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Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland
Picture of Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland

Destination: South Greenland

Greenland is the least populated, wildest country in the world. Most of it is covered by a huge ice cap and the population of 56,000 clings to the green fringe along the coast. It is spectacularly beautiful: soaring mountains tower over fjords choked with blue-tinged icebergs, sheep graze in deep green meadows, Viking ruins remind us of the population that survived here for 400 years, and Inuit farms and tiny towns are testaments to the people who have carved out a living here for over 4500 years. We'll spend time camped across from a huge glacier, listening to its creaks and groans and exploring a small part on crampons. We'll hike to the top of a mountain from where we can look across to Inlandis, the ice cap. We'll kayak in a bay off of Sermilik Fjord among icebergs that come off the huge Egaloruutsit glacier. We'll learn about Viking and Inuit history and shelter. This trip offers a rare combination of experiencing Greenland's wilderness and still having shelter if the weather turns. Maximum group size: 11;

Highlights

  • Being immersed in Greenland's wild remote beauty on foot and by boat
  • Navigating among icebergs in kayak and RIB boat
  • Learning about Viking history and current Inuit culture
  • Walking on a glacier and learning how glaciers are formed and seeing how they retreat
  • Experiencing almost constant daylight as we are close to the Arctic Circle at midsummer

Departures and Prices

June 15 to June 24, 2020
$4150.00 - Available
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Inclusions

  • An English-speaking guide and an AGC guide (If there are fewer than 8 on the trip, there will not be an AGC guide)
  • 9 nights accommodation as described
  • Round trip airfare between Iceland and Greenland
  • All meals from dinner on the 14th through breakfast on the 23rd with the exception of one lunch and dinner
  • Transfer from Reykjavik hotel to airport for flight to Greenland
  • Transfer by RIB boats and warm insulated jackets for the transfers
  • Kayaks and group camping equipment

Not included: airfare to Iceland, transfer to the Reykjavik hotel, alcoholic beverages, sleeping bag and pad (can be rented), 1 lunch and dinner, guide gratuities, mandatory travel insurance, unexpected expenses as a result of weather conditions (including difficulties or cancellations due to ice or weather conditions) or flight or boat delays

Details

This trip is suitable for women with prior outdoor experience, endurance, enjoyment of very rustic conditions, the ability to stay active for 3 to 5 hours a day, and a very flexible approach to travel. A rating of 3 requires aerobic conditioning, such as walking vigorously up hills, jogging, cross country skiing or stair stepping for 30 - 45 minutes at least 4 times a week. Rating: 1 2 [3] 4 5.

Our primary activities on this trip are hiking, kayaking, and simply experiencing the raw power of Greenland's wildness and beauty. Some hiking is on dirt roads that are shared with all terrain vehicles, and some is off trail. The kayaking is leisurely and not a good choice for someone whose interest is in kayak expeditions.

In Reykjavik we'll stay in a 3-star hotel, double occupancy, with ensuite bathrooms. Please note: There are no single supplements offered for this trip. In Greenland our accommodations are very basic. We'll spend the first three nights at Qaleraliq Glacier Camp with large geodesic domes - there are 4 people in two bunkbeds in each dome and there is also a larger one for cooking and meals. We'll sleep in roomy domed tents for the kayak portion; and in between we'll stay in hostels where we'll stay in rooms for 2 to 8 women, all of which share one bathroom with several shower stalls, basins, and toilet stalls.

Below is the proposed itinerary for the trip. As is true on any adventure travel trip, plans for any specific day may be modified due to weather considerations, unforeseen circumstances, new opportunities, and group interests.

DAY 1
Arrive Reykjavik anytime today. Flights from North America typically arrive early in the morning and transportation into the city on dedicated buses is simple (we'll provide instructions in the Pre-departure document). We'll meet as a group in the lobby of our hotel at 10 am and start getting to know each other. Your AGC guide will orient you to this beautiful compact and walkable city. The Visitor's Center is just next door to your hotel and your reception staff is also very helpful with suggestions of fun things to do. There will be some free time in the afternoon for you to either make any final preparations for heading to Greenland, or wander as you choose before we meet back as a group and go out for a Welcome Dinner together. Overnight in Reykjavik at Center Hotel Plaza or similar. D
DAY 2
Depending on the flight schedule, we may have free time to continue exploring Reykjavik (lunch is on your own) before departing for the airport. The landing strip is at Narsarsuaq, an old WWII US Army base. If the weather is clear, we'll see the mountains that will soon be surrounding us and the fjords we will be traveling by boat. We'll meet our local guide at the airport and transfer to the harbor where we get into the RIB (rigid inflatable boat) that we'll become familiar with over the next week. Navigating along the Tunulliarfik fjord among numerous icebergs, we set off for our home for the next three nights: Qaleraliq Glacier Camp, which is likely as remote and as quiet as you've ever experienced. Set up on a bluff overlooking the fjord and across to huge glaciers, it is an enchanting place. Overnight: Qaleraliq Glacier Camp B, D
DAY 3
Today we'll hike up along the stream that rushes down from Tasersuatsiaq Lake and supplies both our drinking and washing water. Our hike goes up through a glacial valley, scoured out centuries ago, and then up a lateral moraine to a vast dry plain. This was once part of the lake that we will shortly be hiking along, but the shrinking of the glaciers has resulted in a shrinking lake. Our path then becomes considerably rougher as we follow an uneven track up 1200 feet to the top of a small mountain with a commanding view of the Inlandis, the ice cap that covers almost all of Greenland, the lake below, and the fjord up which we traveled. We'll eat lunch here before returning by the same way. Caribou can often be seen here. We'll have free time when we return, to relax, walk along the beach, or perhaps wash off in the stream. Approximate mileage: 7 miles Elevation gain: 1200 ft. Overnight: Qaleraliq Glacier Camp B, L, D
DAY 4
We've been watching and listening to the glacier across the bay and today we finally get to see it up close. The RIB boat will pick us up and transport us across the bay, looking at the different glacier fronts that were once all part of the same edge and admiring their vertical blue walls. As the glacier has receded, the fronts have become dramatically distinct. We'll land in a flat area and after a short walk we'll reach a barrel where helmets and crampons are stored. After we have put these on for our glacier walk, our guide will give us instruction in how to use them to walk up and down safely on the glacier, part of one of the oldest masses of ice on earth. We'll head up the glacier, seeing its crevasses, drains, caves, seracs, and other ice formations. Our expert mountain guide will explain how the glaciers are formed and the special characteristics of Greenland glaciers. It is truly a unique and magical experience. This will be our final night here and even the prospect of hot showers will not make us want to leave. Approximately 2 hours hiking (in crampons) Overnight: Qaleraliq Glacier Camp B, L, D
DAY 5
Leaving Glacier Camp behind, we're off to our next adventure. Our RIB takes us back down Tunulliarfik Fjord to Itilleq, more a name than an actual town. From here we walk over a high point on a dirt road called "The Path of the Kings" to the beautiful little village of Igaliku, a small Inuit settlement of not more than 40 people situated on another fjord. Regarded by some as the most beautiful settlement in Greenland, it is home to the remains of Gardar, the religious capital of Viking Greenland. We'll visit some of the ruins and a reconstructed church before retracing our steps, and then transported by RIB to the small town of Qassiarsuk. We'll spend tonight at the Qassiarsuk Hostel. Approximate mileage: 5 miles. Elevation gain: 900 ft. B, L, D
DAY 6
This morning will start with a beautiful hike across to Tasiusaq, site of a one-family sheep farm and the launch point for our kayak expedition on Sermilik Fjord. After getting suited up, we'll start with some basic kayak instruction and packing up and stowing our gear in our kayaks. We'll be kayaking in a bay of Nordre Sermilik Fjord among icebergs that vary wildly in shape, size, and color. Both the bay itself and the main fjord are always filled with icebergs as they calve directly from Eqaloruutsit Glacier. This is an area in which the kayak is the only possible means of navigation at this time of the year, so we won't see any other boats. Or people. Our kayak is leisurely, allowing us time to take pictures, soak in the scenery, or sit and gaze in awe. In early evening we'll set up our tents on the shores of the fjord, really out in the middle of nowhere. Once camp is settled we'll go for a hike through the tundra, up to a viewpoint from where we can see the main part of the Fjord and the impressive Eqaloruutsit glacier. Overnight: Camping on the shores of the fjord. Approximate mileage: 5 miles Elevation gain: 900 ft. B, L, D
DAY 7
Today is much like yesterday, a leisurely kayak back down the bay, weaving our way around icebergs of all different sizes. Depending on ice, we may be able to get close to the area of Kangerdlua, which is blocked by ice year round. We'll return to Tasiusaq in the afternoon where we’ll exchange our kayaks for our hiking boots to hike the 5 miles back to the hostel at Qassiarsuk. Today is National Greenland Day and also Summer Solstice, and the day is long indeed. B, L, D
DAY 8
We'll get an early start today because it’s our last full day in Greenland and we still have a lot to pack in! This morning we cross to Narsarsuaq on our RIB boat for a hike through Flower Valley, which was formed during an old glacial retreat; the consequent glacial sedimentation has made it the perfect place for flowers to grow and thus its name. We will walk until we can see Kiattut glacier and the landscape around it, with a superb panoramic view of the ice sheet and its Nunataks. This is probably one of the most beautiful hikes in Greenland and a full day it is! Tonight our dinner will offer Greenlandic specialties: seal, whale, musk ox, and fish. Mileage: 8 – 10 miles Elevation gain 1200 feet. Overnight: Qassiarsuk Hostel B, L, D
DAY 9
This morning we'll learn more about Viking history and culture as we walk through Qassiarsuk, the village of about 50 inhabitants where the hostel is located. Eric the Red settled here in 985 and founded the village of Brattahlid, which was the capital of Viking Greenland. They were mostly sheep farmers then and though the breed has changed, the Inuit people who live here still are (this area, including Narsaq, has more sheep farms than any other part of Greenland). During our walk we'll visit some Brattahlid reconstructions, including a replica of the original chapel and longhouse, as well as the original ruins from Erik the Red.

Depending on flight schedules, we will visit the Qooroq Ice Fjord in late morning. Qooroq is one of the most active glaciers in southern Greenland and our boat will nose its way up this ice-choked fjord as far we can go. Surrounded by green leafy tundra and rocky-mountains, we are completely surrounded by this Polar landscape. As many icebergs as we've seen, this may still be the most amazing yet. We'll then return to Narsarsuaq by RIB boat. There will be some time to walk around the area and perhaps visit the local museum and cafe (dinner is not included tonight). Our flight to Keflavik will take us back over some of the area we've traveled through in the last week. And its amazing just how much more civilized Iceland looks after a week in Greenland. Overnight: Aurora Star Airport Hotel or similar. B, L
DAY 10
You are free to leave anytime today. Our hotel is near the airport; but if you don't have a flight until later in the afternoon, you might consider taking the bus back into Reykjavik or perhaps relaxing at the near by Blue Lagoon. B

*These are the unfiltered reviews of women who have been on this trip in answer to the question "Did this trip meet your expectations?". We take reviews very seriously and often tweak itineraries based on feedback. Please feel free to contact us about any questions you have.

Guides were fabulous, the scenery was beyond amazing. Icebergs, wild flowers, complete remoteness, boat rides...

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


The trip was wonderful. I really had no expectation as Greenland is a unique adventure. I thoroughly enjoyed the scenery, the guides and the company on the trip. Par for all AGC trips.

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


1. The location 2. The guides - both Eva and Anne Brewer were outstanding 3. Glacier camping 4. Combination of hiking, kayaking, and culture

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


So, I didn't know what to expect and unlike other trips just went not knowing what I would find. I was so taken by the stark, rugged beauty and unbelievable remoteness. Glacier camp, kayaking next to mammoth icebergs, listening to the ice rumble at night and incredible guides were all highlights.

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


Everything!!! . . . The land, the people, the guides, the history - truly an incredible experience

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


Hike to glacier and the kayaking among waterfalla

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


As a last minute participant on this trip, I had very little expectation. I was extremely amazed by the beauty of Greenland. Although for me the physical activity was rather mild the cultural information and the shear awe of the landscape far exceeded any possible expectation. I also truly enjoyed the dynamics of an all women’s group.

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/17/2019-6/26/2019


The guides made this trip....the enthusiasm and professionalism of Eva combined with the gentle knowledge and pride of our Greenalandic guide Berta were invaluable to the great experience

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


Loved the glacier walk. I thought it would be scary, but once you get used to the crampons, it was delightful (sunny day helped). Also really enjoyed the slow RIB ride out to see icebergs, where we were able to take some close up photos of the beautiful icebergs. It was great to be the first group of the season to travel to Greenland, because we had Glacier Camp and the hostels to ourselves,

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


Would have liked more hiking.

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


Greenland scenery, interesting experiences, fantastic local guide - Eva

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


Loved the kayaking and glacier walks. Really liked the hikes, I wish there had been more/ longer!

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


Camping in such a remote area; seeing glaciers and icebergs daily and up close; clean, clean air and drinking water from the streams; good times with a bunch of great women

Hiking and Kayaking in Greenland 6/15/2018-6/24/2018


  1. Where do we eat?

    There are no restaurants in Greenland (at least not in the area you'll be traveling). Meals will be prepared by the guides at Glacier camp and the hostel staff at the hostel.
  2. What dietary preferences or restrictions can you accommodate on this trip?

    The variety of foods, particularly fresh fruits and vegetables, are very limited in Greenland; while vegetarian and lactose diets can be accommodated, your options will be limited. We cannot guarantee a completely gluten-free diet and we cannot provide a kitchen guaranteed to be free of cross-contamination. If you are vegetarian or vegan, we ask that you bring some additional protein bars or sources; and if you are gluten-sensitive, please bring some gluten-free snacks. If you have severe allergies, Celiac disease and/or other significant dietary restrictions, please call the office before you register.
  3. I will be coming by myself. Do I need to pay a single supplement?

    Nope! The sleeping arrangements on this trip are varied and singles aren't available. On our other trips you only need to pay a single supplement if you want to guarantee that you have a room to yourself.
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