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Inspiration / Towns and settlements / ILIMANAQ

Luxurious comfort amidst unspoiled nature. New development thriving within cultural heritage. Visitors meet the locals. In Ilimanaq, contradictions meet beautifully, and a stay at Ilimanaq Lodge is unforgettable.


You should visit this small village, which is beautifully located on the south side of Ilulissat Ice Fjord. Icebergs drift past in Disco Bay, and don’t be surprised if you hear the blow of a whale, or you see its tail just outside your window. In Ilimanaq, you can stay at Ilimanaq Lodge, a collection of 15 luxury cabins located on the cliffs, facing the water. In Ilimanaq, you will also find some of the oldest colonial buildings in Greenland.

World-class icebergs

The trip to Ilimanaq is an adventure in itself. You sail from Ilulissat to the settlement, and on this boat trip, you pass the famous Ilulissat Ice Fjord, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Thousands of icebergs lie in the blue water. The most popular excursion in all of Greenland is a boat trip to the mouth of Ilulissat Ice Fjord. When you sail to Ilimanaq, you automatically get that experience.

Ilimanaq means “expectation” or “probably” in Greenlandic. And you can expect unique natural and cultural experiences in Ilimanaq.

Ilimanaq Lodge south of Ilulissat Ice Fjord

Ilimanaq offers the entire color palette from brightly colored houses to the changing hues of the surrounding countryside as the seasons come and go. Ilimanaq is a traditional, Greenlandic village where people still live from hunting and fishing. In recent years, Ilimanaq has become known for the beautiful cabins that make up Ilimanaq Lodge. Here you stay on the cliffs along the water’s edge with the most beautiful view of Disco Bay and the huge icebergs that lazily drift by from Ilulissat Ice Fjord.

World of Greenland is Greenland Travel’s subsidiary in Ilulissat, and together we have built the formidable luxury cabins. You will be staying in beautiful cabins, built in the summer of 2016. Two listed buildings, the former settlement manager’s residence and the grocery store, have been restored by the Danish Foundation Real Dania. The buildings now house the reception, a restaurant, a museum, and conference facilities.

When you arrive at Ilimanaq, you are welcomed by the black, listed restaurant, located just off the harbor area. Next to the restaurant, you find the reception to the Ilimanaq Lodge. The former manager’s residence dates from 1751 and, over time, it has had many functions: home for priests, missionaries and traders, and it has also served as a village office, a leather workshop, and much more. There are many stories associated with these ancient buildings.

World of Greenland, poetically describes the place as follows: “Ilimanaq is the scent of burning heather and simmering trout. Of the ocean’s salt and the warmth of the mountains. Of wind and calm hours.”

The settlement

Ilimanaq is located 15 kilometers south of Ilulissat and has approximately 50 inhabitants. The settlement’s former Danish name is Claushavn, named after the Dutch whaling skipper Klaes Pietersz Thorp, who operated whaling in the Disco Bay in the years 1719-1732. At that time, the area was the most inhabited in Greenland, and small dwellings were spread out along the coasts.

Ilimanaq offers some of the oldest colonial buildings apart from those already mentioned. The church in Ilimanaq from 1908 has also been renovated, so it looks beautiful in its lovely location. Also, you will find a fish house, a few warehouses, former coal houses, and a former blubber boiling plant.

Ilimanaq is one of Disco Bay’s smallest settlements, and it is rich in history – and kind people. The traditional hunter’s culture is still a major part of the Greenlandic way of life, and this is particularly evident in Greenland’s settlements. The hunter gets up early and takes his boat out to sea, from where he later returns with seal and fish, among other things.

Coffee at a private house and cultural exchange

On request, locals welcome tourists inside their own home for coffee and cake in a traditional Greenlandic gathering. You hear about their lives, and you get to tell who you are and where you come from. It puts things into perspective to hear about life in Greenland in a small village with 50 inhabitants.


The hinterland of Ilimanaq is also an unforgettable place for hikers. There are great expanses and incredible views, where you get an overview of valleys, fjords, icebergs, and whales and seals in the sea.