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Overview

Set on a pitched bank on Koojesse Inlet in Baffin Island’s southern reaches, Iqaluit is a bustling, sprawling capital of brightly colored houses, apartments, and business and government buildings. More than 5,500 people thrive here and almost half are non-Inuit. While many residents hunt, fish and carve, they are also involved in major sectors of transportation, communications, health care and government. In this part of the world, primary expressions of art center around Inuit stone sculptures, but also include antler or bone carvings, tapestries, stone-cut prints and ceramics. In town, it is not uncommon to find a sculptor working in his ...

Set on a pitched bank on Koojesse Inlet in Baffin Island’s southern reaches, Iqaluit is a bustling, sprawling capital of brightly colored houses, apartments, and business and government buildings. More than 5,500 people thrive here and almost half are non-Inuit. While many residents hunt, fish and carve, they are also involved in major sectors of transportation, communications, health care and government. In this part of the world, primary expressions of art center around Inuit stone sculptures, but also include antler or bone carvings, tapestries, stone-cut prints and ceramics. In town, it is not uncommon to find a sculptor working in his backyard. Iqaluit is a good base with more than a few places to shop for Inuit art brought in from all over the north, including Cape Dorset and Pangnirtung. Iqaluit is a staging area for many travelers headed onward to hike Auyuittuq National Park out of Pangnirtung, view wildlife near Pond Inlet or hike the Itijjagiaq Trail in Katannilik Park. Yet, it is worth spending a day or two to explore this unique town surrounded by ancient rock and fields of arctic wildflowers.

Catherine Senecal
About the Expert

Catherine Senecal is the author of Pelicans to Polar Bears, a wildlife viewing guide to Manitoba, and has written about Alberta, Manitoba, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and other places for Michelin Guides, Rand McNally, and Reader’s Digest Atlas.

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Catherine Senecal for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Iqaluit is the territorial capital and the largest community of the Canadian territory of Nunavut. It is located on the southern coast of Baffin Island.
  • Language: Inuktitut, Inuinnaqtun, English, French
  • Currency: Canadian Dollar
  • Research: Wikipedia
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Summer