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Things To Do In Alaska
For most, the idea of Alaska is that of a dark, dingy land, covered in perpetual snow and bitter cold. That is, however, not true. In fact, Alaska is a place that sees the highest amount of sunlight (almost 24 hours) during the peak of summer. The phenomenon of midnight sun is experienced here, as is that of the northern lights. There are alpine meadows as well as green covered mountains and white glaciers, salmon fishes swimming in rivers and dark bears stuttering about in forests. Why, you even get to see the quintessential American Bald Eagles in the skies of Alaska!
Now you definitely changed your mind and are checking your calendar for the next trip to this beautiful piece of land, isn’t it? Then read on to get an idea on what other things you can do in Alaska.
Enjoy a day at Denali National Park
Denali National Park is a reserve and one of the largest parks in all of America. It has been on the front of Alaska’s tourism brochure for the longest time and attracts tourists in summer. You can go to the park for a leisure tour of its alpine forests, treks up hills and even the mighty Mount McKinley, view awesome glaciers glinting in the sunlight and look out for animals. Some of the best animal sightings here happen in the peak of summer, between July and August, when the bears are out of hibernation and other flocks of animals are also collecting food. You will be astounded to see elks, reindeer, wolves as well as black grizzly bears.
Go see the Northern Lights
The Northern Lights are a stunning phenomena observed in the extreme north and south poles in the thick of winters, when the pollution is almost nil. A symphony of coloured dancing lights, from green to blue, yellow to reds sparkle the sky depending on the mood of the sky. Alaska is one of the major destinations of the world where you can see Northern Lights, also called the Aurora borealis during the winter months. Fairbanks is the best town to see these lights and sends out regular forecasts to invite people at the right time to its many viewing platforms. Brooks Range and Anchorage also make for decent places. You can usually see Northern Lights between 10 pm and 2 am.
Have an Outing
You can’t go to Alaska and just sit at cafes or trail down shops. It is a very physical, outdoorsy kind of a place. One thing you must do in Alaska is spend time outing, in the lap of natural landscape, forests, mountain glaciers and the clear cloudless sky. You can visit the Portage Glacier, Glacier Bay for trekking and fishing, Juneau for whale watching, Indian Village to learn about the Native Americans, and take a train down the Alaska Railroad for the full, Alaskan experience. There is also kayaking, flight-seeing, hiking and river rafting for takers in summer. While you can go dog sledding, Nordic skiing, dipping in hot springs, ice fishing and meeting eskimos in winter.
Visit Santa Claus at North Pole
Santa Claus lives in North Pole, that much we all knew. But where is this North Pole was something most as children wondered. Well, it is not the geographical North Pole of the Earth but a small, close-knit town in Alaska where Santa’s home and post office is. This town is dipped in Christmas spirit all year round and everything here revolves around the myth of Nicolas Claus, from the toy making shops to the post office that receives letters from children all over the world. A visit to this magical town is a must, especially if you are travelling during Christmas.
Address of Mr. Claus: 101 St Nicholas Dr, North Pole, AK 99705, USA.
Take the Kenai Fjords Tour
Kenai Fjords National Park is just off the small town of Seward near Anchorage. The Park is known for its beautiful stretches of ancient crystal-like glaciers, grey humpback whales, orcas, sea lions, arctic birds, seals, and porpoises. With such an exotic collection of fauna and a great clean environment to cleanse your aura, Kenai Fjords National Park is a perfect place to relax as well as enjoy yourself. Regular tours commence from Seward and even Anchorage and the best time to take them is the month of July.
Animals of the North
Like there is a King of the North, there are some pretty exotic animals of the North. In Fairbanks town of Alaska, you will encounter some mountain and snow animals that you have only probably read about in children’s books or imagined in the era of Ice Age. Think Dall sheep, Mountain goats, Harbour seals, owls and Bald Eagles. Other Arctic wildlife of Alaska you must see up in the north includes reindeer, musk ox, ptarmigan, Arctic fox, Moose and the beautiful Polar Bear. Do make it a point to take up the Running Reindeer Ranch Tour when going to Fairbanks.
Dogsledding is not just a pretty Christmas activity but Alaska’s national sport. In winters, you must visit an Iditarod kennel and either be a spectator to the race training, or sit beside the driver and have the time of your life. You literally feel like Santa himself, pulled by his seven reindeers in his sleigh. Mendenhall Glacier outside Juneau is one of the most coveted trails where you can enjoy dogsledding, followed by Fairbanks and Seward. If you happen to go to Alaska in summer, worry not, because tours fly you to areas with thick glacial cover where you can indulge in dogsledding.