From Iceland — Go To Nuuk, Do Things…Because Why Would You Go To Nuuk And Not Do Things?

Go To Nuuk, Do Things…Because Why Would You Go To Nuuk And Not Do Things?

Published June 23, 2009

Photo by
Julia Staples

Nuuk is, admittedly, not the most aesthetically pleasing of towns. Whatever impression of charm is instilled by the quaint and colourful wooden homes dotting the rocky coast is partially negated the instant the colossal blocks of run-down apartments come into view. But that is Nuuk. Its infrastructure reflects its politics and history, and can even prove to be a point of interest for culturally or historically minded tourists to the area. But, if exploring the ghettos of Nuuk isn’t your cup of tea, rest assured that there are many other activities at your disposal while in town.


At the Greenlandic National Museum in the Colonial Harbour (Hans Egedevej 8) you can check out a range of traditional Greenlandic costumes, some set-ups of how traditional Greenlandic and Danish homes (in Greenland) looked back in the day, and the Qilakitsoq mummies.

The Nuuk Kunstmuseum (Kissarneqqortuunnguq 5) holds a collection of Greenlandic art that is reflective of the country’s culture and history. If you’re not a fan of historical art, this museum also exhibits the work of up and coming Greenlandic artists.

Katuaq – The Culture House (Imaneq 21) – is easily distinguishable in the city for its impressive architectural design, mimicking the wave of the northern lights. The impressive building houses the country’s only Greenlandic cinema, Greenland Art School, the Nordic Institute (NAPA), and a large auditorium for concerts, lectures and plays. Katuaq also has a café where you can chow down on a musk ox burger, if you’re so inclined.


Not far from the city centre, and conveniently accessible by bus number 3, is Quassussuaq (Lille Malene), with a peak of 443 m. In the winter months Quassussuaq is a ski hill, so it’s easy to spot the most reasonable hiking terrain based on where the ski-lift poles are located. The view from the top is exquisite, offering a panorama of the city and harbour to your left and Nuuk’s landmark mountain, Sermitsiaq, to your right, which stands an imposing 1210 m.


Everybody we spoke to sung the praises of Manhattan nightclub, so check that out (hopefully it will be busier than the Thursday night we stopped by). Other hot spots that the locals favour are Bryghuset, Daddy’s and Skyline at the Hotel Hans Egede. Expect to pay 62 to 92 Danish kronas for a beer. You may want to consider staying on the wagon for the duration of your trip.


AKA: Godthåb

» Location: 64°10′N 51°45′W

» Population: 17,834

» Settled: 2000 B.C.

» (claimed by the Danes in 1728)

» Economic Cornerstone: Fishing

» Where to Stay: Hotel Hans Egede

» Where to Eat: Godthåb Bryghus

» Where to Drink: Skybar

» Where to Dance: Manhattan

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