Indigenous peoples and communities


This website will change as a result of the dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, and the creation of Indigenous Services Canada and the eventual creation of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada. During this transformation, you may also wish to consult the updated Indigenous and Northern Affairs home page.

‘Indigenous peoples' is a collective name for the original peoples of North America and their descendants. Often, ‘Aboriginal peoples' is also used.

The Canadian Constitution recognizes three groups of Aboriginal peoples: Indians (more commonly referred to as First Nations), Inuit and Métis. These are three distinct peoples with unique histories, languages, cultural practices and spiritual beliefs.

More than 1.67 million people in Canada identify themselves as an Aboriginal person, according to the 2016 Census. Aboriginal peoples are:


First Nations

There are more than 630 First Nation communities in Canada, which represent more than 50 Nations and 50 Indigenous languages.


Learn about Inuit, the Indigenous peoples of the Arctic. The word Inuit means "the people" in the Inuit language of Inuktitut.


Find out more about Métis communities in Canada and the Powley Decision.

Aboriginal arts, culture and heritage

Learn about the Aboriginal arts, culture and heritage that are woven into the fabric of our country.

Map room

Find Indigenous communities in Canada by using these maps.

Renewing the relationship: Key documents

Consult the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's report, the Report of the Royal Commission of Aboriginal Peoples, and more.


Learn about support for strong, effective and sustainable governments in First Nation communities.

Success stories

Find out more about community-driven projects to improve the lives of Indigenous and Northern individuals, families and communities.

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