White rounded corner
White rounded corner
Aim, Focus, Shoot - The HyPyC blog

Boat trip to the Eqip Sermia Glacier, Greenland

During my time on the west coast of Greenland I took a day trip with World of Greenland tours to the Eqip Sermia Glacier, otherwise known as the calving glacier. This was a rare opportunity to get up close to the tongue of a glacier and see this natural wonder in action.

Iceberg in the see en-route to Eqip Sermia

Tour information - The tour was booked as part of my excursion package with Greenland Travel so I am not sure exactly how much it cost. In total the boat trip lasted around 12 hours – 5 hours travelling to the Glacier, a couple of hours admiring it, and then a further 5 hours return journey. It was an early start and we had to be at the designated meeting point in Ilulissat for 6:45am! (Outside the World of Greenland tour office in the town centre) The boat had indoor seating as well as plenty of deck space and we were given breakfast, lunch and free tea and coffee throughout.

The immense face of the glacier

Preparation - It is advisable to bring warm clothing – It can get really cold on the sea especially when you are stood on the deck. I wore thermal leggings, top and socks as a base layer, and then over that trousers and a shirt. Finally for the top layer I wore a waterproof coat, hat and gloves – If I didn't wear all of this I would have been freezing outside! You might consider taking some water, snacks and reading material for the long journey –No matter how interested in nature you are, 10 hours is a long time to stand outside in the cold!

The immense face of the glacier

Sailing - The boat set off out of Ilulissat and made its way through the channel that lies between Arve-Prinsens Island the mainland Greenland – The scenery was fantastic. Icebergs of various sizes drifted past us in the beautiful blue water, while mountains and landmass rolled by in swathes of green, brown and yellow. I was expecting more snow and scenery akin to what I saw in Antarctica, however in the summer months in Greenland the snow retreats from the coast.

Sailing away from the Eqip Sermia Glacier back to Ilulissat

I enjoyed the scenery and being out on deck and feeling the cold air on my face. The wind was gentle but biting and kept me alert. The different sizes of Icebergs were really intriguing; while the ice flows we crashed through bumped on the underside of the boat. It was an exciting yet peaceful journey and I really did just enjoy being immersed in the landscape of Greenland.

The impressive face of the glacier Closeup of the jagged top of the glacier Eqip Sermia Glacier and the right hand Moraine Sailing away from the glacier Zodiac boat being offloaded The sea en-route to the glacier

The Glacier - As we approached the Glacier, the boat had to make its way through ice porridge and force its way through – The noise of the ice crunching and cracked underneath the hull was so loud and impressive. Finally we reached the face of the Glacier and stopped at a safe distance so as to not get crushed by falling pieces of ice or capsized by the huge waves they generated. I can only describe the Glacier as unimaginable. Picture in front of you a wall of snow and ice up to30 metres in height that stretches for over 200m in width; beneath this birds perch on chunks of ice, and icebergs of different colours rest gracefully in the water. All the time you can hear the groans and crunching of the glacier as it continually moves and the combined pressure of thousands of tonnes of compressed snow threatens to break free. Indeed there are times when great pieces of ice come crashing down and smash into the water below causing the boat to rock from the waves. The sound is like thunder and reverberated around the valley, disrupting this otherwise silent scene.

The mighty Eqip Sermia Glacier

You may think my words are exaggerated but they don't even come close to describing the Eqip Sermia Glacier. Even my photos and videos do not do it justice. It really is one of those natural phenomena that you have to see to understand. Our tour guide gave an interesting talk about the glacier, its geology and makeup and explained about the different types of snow and ice it is composed of. After what seemed like an age, the boat set off towards Ilulissat and left the beautiful glacier behind.

The full length of the Eqip Sermia Glacier

This trip will forever stick in my mind and I will always appreciate and revere the magnificent nature and undeniable force of the Eqip Sermia Glacier. If you happen to travel to the west coast of Greenland do not miss a chance to see it!

Comment Box is loading comments...

What is Aim Focus Shoot? My travel blog! Aside from travel reviews I also maintain a regular blog with different travel & photography articles such as photo essays and memorable moments.

Simply click on the "read more" button to read the full article, and use the numbered buttons above to navigate through the pages....Enjoy!

Regular blog features
Hotel Reviews Photo Essays Photo of The Day Travelling with an Illness Travel Insights
Bkpk.me Traffic Exchange
White rounded corner
White rounded corner

Have you Packed the Camera? © is a blog dedicated to travel and photography