Qaasuitsup Kommunia
Municipality of Greenland
Coat of arms of Qaasuitsup
Coat of arms

Location of Qaasuitsup within Greenland
 • Coordinates69°13′N 51°06′W / 69.217°N 51.100°W / 69.217; -51.100
• 2015
660,000 km2 (250,000 sq mi)
• 2015
• Established
1 January 2009
• Disestablished
31 December 2017
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Population data:;[1] ISO code: GL-QA; Calling code: +299
Clockwise from top left: Ukkusissat, Upernavik, Ilulissat Icefjord, Uummannaq

Qaasuitsup (Greenlandic pronunciation: [qaːsuitt͡sup̚], Place of Polar Darkness) was a municipality in Greenland, operational from 1 January 2009[2] to 31 December 2017.[3] As of January 2015, its population was 17,168.[1] The administrative centre of the municipality was in Ilulissat (formerly called Jakobshavn).


The municipality consisted of the former municipalities of western and northern Greenland, each named after the biggest settlement:


Effective 1 January 2018, Qaasuitsup Kommunia was partitioned into two new municipalities:


The municipality was located in northwestern Greenland. With an area of 660,000 km2 (254,827.4 sq mi),[4] it was the largest municipality in the world by area,[5] larger than France at 643,427 km2 (248,428.6 sq mi).[6]

In the south, it was flanked by the Qeqqata municipality. In the southeast, it was bordered by the Sermersooq municipality, however this border ran north–south (45° West meridian) through the center of the Greenland ice sheet (Greenlandic: Sermersuaq), and as such was free of traffic. In the east and northeast it was bordered by the Northeast Greenland National Park.

At the southern end of the municipal coastline were the waters of Disko Bay, an inlet of the larger Baffin Bay, which to the north edges into the island of Greenland in the form of Melville Bay. The coastline of northeastern Baffin Bay is dotted with islands of the Upernavik Archipelago, which was entirely contained within the municipality. In the far northwest near Qaanaaq and Siorapaluk, the municipal shores extended into Nares Strait, which separates Greenland from Ellesmere Island.

Denmark claimed Hans Island as part of Qaasuitsup (now Avannaata), while Canada considers it to be part of the Nunavut region of Qikiqtaaluk.

Administrative divisions

Main article: List of cities and towns in Greenland

Now in present Avannaata Municipality

Ilulissat area

Qaanaaq area

Uummannaq area

Upernavik area

Now in present Qeqertalik Municipality

Aasiaat area

Kangaatsiaq area

Qasigiannguit area

Qeqertarsuaq area


Main article: Greenlandic language

Kalaallisut, the West Greenlandic dialect, is spoken in the towns and settlements of the western and northwestern coasts. Inuktun is also spoken in and around Qaanaaq.

See also

References and notes

  1. ^ a b "Demographic perspectives". Archived from the original on 8 Aug 2022. Retrieved 2023-02-12.
  2. ^ Qaasuitsup Municipality (in Greenlandic)
  3. ^ a b "Nittartakkat nutaat: kiisalu". Retrieved 2018-01-07.
  4. ^ "Fakta om kommunen" (in Danish). Qaasuitsup Municipality, Official Website. Archived from the original on 30 October 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010.
  5. ^ not considering the Chilean Antarctic commune, which is not internationally recognized
  6. ^ France at the CIA World Factbook