America's largest and most sparsely populated state is given the tagline 'The Last Frontier' for good reason. You could easily be forgiven for forgetting that you are actually in the USA as you step into Alaska's immense and unforgiving wilderness. Purchased by the Americans from Russia in 1876 for $7.2 million, Alaska seriously started paying its way when gold was discovered in the now state capital, Juneau, in 1880 and triggered the gold rush. Remnants of this prosperous and exciting era can still be experienced on a self-drive trip through some of the most renowned pioneer towns and staging posts of the time.
These days, Alaska is famed for its remote, rugged and unparalleled wilderness. The state attracts the most extreme of outdoor enthusiasts with its endless mountain ranges, vast snowfields, glaciers and challenging back country. However you certainly don't have to have Bear Grylls' aspirations in order to experience your own Alaskan adventure.
Wildlife enthusiasts will find themselves in paradise with such an incredible and diverse ecosystem. Be prepared to spot moose, caribou, wolves, grizzly bears, leaping salmon, breaching whales and even polar bears. There are some fantastic guided tour and shore excursion options available, ensuring that your sightings are informative and safe. Additionally, the culinary options in Alaska will not leave you disappointed. Not surprisingly, seafood is high on the agenda. Alaskan salmon is internationally renowned and can be prepared in a variety of ways, including 'candied'. Alaskan king crab is a source of regional pride and sourdough bread actually hails from the Alaskan gold rush days.
A fantastic way to experience the ragged and dramatic Alaskan coastline is to board a cruise from either Seattle or Vancouver and spend a week travelling through the Inside Passage, a coastal route that weaves through the islands of Canada and Alaska's Pacific coast.
Explore Alaska's interior wilderness at Denali National Park
Cruise along the coastal route of Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve
Tuck into deliciously fresh seafood, from lobsters and clams to freshly caught salmon
Visit Katmai National Park and Preserve and spot the brown bears that are drawn to abundant salmon in Brooks Falls
Capital City: Juneau
Languages: English and various native languages
Currency: American Dollar
Time difference: GMT - 9 hours
Flight time: 19 hours to Anchorage or Juneau via Seattle or Calgary
Places to go in Alaska
Here are some of the best places to go in Alaska. Got a few ideas about where you’d like to go or need some help? Call our Travel Designers now: 01483 319 333
Map of Alaska
When to go to Alaska