Post 288: 10 August 2018, Walking around Nuuk
We arrived at the port of Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, at 9.30am and were able to dock rather than tender. There are some fine mountains and fjords surrounding the capital.Interestingly there are water taxis.
There was a short shuttle bus journey to the city centre. We only had until 14.30 when our ship was due to depart. However, it is possible to walk around the city which, although the largest in Greenland and its Capital, is quite small. The population is only 17,316 (2016), although it is expanding as people migrate to the city from poorer more remote regions of Greenland. A third of Greenland’s population live in Nuuk. It has a cosmopolitan feel about it. There seems to be a lot of new building work taking place, although it still only has 62 miles (100km) of road, the latter the most advanced road network in Greenland.
Temperatures range from minus -31.5C (-26.5F) in January to 26.3C (79.3F) in July but more normally are 10C (50F) in July. We had a warm August day. After alighting from the bus we visited the Tourist Information Office and I purchased a fabulous, stunning, photographic book (their last one). I highly recommend it although I am not sure it is readily available in the UK. It covers Greenland, Svabard, Iceland and Eastern Canada. The author and photographer Uri Golman has a web-site: http://www.urigolman.com
We then walked to the older colonial harbour of Nuuk where the cathedral and the National Museum (no. 29 on map) are situated along a lovely waterfront. On occasions whales can be seen from the waterfront as well as icebergs/flows.
Nuuk Cathedral, the Church of Our Saviour, is a wooden Lutheran cathedral with a clock tower and steeple. Behind and to the left of the cathedral on a small hill is a statue of Hans Egede. It commemorates the Dano-Norwegian Lutheran missionary Hans Egede who founded Nuuk in 1728. His house, built in 1721, is the oldest building in Greenland and is found near the harbour and is used for government receptions. It is quite colourful near the harbour with many buttercups and other flowers.
There are number of arts and crafts shops where it is possible to purchase local products, some carved from reindeer antlers or stone. Whilst Celia was making purchases and I waited ‘patiently’ outside the second shop, a local school passed and one of teacher’s heralded from Manchester – a small world. There are some attractive houses and views in this waterfront area overlooking a fjord.
Below the houses is the National Museum, which is excellent. It was inaugurated in the mid-1960s and has many artifacts relating to Greenland’s archaeology, history, art and handicrafts. However, most striking are the Qilakitsog Mummies.
There is much else in the museum including these handcrafted pieces.
Many traditional clothes
There were many other items and other information.
Leaving the museum we headed back to the city centre. Time was pressing. Near the bus stop was the cultural centre for concerts, cinema and exhibitions. Nearby a couple off our ship were playing instruments, which the local Greenlanders enjoyed. This commemorated the Arctic Winter Games 2016Back at the ship we were quickly back to ‘our culture’ with the sail away party at 14.30.
As a helicopter passed overhead in the opposite direction.
To be followed with an exquisite sunset….