A true expedition on Southwest Greenland to Nuuk!

Southwest Greenland to Nuuk - Expedition Greenland 25
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This week we are going to spend around the fjords and inshore waters of the greenlandic southwest coast. With hiking, fishing, iceberg watching, sailing and also time for relaxing and contemplation in this huge landscape. We will also try to get to know some locals and more about their inuit heritage and traditions. Join us on our adventure in southwest Greenland to Nuuk.

From Narsarsuaq to Nuuk

This leg starts in the airport village of Narsarsuaq all the way at the end of Eriksfjord. As we start our trip here, the first thing that will meet us is the 1000m peaks raising straight up from the fjord. Capped with the greenlandic inland ice, the worlds second largest ice cap. We will sail mostly on sheltered inland waters. Though we will also spend a few of the nights underway, sailing further off the coast during the light hours of the polar night. To cover some of the unique miles we will cover on this trip.

Inuit culture and the capitol region

On this leg we also want to learn more about the inuit culture and culture. We will stop by some of the smal fishing and hunting villages we pass along the way, and see if we can make some new friends. Among the villages we pass on this leg is; Narsaq, Arsuk, Paamiut and Qeqertarsuatsiaat. We may also give the abandoned village of Kangerluarsoruseq (Foeringehavn) a visit before we reach the worlds smallest capitol, Nuuk.

Mountain hikes and ice cap spotting!

On this leg we hope to see the inland ice from different angels, and in different forms. Maybe even climb on top of it. Though we have to be carefull not hitting any of the numerous icebergs in these waters while navigating up the coast. The landscape her, as always in Greenland, is spectacular. And for those that want to join, we will spend a day or two climbing some of the peaks we pass by on one of our secluded anchorages.

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.

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. For pictures and more information about the vessel Valiente, see this link.

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 Narsarsuaq

We meet in Narssarsuaq at 16.00 this first day. Where the dinghy is our airport express. Here we get to know each other and the boat, go through safety routines on board and the plan for the leg. When our expedition ship is seaworthy, we plan to leave for a little sail already this first evening. We will become a close-knit team and spend the evening practicing various maneuvers and procedures. We anchor here in the inner part of Eriksfjord for the night.

Day 2: Brattahild, the inland ice and Eriksfjord

We wake up the first day at our adventure to a impressive scenery. With 1000m peaks raising straight from lush grassy hills along the fjord dotted with icebergs. Today we can both visit the old norse settlement of Brattahild, or we can climb one of the nearby peaks and get a great veiw to the ice cap. For the evening we sail out of Eriksfjord.

Day 3: Calving glaciers in Bredefjord and sail to Arsuk

On our way out to the coast, we sail passed Narsaq and up into Bredefjord. This fjord can some years be almost not possible to navigate, as there can be seaice here far into summer. In addition to possible seaice, this fjord has alot of glacier fronts of the huge inland ice calving straight down into the fjord. We sail into one of these fjordarms if possible, to witnes the magnitude of these glacier fronts with our own eyes.

Day 4: Hiking in Arsuk and offshore sail in the night

We wake up the in cute village of Arsuk laying on the foot of the mountain Kungnait. We have the opportunity today to climb this mountain at 1396masl. When we have streched our sea legs, we cast off out offshore of the coast and head further north.

Day 5-6: Offshore towards Nuuk!

Depending on the weather we plan to spend the next days with a few full 24h days up the coast. We sail further out offshore for these longer passages to be more effective and for easier navigation. Though we might run into more fog further offshore. We pass by the villages of Paamiut, Qeqertarsuatsiaat and Foeringehavn on the way, and will probably stop by a few of these places and take in the distinct atmosphere.

Day 7: Vesterbygd and Kobbefjord en route to Nuuk

We should have reached almost all the way to Nuuk by now. This fjord area inside of Nuuk is actually the second place the norse had their settlement in Greenland 1000 years ago. Before we dock in Nuuk, we may have time for a hike around the magnificent scenery in Kobbefjord, just east of Nuuk. We clean and tidy the boat ready and celebrate a great adventure with eating in the charmin city of Nuuk this last evening!

Day 8: Bye for now, in the worlds smalest capitol Nuuk

Nuuk is a vibrant little city, with a great cultural scene, local restaurants mixed with international flavours and influences and fun bars. This leg of the expedition have come to an end. And we will pack together our stuff, do the last cleaning and say goodbye latest at 10.00 this morning. Breakfast at one of the cozy cafes here in Nuuk is a great option!
Thanks for a wonderfull 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 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 Narsarsuaq, and end in Nuuk, Greenland.

You find more information about the travel, equipment and packing under Practical information

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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