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Although only established as a town in 1756, the area has a rich history and has been inhabited for some 4 500 years. There are countless artifacts of the Inuits of the Saqqaq culture who occupied the area almost five centuries ago while the majority of the population is descended from the Thule people, who settled the area nearly one thousand years ago.
Aboard a Hurtigruten journey, you can explore the coast of Greenland, seeing incredible glaciers, fjords and oceanside towns. Some towns of the island are so isolated that they can only be accessed by boat and most aren't connected to each other by roads. Sisimiut is one of the larger towns the voyage stops at - specifically chosen for its charm and the wealth of opportunities it presents to adventurous souls!
Summer - Hiking, Fishing and more
In the summertime, take advantage of the midnight sun and hike amongst the mountains any time of day. Crest the summit of the Palasip Qaqqaa - from the peak on a clear day you can see the long Greenland coast snaking off into the distance. With the stunning views of the ocean and Nasaasaaq mountain, it is well worth the climb.
The back country of Sisimiut is where the original people of this land have walked for centuries. Participate in an organised guided walk to see early Inuit artifacts and ruins along the trail or buy yourself a map and find your own way.
Fly fishing is also a popular summer past time, with Arctic Char abounding in the rivers. There are also opportunities for big game hunting, mountaineering and kayaking.
Winter - Skiing, Snow Shoeing and Sleds
In the wintertime, do as the locals do and ski! Back country skiing offers fresh powder off-piste almost daily. Each year the strenuous Arctic Circle Race takes place from Sisimiut. At 160km, this race is the toughest cross-country race in the world but unites locals and travellers alike, all challenging themselves to an ultimate test of endurance.
Dog sledding is a must do, heading off into the back country for the afternoon or perhaps for a longer three day adventure. Bunk down in log cabins each night, eat fresh Greenland produce and try some cross country snowshoeing.
All year - Cultural Experiences and Fresh Produce
Visit the fascinating Sisimiut museum, housed in historic 18th century colonial buildings, with an entrance gate decorated by an intricately carved whale jawbone. Here, you can learn of the history and traditions of the region, as well as examining artifacts from the Saqqaq settlements, an exhibition of modern and traditional dog sleds and hunting tools, plus explore a reconstructed traditional peat house.
A trip to the local handicraft market is fascinating, where art is made out of reindeer antlers, seal skins and walrus tusks. A popular souvenir is a tupilaq statute - a monster traditionally carved into an animal bone but now more often out of antler or tusk, that Inuits would use to take revenge on their enemies.
For those not keen on any strenuous outdoor activities, Hurtigruten also offers a leisurely boat excursion, where you can admire the mix of modern and traditional in the town, with its brightly coloured colonial houses and new cultural centre.
To try the local fare, you can't go past the central fish and meat markets, where there is casual dining on the very freshest ingredients. Just be aware that most of the market (and the museum) will only accept cash, so have some with you.