The fascinating natural phenomenon of Northern lights, or the aurora borealis, can be observed in Greenland in winter. While gazing up to the sky where the colourful lights magically dance around, standing on the white snow, the concept of infinity and timelessness seems to make sense.
The lights, mostly in white, yellow and green, are so mystery that it has created some myths: The Eskimo believed that it is possible to make a contact with the dead by whistling at the aurora borealis, and when the connection with the dead was established, there would be crackling sounds. Another says the aurora borealis is the dead playing football with a walrus skull.
The lights, mostly in white, yellow and green, are so mystery that it has created some myths.
The further north you go, the longer the period you have the midnight sun.
Imagine our traditional perception of time ceases and it lights for twenty-four hours a day. That exotic phenomenon, called midnight sun or white night, happens in many parts of Greenland during the summer. In the north of the Arctic Circle, you can enjoy the daylight for 24 hours for a period of time, which ranges from a few days to five months depending on the latitude.
The further north you go, the longer the period you have the midnight sun. In Qaanaaq in the far north of the country the white night lasts from the middle of April until the end of August, whilst in Ilulissat the sun is in the sky 24 hours a day from the end of May until the end of July.
ICE! (Ice Cap, Glacier, Iceberg, and Sea Ice)
Without ice, Greenland cannot be described. About 85% of the country is covered with ice cap or inland ice. (No wonder there are so many different words for ice in Greenlandic!) And here, you can fly, sail, drive, and walk to the ice cap and glaciers that are hundreds of thousands of years old. An ice cap can be as thick as 3 kilometres, and it makes up about 10% of the world’s fresh water reserves. The ice caps and glaciers do not stand still but flow and move. The ice from the glaciers breaks off to form icebergs.
While a glacier is a compact of snow, i.e. fresh water, sea ice is frozen seawater. Sea ice is formed at below -1.8°C and in different forms thanks to the waves. When the ice clumps together, it forms rounded sheets with upturned edges, called pancake ice, which becomes even bigger sheets of sea ice floating on the surface of the sea.
While a glacier is a compact of snow, i.e. fresh water, sea ice is frozen seawater.
Ilulissat Icefjord, listed to the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004
Ilulissat Icefjord, listed to the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004, offers outstanding natural beauty. Not only the gigantic ice wall but also the cracking sound of icebergs apart from Sermeq Kujalleq, one of the world’s most productive glaciers, overwhelm the audience.
Greenland is not all about ice. Hot spring is a natural phenomenon in Greenland, and South Greenland is most well-known for it. There is a some-1,000-year-old hot spring in Uunartoq, where crystal clear water springs at a constant temperature of 38°C, or 100.4°F, all year round. How about soaking in the hot spring, drinking vodka and enjoying the natural surroundings of colourful flowers as well as icebergs floating the fjord?
Hot spring is a natural phenomenon in Greenland.
There are about 20 species of whales along the coasts of Greenland.
The polar bear is the biggest predator in Greenland, but it is mostly seen in remote places of North and East Greenland. While you should not expect to see a polar bear during the visit, there are good chances of spotting whales, seals, musk oxen, Greenlandic reindeer as well as mountain hares and arctic foxes.
There are about 20 species of whales along the coasts of Greenland, including the humpback and the minke. Kangerlussuaq has one of the world’s biggest flocks of musk oxen. About 50 species of birds, including white-tailed eagles and ravens, are also observed in Greenland.
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