Grytviken was the largest whaling station on South Georgia, part of the British Overseas Territory of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands in the South Atlantic. The settlement, which is located at the head of King Edward Cove within the larger Cumberland East Bay, was considered the best harbour on South Georgia Island. It was founded on November 16, 1904, by Carl Anton Larsen of Sandefjord, Norway.
Despite being founded by a Norwegian, the settlement's name, Grytviken, is Swedish in origin and means "the Pot Bay". The name was coined in 1902 by the Swedish Antarctic Expedition and documented by the Swedish surveyor Johan Gunnar Andersson, after the expedition found old English try pots used to render seal oil at the site. Grytviken is built on a substantial area of sheltered, flat land and has a good supply of fresh water. Although it was the largest settlement on South Georgia, the island's capital and administration was based at the British Antarctic Survey research station at King Edward Point. The station closed in December 1966 when dwindling whales stocks made it uneconomical.
Grytviken no longer has permanent residents. It is temporarily inhabited during the summer months by a few staff who manage the South Georgia Museum. The settlement has become a popular attraction for Antarctic cruise lines, with many tourists visiting the resting places of polar explorers Ernest Shackleton and Frank Wild in Grytviken's graveyard.