Alaska’s beautiful tundras, dramatic mountain ranges, and vast wilderness make the state one of the most exciting places to visit in the world. From trekking across (and even inside) glaciers to taking a road trip along the Alaska Highway, an adventure to Alaska guarantees adrenaline, excitement, and unique experiences.
While the chilly climate means that most people think that the best time to sail to Alaska is during the summer, in reality, there are exciting adventures to be had year-round…you just need to choose what to do and where to visit carefully!
Even in the depths of winter, there are some thrilling experiences to be discovered in Alaska. So if you feel like finding out what makes the Last Frontier such an amazing vacation destination, here are some of the best adventures you can have in Alaska depending on the season.
Things to Do in the Summer in Alaska
Summer is when most people visit Alaska, as the weather is milder and more places are accessible. The whole of the state opens up to you during the summer months, and there are some truly spectacular things to see and do.
Glacier Bay National Park is one of the most exciting and interesting destinations in Alaska, and a must-visit during the summer months. Home to 16 tidewater glaciers it offers stunning views, as well as some of the most exciting wildlife the state has to offer, including humpback whales, seals, eagles, and otters. A cruise across Glacier Bay itself and around the park is one of the best ways to take in its stunning scenery.
If you are feeling active, summer is the best time to go hiking and camping in Alaska. Try exploring the Chugach Mountains, where a great network of trails, some excellent campsites, and a number of rivers and streams for kayaking make it perfect for outdoor lovers.
Things to Do in the Fall in Alaska
The temperatures begin to drop as fall rolls in, but that doesn’t make Alaska any less interesting to visit. September and October are the ideal months for bear-watching, and you can head to Katmai National Park, Lake Clark, or Kodiak Island, to see these remarkable creatures in their natural habitat.
Fall is also a great time to see the Northern Lights in Alaska. This amazing natural light show can be found across the state, but Fairbanks is considered to be the ultimate destination for Aurora Borealis fans.
Things to Do in the Winter in Alaska
Winter in Alaska is only for the brave, but if you can face the frozen temperatures it is a magical time to be there. From the famous Iditarod dog sled race and Trek Over the Top snowmobile trip to cross-country skiing and ice fishing, there’s so much going on that you’ll never be bored. You can even visit the Santa Claus House in the wonderfully named town of North Pole for a charming Christmas experience.
Winter is also a wonderful time for a scenic drive along the Seward Highway to the vibrant city of Anchorage, where the annual Folk Festival takes place in January.
Things to Do in the Spring in Alaska
As the weather starts to improve again and the snow starts to thaw (in some places!), Alaska once again offers opportunities for more casual tourism. You can hike trails that are inaccessible during the winter months, and drive down roads that are often blocked by snow. Whales return to the coastline, and heading to Juneau for a whale-watching expedition is one of the best spring experiences Alaska has to offer.
For a slightly alternative experience, why not head to Crow Creek Historic Gold Mine, just outside Anchorage, and try your hand at panning for gold in the river? Or take a scenic flightseeing tour to see the extraordinary natural beauty of Alaska from the air.
More Places to Visit in Alaska and the Yukon
About the Photo
The photo above is of the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights. It was taken in Alaska, USA, by Jane B.
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