"Juneau" Top 5 Page for this destination Juneau by starship
Juneau Travel Guide: 369 reviews and 902 photos
[Note: June, 2010 ~ It has now been 4 years since we have visited Alaska, and I have missed visiting it. I am quite jealous of my friend who will be visiting in 2011 for almost a month and will experience parts of the state which I have never seen!! In July, 2006, we visited Juneau for the third time and had a great time seeing & doing some of the things we didn't have a chance to do in 2002 and 2004!! Each time we have visited, I am reminded of what a magnificent state Alaska is and how lucky we are that it became the 49th State of the Union on January 3, 1959. Alaska celebrated 50 years of statehood in 2009 with many commemorative events throughout the state.]
Juneau is marvelously encapsulated by the majesty of the environment surrounding it! If you do a little research on Juneau, you will learn that this remote jewel of a capital can only be reached by air or sea. No roads leading into or out of Juneau make for a somewhat limited and select group of persons who can visit it. Today, almost a million visitors come by cruise ship each year and another 100,000 arrive independently. (Thanks to "RickinDutch" for the updated information on the ever expanding number of visitors to Alaska.)
Perched on the water's edge of the Gastineau Channel, and towered over by mountains which jut up against the Juneau Icefield, Juneau is surrounded by some of the best scenery you will come across anywhere. The attractions here are numerous and enticing and will make you want to spend more than just a day. Juneau offers the opportunity to explore some of the best that Alaska has to offer while still being attached to civilization. You will find plenty of charming B & B's to stay at, interesting places to eat and visit, and don't forget---shopping!
A Few Facts:
Juneau is named for Joseph Juneau, one of a pair of prospectors who were enticed by a mining engineer named George Pilz to lead him to a source of gold in Alaska. Joseph Juneau and Richard T. Harris had reached the Gastineau Channel in August, 1880, but it wasn't until Chief Kowee of the Auk Tlingit tribe urged their return to the area that the pair climbed Snow Slide Gulch and found the "mother lode" of gold in Silver Bow Basin. That October, Harris and Juneau staked 160 acres of land on the shore of the Gastineau Channel and the town of Juneau was born. What was once a seasonal, native fishing village of the Auk-Tlingit tribe became a center of large-scale, hard-rock mining. Even today the surrounding mountains are honeycombed by miles of underground tunnels from the great mines such as the Alaska-Juneau Mine and the Alaska-Gastineau Mine.
Douglas Island, now incorporated into the city of Juneau, was once home to 960 stamping mills of the world renowned Treadwell Gold Mining Company!! Production from Treadwell's four mines peaked in 1915, just two years before a cave-in lead to the flooding of three of the four Treadwell mines. Mining production was further reduced and ultimately ended when World War II lead to shortages of manpower and supplies. Amazingly, there are still more miles of underground mining tunnels than miles of road in all of Juneau!!
When you are in Juneau, you are in the heart of the Tongass National Forest, the largest temperate rainforest in North America!!
This beautiful mural depicts the type of scene that you will forever more connect with Alaska. (Click on the picture to enlarge the detail.) This particular mural is painted on one side of Juneau's City Hall located on the corner of Shatuck Way. When visiting Alaska, or anywhere in the far northwest of North America, it will be impossible for you to miss the fact that the heritage of this region lies largely in its native Indian tribes, also sometimes called "First Nations." The distinctive history of these people is displayed in their art everywhere--from carvings, to jewelry, in clothes, in museums, and painted murals. Take the opportunity to explore the "new" history of Alaska and the Northwest, but don't forget to appreciate the past.
- Pros:Glaciers, Mountains, Water & Wildlife ~ The Outdoor Life!
- Cons:Maybe a few too many rainy days, long hours of darkness in winter!
- In a nutshell:Juneau has breathtaking vistas whether in mist or sun!
UPDATE: In 2015, online posted price is now listed as $20 pp round trip. UPDATE: In 2013, posted price is listed as $16... more travel advice
In the beginning, men & women from lower North America came to Alaska for the same general reason -- gold. Now it's true... more travel advice
- Have Jobs ---- Will Travel!
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- Don't Forget Warm Clothes & Rain Gear
starship's Related Pages
Juneau Travel Guide
Member Travel Pages
- "Independent Traveler's Guide to Juneau"
- "Juneau in Summer"
- "Juneau - Home of the Mendenhall Glacier."
- "Alaska Cruise - Juneau First Port Of Call"
- "Big State, Little Capitol"
- "Cruise Stop: Juneau"
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