The largest and northernmost state in the US. In addition, it is separated from the rest of the country. Alaska consists not only of the mainland, but also of a large number of islands. These lands once belonged to the Russian Empire, and traces of the Russian presence are still preserved, for example, in the names of a number of geographical objects. In 1867, Alaska was sold to the United States and very soon began to take shape as a tourist area.
Travelers are interested in local nature. National parks, glaciers and fjords are the main wealth of the state. Tourist routes have been developed to suit all tastes, for example, walking through the "Foggy Fjords" or sea in Juneau for whale watching. The climate and geographical location give travelers the opportunity to see another unusual phenomenon - the northern lights.
What to see and where to go in Alaska?
The most interesting and beautiful places for walking. Photos and a short description.
One of the main attractions of Alaska. The national park occupies about 25 thousand km². Here is the highest point in Alaska, after which the area is named. Mount Denali has another name - McKinley, given in memory of the 25th president of the country. A visit to the park allows you not only to admire the natural beauties, but also introduces you to the life and culture of the indigenous people of North America.
The area of the national park is approximately 13 thousand km². Most of the territory is covered with forests. In addition, there are many hills, mountain rivers and streams, lakes and glaciers. The largest glaciers are Margerie and Lamplugh. The climate in Glacier Bay is specific: warm winters and cold summers. There are convenient hiking trails for tourists. Guests of the park can go fishing, rock climbing or rafting.
It was created in 1980 with the aim of protecting the Arctic territories from the negative influence of people. The area is approximately 2800 km². More than half of the territory is covered with snow and ice. The fauna is typical for this climate: polar bears, walruses, whales, seals. But the coastal flora is more exotic. Kenai Fjords is famous for its "glacial cruises": tourists are offered to look at the parts breaking off from the glaciers.
In 1978, the territory with this name was declared a national reserve. The area is 9500 km². The remoteness of the area allowed the wildlife to remain almost untouched. Tourists are brought here mainly on cruise ships and airplanes. Hiking trails allow you to see the main beauties of the park. Those who wish can go mountain climbing, go boating or go fishing in the designated areas.
The largest glacier off the coast of Alaska. Hubbard continues to gain weight and grow. At the same time, it is in motion and is slowly heading towards the bay. The maximum age of ice layers is 400 years. In the summer, impressive pieces break off from the glacier and fall into the water with noise. Tourists come to watch this process. And the icebergs separating from the Hubbard are a serious problem for the navigation of ships in the region.
It can be found in the valley of the same name. Since it is not so far from the central part of Juneau, in the past it was called "a glacier outside the city." In 1891, it received its current name in honor of the physicist and meteorologist Mendenhall. The length is about 19 km. Climate change has greatly affected the size and location of the glacier. The glacier is part of the recreational area of the Tongass National Forest.
Tracy Arm Fjord
Surrounded by emerald water. The banks of the fjord are indented, the slopes are covered, and the rocks and mountains have "torn" features. Tracy Arm Falls carry their waters straight into the sea. Tourists during sightseeing tours are brought as close as possible. Sometimes you can see breaking pieces of glaciers. Another interesting phenomenon is the bathing of bears and deer. Dolphins near the fjord are accustomed to people and often swim up to ships.
Located in Katmai National Park. A large number of sockeye salmon and shallow water attract bears. In the past, they were hunted, so the population has declined significantly. Thanks to the current bans on extermination and the conservation regime, the number of individuals is growing year by year. There are webcams installed near the waterfall to watch bears fishing.
Vintage Car Museum (Fairbanks)
In 2007, this museum of rare cars was opened in Fairbanks through the efforts of Tim Kearney. Under one roof, it was possible to assemble 85 cars. They look perfect and all but a few are on the go. Cars from this collection were produced before the Second World War. In good weather in spring and summer they are "released" from the hangar. If you find yourself in a museum at such a moment, then there is a chance to ride a rarity or watch a mini-race.
Museum of the North (Fairbanks)
Located in Fairbanks. A building in a futuristic style was built especially for the museum collection. Each hall is responsible for a certain direction. The historical, geographical and cultural halls are the largest. Notable exhibits are a mummified ancient bison and Inuit items. The museum has a gallery that exhibits artists whose work is associated with Alaska, and a botanical garden.
Morris Thompson Center (Fairbanks)
Here you can plan your trip around Fairbanks or throughout Alaska. The center offers brochures, telephone and wi-fi access, and overnight accommodations. The spacious exhibition hall features dioramas and other exhibits that tell the history of the state. The center is open all year round, seven days a week and closed only for a few national holidays. Research activities are carried out on its basis.
Opened in 1968, this is how the state authorities celebrated the centenary of the sale of Alaska to the Americans. The area of the museum exceeds 16 thousand m². Initially, the exhibition was composed of approximately 2,500 ethnographic and historical exhibits. Of these, 60 are paintings. Now the funds have increased 10 times. Now a full-fledged gallery is reserved for painting. The design of the museum building is dominated by metal and glass.
Red Onion Salon (Skagway)
During the "gold rush" this institution was the most popular in Skagway. Upstairs were rooms for "leisure". Each girl was assigned to a doll that was displayed at the bar. As soon as the doll was in a horizontal position, it meant that the prostitute was free. For the museum, the appearance of the solon was completely recreated. During the tours, real performances are arranged and stories about the past are told.
Alaska SeaLife Center (Seward)
A large aquarium has been in Seward since 1998. His task is to maintain the integrity of the water system of Alaska. The organization is non-profit, it provides its reports to everyone who helps keep the seas and rivers clean. Another area of activity is the rehabilitation of animals. As a result of natural disasters or human activities, some individuals require treatment, and the center provides it.
Alaska Zoo (Anchorage)
It has been operating since 1969 and attracts more than a hundred thousand additional tourists to Anchorage annually. The history of the zoo in Alaska began with a local resident winning a baby elephant in the lottery. Currently, the number of mammal species has reached 46. In addition to them, about a hundred birds are kept here. On the basis of the zoo, scientific research and rehabilitation of animals injured or thrown out by their previous owners are carried out.
Bight Totem Historical Park (Ketchikan)
It occupies 13 hectares in the vicinity of Ketchikan. Created in 1939. In the past, this place was a campsite. The historic area includes the original totem poles of the state's natives. Other unique objects have also been added, such as the restored chief's dwelling. Tourists have access to agility tests, participation in rituals, canoeing. Every evening, gatherings are arranged around a large fire.
Tony Knowles Coastal Trail (Anchorage)
Stretches more than 17 km from downtown Anchorage to Kincaid Park. Passes along the coast of Cook Inlet. The terrain and scenic views attract walkers, bikers, half marathon runners and skiers to the trail. There is something to see here at any time of the year. The conditions remain comfortable, both for walking and for sports. From here you can see Fire Island and planes taking off from the local airport.
Construction began in 1903. The length of the main highway is about 760 km. The state road belongs to the second class. It is connected to the rest of the country's railway system via a ferry: trains are transported from Witter to Seattle. There are several special tourist routes. The cars on them are equipped with panoramic windows or even transparent domes on the roof.
Whales in Juneau
Among the sightseeing tours, this is the most popular. The tour lasts about 4 hours. Buses with tourists depart from downtown Juneau and reach the port in less than half an hour. There, groups are placed on special boats. On the way to the places of accumulation of whales, all kinds of inhabitants of the local waters are encountered. Especially a lot of seals. They also attract whales. Killer whales are not at all afraid of people and swim up close.
One of the most beautiful and unusual natural phenomena. The glow of the upper atmosphere is due to their interaction with the flow of ionized particles. Alaska is just the place where to watch the lights is best. Usually, the phenomenon in all its splendor is revealed in September, although the forecast varies from year to year. The heights of Denali National Park are great as a viewing platform.