Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Greenland

Landnamsgaarden

People have lived in the current Narsaq area for thousands of years, but not continuously. Remains of the Norse settlement can be found in the area. The church ruins of Dyrnes can be found on the north-western outskirts of the town. The Landnám homestead, Landnamsgaarden, can be found immediately to the west of the town. Dated to the year 1000, the homestead is among the oldest of the Norse ruins in the area. The w ...
Founded: 1000 AD | Location: Narsaq, Greenland

Garðar

Garðar was the seat of the bishop in the Norse settlements in Greenland. In the sagas it is told that Sokki Þórisson, a wealthy farmer of the Brattahlíð area launched the idea of a separate bishop for Greenland in the early 12th century. He got the approval of the Norwegian King. Most of the clergy would come from Norway. The first bishop of Garðar, Arnaldur, was ordained by the Archbishop ...
Founded: 1126 | Location: Garðar, Greenland

Eastern Settlement

The Eastern Settlement (Eystribyggð) was the first and largest of the three areas of Norse Greenland, settled c. AD 985 by Norsemen from Iceland. At its peak, it contained approximately 4,000 inhabitants. The last written record from the Eastern Settlement is of a wedding solemnized in 1408, placing it about 50–100 years later than the end of the more northern Western Settlement. Despite its name, the Eastern S ...
Founded: 985 AD | Location: Eastern Settlement, Greenland

Qoornoq

Qoornoq is an abandoned fishing village in the Sermersooq municipality. The area was known to have been inhabited by the ancient pre-Inuit, Paleo-Eskimo people of the Saqqaq culture as far back as 2200 BC. It still contains archaeological ruins of ancient Inuit and Norse buildings. The site was excavated in 1952 and the remains of an old Norse farm and ancient tools were discovered. The outside walls of the farm are doubl ...
Founded: 2200 BC | Location: Sermersooq, Greenland

Qilakitsoq

Qilakitsoq is an archaeological site on Nuussuaq Peninsula. Formally a settlement, it is famous for the discovery of eight mummified bodies in 1972. Four of the mummies are currently on display in the Greenland National Museum. The remains that were found in an icy tomb dated to 1460 CE. Four of these bodies were preserved well due to being buried under a rock in cold temperatures. In essence, they were freeze dried. Th ...
Founded: 1460 | Location: Siaqqissoq, Greenland

Deltaterrasserne

Deltaterasserne is one of the largest archaeological sites in Peary Land, the northernmost part of Greenland. These terraces were inhabited circa 4000 - 3700 BC by Independence I and Independence II cultures. Deltaterrasserne was constructed of large, terraced stones, ranging from 5m to 23m above sea level. Knuth named the site"s ruins and caches in order of their descending elevation. These are scattered over 800 m ...
Founded: 4000-3700 BC | Location: Northeast Greenland National Park, Greenland

Comer's Midden

Comer"s Midden is the find after which the Thule culture was named. The site was first excavated in 1916 by whaling Captain George Comer, ice master of the Crocker Land Expedition"s relief team, and members of Knud Rasmussen"s Second Danish Thule Expedition who were in the area charting the North Greenland coast. The site shows signs of having been inhabited from the 14th to the 20th century although Holtv ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Qaanaaq, Greenland

Western Settlement

The Western Settlement (Vestribyggð) was a group of farms and communities established by Norsemen from Iceland around AD 985 in medieval Greenland. Despite its name, the Western Settlement was more north than west of its companion and located at the head of the long Nuup Kangerlua fjord (inland from Nuuk, the present Greenlandic capital). At its peak, the Western Settlement probably had about 1,000 inhabitants, about ...
Founded: 985 AD | Location: Western Settlement, Greenland

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Petersberg Citadel

The Petersberg Citadel is one of the largest extant early-modern citadels in Europe and covers the whole north-western part of the Erfurt city centre. It was built after 1665 on Petersberg hill and was in military use until 1963. It dates from a time when Erfurt was ruled by the Electors of Mainz and is a unique example of the European style of fortress construction. Beneath the citadel is an underground maze of passageways that can be visited on guided tours organised by Erfurt Tourist Office.

The citadel was originally built on the site of a medieval Benedictine Monastery and the earliest parts of the complex date from the 12th century. Erfurt has also been ruled by Sweden, Prussia, Napoleon, the German Empire, the Nazis, and post-World War II Soviet occupying forces, and it was part of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). All of these regimes used Petersberg Citadel and had an influence on its development. The baroque fortress was in military use until 1963. Since German reunification in 1990, the citadel has undergone significant restoration and it is now open to the public as a historic site.