Forget battling the crowds of Italy or sweltering in Spain. Greenland is having a moment.

Last year, I was lucky enough to set foot on the emerald green grass of Greenland. That’s right, despite all the jokes about Greenland being the icy one, and Iceland being the green one, there are actually many places that are lush with Arctic meadows on this huge Danish territory off the western coast of mainland Europe.

As part of a cruise traversing the Northwest Passage (that’s Iceland to Alaska) I made landfall on Greenland twice: once in the town of Sisimiut and again in Ilulissat. Greenland is an island of wild, clean beauty: meadows full of dancing wildflowers, oceans bobbing with icebergs, proud Inuit communities with their narrow-eyed husky dogs and crayon-coloured villages.

In summer, at least in the southern parts of the island, it’s cold but not freezing; you can easily go for brisk treks wearing little more than a light thermal outer layer. Would I rather spend a Euro summer in this unspoilt wilderness? Or line up with 10,000 of my best friends to get a photo in front of the Trevi Fountain or Buckingham Palace? It’s a no brainer.

And it turns out now is the best time to visit Greenland, as it’s almost certainly about to get swept up in a big tourism boom. The country is about to open three new airports within the next year or so: one in the capital of Nuuk, one in Ilulissat and one in Qaqortog, and there’ll be direct flights from North America and various ports in Europe. The big one, in Nuuk, is set to open as early as November of this year.

But beyond accessibility, why should Greenland be on your must-visit list? Here are a few ideas for the vision board:

 

You can dine at the world’s most remote fine dining restaurant

The two Michelin starred Restaurant KOKS on the shores of the UNESCO World Heritage Ilulissat Icefjord, is considered one of the most rugged and remote restaurants on the planet. The tiny team cooks with reindeer, muskox, and wild-caught trout. You can watch a documentary about this unlikely fine diner here. It’s here for a good time, not a long time; the restaurant has ongoing plans to relocated to the Faroe Islands, so get a booking in while you can.

 

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Pic: Supplied

 

It has wild, rugged, pristine landscape

Some of my most treasured photos from Greenland involve me trekking along rocky hikes with meadow-fresh grass beneath my feet and icebergs on the horizon. Further north, when you get into the true wilderness, it’s all about rugged fjords, more primal and pristine than you’ll find anywhere on earth. Aurora Expeditions will lead several 2025 journeys that include Greenland on their itineraries. On their voyages, you can take helicopter rides over the Jakobshavn Glacier, or marvel at the ancient geology of Disko Island off the island’s west coast. “Icebergs in all shapes and colours, and massive glaciers running down to the fjords from the Inland Ice Cap are a highlight of every voyage in Greenland,” says  Bettina Ovgaard, Arctic Guide and regional expert. “I’ve never sat still staring at the horizon as much as I did in Greenland,” says photographer Simon Bajada.

 

You’ll try food you’ve never eaten before

Seal. Minke whale (pictured above). Muskox. Arctic char. Lingonberries. All these foods form the backbone of the Inuit diet. I tried them all in Sisimiut. Can’t say I’m in a wild rush to eat minke whale again (it’s thick, oily and fishy, I’ll just say that) but the wild berries of this region are delicious, as is the fish. At most towns, there are opportunities to try the local delicacies.

 

The human history here is long, varied and fascinating

Greenland is full of cultural artefacts including ancient human settlements and 4,000 years of human history – be that Inuit cultures, Norse dwellings and trappers’ huts, as well as epic tales of adventure and exploration, says Aurora Expeditions’ Bettina Ovgaard. As part of their August 2025 ‘Southern Greenland, On the Trail of the Vikings’ expedition (from Reykjavik, Iceland to Toronto, Canada), guests will visit the National Museum in Nuuk, see the fascinating exhibit of the Qilakitsoq mummies, dating back 545 years. On July’s Jewels of the Arctic expedition (between Oslo and Reykjavik and including East Greenland, Iceland and Svalbard), a highlight is a visit to Ittoqqortoormiit, one of the world’s remotest Inuit settlements.

 

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Pic: Supplied

 

Um…polar bears!

Greenland polar bears can be shyer than their Svalbard cousins, but they are very much alive and active on the island.

“The polar bear is a treat to behold in its natural environment, elusive, yet with a massive presence if you are lucky to spot one,” says Ovgaard. “You may also see whales, seals resting on ice floes, and land mammals like musk ox and reindeer. Bird life also thrives here.” Simon Bajada watched a pilot whale hunt and fish from the vantage point of his cabin in Ilulissat. And for me, one of the loveliest creatures to behold were the noble Greenland dogs (that is their official species name) who lounge around on their owners’ porches and meadows, or howl in unison to signal their readiness for dinner.

 

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