Facts and figures about the destination
Greenland is the world’s largest island and an exciting destination in the Arctic for all adventure-minded travelers
Greenland is the world’s largest island and an exciting destination in the Arctic for all adventure-minded travelers. It is located between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans, east of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Greenland is an autonomous territory within the Kingdom of Denmark.
With a population of just under 57,000 people, Greenland is the least densely populated territory in the world. Most inhabitants are concentrated on the southwest coast of the island, while the rest of the island is sparsely populated.
Name: Greenland (Greenlandic: Kalaallit Nunaat)
Population: 55,877 (1 January 2018)
Geography: Stretching approximately 2,800 kilometers (1,750 miles) from north to south and approximately 1,000 kilometers (625 miles) from east to west, Greenland is the world’s biggest island.
Government: Constitutional monarchy. Greenland is an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark.
Flag: The flag of Greenland Erfalasorput (our flag) features two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red with a large disk slightly to the hoist side of centre. The top half of the disk is red, the bottom half is white. The circle in the middle represents the sun setting on the horizon of the ice cap and the colors coincide with the flag of Denmark (Dannebrog).
Religion: Predominantly Christian.
Language: Greenlandic belongs to the Inuit-Aleut family of languages, which is spoken by some 80,000 Inuits in Alaska, Canada, and Greenland. Greenlandic is the official language, other languages (Danish and English) are spoken.
Currency: Danish Kroner (DKK) is the valid currency in Greenland.
Timezones: Greenland stretches from UTC -1 to UTC -4 in standard time and UTC -0 to UTC -3 in the summertime.
Highest point: Gunnbjørn Fjeld 3,694 m (12,119 ft) – also the highest mountain north of the Arctic Circle.
Natural resources: Fish (mainly shrimp and halibut), coal, iron ore, lead, zinc, molybdenum, diamonds, gold, platinum, niobium, tantalite, uranium, hydropower, possible oil and gas.
Temperatures: Greenland has an Arctic climate with average temperatures that do not exceed 10° C (50° F) in the warmest summer months. Due to the very dry air, summer temperatures will often feel warmer than you might expect. If the sun is shining, T-shirts are perfectly adequate. All towns are below freezing from November through to April. The winter is particularly cold in the very north of Greenland, for example in Upernavik, where the thermometer shows an average of -20° C (-4° F) in February.
Good to know while preparing your trip to Greenland
Admission to Vestnorden is for registered participants only
On-site registration is not possible, and it is not possible to buy guest tickets.
Passport and visa regulations
You do not need a visa as a Dane, but if you come from a country from which a visa is required to enter Denmark, it should be noted that you are traveling on to Greenland. Remember to take your passport with you, as security regulations may require that you provide proof of identity both on arrival and on departure.
Climate and clothing
In Greenland, sudden changes in weather are common, and you have to be prepared for all types of weather when on an excursion. During the winter, temperatures range from minus 5° C to minus 30° C and in the summer from plus 5° C to plus 15° C. As the air in Greenland is very dry, temperatures do not feel as cold as in Europe.
The air quality in Greenland is among the best in the world due to the country’s geographical position to the high north. Due to the fine air quality and low levels of moisture in the air, in general, you are able to see very, very far. For more information about what to wear: https://youtu.be/5zsa_vp8vb8
Useful phone numbers
Emergency number: 113
Police: +299 701448
Medical assistance: +299 344400
Vestnorden Project Management Team: +299 282288 / +299 482448
You will probably be surprised at the wide range of goods to be found in a supermarket in Greenland – in many ways similar to what you would find in a European supermarket. However, since almost everything except fish and certain meat products has to be imported to Greenland either by ship or by aircraft, price levels are a little higher than in Europe. Alcohol, tobacco, fresh fruit and vegetables, and dairy products are considerably more expensive in Greenland, however.
There is a hospital in all towns, however, it is recommended that visitors bring their own medicine and any other medication that is used regularly, as special products are not always available. In the event of acute illness, emergency treatment is free of charge. However, we recommend all participants to travel to Greenland with a good travel insurance covering emergencies, chronic illness, and covid-19 sickness.