Southeast Alaska may be part of the United States, but it sits in an icy wonderland separated from the rest of the country. It is a mostly wild place, with disconnected cities and towns that are reminiscent of the late 1800’s. Glaciers move in minuscule increments while whales play off the shore. This area of Alaska is pristine and, thanks to American Cruise Lines, today’s Outpost is all about what the traveler can find here.
Juneau, the capital of Alaska and second-largest city by area in the United States, has no roads leading to another city. It lies at the base of Mount Juneau, where the traveler can see glaciers atop the mountain from the roads below. These are the Mendenhall Glacier and the Lemon Creek Glacier. The city is split in two, with a ferry to take the traveler from part of town to the other. Downtown still has a look reminiscent of the late 1800’s, early 1900’s. The calm and laid-back atmosphere will let the traveler get away from it all and be surrounded by nature in all directions.
North of Juneau is Skagway, a small town with the population of 1,057 that doubles in the summer tourist season. It is a quaint town, with store fronts that remain traditional in the vein of the Gold Rush era. A popular port for cruise ships, the passengers will find about 100 buildings from this era. Known for the setting of Jack London’s The Call of the Wild, travelers looking for the wonder of nature will not be disappointed by Skagway’s out-of-the-way appeal.
There are other natural areas that are not so close to cities and towns, such as Glacier Bay. This national park and wildlife reserve covers 3.3 million acres of mountains, glaciers, rainforest, wild coastlines, and fjords that are untouched by the hand of man. Tracy Arm, south of Juneau, is a fjord with 1,500-foot vertical cliffs jutting into the air. At the end of the fjord is the North and South Sawyer Glacier, an impressive sight at the end of a trip through the vertical cliffs.
The coasts and mountains of southeast Alaska are perfect for the traveler looking to get away from the noise of civilization. That’s why American Cruise Lines has created their 8-day/7-night Southeast Alaska Cruise. With stops to all the aforementioned places, the traveler will be taken care of with pleasant, comfortable accommodations and breathtaking views of whales, eagles, and scenic shorelines.