Geography of Greenland

Greenland is the largest island in the world and covers an area of 2,166,086 km². Greenland sits atop the Greenland plate, the Arctic part of the North American plate. In political terms Greenland is an autonomous constituent country within the Kingdom of Denmark. Aside from the Antarctica, the northern island is the least densely populated territory in the world. It is home to only 56.171 people. In Greenland the name of the capital is Nuuk, in Danish it is called Godthåb, 17,316 people live there, so it is the most populated town of the island. The common language used is Danish. The north coast of Greenland is 710 km away from the North Pole. Kulusuk village is located at the south-eastern coast. In summer there are several flights from Iceland. The town of Ilulissat is situated in the south-west of Greenland, where tourism has already become an important factor.

Climate in Greenland

Temperatures in the polar and sub-polar climate zone are far below zero, especially during the winter months. In the inland the lowest temperature amounts to -66.1 °C. At the west coast temperatures are milder due to the effects of the Greenland Current. In summer there are sometimes temperatures up to 25°C in Ilussat. There are hardly any windless areas in Greenland due to the inland ice formation. During the Medievel Warm Period rich vegetation developed along the south-western coast. That is why the Vikings, coming from Europe, called the island Greenland. Check out our feratel webcams for first impressions of the island and the current weather situation. feratel webcams offer live images of this unique countryside.

Population of Greenland

First settlements in Greenland were established by the Inuit about 4,500 years ago. 3,500 years later Thule people expanded to Greenland from the west, these Inuit are the ancestors of today's Greenland population. At the same time non-Inuit settlers immigrated from Iceland from the East. 88% of today's population descend from the original tribes and are called Greenlander by the locals. The law provides that every Danish citizen domiciled in Greenland is a legal Greenlander. If you are not sure where to spend your holidays in 2018, check out our feratel webcams offering live images from this charming area and make your hotel reservations.

[Translate to 01_EN:] Nordlichter in Groenland
[Translate to 01_EN:] Eisberge in Groenland

Economy and Tourism

Fishing industry, seal hunting, whales and walruses are the basic factors of Greenland's economy. Another important source of income is the tourism branch, which has become more and more important in the last few years. Agriculture is not a very strong factor in Greenland. Sisimiut Town located at the foot of Mount Nasaasaaq (784m) is very popular among tourists. They are charmed by the picturesque and colourful houses and traditional handicraft objects. The town offers the only open-air swimming pool of Greenland. It is situated 100 km north of the Arctic circle. In summer the surroundings of Ilulissat are the perfect starting points for hikes and boat trips. Arctic Circle Trail, a 170 km-long backcountry trail leads from Sisimiut to Kangerlussuaq. Along the trail you will find seven huts, providing free shelter to four persons. Hotels can be found at the southern part of the west coast, in Nuuk for instance.

Nature in Greenland

Only 18.9% of the island is not covered by ice. The gigantic ice sheet amounts to 3400 meters at its thickest point. If the entire ice were to melt, it would lead to a global sea level rise of 7.4 m. The south is characterised by a hilly high plateau reaching the coast in numerous fjords and bays. The plateau is surrounded by very high mountains. Greenland has a high diversity of fauna, but there are no amphibians or reptiles. Vegetation is rather scarce, but there are approximately 600 species of higher plant vegetation. 3,000 different types of moos, lichen and algae can be found. Some trees can only be seen in the most southern territory. Check out our feratel live webcams to discover the unique beauty of Greenland.