Experience the best of West Greenland, from Disco Bay to the south coast!

Best of West Greenland - Expedition Greenland 25
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After almost a month around the Disco Bay area, it’s time to think about the return home. We’re still far away from homeport Norway, but on this leg we’ll do a solid effort to cover quite a few of the sea miles back. Join this chance to see all the areas highlights on our Best of West Greenland!

All the highlights from Ilulissat to Narssarsuaq

What is most unique with this leg on our grand Greenland Expedition 2025, is the fact that we cover mostly all of the west coast. We start in Ilulissat, in Disco Bay, with a peak into the UNESCO World heritage ice fjord! To see the largest ice bergs of them all, and get used to navigating around these frozen giants. As they will follow us for our whole journey. Before we continue past the great sceneries of Sisimiut and the lively capitol region of Nuuk. And lastly head all the way to the southern coast around Qaqartoq and Eriksfjord.

Offshore sailing and marine life!

On this journey you will cover lot of seamiles and can expect quite many full days and nights at sea, also on offshore stretches. With wonderful experiences of quiet watches, away from cellphone coverage and the hustle of everyday life, with only the sea and horizon melting together in one mesmerising line! Sailing with us in SeilNorge is really involving. Which means that when we cover many miles, you will also learn a lot underway. About sails and trim, navigation and watch keeping and boat handling and -manoeuvring. All this in proper Arctic waters with whaleblows and ice berg around us, and midnight sun and beautiful light over the majestic scenery. This is an optimal opportunity for mile building, and offshore sail training!

Spend much time offshore and underway sailing, we do also have a fair chance of seeing quite some marine life. We can’t guarantee that you’ll tick off all the Arctic whale species – although the humpback whales are next to guaranteed. What we can guarantee you though, is that if you stay under deck and dont pay attention, you will not see anything! 🙂

Exploring and hiking the best of West Greenland

Although we have many miles to cover, we have almost two weeks to spend. So we’ll definitely spend some time inshore among the fjords, mountains and islands. Exploring these vast landscapes, looking for wildlife, hiking in untouched sceneries and trying our fishing luck! And with our useful expedition vessel and a small group on board, we can just choose the very best hikes on our way. Maybe we even get a chance to hike onto the vast inland ice cap if the conditions this year allow us!

Join as part of the crew on board

From SeilNorge we will be skipper, co-skipper and crew/guide onboard. All good sailors, at least one of whom will have solid sailing time and experience from similar expeditions. The guide and remaining crew on board also take responsibility for being polar bear watch when we are on land, where needed. En route for sail or motor, we include everyone on board in the sailing. We will mostly sail around the clock, and divides everyone into watch teams. We rotate between the duty shifts and go 4 hours on and 8 hours off. In addition, we include a couple of shorter shifts in the rotation in the afternoon, so that we also rotate the night shifts between the different watch teams.

Our expedition vessel, Valiente

It’s not just any sailboat we’re using on this trip, but our 70-foot expedition boat Valiente. She is a very stable and comfortable boat built in steel for sailing in arctic waters. The boat is well equipped and has large outdoor areas, and a wheelhouse and a saloon with a 360-degree view. Find pictures and more information about the vessel Valiente here.

The great Greenland expedition 2025

This expedition, like our other longer trips, is primarily a great voyage of discovery, but also an excellent opportunity to learn a lot about sailing and navigation. And not least using a boat as a starting point for discoveries and experiences on land. Are you ready for our big expedition from Greenland?

We recommend all participants stay a few extra days in Greenland, there is a lot to see and do here. We will send out tips and information about activities and accommodation to all participants. This is also part of our big Greenland expedition in 2025, where we will go all the way up to Disco Bay and back. If you want to join several of the stages up/down the west coast of Greenland, you are also most welcome!

Environment and sustainability

The Arctic is a vulnerable area under pressure from people and the climate. However in SeilNorge, we are concerned with taking care of the environment to the greatest extent possible. We believe that small boats with fewer people and little pollution and waste are much less harmful to the environment, climate and local wildlife, than larger boats and cruise ships. In the places we visit, we also try to clean up litter rather than leaving anything behind, so we leave a positive handprint. In Svalbard and Greenland, we follow AECO’s guidelines for encounters with wildlife, beach cleaning, cultural heritage sites and for visitors and operators in the Arctic. You can read more about AECO’s guidelines here.

This longer expedition to Greenland is a dream we’ve had for a long time. Last year we had to postpone - so in 2025 we set sail for new adventures! Many have already showed their interest for the different legs so this will be very exciting!

Emil, SeilNorge

Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome onboard in Ilulissat

We meet in the charming little fishing village of Ilulissat at 10.00 this first day. Firstly we will get to know the boat and the other expedition participants, and we walk through how life is onboard, safety information and basics about sailing and navigation. When we are all ready we head off for our adventure already this first afternoon and set sail south and past the famous UNOSCO World Hertaige site of the Ilulissatfjord. Where huge icebergs calf directly from the vast inland ice into the fjord.

Day 2: Full sailing day to Sisimiut

We wake up the first day at our adventure to an impressive scenery. From the anchorage at Ilimanaq we have a view straight across to the huge ice bergs, stranded on the seil of the Ilulissat ice fjord. From here in the inner parts of Disco Bay, we have around 24h to sail to Sisimiut. We get a good introduction to sailing, navigation and not least our night watch rotation.

Day 3: Activities in Sisimiut and night sail to Maniitsoq

Sisimiut is the next largest city in Greenland, and in our eyes a little gem in between spectacualr scenery. Here we can do a wide variety of activities, including kayak, SUP or biking. So we spend half day here and make use of our bodies or just stroll around the town. After dinner we sail further south towards Maniitsoq and the Eternity Fjord.

Day 4-5: Maniitsoq and the Eternity Fjord.

Maniitsoq with its Eternity Fjord, is said to have the most scenic mountains of the whole West Greenland coast. Where glacier tumble down steed mountain sides into the greenish fjord. So we need to explore this stunning fjord landscape for a day before we set sail further south. Maybe some want to climb a mountain here, try our fishing luck or just sail around the icebergs.

Day 6: Sailing to Nuuk

We’re getting closer to the capitol region now, and depending on the weather lookouts we probably start early this morning to reach Nuuk be the evening. After quite a few days of sailing, we take a little pit-stop and rest here in Nuuk. The worlds smallest capitol. Maybe we find ourself a nice sailors bar for tonight?

Day 7: Exploring the capitol region around Nuuk

Nuuk is in itself a charming little capitol. With museums and history, restaurants and cafés and a varied cultural scene. Not to forget the city mountains surrounding it, and the peaks in the Nuuk Fjord and Kobbefjord.
In other words, plenty of activities for us to spend the full day here.
For the evening we sail out of the port and find a nice anchorage for the night.

Day 8-9: Offshore sailing to Austerbygd and Qaqartoq

This will be the longest sailing leg of our journey. Depending on wind and conditions of course, but lasting around 48h. As we cover the distance from the Nuuk area, and all the way south to the area the vikings called Asterbygd when they was settling in Greenland 1000 years ago. We reach for the area around Qaqartoq for our first landing down here in the south.

Day 10: Qaqartoq and Hvalsey Church

We clearly see that we have gotten further south during this leg. The nights are become darker as we get further south of the polar circle, and the vegetation become more lush and plentiful around the beach inside the fjords here. We look around in Qaqartoq and the area around today. Here we also want to sail a little further into the fjord to visit the best preserved viking ruins of all Greenland. At the ruins at Hvalsey Church.

Day 11-12: Exploring Eiriksfjord, with the inland ice and glacier fronts

The last days we want to spend around the Eiriksfjord and natural beauty here in the south. We hike, fish and look for wildlife both on land and in the sea. As we work our way into the bottom of Eiriksfjord. Here we find Brattahild, the old farm where Eirik Raude, the first viking settler that discovered Greenland, had his farm. Around us is in here is the huge inland ice sheltering us from all sides, and we hope to get some good views of it. Maybe we even find a place to hike onto the world second larges ice cap? The glaciers here also reach all the way down to the fjord and we explore some of the huge glacier fronts in the area!

Day 13: Bye for now in Narsarsuaq

The adventure unfortunately comes to an end, as we anchor outside Narsarssuaq. Where our dinghy is the airport express.
We clean, wash and tidy our way out of the boat and say goodbye at 10.00 this last morning. Thanks for a wonderful shared experience!

Changes to the program

The program should be seen as a rough itinerary that we can adapt to the weather and conditions. We also reserve the right to change and improve our itineraries. We will have a dinghy for beach trips and small expeditions, fishing gear for cod, and gear to hike or make bonfires on the beach on all our trips – we are ready for adventure! Are you?

What is included?

  • A trip experience with sailboat – experienced skipper with local knowledge on board
  • Co-skipper and crew/guide on board
  • All food we eat on board during the trip
  • Our Comfort Package, which consists of accommodation onboard in a shared double cabin (bunk or double bed) with a ready-made bed (warm and nice duvets and pillows!)
  • An environmentally friendly, local, sustainable, unique, exotic and exclusive Norwegian adventure holiday
  • A shared experience and friendship with like-minded adventurers from around the world
  • A lot of time outdoors – raw and honest nature experiences
  • Use of our shared equipment: dinghies, kayaks, fishing equipment, etc. when possible
  • All boat-related costs such as diesel, propane and harbor fees
  • Personal safety equipment; Helly Hansen inflatable lifejacket
  • Survival suit and Search and Rescue (SAR) Insurance for everyone onboard
  • Instruction, advice, guidance and practical training in boating and sailing

What is not included?

  • Travel to and from the start/end location
  • Optional meals at a cafes/restaurants during the trip
  • Entrance to galleries, museums, or other alternative activities that you/we may come up with
  • Rental of equipment and/or activities from external operators, ex. paddling, glacier hiking or surfing where possible
  • Drinks such as wine, beer or exclusive apple juice and other luxuries (yes, we drink beer and wine on board, bring your own)
  • Travel insurance and/or cancellation insurance – (up to you, but recommended!)

Important info

Departure and arrival

This trip start in Ilulissat and ends in Narsarsuaq, Greenland.

You find more information on travel, equipment and other tips under Practical info.

Deposit and payment

You only pay a deposit (NOK 6000) upon registration, the remainder of the payment is due 60 days prior to departure.

Safety and risk onboard

We are all about people, and so we also take safety very seriously. On our trips we practice sail- and boat handling also for safety, and we spend time going through various situations that can arise at sea, how to handle them and how to avoid them.

Onboard a boat everyone must know what to do in critical situations and in the event of an emergency. Our philosophy is that partaking and participation builds safety. It is important for the safety of the whole boat that you are a participant onboard, not just a passenger.

Therefore all our trips are to be considered sailing courses in addition to being great  holidays and adventures: You are trained to make up the crew onboard and so we build a capable team onboard.

Feel free to contact us for a chat about safety and risk on our adventures.

Level of the trip

No sailing experience? No problem! Our sailing adventures welcome both novices and seasoned sailors for an inclusive and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re new to sailing or a salty sea dog, our trips cater to all levels.

We aim to transform beginners into sailors quickly while offering experienced participants greater responsibilities and challenges. Our mainland sailing journeys involve 44-50 feet boats navigating coastal and protected waters, occasionally crossing open stretches for excitement. Route adjustments based on weather and conditions ensure a safe and adaptable voyage.

Trips are not overly strenuous; with rotating positions, participants can balance sailing and relaxation. Active engagement minimizes seasickness, and if it occurs, it passes swiftly. Weather, however, is unpredictable, with the potential for stronger winds and various conditions in northern Norway and the Arctic, making each trip a true sailing adventure. Be prepared for calm winds and rough weather—embracing the elements for an unforgettable experience.

What we expect from you

Our trips require a little effort from you who are joining – everyone on board must be ready to contribute and to give of themselves also socially; the more you open up, share and interest yourself in the others onboard, the more enjoyable it gets. 

When you’re sailing with us you are invited to take part in the running of the ship and all that comes with it. You will be sailing, docking, navigating, looking out for whales and icebergs, but also making food, serving others, doing dishes and helping clean the boat during the trip, and contributing in other ways when needed. Onboard we are all in the same boat and when all help out, the ship is most happy. 

Our experience is that doing things together with others out in nature, and not least cooperating and doing activities with new people and different personalities than you might have around you normally, is what creates the best, most interesting and memorable moments and stories:)

Equipment and packing

As with all activities, there is plenty of special equipment and clothing for sailing. If you don’t have any of this, you will get very far with normal hiking/outdoor equipment. You do not need to buy a lot of new equipment to join our trips. Use what you have, borrow what you need from a friend, purchase used equipment, and if you have to invest in new equipment – buy quality items that will last! What you need is something waterproof and windproof on the outside, and layered warm clothing underneath.

Some jackets may not be waterproof “enough”, or might not perform too well in salt water, so you can consider a set of oilskin for the wettest days (available for rent or purchase onboard). A pair of higher rubber boots for disembarking from the dinghy is very good to have, as well as indoor shoes below deck. Out at sea and in the Arctic it can be cold even in summer, so bring both swimwear and plenty of warm clothes. Well before departure, we will send you a detailed recommended packing list.

Read more and see our packing tips here:

PS: In a sailboat, you pack in a bag or sack, not in a rigid suitcase. 🙂

Food & cooking onboard

On our trips, you will be part of the crew onboard and get the chance to participate in all tasks for the operation of the boat. This includes cooking and preparing food – everyone take turns in the galley! Skippers and crew assist as much as they can along the way.

We have great menus with tasty, healthy and “boat-friendly” food, and for each trip we order provisions for all meals onboard. If you have allergies or preferences, let us know in the registration form and we will take that into account as best as we can. You are also most welcome to bring any special food or drink with you. Why not bring some specialities from your country or region for the boat to enjoy? 

During a weeklong trip we often sail by a good restaurant or two where we can have dinner on land. Some places we need to pre-book and we will then need to choose a menu before we arrive. More about all of this when you come onboard!

Life onboard & accommodation

Life on a sailboat is super social and fun, but it might feel a bit intimate at first. No worries though, that vibe usually fades after the first hour. Everyone chips in to run the boat, and we’re all part of the crew, which means quick bonding.

We’re keen to get to know you and hope you’ll connect with the rest of the crew. It takes some patience, generosity, and an open mind to thrive, but soon you’ll be focused on making new friends and enjoying raw nature experiences once sea life feels like home.

Sleeping arrangements in shared cabins with double or bunk beds can be a bit of a puzzle, but we’re pretty good at figuring it out. Let us know if you have preferences. You’re on your own for land accommodations before or after the trip.

The boat provides heating and good food, but fresh water isn’t always abundant. Water conservation means not showering every day, but when near freshwater sources, we make the most of it. But nothing beats a morning sea swim for that fresh feeling.

Safety and risk on our expeditions

As mentioned, we take safety very seriously. Even more so on our expeditions, as we then explore really remote waters and terrain, cross open oceans and sail into areas with additional risk factors such as sea ice or poor charts and uncharted waters. We deal with this by having an extra focus on the situations we may encounter among everyone onboard, for each expedition. We sail in these remote areas only in the most optimal seasons; and we use larger and very solid boats for our expeditions. Which are both equipped and sized to cope with this type of expedition trips and waters very well.

We are absolutely certain that sailing is the safest and most accessible way to visit these very inaccessible places we go on our expeditions. However, all sailing in general, and particularly sailing in arctic regions and over open seas, involves a certain risk that you must be aware of when joining.

Level of the expedition

Some have their first sailing experience ever, joining us on an ocean crossing! Please note that our expeditions require a certain physical health and mobility level.

The boats we sail on our expeditions are larger, robust and sit well in the sea. On our sailing expeditions we both sail in more coastal, sheltered waters, and cross open stretches of waters. On some of our expeditions even ocean crossings over several days at sea. An incredibly wonderful and special experience!

Weather dictates our journey, and we adapt each expedition’s program accordingly, often allowing extra days for flexibility in assessing and choosing optimal weather windows. Despite planning and preparations, we can’t control the weather, so be prepared for various conditions. The proximity to nature’s forces on such expeditions is a rare and rewarding experience.

On expeditions, we sail with many participants, forming watch teams for a solid onboard team spirit. Rotating watches around the clock ensures active involvement without overwhelming fatigue.

As everyone participates actively during the week or more onboard, seasickness is rare. If you anticipate seasickness, consider bringing remedies, such as seasickness plasters, often effective for longer expeditions. Consult your doctor for advice on seasickness and any necessary medications. Feel free to ask us about seasickness as well.

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