+27 (0)82 4000 470 rob@robcaskie.com

The plan today was to visit ITTOQQORTOOMIT, one of the youngest towns in Greenland. Scoresbysund is the Danish name, named after English whaler, William Scoresby, who first mapped the region in 1922. Home to around 500 people, and the largest permanent settlement in Scoresby Sound. This is the largest and longest fjord in the world. The mouth between Kap Brewster and Kap Tobin is 15miles/25km across, and runs 110km inland to the west. A number of fjords make up this showpiece in south-eastern Greenland. Mountains and steep edges surround the fjords. A fjord system of this magnitude produces prodigious quantities of icebergs, and ice. The ice slowed our approach today, such that a planned 8.30am landing became a 2.30pm activity instead.

With breathtaking views in all directions guests enjoyed a wonderful Arctic barbeque around the pool on Deck 6. Parkas were required as the temperature hovers around 0C/32F.
The Captain brought Le Boreal in close to the village of Ittoqqortoomit, having weaved his way expertly and painstakingly through multiple bands of ice. Guests were taken ashore in the Zodiacs, past a number of sailboats, sailed here by doughty sailors and rock climbers. Scoresby Sound holds magnificent rock climbing opportunities. We were able to explore the settlement on our own, established and sponsored as it is by the Danish government. Most of the local Inuit hunt – hides of Polar Bears, Musk Oxen and seals are common. Greenland’s quota of 160 Polar Bears to be hunted annually is guess work. They have no accurate idea of how many Polar Bears there are. This area is allocated 35 Polar Bears, all of which were killed this season. Each year 1000 Polar Bears are hunted, the bulk of these in Canada. Polar Bear expert onboard, Morten Joergensen, maintains it is utterly unsustainable.

A memorial erected in honour of Captain Jean Baptiste Charcot (French Polar explorer) and his faithful, old ship, the Pourquois Pas lost nearby in 1936, stands almost forgotten at the street edge. Habituated Arctic Hares scampered between the homes, as four-wheelers seemed to run around all the time.
By 5.30pm everyone was back onboard Le Boreal for a shower, Recaps, dinner and some dancing. Having turned our clocks back one hour each of the past two evenings; 9pm is 11pm two nights ago, and most guests retired after dinner.
All in all a magnificent day in Scoresby Sound and Ittoqqortoomit.

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