn about this unique culture. Your family can witness firsthand the traditions and customs that have shaped Greenland’s history. We enjoyed meeting local families and hearing about their history while traveling on the Sarfaq Ittuk, one of Greenland’s passenger and cargo ferries, connecting coastal towns and settlements along Greenland’s west coast.

Our two-day and night journey from Qaqordoq to Nuuk on this ferry provided a wonderful chance to engage with locals, while sailing amidst icebergs and soaking in the gorgeous coastal views of Greenland. We encountered local families visiting relatives, residents on vacation, and a heartwarming moment when we met a girl my daughter’s age traveling with her aunt to meet her newborn sister, just delivered at the hospital in Nuuk. In Illulissat, we were thrilled to meet the incredibly warm-hearted couple who own Arctic Living. They graciously provided a hands-on demonstration of traditional sleds and tents and introduced us to their sled dogs, a child’s dream experience! It was a truly enriching and special opportunity, providing an understanding of authentic traditions and culture. Whether in shops, restaurants, accommodations or on tours, we had wonderful interactions and great conversations with locals in Greenland. It was definitely a highlight of our trip. 

Educational Opportunities

A trip to Greenland is not just a vacation; it’s an educational experience. The Arctic environment provides a unique setting for children to learn about climate change, environmental conservation, and the delicate balance of ecosystems. Visiting the Illulissat Icefjord Center and via conversations throughout our trip with our knowledgeable Greenland Travel guide provided a detailed explanation of the effects of melting ice and a deeper understanding of the importance of preserving our planet. A trip to Greenland is more than just beautiful views, it is a valuable learning opportunity for the entire family.

Unique Lodging

Our journey through Greenland was enriched by the diversity of accommodations we experienced. From modern hotels boasting panoramic views of floating icebergs to a cozy ferry berth, from the rustic charm of a country hotel  nestled in a sheep farming village to the secluded tranquility of cabins perched in remote locations with breathtaking vistas, each lodging was a distinct gem in its own right and all very kid-friendly. Some of our fondest memories were etched at Eqi Lodge, where our charming cabin offered unparalleled views of the majestic Eqi Glacier. Evenings were spent on our private terrace, soaking in the sunset, indulging in card games, or curling up with a good book. 

And there is plenty of space for children to explore the wilderness outside the lodge but within view, with every moment filled with joy from wildlife spotting to rock-hopping. Equally captivating was our stay at Illimanaq Lodge, where the unexpectedly spacious cabin provided a front-row view of the mesmerizing beauty of Disko Bay. Everywhere we went, warm hospitality and delicious cuisine greeted us. Our experience surpassed all expectations, leaving us yearning for more. We are tempted by the thought of camping under the Arctic sky or sleeping in an igloo, possibilities that await of future Greenland Travel excursions.

Read more about hotels and lodges in Greenland

Greenland may not be the most common destination, but its raw beauty, cultural richness, and abundant outdoor adventures make it perfect for family travel. It’s a place where children can learn, explore, and connect with nature and different cultures in a way that is both thrilling and educational. Greenland’s stunning natural beauty alone makes it an amazing family vacation destination. However, Greenland offers so much more. So, why wait? Start planning your family’s unforgettable journey to Greenland. My daughter and I are grateful we did!

Read about The Great Greenland Roundtrip