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Sabin’s on the Sea 2023 - Day # 8 - Paamuit (Frederickshab), Greenland

by Nina Sabin - Travel Blog

It was difficult sleeping for two reasons: one because it was light outside by 3 am and second, because we were so excited to be visiting Greenland. We kept our curtains open because we didn’t want to miss any chances to see icebergs. I think tonight we may close the shades since we have many more opportunities to see icebergs.  Four hours of sleep. 

Today we woke up to beautiful skies and were surrounded by mountains and some icebergs. What a glorious site… The calm after the storm of the previous day. 

I really enjoy just laying in bed and looking out our balcony to admire God’s creation…the majestic scenery. 

The weather was 43 degrees, so we bundled up. For Floridians that is considered freezing. Later, we found 43 degrees in the sun very pleasant and were over dressed. 

Paamiut starts our true Voyage of the Vikings.  It is a small town of only 1200 inhabitants. The Vikings arrived there years ago. 

This was another port we had to tender into because it cannot accommodate such a large ship. Our ship can hold 2,100 passengers, but we are around 1,700. 

Once off the tender we were greeted by gnats, lots and lots of gnats. 

The cruise originally told us to pack bug spray but they never told us why.  When doing their announcements they did not mention this was the port we should use our bug spray. 

Most passengers, including us, left our bug spray in the cabin. 

At the port there was a small information place set up in a cargo container. They sold netting for your head; they called it Head Mosquito Net. 

We didn’t find out about this untill we were on our way back to the tender. By then, they were sold out of the netting. Calling it mosquito net, concerned many of the passengers; however, they weren’t all biting mosquitoes. At least I didn’t get bitten, John had one small bite and others passengers did get more bites and even welts. So we think it was a mixture of annoying gnats and mosquitoes. 

What was funny, is with everyone waving at the mosquitoes it looks like we were being extra friendly to each other. 

Besides the gnats, Paamiut, is a quaint little fishing town with cute colorful homes.

It is informally known as Greenland’s “artist colony” because of its quality soapstone carvings. Paamiut rests at the mouth of the Kvanefjord. Established in 1742 by Jackson Severin, the town was eventually transformed into a fur and whale-product station in          1774.

There is an information building where they handed out maps of the area and sold handicrafts. 

It was easy to walk around and we even made it to the top of one of the mountains where they had stairs to a lookout platform. It actually had a trap door that you closed after to have a place to stand and admire the views. 

We were surprised to see a hotel; it was right next to what we think was a hospital because the ambulance was outside.

Another place to see is the museum which is not too far from the port, in the center, for $3 per person to walk through and learn a more about the Paamuit and the Vikings. The museum is housed in old trading company buildings, which displays Eskimo and Inuit artifacts, historical photographs, and one of the best stone collections in Greenland. 

Next to the museum is a small handicraft building where locals sell their handicrafts. One gentleman was entertaining the visitors with his accordion playing.

A little ways from the museum is

a store that accommodated everything the inhabitants would need… food, clothing, shampoo, soap, etc. As John put it, the prices were European prices plus island prices; in other words, quite expensive (e.g. $8 for a watermelon the size of a small volleyball).

Two hours after batting away the bugs and taking pictures of this little town we were ready to get back on the Zuiderdam. 

We would have explored more but I think we could only take so much of bugs annoying us. It appeared that was the consensus of all the passengers, even those who bought the head net. 

At the next Greenland port, Nanortalik, we are going to bring the bug spray just incase; as well as the netting bag that our bathrobes came in. Someone recommended it and we thought it was an ingenious idea.

The rest of the day was relaxing by the pool, reading, and taking in all the scenery. The good news is no gnats on the ship. 

We heard while we were on the journey of Paamiut early, to beat the crowds, we missed the whale sighting. John hopes to get more opportunities to see whales.

Not sure the next time we will get wifi, but when I do you’ll know cause you will be reading our blogs. 

I will be posting whenever I get the opportunity so remember to check often. 

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