Narsarsuaq means "the great plain" and in a mountainous country like Greenland, with few large, flat areas, it was very natural that South Greenland's international airport was located right here. Narsarsuaq was founded in 1941, as an American airbase just 9 km away from the ice sheet - or about 3-4 hours on foot through the lush 'Flower Valley", where South Greenland sheep farmers grow grass for winter fodder.
Surrounded by mountains and glaciers
About 160 people live and work in the airport area, where there is also a hotel, hostel, shop, café and a nurse station. The mountains that surround the great plain are up to 500 metres high, but you don't have to go so high up to enjoy the breathtaking views of the Ice sheet's glaciers. Even the runway is almost a direct extension of one of these ice streams.
Facts about Narsarsuaq:
Population: 160 inhabitants in the settlement.
The place is littered with Norse ruins and it was here that Erik the Red settled. He called the place Brattahlid and Greenland's and North America's first Christian church was erected here.
How to get there:
Via the international airport in Kangerlussuaq you fly to Narsarsuaq. However, during the summer months there are also several weekly departures from Copenhagen with Air Greenland and from Iceland with Air Iceland (from April to September). Onward transport to towns and settlements in South Greenland is by ship or Air Greenland's helicopter, including a regular service to Narsaq and Qaqortoq, as well as seasonal tourist boat connections to the settlements of Qassiarsuk and Igaliku (contact the local tourist office for details). From Narsarsuaq there are also connections to the rest of Greenland with Air Greenland's fixed-wing aircraft.
How to get around:
The area is ideal for walking - both long and short hikes. You can go on fishing trips and excursions by boat. In winter, cars are supplemented with skis and snowmobiles. Transportation between towns and settlements in South Greenland is made by ship or Air Greenland's helicopters.
Where to sleep:
You can stay at the hotel and the hostel, or you can put up a tent in the mountains, where the countryside and view pleases you most.