Greenland Harbour Pilot

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Nuuk (Sikuki Nuuk Harbour)
Last updates • Text: 01-09-2021 - Plan: 16-08-2019
Kitaa (West Greenland)
64º10,4´N 051º43,5´W - Chart 1331 - harbourplan chart 1351
17796 inhabitants (2018)
1: A new road to the container terminal entails the establishment of a pier/embankment across the entrance to Iggiaa E of the bay Sarfaarsuit.
Information on vertical and horizontal clearance of the bridge and lights on the bridge will be published in the plan when the information is GST in hand.

2: In the proximity of the lighthouse on the E side of Qeqertaq Avalleq blasting and filling is carried out. Refer to the chart and harbour plan
The Government of Greenland is the central harbour and ISPS authority in Greenland. The Government of Greenland has transferred ownership and operation of harbour facilities in Nuuk to Sikuki Nuuk Harbour A/S, which is a 100% self-owned company. Sikuki Nuuk Harbour A/S is the local functional harbour authority and is responsible for ISPS for harbour facilities in Nuuk.

Sikuki Nuuk Harbor A/S owns harbour facilities in Nuuk consisting of:
1.1 Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene/Containerterminal).
1.2 Qeqertaq Avalleq.
2. Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn), which is divided into Yderhavn and Inderhavn.
4. Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red).

The quay facilities in Nuuk also consist of:
2.1 Oilpier for tankers, belonging to Polaroil.
2.2 Dinghy jetties in Vestre Vig, operated by Kommuneqarfik Sermersooq and NAPP.
2.2. Shipyard quay and slipway facilities belonging to Nuuk Værft A/S.
3. Marina in Iggiaa (Godthåb Bådeforening) located to the N on Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene).

1.1 Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene/Containerterminal)
Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene/Containerterminal) has the following quay facilities:
1.1.1 Quay 101 and Quay 102 : Total quay length 310 m towards W, depth 3) 10.5 m/wharf height 4 m/load 5,000 kg/m².
1.1.2 Quay 103 towards N: Quay length 50 m/depth 3) 5.5 m/wharf height 4 m/load 5,000 kg/m².
1.2. Qeqertaq Avalleq
At Qeqertaq Avalleq, which is located E of Qavaap Nuua (Valternæs), there is access to storm bollards towards SW. Refer to the chart and harbour plan.

Text continuous in section Harbour Area.
Location description
Nuuk means "point" in Greenlandic
Refer to the harbour plan.
Along Quay 101 and Quay 102: Length 280 m, width 35 m and draught approx. 10 m. Refer to the harbour plan.
Along Quay 103: Length 50 m, width 15 m, draught approx. 5 m. Refer to the harbour plan.
Gl. Atlantkaj: Length approx. 135 m, width approx. 18 m, draught approx. 7.5 m.
Oilpier for tankers: Deadweight 25,000-30,000 tonnes.
Feederkaj: Length approx. 160 m, width approx. 24 m, draught approx. 5.0 m.
Ny Atlantkaj: Length 250 m, width 32 m and draught 7.2 m.
Skonnertkaj: Length 110 m, width 20 m, draught 4.5 m.
Tidal range at spring tide approx. 4.4 m, at neap tide approx. 2.1 m. Max. tidal range approx. 5.1 m. Lowest water level is approx. 2.4 m below the 0-point on the tide gauge.

Tide gauge: At Sandkaj, Quay 101 and Quay 102.
Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn): The tide flows at 1-2 knots.

Gl. Atlantkaj: The coastal countercurrent flows N with falling tide and S with rising tide.

Feederkaj and Ny Atlantkaj: Close to the quay, the coastal countercurrent flows N with a falling tide and S with a rising tide.

Skonnertkaj: A coastal countercurrent flows NE with a falling tide and SW with a rising tide

On the stretch of coast between Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red/Kolonihavnen) and Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn), a strong current can flow along the coast, even when not due to the tide turning. This changes direction S of the peninsula and is strongest off Noorliit Nuunnguat (Tyskernæsset).
Ice-free approach period: Mid-March to mid-December. Open water location.

Glaciers in Nuup Kangerlua (Godthåbsfjord) are active. Especially during spring tide and neap tide, fjords and the entrance at the Attorsuit lighthouse are obstructed by the ice drift from these "Godthåb icebergs and floes". During S and SW gales, Feederkaj and Ny Atlantkaj are hampered by this ice, but the ice disappears quickly again when the wind shifts. Floes should always be expected in the waters off and into Nuuk (Godthåb).
In extremely cold winters, the winter ice has been measured with a thickness of 10-25 cm in Nuup Kangerlua (Godthåbsfjord) and up to 35-40 cm in Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn), as well as in the waters off the Attorsuit lighthouse, where hummocking also occurs, as the winter ice is often broken up by the frequent winter storms.
Large masses of ice rarely enter the fjord complex or up to Nuuk (Godthåb), but it can occur. The last time it happened was in 1983. If there is ice in the area S of Nuuk, storms from SW can fill Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn). The ice first appears in the channels between Kingittorsuaq (Hjortetakken), Aqissersiorfik (Rypeø) and Qeqertarsuaq (Hundeø), as well as at all the small islands around here. It then flows from there up against Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn), which can be completely blocked, while the fjord is otherwise free of ice. Smaller ice masses can occur every year, and although they usually leave Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn) quickly again, they can nevertheless impede the traffic in the harbour.
In recent years, Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn) has begun to freeze over in the winter, and smaller ships have occasionally been ice-bound.
S storms/hurricanes, especially when caused by a Southeaster that has blown further S, can occur without warning and blow hard into the area in the autumn and winter. These storms/hurricanes create waves and cause a swell in Yderhavn, and a strong rip tide in connection with a falling tide. The S storms are also felt strongly in the narrow Inderhavn. Tidal and fjord winds blow strongly in the harbour and at anchorages.
Fog often occurs during extremely cold winters that coincide with a polar ice period and when there is a great deal of bergy bits and/or glacial ice in Nuup Kangerlua (Godthåbsfjord). Frosty mist can be very dense in the harbour. During the summer, low-lying coastal fog can spread E and settle close to Yderhavn. S and SW winds often produce precipitation and poor visibility.
The harbour can be navigated during both the day and night.

Calls must be booked in advance with the harbour office, stating the expected ETA and ETD, as well as the purpose of the call. The harbour office will assign a berth.

Mooring on the side of other ships must be agreed with the harbour authorities and the ship concerned.

Approach conditions and anchoring:
ETA should be notified with 24 hours notice. ETA must be regularly adjusted so that the harbour authorities can assign a quay and anchorage, stern mooring or buoy mooring. The harbour office must be contacted immediately before arrival for confirmation of the berth.

Extra moorings should be set on shore in good time before imminent S and SW storms, which can be particularly severe, especially in autumn and winter. This applies not least to the vessels stern-moored to Marinenæsset. Large ships arriving at night or in strong winds of gale/storm force are advised, depending on the wind direction, to seek anchorage at Aqissersiorfik (Rypeø) or in Qinngorput (Malenebugt) to await daylight and/or better weather.

Larger ships moor at:
Quay 101, Quay 102 and Ny Atlantkaj, often with the bow towards S, if there is a warning of S winds.

Gl. Atlantkaj with port side alongside. Ships without bow thrusters can swing with a port anchor set and moor at the quay with their starboard side.

Skonnertkaj with the bow towards W or E, if there is a warning of S winds.

Feederkaj with the bow towards S. This applies especially if Yderhavn is filled with bergy bits or polar ice or there is a warning of S winds. Ships with weak engine power relative to the "air resistance" are advised to set a port anchor in good time when mooring in strong S winds, so that the ship can use the anchor, partly to swing around to starboard and partly to reduce the speed of the ship during the approach manoeuvre with starboard side towards the quay.

Larger tankers moor with their port side alongside the Anlægsplads berth for tankers. Smaller tankers, including cement tankers, can Stern-moor S of Sandkaj.

Stern-mooring/mooring to buoy:
With the permission and instructions of the harbour authorities, ships can stern-moor to Marinenæsset between Østre Vig and Vestre Vig, where there are mooring rings on the N side of the headland and bollards on the rock immediately below the headland. Large ships are advised when stern-mooring to set anchor E of a line extending from the S part of the front of Trawlerkaj, as the holding ground W of here is not good. If two anchors are used, they should be set 15-20 m apart, partly for them to act together, and partly to facilitate the departure manoeuvre and not to catch anchors or chains set by ships moored at Atlantkaj.

Permission must also be obtained from the harbour authorities before mooring to the mooring buoy provided in Inderhavn, where it is possible to moor to 4 buoys NW of the mooring buoy along the steep rocky coast.
Length of the day
Length of the day (approx. times):
Shortest day: 10:00-14:00.
Longest day: 02:00-24:00.
Ships must navigate the harbour at moderate and reasonable speed, so that harbour facilities, ships or their moorings are not exposed to a risk of damage.
Refer to the chart and harbour plan.
Refer to the chart and harbour plan.
1. It is possible to anchor in shelter from winds from W to N to SE in Qinngorput (Malenebugt) E of Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene) on a shoal with approx. 20 m of water. The holding ground is good. The holding ground is less than good close E of Qeqertaq Avalleq (Fyrø).

2. It is possible to anchor in shelter from S winds N of the sound between Aqissersiorfik (Rypeø) and Taartunnguaq in approx. 30 m of water and approx. 400 m from the nearest shore on both islands. The holding ground is good and consists of mud/rock.

2.1 Smaller ships can anchor approx. 1.5 M inside the mouth of Kangerluarsunnguaq (Kobbefjord) between the rocks and the island of Qeqertarujussuaq. Approach N of the rocks.

3. Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red/Kolonihavnen) can also be used as an anchorage, but it is rarely used and it should only be used in calm weather conditions. The anchorage is not recommended in the spring or when there are many bergy bits in the fjord, because it is open to winds from N, W and S. It is particularly the S winds that can occur very suddenly and blow very hard, causing a swell at this anchorage. The warning is that Kingittorsuaq (Hjortetakken) "puts on a hood". If large vessels have to anchor on/in Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red/Kolonihavnen) for a brief period in good weather conditions, the anchor can be set in 45 m of water approx. 300 m W of Orsiviup Nuunngua (Spækhus Næs). In this case, the engine must be on "stand by".
Anchorage restrictions
It is not permitted to swing at anchor in Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn) because of the mooring barrels deployed and it is also permitted to have anchors laid out for stern mooring and swing purposes.
See the page about pilots.
There are no tugs permanently stationed in the harbour. The harbour office may be able to arrange contact with a tug boat.
At Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene/Containerterminal), a 47,000 m² container terminal has been established with associated quay facility, 2 mobile harbour cranes, warehouse buildings, terminal administration and a workshop.

There is a storage area of 37,000 m² at Qeqertaq Avalleq (Fyrø), located SE of Qavaap Nuua (Valternæs). No pierhead or quay facility has been established at Qeqertaq Avalleq. Access is by means of an embankment and road, which is blocked by a boom, from Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralitets Holmene/Containerterminal).

Fresh water:
Water can be supplied from a hose at Gl. Atlantkaj, Ny Atlantkaj, Feederkaj and Skonnertkaj by agreement with the harbour office, and from Trawlerkaj by arrangement with Nuuk Fiskeriindustri.

Electricity supply:
Payment system with refuelling card arranged at Trawlerkaj, Fiskerikaj and Kutterkaj with 240 V, 32A and 63A.

All kinds of repairs can be performed. It is possible to order gas oil, lubricating oil, supplies, bottled gas and diver assistance. A laundry is available.
Nuuk Værft A/S:
1,860 tonne slipway facility with side-drawn arrangement for 50, 120 and 250 tonne ships. Repair shipyard. Tank cleaning plant. Oil separation plant.

Loading and unloading gear:
Private operators and contractors have various forklift trucks, front-end loaders, excavators, etc. with lifting capacity of 3.5-25 tonnes, as well as mobile cranes with lifting capacity of up to 90 tonnes. The container terminal operates with reach stackers that lift up to approx. 40 tonnes and two 2 mobile harbour cranes with lifting capacity of 124 tonnes, which can handle up to 200 tonnes in twin-lift mode.
There is an airport with national and international connections.

Iceland, Finland, USA, Canada, France, Norway, Sweden, South Korea, Czech Republic, Germany, United Kingdom & Northern Ireland, Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.
Sikuki Nuuk Harbour A/S
Aqqusinersuaq 48A, Box 4102
3900 Nuuk, Greenland
Main number (+299) 31 40 30 (weekdays 08:00 to 16:00)
Harbour officer (+299) 48 64 37 (Nakkutillisoq, Emergency)
Email: /
VHF (The harbour can be contacted on channel 12 during normal working hours)
Customs Clearance
Customs function
Harbour area
2. Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn)
Umiarsualivik (Skibshavn) is divided into 2.1 Yderhavn and 2.2 Inderhavn.

2.1. Yderhavn
Yderhavn is an open sound to SSW, which is bound to the E by Qeqertaq Avalleq (Fyrø) and Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralty Holmene/Containerterminal) and to the W by Puulukip Nuua (Pakhusnæs) and the shore SSW of here to Qavaap Nuua (Valternæs).

Yderhavn has the following quay facilities:
2.1.1 Oilpier for tankers: Quay length 75* m/depth 1) 12.5 m/wharf height 2) 5.0 m.
2.1.2 Sandkaj: Quay length 30 m/depth 1) 5.0 m/wharf height 2) 1.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m².
2.1.3 Ny Atlantkaj: Quay length 102 m/depth 1) 10.0 m/wharf height 2) 3.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m².
2.1.4 Feederkaj (formerly Kystpassagerkaj): Quay length 40 m/depth 1) 6.5 m/wharf height 2) 3.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m².
* The distance between the 2 dolphins.

2.2. Inderhavn
Inderhavn is the cove inside Puulukip Nuua (Pakhusnæs) and Nuussuaq. The S part of Inderhavn is divided at Marinenæsset into Østre Vig and Vestre Vig.

Inderhavn has the following quay facilities:
2.2.1 Skonnertkaj: Quay length 52 m/depth 1) 3.9-4.5 m/wharf height 2) 2.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m2.
2.2.2 Gl. Atlantkaj: Quay length 170 m/depth 1) 4.6-7.0 m/wharf height 2) 2.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m2.
2.2.3 Værftskaj: Quay length 25 m/depth 1) 6.6 m/wharf height 2) 1.0 m/load 2,000 kg/m².
2.2.4 Monteringskaj 1 (formerly Kommunal Kaj): Quay length 25 m/depth 1) 4.6 m/wharf height 2) 1.0 m/load 2,000 kg/m².

Østre Vig
2.2.5 Fiskerikaj: Quay length 95 m/depth 1) 4.0-6.6 m/wharf height 2) 2.5 m/load 2,000 kg/m2. Unloading to Kitaa and Polar Raajat etc.
2.2.6 Pontoon S for Fisherman's Bay for unloading to Royal Greenland.
Vestre Vig
2.2.7 Trawler quay: Quay length 30 m/depth 1) 3.9-4.4 m/wharf height 2) 2.5 m/Load 1500 kg/m².
2.2.8 Kutterkaj: Quay length 40 m/depth 1) 2.0-3.7 m/wharf height 2) 2.5 m/Load 300 kg/m².
2.2.9 Three pontoon bridges for recreational boats S for the quay.
Seabed conditions: Mud/rock. The abchor hold in the harbour is good. However, the anchor hold is less good in Inderhavn close to the steep rock wall on the W side of the harbour.

3. Marina
There is a Marina in Iggiaa on the E-side of Nuussuaq. The Marine consists of pontoon bridges perpendicular to the shore protected from SW by a breakwater. The depth at the pontoon bridges is approx. 1.6-2.6 m. A dam from Nuussuaq to the northernmost point of Umiarsualiviup Qeqertai (Admiralty Holmene) divides the Marina into two parts. No passage is allowed for boats in the E-section of the dam, which is effected by blocking.

4. Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red / Nuuk Road)
Nuup Saava (Godthåb Red) is a SW-facing bay that is limited to N by Avannarliit Nuunnguat and towards S by Orsiviup Nuunngua (Spækhusnæs). Next to the old warehouse is a tidal staircase for small boats. The anchor holding in the bay is poor.
Seabed conditions: Rock.

1) Mean low water spring, 2) Mean high tide., 3) LAT - Lowest Astronomical Tides
Special provisions
There are special rules of conduct for Sikuki Nuuk Harbor A/S, which can be found on the harbour's website

There is user payment to Sikuki Nuuk Harbor A/S in the form of ship tariffs and goods tariffs for the use of the harbour.

Calls must be booked in advance with the harbour office, stating the expected ETA and ETD, the purpose of calling and contact information and email address for invoicing the user payment.

Navigation inside the harbour area is also subject to the rules for navigation issued by the Danish Maritime Authority at any given time.
Refer to the section Vind.