Alaska is an amazing place to visit and as the largest state in the US, it is hard to see everything in just one visit. No matter if you are an adventurer, art or history lover, or hope to catch that next 200-pound Halibut, Alaska has you covered. There are some definite things that you don’t want to miss when visiting Alaska, so make sure to do a little bit of homework before your vacation. Just in case you don’t have time to research things, here is a quick Don’t Miss This in Alaska roundup for you.
Summer or Winter Solstice
On Summer Solstice, the Midnight Sun never sets and there is 24 hours of sunlight. Every town in Alaska has a celebration in honor of this momentous occasion. Anchorage has the Mayor’s Midnight Sun Marathon that day and you can then enjoy a cold brew at the Midnight Sun Brewery. This day is a big deal in Alaska! The Winter Solstice occurs in late December and is the darkest day of the year. It too has a big celebration as it signals that the days will now start to lighten up and the darkness of winter is behind.
Alaska is known for its sport fishing from 200-pound Halibuts in the Gulf of Alaska to salmons spawning up the Kenai River. People come from all over the world to Homer and Seward, Alaska to try their pole in the Halibut Derby every summer. In mid-June the salmon season starts and you can see miles of fishermen along the banks of the most recognized salmon-river in the world, the Kenai.
The old way of life of the first Alaskans and early setters is a sense of pride in this state. Almost every town has a museum documenting how it was settled and how it has progressed. You can spend your entire trip in Alaska visiting old and new museums from Anchorage to Soldotna.
Iditarod Dog Sledding Race
In the winter months the one thing on most Alaskans minds is the Iditarod. You have to qualify to compete in this coveted dog-mushing race that spans over two weeks. It is a sight to see! If you come in the summer, you can still take a helicopter up to the mountains and go on a dog-mushing ride. You can also travel along the same course as the Iditarod and start in Seward, AK at the famous Mile 0 post.
Hike back to a glacier and see the ice that was formed thousands of years ago. Take a cruise of around Alaska and watch as the glaciers calve, or break off into the ocean. If you go with a guide up a glacier there is a good chance that he can show you how to drink water from that pure water source!
Thank you to Kristi Trimmer for sharing her insights of Alaska in this post!