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AlaskaUnited States of America

Juneau

This second-to-last US state is also the largest. Explore this faraway land of mountains, gold mining, dog sledding, whale watching and hiking glaciers.

Alaska’s sheer size, 663,300 square miles (1.7 million square kilometers), means you’ll find myriad adventures as you travel across diverse regions of the state. Experience mountains, glaciers and beaches as they change character with the seasons.

In the center of the state, Fairbanks showcases its history as a gold-rush town. Try panning for gold like the old-timers did in the 1840s and ’50s. Visit Alaskaland Pioneer Park with a replica of a Native American village and a Wild West theme park. From early fall to mid spring, watch for the shimmering lights of the aurora borealis.

From Fairbanks, take the McKinley Explorer railroad to one of the state’s most impressive sites, Denali National Park. If you’re an experienced mountain climber, scale the 20,237-foot (6,168-meter) Denali peak (formerly known as Mt. McKinley). Otherwise simply enjoy the impressive view reflected in Wonder Lake. Look for moose, grizzly bear, caribou and 130 different bird species in the park’s natural wilderness area.

Take a soothing thermal bath at the Chena Hot Springs Resort. Stop nearby to see ice carvings at the Aurora Ice Museum. Kayak along the Chena River or brave the chilly waters floating in a tube.

On the southern coast, Anchorage offers opportunities to tour fjords in Prince William Sound, hike in the Chugach Mountains and see the start of the March Iditarod dog sled race. Learn about local history at the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center and see lifelike exhibits at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Enjoy a sandy ocean shoreline at Kincaid Beach or watch Pacific loons and swim in the warmer waters of Goose Lake.

Farther south in Homer, watch commercial fishermen haul in the day’s catch. Even better, charter a fishing boat to cast your own line for salmon or halibut. Hike the Kenai Mountains and ski down the Wosnesenski Glacier.

Alaska’s capital of Juneau is a great spot for whale-watching. Do a glacier walk; you have many sites to choose from: Herbert, Sawyer, Mendenhall Glaciers and Tracy Arm Fjord.

Popular cities in Alaska

Fairbanks
Fairbanks
Known for Seafood, Shopping and Family-friendly
See the northern lights, pan for gold like a pioneer or enjoy the spectacular ice festival in Alaska’s rugged but beautiful heart. 

Reasons to visit

  • Chena Hot Springs
  • Pioneer Park
  • Creamer's Field
Juneau showing a small town or village
Juneau
Known for Seafood, Shopping and Tour
Alaska’s capital is a gateway to some of the area’s most spectacular and accessible sights. Walk on ice fields, witness mammoth glaciers and catch sight of humpback whales.

Reasons to visit

  • Mendenhall Glacier
  • Auke Bay
  • Tracy Arm Fjord
Anchorage which includes street scenes
Anchorage
Known for Shopping, Tour and Skiing
Known as a great place to see the northern lights, this city also offers many extreme adventures, including snow-kiting and ice-bike racing.

Reasons to visit

  • Alaska Botanical Garden
  • Tony Knowles Coastal Trail
Denali featuring land animals, a lake or waterhole and tranquil scenes
Denali
Known for Seafood, Tour and Shopping
This vast Alaskan wilderness of rock and ice includes hiking trails, grizzly and black bears and the highest mountain in North America.

Reasons to visit

  • Denali
  • Wonder Lake
Seward showing signage and fishing
Seward
Known for Port, Tour and Scenery
Explore the dynamic harbor in this historic town that is the Gateway to Kenai Fjords National Park and its snow-capped mountains and lakes.

Reasons to visit

  • Kenai Fjords National Park
Ketchikan
Ketchikan
Known for Shopping, Port and Walking
See the world’s largest collection of standing totem poles and enjoy some of the best sport fishing in the world in this southeastern Alaskan city.