In the heart of Greenland

Disko Bay Round - Expedition Greenland 2025

Welcome onboard our expedition Disko Bay Round; in the heart of West Greenland! We spend a week around mighty peaks, vast landscapes, towering ice bergs and not least a bustling wildlife. Underway we’ll get off the beaten track, go onshore for hikes and beach parties, visit remote villages and just enjoy the greatness of these surroundings.

From Ilulissat around Disko Bay

We start and end this expedition in Ilulissat. This vibrant adventure hub of West Greenland. Reknown for the UNESCO World Heritage area Ilulissatfjord. Where the calving glacier Sermeq Kujalleq fills the fjord with the world’s largest icebergs straight from the vast inland ice sheet. From here we work our way north towards the next fjord basin; Uummannaq Fjord. We will circumnavigate the Disko Island, where also Amundsen was docking on his famous journey conquering the North-West Passage.

We will spend most of our time this week inshore, among the fjords, mountains and islands here. But we will for a few shorter stretches venture a little further offshore and probably sail through some of the nights. Having the wheelhouse filled with the midnight sun on our night watches; a great experience in itself!

Marine wildlife and inuit villages

The waters of Disko Bay is known for its thriving and rich marine ecosystems. All the runout from land and the glacier fronts bring with it lots of minerals and nutrients for plancton and algee, which in turn support the rest of the ecosystem. One of the larger species on the top of the food chain, we will see here, is the humpback whale. Where they blow and dive among floating icebergs. When we are this far north, we may even be able to spot a pod of Narwhales, even though they are very rare here in summer. We’ll find the local hunters and ask for their advice!

On our way we will also pass along some smal cozy villages. Where colourful houses cling onto the mountain sides among rocky slopes on the blue seafront. Some of the villages on this leg include Uummannaq and Qeqertarsuaq. Where we dock, look around and hope to get some new friends and learn about the local inuit heritage and traditions. The trip will also include secluded anchorages in beautiful landscapes with bonfires on the beach. And mountain hikes with incredible views from the inland ice cap in the east, to the Baffin Bay to our west.

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 Disko 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 is a dream we’ve had for a long time and finally the time is here; in 2025 we set sail for new adventures and expeditions to Greenland! We know there are a lot of adventures out there, waiting to explore the wonders of Greenland with us!

Emil, founder SeilNorge

Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome on board in Ilulissat

We meet in the habour in Ilulissat at 16.00 this first day. To start us off, we will get to know the boat and the other expedition participants. We walk through how life is on board, safety information and basics about sailing and navigation. When we are all ready we hoist sails for our adventure already this first afternoon and sail into the midnight sun!

Day 2: Sailing day to Uummannaq Fjord

We spend the first night getting into our watch rotation. And our first day getting to know the vessel well, and learning more about sailing. As we make our way north towards the next fjord basin. For the night we arrive in the Uummannaq fjord, where we find a suitable anchorage for the night.

Day 3-4: Uummannaq - sea cliffs and caves, hiking and exploration

We spend these next few days around the Uummannaq area. Where also the village of Uummannaq is a very pretty place. Situated just below towering rocky peaks reaching more than 1000m to the sky! We have also heard rumours about some great sea cliffs and even caves on an island in this fjord. So we need to spend our exploration days well!

Day 5: Whale watching around Disko Island

Further on our adventure we will sail south, on the outside of Disko Island. The waters here are rich and we may spot lots of different marine life underway. Seals and whales in the sea, and maybe musk oxen and polar foxes on land! Keep your eyes open and course steady!

Day 6: Qeqertarsuaq

The main port on Disko Island lay on the south side. In a nice sheltered bay surrounded by mountains, as all villages here in Greenland. We stop here, rest, hike and explore what the little town has to offer. This is also where Roald Amundsen was stopping with his expedition vessel Gjøa. As their last stop in Greenland before they headed towards the Northwest Passage.

Day 7: Back towards Illulissat and the ice fjord

We sail back into Disko Bay to complete our circut, again at the UNESCO World Heritage Ilulissat Ice Fjord. This fjord itself is around 1000m deep, and the huge inland ice is calving enormous ice bergs into this fjord. At the entrance of this fjord though, it’s only a few hundred meters deep. Which make all the huge ice bergs ground and form a plug. So this whole fjord is packed with ice bergs, large as skyscrapers. A super impressive sight. For the evening we anchor at Ilimanaq, south of the ice fjord. Have dinner by the bonfire on the beach and enjoy!

Day 8: Bye for now, in Ilulissat

Last day we spend sailing around the huge ice bergs at the entrance of the ice fjord. Before we head back towards the port of Ilulissat. Where we pack together our stuff together, clean and tidy the boat and say goodbye by 16.00 this last afternoon. Thanks for a wonderful experience together!

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 on board 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 if available: dinghies, kayaks, fishing equipment, etc.
  • 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 on board
  • 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. kayak, 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 starts and ends in Ilulissat, 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 on board

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.

On board 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 on board, 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 on board and so we build a capable team on board.

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 on board, 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. On board 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 on board). 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 on board

On our trips, you will be part of the crew on board 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 on board. 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 on board!

Life on board & 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 on board, 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 on board team spirit. Rotating watches around the clock ensures active involvement without overwhelming fatigue.

As everyone participates actively during the week or more on board, 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.

Any questions? Need travel tips? Practical information?


You'll probably find the answer here, in our collection of questions and answers and practical information.

Practical information →