14th Oct 2012 10:20am | By Editor
Laura Lindsay from Lonely Planet answers your travel questions
As Greenland’s landscape is rapidly changing, I want to visit as soon as possible. I’m limited by budget and don’t want to take part in any type of adventure holiday. Do you have any tips for me?
Milla, via email
Greenland is a destination like no other. The magnificent scenery is virtually untouched – unspoiled wilderness trails, glaciers and fjords make this a unique part of the world.
Climate change is making a huge impact on Greenland’s landscape, and this summer the country saw unprecedented melting of its snow and ice.
For an opportunity to see first-hand the effects of climate change, consider taking a helicopter journey across the country. Flights depart from both Nanortalik and Qaqortoq.
In both of these old towns, the quaint 19th-century buildings will give you a glimpse of the historical side of Greenland, too. In particular, Nanortalik’s harbour, lined with timber cottages, is a real gem.
The town’s museum is definitely worth a look as well, with the old general store, bakery and cooperage all on display here. Also in the south are the 1000-year-old Norse ruins at Qassiarsuk, where you can find a carefully reconstructed longboat.
To save money and get as close as possible to the people of Greenland, arrange to bunk down with a local family in a homestay.
These can be arranged through the tourist office in Uummannaq. Or, sign up to couchsurfing.com and check its list of Greenland hosts.
In January, I’m considering travelling from Marrakech to Nairobi overland. Would you suggest heading across Algeria or down through Mauritania? Then I’m heading from Kenya to Cape Town. Any advice on borders/visas would be greatly appreciated. Luke, via email
Bad news I’m afraid Luke, overland travel from Morocco to eastern Africa is impossible, as all overland routes eventually encounter an unsafe area which you should not travel through.
In fact, large sections of your entire suggested journey are classified as unsafe for travel by the Foreign Office.
My advice would be to take two separate trips, one to Morocco and one to eastern Africa. Despite being on the African continent, Morocco is far better connected by air to Europe than other parts of Africa, making it ideal for a short break from London.
Kenya’s neighbouring countries have a wealth of incredible landscapes and wildlife.
Think about taking in the cosmopolitan Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, tracking gorillas in either Uganda or Rwanda and joining an organised tour to Rwanda’s stunning Parc National des Volcans (Volcanoes National Park).
Travel to this region is relatively safe if you follow these caveats: avoid the northern section of the Kenya/Uganda border and, in all countries, always keep to main roads, stick to recognised border crossings and check the Foreign Office website (fco.gov.uk) regularly for safety updates.
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