In the late 1800s, fortune-seekers headed to Skagway, known as the “Gateway to the Klondike,” on their way to the White Pass and Chilkoot Trails during Alaska’s Gold Rush. Today, this cozy town is one of the most popular stops on the Inside Passage route for Alaska cruise lines. It retains much of its old charm, with rustic boardwalks and storefronts that transport you back to the old west.
You don’t want to miss a stroll down Broadway, where jewelry stores, unique retail shops, and local restaurants compete for your attention. The Visitor’s Center, Museum of Alaskan History, and National Park office give you a great feel for the area’s history, with hand-on displays and fascinating stories. “Ladies of the night” beckon from the Historic Brothel Museum as you meander along the rustic boardwalks and past frontier-style storefronts.
For a unique tour, try the Eagle Preserve Rafting and Wildlife Quest or The White Pass Scenic Railway.
If you prefer to hike, Dewey Lake, Devil’s Punchbowl, and Sturgill’s Landing are well-marked trails. Like in most of Alaska’s port towns, you can try your hand at gold mining, ziplining, or fishing. However, if you really want a special experience, take a helicopter ride to a nearby glacier that serves as a temporary home to a dog-musher’s camp. Meet the Alaskan huskies and the mushers themselves, some of whom have competed in the IDITAROD. Then enjoy a ride around the track, take your turn steering the sleigh, and “train” some new puppies by simply cuddling them!
Photos courtesy of Tradd Harter.
Ready to check out Skagway and other Alaska destinations? Our Alaska expert Natalie can offer plenty of insight from her many years of experience planning dozens of Alaska land and cruise vacations for our happy clients. Set up a consultation today!