Attractions December 14, 2021
The Heart And Soul Of Alaska Is The Small Towns And These 7 Have The Best Downtown Areas
There’s no better place to be than the charming, small towns in Alaska. And all seven of these gorgeous spots have fun little downtown areas that are begging to be explored. So the next time you plan a weekend trip, head to one of these unforgettable Alaskan small towns!
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. McCarthy, Alaska
McCarthy, Alaska is a fun little small town located inside Wrangell-St Elias National Park. The gateway to everything beautiful in this area, there’s a small downtown area with a couple of restaurants, a gift store, a general store, and even a saloon. Come check out this peek into what feels like the original Wild Wild West!
2. Ketchikan, Alaska
Ketchikan’s downtown is one you won’t soon forget. Suspended on boardwalks over the creek, this stunning downtown is flagged with colorful buildings and stunning views. There are tons of great places to explore in the area, including art galleries, restaurants, and even places to stay, right on the boardwalk.
3. Skagway, Alaska
Skagway used to be the gateway to the Klondike Gold Rush. Ships would dock in before miners would head on up the Pass and into the Yukon. Downtown Skagway was built up over the years and is now a great area with a ton of history. Stroll around and hit any of the many shops along the way.
4. Talkeetna, Alaska
Talkeetna is pretty famous, especially in the climbing world. Known as the first stop on your travels to Denali Mountain, this town is filled with climbing history! It’s also a stop on the Alaska Railroad, and downtown is filled with fun. Check out Nagley’s Store, an old-time general store, stop and grab a famous pie at the Talkeetna Roadhouse, or hit one of the tasty breweries you can walk to from the railroad.
5. Sitka, Alaska
Sitka’s downtown is gorgeous, with a ton of great little shops lining the street. Sitka, as Alaska’s first capital, is a bustling small town with a big personality. There are wonderful gift shops, cute little cafes, and amazing restaurants all within a great walking distance and within the shadow of the majestic mountains behind them. This is a wonderful downtown to explore!
6. Homer, Alaska
You could say that Homer has three downtowns. You have Old Homer, and the strip of businesses right by the ocean with restaurants, cafes, and art galleries, all near the popular local’s beach Bishops Beach. Or you have the long Homer Spit, a wonderful area filled with restaurants, shops, and bars, situated on the land jutting into Kachemak Bay. Or you have traditional “downtown” Homer, with museums, great food, and even a small movie theater! There are so many great places to explore in Homer.
7. Juneau, Alaska
Juneau is the biggest “small town” on the list, but this is one enviable downtown, so we had to include it. It may be Alaska’s capital, but it has all the charm of any of these small towns on the list. Downtown is perfectly walkable and filled with tons of great Alaska history. Walk down to the docks, hit any of the tasty restaurants, or hike one of the trails that starts right in downtown Juneau.
Have you visited any of these small towns in Alaska? What did you think? Do you have a favorite? Let us know in the comments below!
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