Fort Simpson (Liidlii Kue – "place where the rivers come together") is located on an island where the Liard River flows into the Mackenzie. This historic spot was a meeting place for Aboriginal people for generations before the fur trade brought trade goods north. Today the community’s economy is based largely on government, transportation and private entrepreneurship. The tourism industry is important, as Fort Simpson is the gateway to and administrative centre for Nahanni National Park Reserve.
The community is on the Mackenzie Highway, north of the junction with the Liard Highway leading to British Columbia. There are daily air connections to Yellowknife via Air Tindi and First Air. There are two schools, Bompas Elementary and Thomas Simpson Secondary. The community has a range of accommodation, a restaurant, a retail sector, charter airlines and taxi service. Attractions include a park with a view of the river, a golf course, Territorial campground and several trails. The population is majority Aboriginal with a relatively high level of education, and high community involvement. There is good high speed Internet and cell service, a health centre and an RCMP detachment.