Alaska, a mecca for wildlife lovers, outdoor enthusiasts, and anyone looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Alaska is the biggest state in the USA, with the lowest population. California, Texas, and Montana can all fit into Alaska. It's also home to the highest point in North America, Mount McKinley. Alaska also lies partially inside the Arctic Circle. Alaska has about a dozen scattered hostels, and the state offers amazing hiking, mountain climbing, snow trekking, skiing, mountain biking, and wildlife spotting opportunities - the opportunities are almost endless.
Alaska's highlights include Denali National Park, home to Mount McKinley (also known as Denali). The Kenai Peninsula, with its numerous hiking trails. Glacier Bay National Park, which can only be visited by cruise ship or boat. The Northern Lights, which can be sighted during the spring and autumn (fall) months each year. For the best opportunities to see the Northern Lights, get away from any towns or cities, and turn off all lights (car lights, etc.). Juneau, the state's capital, which can only be reached by air or boat. Seeing the salmon spawning, watching the salmon swim upstream is almost mesmerizing.
The best and most popular ways to visit Alaska is either by cruise ship, or by renting a car and driving around Alaska. You can also get around by plane, train, bus, bike, and boat. Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska, and has all the usual city facilities and amenities. Fairbanks is the second largest city and also has all the usual city amenities.
Accommodation options can vary throughout the entire state. There are about a dozen cities in Alaska with hostels. The smaller towns are going to have less options, maybe a couple of motels, hotels and occasionally hostels. In rural areas, wilderness hostels can sometimes be found, these are primitive hostels that may not have wifi or sometimes even electricity. Camping is a popular opportunity, but make sure you take precautions, Alaska is home to many wild bears, cougars, and coyotes. Make sure you carry the correct equipment, and get the latest updates from the ranger. Also make yourself familiar with what you should do if you do happen to come across a bear or cougar.
Hi, I'm Kelly Sheldrick,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Alaska hostels. Welcome.
Anchorage is a world class city. One of my 5 favorite cities in the US.
Seward is a nice little town. The hike at Hardings ice field is a damn good day hike. Reasonably strenuous and we saw a bear and 2 cubs. We had a great lunch at Harbour Dinner Club. Surprisingly, sea food is expensive in Alaska. Expect to pay $20 per head. Another thing to do in Seward is the resurrection Bay Cruise …
The harbor in Juneau has the feel of a movie set -- it has been ruined by the big cruise ships.