Alaska November 10, 2017
11 Tiny Towns In Alaska Where The Closest Civilization Is Miles And Miles Away
Alaska has as many villages on the rivers and coasts as there are perfect spots to make a home. These tiny towns are extremely remote by the standards of most of the U.S. Travel here is along the rivers and shoreline in boats and on 4-wheelers in the summer, and dog sled and snow machine in the winters. Bush planes are a year-round mode of transportation.
Modern Alaskan village life is a fascinating mix of ancient and modern. Subsistence living is the way of life and hunting, fishing, and gathering berries are still major occupations. However, high-speed internet and cellphones live alongside the simple way of life that people have practiced in the great land since time immemorial. Tiny towns, in Alaska referred to as “villages,” are fascinating places and if you ever get the chance to travel or work somewhere remote in Alaska, take it. You will fall in love with the natural beauty, the peaceful mindset, and the friendly Alaskans.
See a map of the villages here.
1. Fort Yukon, Northeast.
A Gwich'in Village in the Arctic noted for having the highest temperature on record in Alaska: 100 degrees. It lies near the junction of the Yukon and Porcupine Rivers and has a population of around 500 and is 145 north of NNE Fairbanks.
2. Point Hope, Northwest.
This Inupiaq village of more than 600 people lies on the shore of the Chukchi Sea. Known for its traditional whaling and the amazing cultural festival each Spring for the harvest. Point Hope is one of the oldest continually occupied sites in North America.
3. Kaktovik, Northeast.
This village in the far north was historically a major trade center for the Inupiat and was especially important as a bartering place for Inupiat from Alaska and Inuit from Canada. This tiny town of around 300 residents is definitely isolated and has maintained an Inupiaq traditional way of life.
4. Shishmaref, Western Alaska.
This village is on the edge of the world on Sarichef Island in the Chukchi Sea, just north of the Bering Strait. With a population of around 550, this community thrives miles and miles away from the rest of the world.
5. Galena, Interior.
A village of about 450, Galena was an area populated by Koyukon Athabascan fish camps in the summer months. Next, it became a Gold Rush trading camp, then a WWII military airfield. Galena is currently rebuilding after a catastrophic flood in 2013, but efforts continue to save this long-standing community.
6. Arctic Village, Northwest.
The village is located in the large Gwich'in speaking region of Alaska, and the local dialect is known as Di'haii Gwich'in or Kutchin. Of the roughly 150 residents, 95 percent of them speak and understand the local dialect.
7. Unalakleet, Western.
Unalakleet is known for excellent salmon and king crab harvests and the residents rely heavily on wild foods to survive including caribou, ptarmigan, and oogruk (bearded seal) in addition to the bounty of the sea. About 600 people live in this beautiful spot on the Bering Sea and next to the Unalakleet River, with trees, tundra, and hills in the distance.
8. Minto, Interior.
An Athabascan Village located on Minto Spur Road off the Elliot Highway, Minto lies directly in the heart of Alaska. The village is located on a bluff above the Tolovana River flats, which contain several lakes formed by the flow of the river. Their language is Lower Tanana, one of eleven Athabaskan languages spoken in Alaska.
9. Togiak, Southwest.
This village of around 800 lies in Togiak National Wildlife Refuge and is the gateway to Walrus Island Game Sanctuary. This is a very picturesque spot in the southwest where the river has abundant catches of all five species of salmon.
10. Savoonga, St. Lawrence Island.
Savoonga is located on St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Sea and the population is around 600. The people practice subsistence hunting for walrus, seals, fish, and bowhead whales. Due to the abundant populations of sea mammals, the city calls itself the "Walrus Capital of the World." The area also boasts hundreds of thousands of nesting auklets in the rocky terrain near the village, as seen in the photo.
11. Kake, Southeast.
Kake, pronounced like "cake," is on the northwest coast of Kupreanof Island in the Alexander Archipelago in the southeast. About 700 people enjoy the life of abundance as the sea is generous in this part of Alaska.
Read about a tiny town on the Canadian Border in
This Tiny Town In Alaska Is Like Nowhere Else On Earth. Here is an article about a tiny town in Southeast: The Tiny Town In Alaska Where You Can Retire In Peace And Never Pay Taxes.
If you live in any of these villages, or used to, let us know! Comment below with your location.