In Greenland whale watching can be enjoyed from the streets or even from your hotel room. During the late summer and early autumn whales swim close to the coast and are sometimes seen in the harbours. But of course the best way to spot these huge mammals is at sea. Whale-watching tours are offered in several towns in Greenland. When you sail along the coast on a passenger ship, the captain will often notify you when whales are close.
There are many different species of whales in Greenlandic waters including the two largest, the blue whale and the fin whale. Humpback whales, minke whales, narwhales, beluga or white whales, sperm whales, pilot whales and Greenland whales are among the other species here.
At sea you’ll also see seals. An estimated two million seals live in Greenlandic waters. Walruses are primarily seen in north and east Greenland.
Your first encounter with large animals in Greenland usually takes place very soon after arrival. More than 3,000 musk oxen live in the area around Kangerlussuaq Airport and some of them can be seen in the immediate surroundings. A one-hour guided tour of the area will most likely include an encounter with these large, sedate animals.
Reindeer live all over the ice-free parts of Greenland, and you may be lucky to see a herd. Reindeer hide is very insulating, and if you decide to go on a dog-sledge tour you will have the chance to dress in clothes made from reindeer hide.
Polar bears live predominantly in north and east Greenland but also come to south Greenland, drifting on the field ice. Encounters with polar bears are extremely rare except in north and east Greenland and no precautions are necessary outside these regions.
The northeastern part of Greenland is a protected national park. With a size larger than England and France put together, it’s the largest national park in the world. Polar bears, walruses, reindeer, musk oxen and a growing stock of wolves live here along with smaller animals and many bird species.