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The earliest known inhabitants of Greenland were the Inuit people who came from North America. They settled in the northwest regions of the island between 4000BC to 1000AD.
In 982AD, Erik the Red from Norway arrived and founded a colony in 986AD. He named the island Greenland in the hopes of attracting immigrants.
Throughout the centuries, large numbers of settlements thrived in the region, such as the Dorset, and the Bratthahlio, but they disappeared in the 15th century, most likely due to the dramatic temperature shifts in the region. The settlement that survived were the Thule settlers, who arrived in the region in the 13th century, and are considered to be the ancestors of the modern day Greenland population.
In 1605, Danish King Christian the IV claimed Greenland for his kingdom. Denmark made the island a colony until 1953, when Greenland was given an overseas county status.
In 1979, Greenland became a self-governing part of the Danish kingdom, but the island is still subject to the Danish constitution.
Greenland is an island located in the Arctic, and situated in the northeast region of North America. Its neighbors include Iceland to the southeast, Canada to the west, and Svalbard of Norway to the northeast. It is made up of the main island and a hundred other smaller islands.
About 84% of the total land area of Greenland is covered in ice. There is 0% arable land, and only 1 patch of forested land exist on the main island, which is found in the extreme south of the Nanortalik Municipality.
Greenland is a parliamentary democratic Danish dependency, with the Prime Minister holding the highest position of the country's self-governing government. The Prime Minister is Head of Government and head of a multi-party system.
The dominant party systems are the Social Democratic Forward, the Socialist Inuit Community, and the Feeling of Community.
Executive power is practiced by the government and legislative power is practiced by both the government and the Parliament. Greenland's international affairs are handled by Denmark.
Greenland offers a unique tourist experience that can't be found anywhere else. A country found in the Arctic, it is filled with incredible scenery that is unmatched anywhere else. Among the popular things to do in Greenland are iceberg tours, dog sledding, ice cap treks, wildlife potting, hiking, and immersing in the everyday life and local culture of the people.
A visit to Greenland is never complete without witnessing spectacular glaciers and icebergs. The best ways to see them are through sailing tours and helicopter rides. A seeming contradiction to this country that is covered with ice sheets, one of Greenland's most popular things to do for tourists are the hot springs in Uunartoq island. With water temperatures from 98 to 100 Fahrenheit all year long, the springs are a favorite among tourists and locals alike.
The Northern Lights can be seen from Greenland, but they're more visible in the towns of Kangerslussaug and Ittoggortoormiit. From September to April, the Aurora Borealis provide a breathtaking light display of swirling green and yellow tones, as well as red, purple, and blue lights.
The largest town in southern Greenland is Qaqortoq, and it's the best place to discover Greenland's history. The Qaqortoq museum provides tourists with a visual display of artifacts and exhibits of Greenland's early inhabitants, as well as its modern history. This town is also the home of the country's only fountain - which was built in 1927.
Glaciers and fjords are also found near the town, and it's also home to the best preserved Norse ruins in the region, which is the Hvalsey Church built in the 14th century.
Education in Greenland is free and compulsory for children ages 7 to 16. There are 4 stages of education in Greenland, which are: primary education, lower secondary education, upper secondary, and higher education.
Only the primary and secondary levels are compulsory and before 2005, most of Greenland's population concluded their education at secondary level.
In 2005, a program was created to increase the level of educational achievement of the working population. This program was called the Greenland Education Program - which promotes higher education, as well as vocational and technical studies.
Ruby and other gemstones are found in abundance in Greenland, and mining of these minerals is projected to increase in the next few years, possibly replacing the fishing industry as the population's main source of livelihood.
There are no road or train systems in Greenland, and almost everyone owns a boat as the only means of traveling from one town to another is through boats, dog sleds, or helicopter.
The Midnight sun occurs in Greenland during the summer season, around the time of the summer solstice, where the sun stays above the horizon for days and even several weeks for endless sunshine.