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Although it’s our northern neighbor and only 17 miles from Canada, Greenland seems like a world away. The mystique surrounding this country that is 85% covered in ice is palpable. So we decided to satisfy our curiosity during a trip to Greenland this past summer.

Much of Greenland’s activity is centered on the water. From transportation between towns (there are no roads connecting the towns within the country) to the primary industry of fishing to tourist exploration of the fjords and icecaps, water reigns supreme in Greenland.

Our travels took us to blissfully scenic South Greenland, featuring the cosmopolitan feel of the capital city of Nuuk, the inland ice out of Narsarsuaq, the dramatic fjords and colorful cottages of Narsaq, the picturesque old-town charm of Qaqortoq, and the history of Qassiarsuk.

Although there are only 57,000 inhabitants in the entire country, South Greenlanders have an immense pride of their home and heritage. Add to that the beautiful mountain scenery, outdoor pursuits (including kayaking amongst the icebergs), boating the fjords, hiking the rugged terrain, the history and culture of the Inuit people, the charming, picture-postcard architecture, and the unique and tasty dining scene, and you have all the makings of a once-in-a-lifetime travel experience.