The incredible Disko Bay, where large icebergs meet whales. Experience icebergs, whales, UNESCO World Heritage, Inuit culture, dog sledding, and boat trips to unforgettable camps.
All year round, Disko Bay is the most visited place by visitors to Greenland. Most famous is Ilulissat with its lavish Ice Fjord, but there is much more to see and do. Qeqertarsuaq is beautiful scenery with lots of whales, Aasiaat is a kayaking mecca, and you will also find two superb camps, Glacier Camp Eqi and Ilimanaq Lodge here. In winter, dog sledding and northern lights are the main attractions!
Disko Bay is the largest bay in Greenland
Centrally located in the bay, you will find Disko Island, which is Greenland’s largest island if you ignore the fact that mainland Greenland itself is the world’s largest island. You will also find four towns in the Disko Bay; Ilulissat, Qeqertarsuaq, Qasigiannguit, and Aasiaat and, just to the north of Disko Bay, you find Uummannaq with its characteristic heart-shaped mountain.
Whales in the Disko Bay
You can experience several whale species in Disko Bay. These species are either native to the area or come here in the summer from the Caribbean Sea. You have very good chances of experiencing large whales up close, for example, if you take a whale-watching safari from one of the towns. The whales swim close to land and thrive in large parts of Disko Bay, and especially at Ilulissat Ice Fjord and Qeqertarsuaq you will find them all summer.
Read more about whales.
Disko Bay is a dog sled district
Disko Bay is an exquisite place to ride on dog sleds. There are dog sleds and sled dogs everywhere, and it is a very exciting experience to go out across the ice or the hills, while the dogs in front of you enjoy pulling the sled. Our winter tours are very popular, and this is due not least to the chance of trying to ride a dog sled – and, of course, the amazing Northern Lights are also a good reason to visit.
Disko Bay is the only place in West Greenland, where you can try riding a dog sled in the summer. Summer dog sledding takes place on the Lyngmark Glacier at the top of the island of Qeqertarsuaq, where eternal snow makes it possible to drive also in the summer. However, you should expect that you might get wet because the sun’s rays of summer melt the top layer of snow.
Ilulissat is the main town in Disko Bay. The name Ilulissat means “icebergs” in Greenlandic, and these gigantic icebergs are the reason most people come here. You will find the town itself beautifully located right on the coast and close to the edge of the Ice Fjord, so no matter where you are, the view is fantastic.
Ilulissat Ice Fjord itself is within walking distance of the town. Ilulissat Ice Fjord was the first place in Greenland to be listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, and you will quickly understand why. Ilulissat is a very good starting point for a visit to Disko Bay and most of our package tours to the west coast include Ilulissat in the itinerary.
Qeqertarsuaq – the green (former) volcanic island
Qeqertarsuaq is also known as the Disco Island, and the Greenlandic name is the name of both the island and the main town, which lies on the southern coast of the island. The island of Qeqertarsuaq differs markedly from the rest of Greenland, as it consists of volcanic rocks, whereas the rest of Greenland consists of bedrock. This makes the island especially lush, although you also experience a lot of brown basalt mountains and rock formations. The island seems almost magical in its beauty and with its distinctive landscape, where you walk between rock formations in all kinds of shapes, rising from the ground.
Read more about Qeqertarsuaq and Disco Island here. / coming soon
Uummannaq with the famous heart-shaped mountain
Uummannaq is located just north of Disko Bay but is often mentioned in connection with the area. The town of Uummannaq lies on the island of Uummannaq, just north of the Nuussuaq peninsula, which forms the northern part of the Disko Bay. Uummannaq means “the heart-shaped” and is named after the mountain, which rises steeply above the city.
Many people who travel to Greenland regularly mention Uummannaq as one of the reasons. You will find very special tranquility in this town. Large parts of the town lie on top of cliffs, where countless walkways have been built to the houses from the roads. It is incredibly beautiful on the island, where you can also find the building Santa’s Workshop from a popular Danish TV Christmas calendar show “Nissebanden in Greenland (Santa’s Elf Gang in Greenland).”
Aasiaat and Qasigiannguit
You can also visit the other town in Disko Bay, Aasiaat and Qasigiannguit. Aasiaat is a town with many educational institutions, and here you can also experience Per Kirkeby’s decoration of the community house. Aasiaat is also known for its large archipelago, so it is popular to go on kayaking trips there.
Qasigiannguit is located in the south-eastern corner of Disko Bay and is the ideal place for those who enjoy a good hike. You will find many hiking paths in the hinterland of Qasigiannguit, and it is also a place where, during summer, you will experience lots of whales. Qasigiannguit boasts a really exciting living summer museum, where you can experience how Inuit lived in the old days.
Glacier Lodge Eqi and Ilimanaq Lodge
In Greenland, summer camps have always been a part of life. Inuit paddled to places with good hunting grounds, and here they pitched tents. Our subsidiary, World of Greenland, has built two incredible camps that you can experience on your visit to Disko Bay.
Glacier Lodge Eqi is located 80 kilometers north of Ilulissat, opposite the calving Eqi Glacier. It gives you a unique opportunity to sit and enjoy a glass of wine, while you hear the loud, thunderous sounds from the glacier when the ice breaks.
Ilimanaq Lodge lies only 15 kilometers south of Ilulissat. Ilimanaq Lodge consists of 15 cabins, built on the cliffs near the southern coast of Ilulissat Ice Fjord. The cabins are built in one of Greenland’s oldest settlements, so you also get the opportunity to experience original culture in a Greenlandic settlement life.