Greenland, the world’s largest island, captivates travelers with its raw natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. Among its many wonders are several UNESCO World Heritage sites, which showcase the island’s unique landscapes and history. This article delves into the highlights of Greenland’s UNESCO treasures and answers frequently asked questions to help you plan an unforgettable adventure.

The Ilulissat Icefjord: A Frozen Marvel

The Ilulissat Icefjord, located on the west coast of Greenland, is one of the island’s most famous natural attractions. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2004, the icefjord is renowned for its enormous icebergs calving from the Sermeq Kujalleq glacier, one of the fastest and most active glaciers in the world.

Southern Greenland: Kujataa – A Norse and Inuit Farming Landscape

In 2017, the Kujataa area in Southern Greenland was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. This region showcases the cultural landscape of Norse Greenlanders and later Inuit farming communities, illustrating the adaptation of farming practices to the Arctic environment.

50 FAQs about Greenland and Its UNESCO World Heritage Sites

  1. What is the Ilulissat Icefjord?
    The Ilulissat Icefjord is a stunning fjord filled with icebergs calved from the Sermeq Kujalleq glacier, located near the town of Ilulissat.
  2. Why is the Ilulissat Icefjord a UNESCO World Heritage site?
    It is recognized for its natural beauty and its importance in understanding climate change and glaciology.
  3. Where is the Ilulissat Icefjord located?
    On the west coast of Greenland, near the town of Ilulissat.
  4. What is Kujataa?
    Kujataa is a cultural landscape in Southern Greenland that includes the ruins of Norse farms and Inuit agricultural sites.
  5. Why was Kujataa designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site?
    For its historical significance in showcasing Norse and Inuit adaptation to the Arctic environment.
  6. What can you see in Kujataa?
    Ruins of Norse farms, Inuit agricultural fields, and traditional settlements.
  7. How do you get to the Ilulissat Icefjord?
    Via flights to Ilulissat Airport, followed by local transport or guided tours.
  8. When is the best time to visit the Ilulissat Icefjord?
    Summer (June to August) for milder weather and better accessibility.
  9. Can you see the Northern Lights in Greenland?
    Yes, especially in winter (September to April).
  10. What activities can you do at the Ilulissat Icefjord?
    Hiking, boat tours, kayaking, and helicopter tours.
  11. Is there accommodation near the Ilulissat Icefjord?
    Yes, there are hotels, guesthouses, and hostels in Ilulissat.
  12. What is the climate like in Greenland?
    Arctic climate with cold winters and cool summers.
  13. What wildlife can you see in Greenland?
    Whales, seals, reindeer, musk oxen, Arctic foxes, and various bird species.
  14. Is Greenland part of the Kingdom of Denmark?
    Yes, it is an autonomous territory within the Kingdom of Denmark.
  15. Do I need a visa to visit Greenland?
    It depends on your nationality; check with the Danish consulate.
  16. What is the population of Greenland?
    Approximately 56,000 people.
  17. What languages are spoken in Greenland?
    Greenlandic (Kalaallisut) and Danish; English is also commonly spoken.
  18. Can you see glaciers in Greenland?
    Yes, glaciers are a prominent feature of Greenland’s landscape.
  19. What is the capital of Greenland?
    Nuuk.
  20. How do you get around Greenland?
    By air (domestic flights) and sea (boats and ferries).
  21. What is the currency in Greenland?
    Danish Krone (DKK).
  22. Is Greenland safe for travelers?
    Yes, but it’s important to be prepared for harsh weather conditions.
  23. What traditional food can you try in Greenland?
    Dishes often include fish, seafood, and game meats like reindeer and musk ox.
  24. What cultural experiences are available in Greenland?
    Visiting local museums, Inuit cultural centers, and participating in traditional activities like dog sledding.
  25. What is the Arctic Circle Trail?
    A popular long-distance hiking trail in Greenland.
  26. Are there guided tours available in Greenland?
    Yes, numerous companies offer guided tours for various activities.
  27. What is the Midnight Sun?
    A natural phenomenon where the sun remains visible at midnight during the summer months.
  28. Can you camp in Greenland?
    Yes, but it’s recommended to camp in designated areas and be well-prepared.
  29. What is the main airport in Greenland?
    Kangerlussuaq Airport.
  30. Can you see polar bears in Greenland?
    Polar bears are present, but sightings are rare and typically occur in the far north.
  31. What is the traditional clothing in Greenland?
    Inuit clothing often made from animal skins and fur, designed for warmth.
  32. What is the Greenlandic word for iceberg?
    “Sermersuaq.”
  33. Is internet access available in Greenland?
    Yes, but it can be limited in remote areas.
  34. What are the main industries in Greenland?
    Fishing, tourism, and mining.
  35. Are there any UNESCO cultural sites in Greenland?
    Yes, Kujataa in Southern Greenland is a cultural site.
  36. What is the significance of Norse ruins in Greenland?
    They provide insight into the early Norse settlements and their adaptation to the Arctic environment.
  37. Can you visit the Norse ruins in Kujataa?
    Yes, they are accessible to visitors.
  38. What is the largest town in Greenland?
    Nuuk.
  39. What is the traditional Greenlandic sport?
    Kayaking and dog sledding are traditional activities.
  40. Is there a Greenlandic National Day?
    Yes, it is celebrated on June 21st.
  41. What is the Greenlandic flag like?
    A red and white design with a circle symbolizing the sun setting over the horizon.
  42. How long is the flight to Greenland from Denmark?
    Approximately 4-5 hours.
  43. Are there any festivals in Greenland?
    Yes, including the Nuuk Snow Festival and the National Day celebrations.
  44. Can you drink tap water in Greenland?
    Yes, tap water is generally safe to drink.
  45. What is the Greenlandic word for Greenland?
    “Kalaallit Nunaat,” meaning “Land of the Greenlanders.”
  46. Is tipping customary in Greenland?
    Tipping is not customary but appreciated for good service.
  47. What types of souvenirs can you buy in Greenland?
    Handcrafted items, Inuit art, and traditional clothing.
  48. Are credit cards widely accepted in Greenland?
    Yes, especially in larger towns.
  49. What are some must-try experiences in Greenland?
    Exploring the icefjords, hiking the Arctic Circle Trail, and experiencing the Northern Lights.
  50. Why should you visit Greenland?
    For its unparalleled natural beauty, unique cultural experiences, and the adventure of exploring one of the world’s most remote destinations.

Greenland’s UNESCO World Heritage sites offer a glimpse into the island’s remarkable natural and cultural heritage. Whether you’re marveling at the massive icebergs of Ilulissat or exploring the ancient farming landscapes of Kujataa, Greenland promises a travel experience like no other.