High prices, garbage, bleak architecture greet visitors to Nuuk
Survey on Nuuk and Greenland reveals mixed impressions among tourists
What do visitors to Greenland think of the country? That was the question asked by Greenland’s national tourism association, Visit Greenland ,which surveyed visitors to the island in 2012 and 2013 about their impressions.
Today’s Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, population 17,000, is such a modern city that it surprise many visitors, reports Greenland’s leading newspaper, Sermitsiaq AG.
But others who participated in the survey told Visit Greenland that Nuuk is just too expensive.
As well, they complained that it’s expensive to buy alcohol and cigarettes or do any activities targeting tourists.
“Prices are just too high. I do not really understand why we have to pay so much for such activities. It will discourage us from returning,” said one visitor who participated in the survey.
Other visitors said there’s too much garbage in Nuuk.
“Nuuk is a bit depressing, a bit gray, and there was a lot of litter around. I really do not understand why people don’t take better care of nature and try to keep everything nice,” said a tourist.
Another one said Nuuk would lose any beauty pageant because “when you arrive in Nuuk, it is very beautiful, but then you see all the slums — the grim apartment blocks.”
“This gives a negative impression to tourists who ask ‘what went wrong here?’”
However, some visitors still see beauty where others see garbage, Sermitsiaq reports.
“Greenland appears to be much more structured than northern Canada,” said a tourist from Canada. “All the roads are paved, there are sidewalks and bus service. The buildings look like giant IKEA playgrounds. It’s very clean and organized”
Another visitor said “I really, really like Nuuk.”
“We heard all the rumours, but when we got here, it was a different story. We heard that there was only one store, but in reality you’re in a city that’s more cultural, like Copenhagen.”
That was a theme repeated by another visitor who said he was surprised at how Nuuk’s cosmopolitan atmosphere.
“I didn’t expect that the standard of living would be so high. I was surprised at the availability of so many different things and the quality of everything.”