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To the Lands of the Sagas – Greenland and Iceland
Summer 2011

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Panorama of Igaliku, Greenland Bookmark and Share

Igaliku is the most pleasant place we visited in Greenland.
It’s a small farmer village with only 60 permanent residents.
Yet, we met quite a few Danish and Greenlanders that had summer houses there.

A house in the town of Igaliku, Greenland

Access to Igaliku is easy from Narsarsuaq: we took a boat to Itilleq and then walked four kilometres to Igaliku.

Igaliku has its own harbour but it’s on another fjord, so the easiest way to reach this place is via Itilleq.

Where the Igaliku children play

We found a spot to set our tent and we made Igaliku our base for a few days.
We explored the plateau mountains around and visited the ancient ruins of Garðar.

But Igaliku itself is an idyllic place. The village is surrounded by mountains, facing the sea, with a lonely iceberg floating in the middle of the fjord.

Bygdehotel, the hotel of Igaliku, Greenland

Travellers have a few accommodation options. There’s a small youth hostel providing budget and cosy accommodation. It’s located on a green house near the port.

There is also the Bygdehotel, a hotel that can be booked through Blue Ice travel agency.
It has classic rooms but also a few individual cabins in red wood, which looked quite nice.

The water well in Igaliku in Greenland

The hotel is also the Cafeteria and a good place to dine in the evening.

We had to book ahead and order our dinner in the morning or the day before, so the housekeeper knows for how many people she has to cook.

The fantastic view when waking up in Igaliku

Finally, there’s the camping and that’s the option we chose.
There were only 4 tents in Igaliku and none of them was close to each other, so we all had lots of space.

There is a suggested camping site, but it’s possible to camp anywhere except in the cultivated fields and beyond the fences that clearly show a private property.

To the left: the view from our tent every morning!

 
After the rain comes the rainbow. Igaliku, Greenland

We went to the hostel to ask how much would cost a shower, and at the reception they told us about the Service Houses.

Service houses are communal houses in Greenland with showers, bathrooms, washing machines.
The one in Igaliku even had a common room and a fully equipped kitchen.

Washing machines at the Igaliku Service House

These Service Houses are aimed for the inhabitants of the village that don’t have water in their homes, but visitors can make a quick use of them.
The Igaliku service house was very clean and well kept. That was not the case of the one in Qassiarsuk, which was a bit messy.

We met the lady in charge of the Igaliku Service House, it was a very gentle and welcoming elderly woman.

A monuent to the poet and musician Jacob II Egede in Igaliku, Greenland

Near the harbour there’s a supermarket, or maybe I should just say a shop.
Anyway, it was surprisingly well stored. I didn’t expect to find things like Nutella and different brands of many goods (bread, washpouder etc...) in such a remote place.
The shop also acted as the bank and post office.

There are some monuments. The one on the left is dedicated to the poet and musician Jacob II Egede.

Greenland travel guide

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The viking stone and the church of Igaliku

Igaliku has a colourful church made of wood and sandstone.
It’s a Lutheran church, which is not surprising as Lutheranism is the dominant church in Denmark and most Nordic countries.

The walls are white and light blue, while the altar and the long seats are red.

Golden chandeliers hang from the roof, overlooked by a Viking ship on the side.

Inside the church - Igaliku in Greenland

The altar has a golden cross and a golden menorah.

The church is located just by the site of ancient Garðar, the former Episcopal residence.
Yes, Igaliku is not just a farming village, it’s also a historic site boasting several Norse ruins.

Garðar was the religious heart of Norse Greenland.

Altar of the Igaliko church

Click here for the next page, about Garðar, the ancient Episcopal residence of Greenland.

Click here if you prefer to read about a hike to the Plateau outside Igaliku.

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Inside the church of Igaliko

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