Situated in the North American continent, Greenland is not just huge in size but also known to experience an Arctic climate which means that there are long and extremely cold winters and short warm summers with temperatures that range from bearably cold to almost mild. The four distinct seasons bring with them a host of different experiences and opportunities, from the midnight sun activities of summer to the snow-based adventures and Northern Lights of the winters.
The best time to go to Greenland is generally during summer months, just before it turns from green to pristine white. However, since it is the biggest island in the world, there are variations throughout the seasons, especially when it comes to diverse wildlife, flora, and fauna. You can win exciting American Airlines coupons on booking your next adventure trip. The best time to visit Greenland during winters would have to be the time when one can spot the majestic Northern lights.
The Four Seasons
The 18th century saw the Danes beginning to colonize the island of Greenland which had an ice cap of almost 80% until finally in 1953 it was made an integral part of Denmark. The Arctic climatic conditions in Greenland are largely affected by the extreme variations in sunshine which brings with it distinctly different seasons that further bring their own unique benefits as far as visiting the country goes. The residents of this stunning white land enjoy perpetual daylight for two months each year. Whales, Kayaking, Aurora and aqua treats like hot springs are extremely common and some of the many allures of Greenland.
Winters in Greenland are dark and last from December till March with days gradually turning short and very cold. Considering, the very little daylight that Greenland gets during these cold months and being so far north it isn’t surprising that it gets bitterly cold. The daylight hours vary across the country. On the shortest day in December, the southern part of Greenland experiences just four hours of daylight, while further north, the sun goes down at the end of November and doesn’t rise again until mid-January. Furthermore, the daylight that it does receive is often clear and frosty and, accompanied by the beaming sun winter is, unsurprisingly, a great time to go dog-sledding and the best time to visit the beautiful island. One can catch the strikingly beautiful Northern Lights which are nature’s jewels and along with the vast white blankets of snow and serenely bright moonlight, make the evenings a lot brighter in reality than one would expect. The glaciers in this far away white hinterland are a sight to behold. One can expect a lot of fresh quality seafood including Prawns from the many fishing expeditions that are launched.
The northern lights or the spectacular phenomenon, officially known as Aurora Borealis actually occur all year round but cannot be seen during the summer months due to the midnight sun. The months of February, March, and April are a great time to see the Northern Lights and spot wildlife including musk oxen and reindeer. This time of the year is also the best for dog sledding activities.
The gradual changeover from winter into spring happens very quickly in Greenland (mid-April to mid-June at best). It is truly a magical time to visit with the snow melting away, the days getting longer and the start of vegetation growing again.
Summers in Greenland usually last from June through to September and can be considered unique. The days are long, bright and sunny. It could also be the best time to visit if one wants to go trekking or hiking or get involved in other outdoor activities. Summers are also the time when one can witness the midnight sun which is typical of an Arctic summer. From the end of May until the end of July the sun hardly sets in some parts of Greenland. It is the best time to be there when the concept of time ceases to have any meaning. One will witness children out playing in the streets in the middle of the ‘night’ and groups of people gathered and a bunch of friends sitting about on the hills soaking up the warm, amazing, and never-ending rays of the sun. Most towns and villages will be drowned in the usual bustle and buzzing with life until the early hours. Therefore, it is quite understandable that the further North you are, the more sun you will get.
The Glorious Autumn
Autumns in Greenland though understated are a pleasant time. Like in spring the season quickly changes from summer back to winter which effectively makes autumn (October – November) a rather short season. During this season, the island country more welcoming and is less crowded. It is generally cheaper during this period but without any compromise on the beauty of the place. People can also possibly begin to catch the amazing Northern Lights at a few places at this point. In summers, the Greenlanders are usually seen out and about catching trout and salmon by the bulk, and during autumn they have to stock up the rest of their freezer.
Although Global warming has increased access to Greenland’s vast reserves of mineral resources it is also feared to be causing the ice cover to melt rapidly and posing a threat to the island’s way of life. Hunting season in Greenland begins, and people gather in large numbers to go hunting for reindeer and musk oxen. It is important to note that both of these beautifully large animals exist in large numbers in Greenland. Autumn is also the time when blueberries and crowberries ripen, and in the hills, you will see a lot of people bent over trying to pick the berries growing close to the ground. These berries are turned into delicious marmalade or gooey jam, but the fresh crowberries themselves taste excellent served with just a little glass of milk.