The Beautiful Alaska Town That's Surrounded By Water On 3 Sides
Whittier is a sleepy little town that sits between majestic mountains at the head of Passage Canal. Although it’s only 58 miles from Anchorage, you’ll see no signs of the big city here — the population is roughly 208. But what it lacks in livelihood, it certainly makes up for in charm. It also happens to be surrounded by our beautiful waters.
Whittier was originally part of the portage route for the Chugach Natives of Prince William Sound traveling to fish the Turnagain Arm.
Later, Russians and Americans exploring the region began using the passage. The city was officially established during World War II, officially being incorporated in 1969.
Whittier is bordered by Passage Canal on the north side, Blackstone Bay on the south side...
... and if you head west about 7 miles, you'll find the beautiful Portage Lake.
Portage Lake is a popular destination for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking.
The majority of locals live in this large building, Begich Towers.
This 15-story building is now a 196-unit condominium community (complete with an onsite market, laundromat, and more), but in the 1940s, it was an Army barracks.
It's interesting that so many residents of Whittier are essentially living together. This may be a rural town, but it certainly isn't isolated.
And if you're visiting, you can rent one of the bed & breakfast units on the 14th and 15th floors.
Speaking of visiting, getting to this tiny town isn't easy.
Most people arrive by boat. The only other option is taking a long, one-lane tunnel through the mountains, which only runs one way at any given time. At night, they close the tunnel completely.
But those who do make it to Whittier tend to agree that it's worth making the effort.
While you won't find a lot of traditional tourist attractions, the wildlife, ocean views, friendly community and breathtaking nature will be all you need for a wonderful stay.
And while you're there, don't forget to check out the eerie Buckner Building, an abandoned military building.
You'll understand why Whittier was once known as the City Under One Roof.
Would you ever live in a town like Whittier? If this place seems a bit too isolated,
these waterfront towns also make great places to live.
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