One of my favourite aspects of travelling is learning about ways of life and traditions that I’d never even heard of before. The Sami people in Norway, the geisha girls of Japan and the Maayans of Mexico are just a few I’ve come to know in the last year.

I know not everyone has the luxury I do of travelling and so sometimes we have to gleam what we can from the TV and movies. There’s a new documentary ‘La Sonrisa del Sol’ which tells the history of 11 Greenlandic Inuit people experiencing a totally different climate to what they’re used to, in the Canary Islands.

Inuit culture Greenland

Greenland has a brutal climate, particularly where these Inuits live – the villagers have to do a lot to survive. In the documentary they come to visit the Canary Islands, a world away from their extreme icy landscapes.

The anthropological study observes the 11 Greenlandic Inuits, between one and 64 years old, to see how they react. Before this they’d only known their isolated village, Kulusk, located in East Greenland with a population of 300.

Exploring Gran Canaria

The first stop in the documentary is Gran Canaria 4500km away – somewhere I visited last year to observe a different group of people, the digital nomads. This was their first time away from the climate they knew – the first time they felt sand, or the hot Canaries sun or even to touch trees. It’s the first time they’d seen camels, lizards and even running water.

Experiencing sunglasses for the first time

From Gran Canaria the Inuits visited the other islands in the archipelago, ones that remain so popular for holidaymakers thanks to the year round reliable sun, which have given the Canaries the accolade as one of the best climates in the world.

The unique experience and priceless reactions of the four men, three women and four children coming from one of the harshest climates in the world, to one of what has scientifically been acclaimed as the best, were caught by the filming team who followed them on their journey.

Click here to find out more about the Inuits coming to the Canary Islands, and to see their reactions.

There’s also details on how you can watch the documentary too.

Anthropologist Francesc Bailon Trueba led the study and cultural swap. To date he’s made 21 expeditions to the Arctic, he’s a professor, lecturer and advisor in Inuit culture, a National Geographic contributor and an author on the subject too.

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