Greenland Population, Main Cities and Geography

By | January 27, 2023

Greenland: population, cities



According to Countryaah website, Greenland has about 57,000 residents, of which about 47,000 live in cities and 10,000 in small settlements.

Ethnic composition

88% Inuit (Eskimos)

12% Danes

Religious affiliation

Evangelical Lutheran, Shamanism

National languages

Greenlandic (Kalaallisut), Danish

Capital, other cities

The capital of Greenland is Nuuk, the former Godthåb, with a population of around 15,000. According to Abbreviation Finder, GRL stands for Greenland in English. Click to see other meanings of this 3-letter acronym.

Other cities are:

  • Qaanaa, the legendary Thule, it is one of the northernmost settlements in the world with 650 residents.
  • Sisimiut, the former Holsteinsborg, is the second largest city in Greenland with around 5,100 residents.

Greenland: map, geography

Greenland lies between the Northwest Atlantic and the Arctic Ocean, not far from the Canadian part of the Arctic, Ellesmere Island and Baffin Island. It is the largest island in the world. The northernmost point of Greenland, Cape Morris Jesup, is only 740 km from the North Pole, its coordinates are: 83 ° 37 ‘north latitude and 30 ° west longitude. Only the small coffee club island is further to the north. The southernmost point of Greenland, Cape Farewell, is at the same latitude as Oslo.

The country’s natural resources are zinc, lead, iron ore, gold, platinum, uranium, fish, seals, whales, hydropower, and oil and gas. Check topmbadirectory for politics, flags, famous people, animals and plants of Greenland.

Regions of Greenland

Greenland can be roughly divided into four regions:

First, the southwest coast, also known as Sineriak Bananeqarfik or Banana Coast. The climate here is the mildest. The area is the most accessible.

Other regions are the north coast, the east coast and Disco Bay.

Area, mainland ice

Greenland covers a total area of 2,175,600 km².


  • Ice armorAround 1.7 million km2of Greenland is covered with ice, that is around 78% of the island’s area. The average thickness of this ice sheet is 2,000 m – with maximum values up to 3,000 m.The Greenland Ice Shelf only covers an area of a few thousand km², while the Antarctic is around 1.5 million km².
  • TundraIn the west of Greenland, where the Gulf Stream moderates the climate, there is an approx. 150 km wide strip of tundravegetation that decreases towards the north.

The northernmost headland in the world is on Greenland.

Borders, length of coastline, Hans Island

As an island, Greenland has only sea borders and no land borders.

Greenland has a sea coast with a length of around 44,087 km.

Hans Island

The Hans Island is a small, uninhabited and vegetation-free island with an area of around 1.25 km². Denmark and Canada claim ownership of the island.

To document this, both countries have deposited a national flag and a bottle with local spirits on the island.

The island lies in the middle of the Kennedy Channel, part of the Nares Strait that stretches between Canada’s Ellesmere Island and northern Greenland.

The distance to the Greenland coast is around 16.5 km and to the coast of the Canadian island of Ellesmere near Cape Back around 17.5 km.

In addition to Hans Island, there are Franklin Island and Crozier Island in the Kennedy Canal, which undoubtedly belong to Greenland and therefore to Denmark

The different poles

Geographic North Pole

When one speaks of the North Pole, colloquially one usually means the geographic North Pole. It is exactly 90 degrees north on the earth’s axis. It defines the northernmost point on earth. It lies in the ice in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.

Magnetic North Pole

The Magnetic North Pole is 78 ° 18 ‘North, 104 ° West (as of 2003). This place is not static, it moves. It is defined by the fact that the magnetic field lines of the earth hit the earth’s surface perpendicularly at this point. It is currently in Canada near Ellef Ringnes Island. It is where a compass needle points.

Geomagnetic North Pole

The geomagnetic pole is a theoretically calculated location. An imaginary bar magnet is placed through the center of the earth. The magnet is placed in such a way that the creation of approx. 90% of the earth’s magnetic fields can be explained with its help. This imaginary bar magnet is currently inclined by around 11 ° to the earth’s axis going from the north pole to the south pole. The two imaginary points of penetration of this bar magnet through the earth’s surface are the geomagnetic north and south poles. The geomagnetic North Pole was in 2004 at 78 ° 30 ‘North and 69 ° West, so it is on Greenland, not far from Thule. Its position, like that of the magnetic north pole, changes steadily over time.

Pole of inaccessibility

The (north) pole of inaccessibility is the point in the Arctic that is furthest away from all coasts. It is located at 84 ° 03 ‘North and 174 ° 51’ West, about 660 km from the geographic North Pole. He is on ice with no land below.

Longitude and latitude

Greenland extends over the following geographical latitude (abbreviation Δφ) and geographical longitude (abbreviation Δλ):

Δφ = from 59 ° 45 ‘to 83 ° 20’ north latitude Δλ = from around 13 ° to 73 ° west longitude

You can find detailed information on this subject under Longitude and Latitude

Time in Greenland

For Greenland, the following value applies to Central European Time (CET), i.e. the time (without summer time) in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. A minus sign means that it is earlier there and a plus sign that it is later than after CET:

Δt (CET) = – 4 h (east coast) and – 5 h (west coast) From the beginning of April to the end of October summer time + 1 h

Further and detailed explanations of the time can be found under Time zones, time.

Highs of the sun

For more information on the position of the sun at the North Pole and the position of the sun at the Arctic Circle, see Sun position.


The highest mountain in the country is Gunnbjørns Fjeld in the east of the island with a height of 3,733 m.

Other high mountains are:

  • Illerfuisalik with an altitude of 1,850 m
  • Naparutaq with a height of 2,211 m
  • Quingaq with a height of 1,616 m

Rivers, ice rivers


Due to the icy climate, Greenland has only small rivers. However, the country is criss-crossed with long fjords at its edges, which absorb the breaking glacier masses.

The Scoresby Sound, Nordvesrtfjord is with a length of approx. 300 km and an area of 13,400 km² the largest in the world.

Ice flows

There are also under the ice flows on which the ice then slides into the ocean. These rivers come about when the ice melts on its surface in summer and forms lakes. The water of these lakes then sinks over crevasses to the bottom of the ice to the rocky subsoil of the island. The warmer it gets, the more water is created for such rivers and the faster the ice “flows” into the sea.

Islands around Greenland

The following islands belong to Greenland

  • Disko Island, the largest island with an area of 8,578 km2.
  • Nanortalik Island
  • Asuk Island, the place of the same name on the island, was the richest village in the world for a short time after the per capita income during the halibut boom in the 1970s.
  • Hans Island, Canada and Greenland and Denmark have been fighting over the island since the 1970s. For more details see above.

Northernmost islands in the world

  • Kaffeklubben Island is located at a longitude and latitude of 83 ° 40’N and 29 ° 50’W. This small island about 1,000 m long is located on the northern tip of Greenland.
  • Oodaaq is located at the geographical longitude and latitude of approx. 83 ° 40’N and 30 ° 40’W, approx. 600 km south of the North Pole very close to the Kaffeeklubben Island. It is questionable, however, whether this bank made of gravel and coal can even be regarded as a permanent island.

Greenland Population