Kinngait | The Canadian Encyclopedia



Kinngait (Cape Dorset), Nunavut, incorporated as a hamlet in 1982, population 1,441 (2016 census), 1,363 (2011 census). The hamlet of Kinngait is situated on Dorset Island, off the southeast coast of the Foxe Peninsula of Baffin Island, 395 km southwest of Iqaluit. Known for a period as Cape Dorset, in 2020 the hamlet returned to its original Inuktut name, Kinngait, meaning “mountains.”

Geography and Economy

The rolling tundra surrounding the community is actually part of the Kingnait Mountain range. It is the entry point to the nesting grounds of the snow goose at the Dewey Soper Migratory Bird Sanctuary, 275 km northeast of the community. While the traditional economy is based on hunting and sealing, many of the majority Inuit population are artists. The famous Dorset printmaking shop is located here. Nearby Mallikjuaq Island Historic Park has evidence of over 1,000 years of occupation of the Thule and Dorset cultures. An interpretive centre for the historic park is also found in the hamlet.

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