Things You Should Not Miss
Denali National Park and Preserve - Located between Anchorage
and Fairbanks, Denali includes the Alaska Range and Mt. McKinley, North
America's highest mountain at 20,320 feet high. A visitor center
services guests on the north side of the park from late April to the
end of September. Expect to encounter wildlife here ranging from
grizzly bears, wolves and moose. The park is accessible by car
along Alaska Route 3, and by train to the park entrance, the Alaska
State Railroad (Picture above). There are sled dog
demonstrations several times per year, ranger-guided walks, and an
orientation slide program at the Visitor Center.
Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve - The spectacular scenario of Glacier Bay with its flow of glaciers and snowcap mountains rising 15,000 above sea level provide an awe inspring treat for visitors to Alaska. With its diverse habitats and wildlife, Glacier Bay provides a glimpse into a world far away from the experience of most continental visitors. The visitor center is open from late May to early September, with the remainder of the park open all year. There are no roads to Glacier Bay National Park and getting there must be done by plane or boat. Once there, the best way to see the park is by boat, with a day long journey provided by a park concession. There is no entrance free the park itself. Glacier Bay is located north of Juneau on the north end of the Alaska panhandle.
Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park - Located in Skagway, northwest of Juneau, the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, the park includes a six block historical district within the town itself, the Dyea ghost town, and the Chilkoot trail. The 15 restored buildings within Skagway from the 1897 gold rush era. Klondike is the most visited of all National Park Service parks in Alaska and is easy to get to, by car via the Klondike Highway, or by small plane, the Alaska Marine Highway, or train/bus during the summer months. It is no longer necessary to carry 2,000 pounds of supplies over the Chilkoot Trail to get there.
Sitka National Historic Park - Located in a temperate rain forest, this oldest of the Alaska federal parks commemorates the final major conflict between Europeans and the Alaskan natives in the 1804 Battle of Sitka. The smallest of the NPS parks in Alaska, Sitka should not be missed for its 1843 structure, the Russian Bishop's House, the Memorial to the Russian Midshipmen and the trails along the Indian River. Open year round, although some programs are by appointment only from October to mid-May. Located on Baranof Island on the southeast panhandle and available by sea or land only.
Lodging and Camping
The opportunities to fish, nature watch, and just plain enjoy the grand vistas of Alaska abound all over the state and there are a variety of lodging and camping opportunities everywhere. Remember, the tourist season, past those looking for winter fun, is relatively short, but it is grand. Check out the various travel websites and tourists organizations listed on this page and others for the best opportunities for you. And be careful, this is a wild and wonderful land.
Alaska National Park and Historic Site List
- Alagnak WIld River
- Aleutian World War II National Historic Area
- Aniakchak National Monument & Preserve
- Bering Land Bridge National Preserve
- Cape Krusenstern National Monument
- Denali National Park & Preserve
- Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve
- Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve
- Inupiat Heritage Center
- Katmai National Park & Preserve
- Kenai Fjords National Park
- Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park
- Kobuk Valley National Park
- Lake Clark National Park & Preserve
- Noatak National Preserve
- Sitka National Historical Park
- Western Arctic National Parklands
- Wrangell-St. Elias National Park & Preserve
- Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve
America's Best History Historic Travel TipGet outside. One of the best parts of a National Park vacation is spending time in the fresh air. There is no doubt that a lot of U.S. history is steeped in the historic sites of Philadelphia, or Boston, or Washington, D.C. where our forefathers spent time in brick buildings and cobblestone streets, however, one of the best things about American history is the history of the land itself. This is where Alaska shines. Take advantage of it, ... nature, at its most glorious.
Alaska Then and Now
|The Native Alaskans
- Pictured above of Knik Chief Nikaly and his family, in Anchorage
1905. Life by 1905 for most native Alaskans was better than it
had been during the Russian era, but marginally so. Both the
Klondike and Alaskan gold rushes were all but petered out by this time
and the era of fish canneries and copper mining was just beginning.
Settlement and Towns - By the beginning of the 20th century, the vestiges of settlement had begun to take on the aspects of traditional United States life in the lower states as the postcard of William Duncan and his church and town of Metlakahtia, Alaska denotes.
The Tourism Industry Begins - Among the photographs in the booklet, "A Trip Through Alaska," the picture of Treadwell, Alaska pictures shows scenes meant to entice tourists north in 1905. Not so different from today.
|There are so many national parks
and historic sites within this huge state that it's almost impossible
to visit them all. They are vareid and far apart. To the right is
a list of some of the best, although for most, they have their
favorites, which may not be on that list. Below is a list of the
national parks in the state. Some of rarely visited, as you can
see in the visitor statistics section above. Oh, yes, they are
visited by a lot of wildlife, including cariboo and polar bears and a
whole lot more, too.
Alaska National Historic Sites List
Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Site - Alaska
Denali National Park
Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve
Sitka National Historic Park
Kenai Fjords National Park
Wrangall-St. Elias National Park & Preserve
Katmai National Park
Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve
Noatak National Preserve
Lake Clark National Park
Kobuk Valley National Park
Cape Krusenstern National Monument
Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve
Bering Land Bridge National Preserve
Aniakchak National Monument & Preserve