Established in 1974 and expanded to its present size in 1988, it protects 972,000 km2 (375,000 sq mi) of the interior and northeastern coast of Greenland and is bigger than all but 29 of the world’s 194 countries. It was the first national park to be created in the Kingdom of Denmark and remains Greenland’s only national park. It is the northernmost national park in the world.
The park shares borders, largely laid out as straight lines, with the Sermersooq municipality in the south and with the Avannaata municipality in the west along the 45° West meridian on the ice cap in the west. The large interior of the park is part of the Greenland Ice Sheet, but there are also large ice-free areas along the coast and on Peary Land in the north. The park includes the King Frederick VIII Land and King Christian X Land geographical areas.
The park has no permanent human population. In 1986, the permanent population of the park was 40, living at Mestersvig, although 400 sites saw occasional summertime use. These 40 were involved in cleanup and closeout operations at mining exploration sites and soon left. Since then censuses have recorded zero permanent human population. Recently only 31 people and about 110 dogs were present over winter in North East Greenland, distributed among the following stations.