Alaska Summer – A Dream Vacation
By: Courtney Dowd-Stanley
Visiting Alaska during the prime summer months is an experience unlike anything else in the world. Each year, travelers from all around the globe make their way to the Last Frontier to see the rugged wilderness that shines with magnificent beauty. After accessing the 49th state via plane, cruise, or automobile, visitors have the opportunity to enjoy a seemingly unlimited amount of natural wonders and outdoor recreational activities. The only problem is that once you visit this prized state, you’ll probably never want to leave. Alaska’s bounty is like nowhere else on planet earth.
1: The fishing! Once you’ve reeled in a massive salmon, halibut, trout, or steelhead from the prolific lakes, rivers, streams, and ocean waters of Alaska… you’ll be ruined for life.
2: The mountains! You may have seen ample peaks before, but Alaska’s summits are sure to amaze you. Not only is Alaska home to the highest mountain in North America, Denali (20,320 feet of pure glory), but 12 of the 20 highest peaks in the United States are also located in the 49th state.
3: Two words: king crab! Dive in and experience a succulent explosion of flavor that is sure to put you in a state of seafood euphoria. This is what livin’ is all about!
4: Not to mention… once you feast on the brilliant red flesh of a Copper River salmon fillet (or any wild Alaska salmon for that matter), your tastebuds will be begging you to relocate to this seafood paradise.
5: The small town charm. Once you visit places like Homer, Talkeetna, Healy, Seward, Soldotna, Tok, Palmer, Willow, Cantwell, Kenai, Seldovia, Valdez, or Whittier – you’ll feel right at home.
6: The friendly locals. They might be a little wild with a dash of weird, but there is something extra-special about Alaska residents.
7: The scenic drives. It’ll be hard to go back to where you came from, after driving on the Seward Highway, Old Glenn Highway, Old Denali Highway, George Parks Highway, Edgerton Highway, or the Richardson Highway. Road trippin’ has never looked so good!
8: The midnight sun. Sure you might miss those starry summer nights from back home, but the midnight sun delivers two times the summer break. Now THAT is majorly awesome.
9: The aurora borealis! The northern lights have the magical ability to captivate visitors to the point that they want to drop everything and move to Alaska. Yes, they are actually THAT incredible. If you’re visiting during the summer, your best chances of spotting the lights will likely be towards the end of the season (September) on a clear, dark night.
10: The cultural charm. Learning about the indigenous people of the Last Frontier is easy to do with so many museums and interactive exhibits. Alaska Native culture varies throughout each region, making it easy for visitors to want to stay longer to keep on learning and exploring.
11: Have a soft spot for America’s most beloved companions? Dogs are family in Alaska, and visitors are quick to fall in love with all those adorable sled dogs and the official Alaska state sport of dog mushing.
12: The ability to transport yourself to the past. Alaska is filled with rich history and features everything from magnificent mines that were abandoned after the Gold Rush, to idyllic towns that survived the horrific 1964 Good Friday Earthquake. Everywhere you go in Alaska has a story worth learning about.
13: Alaska is an outdoor playground, perfect for recreational enthusiasts. If you enjoy hiking, biking, kayaking, golfing, birding, surfing, whitewater rafting, flightseeing, ziplining, mining, hunting, or fishing… Alaska has exactly what you’re looking for!
14: The ability to feel like you’re a million miles away from it all. Yes, Alaska summers attract millions of visitors from all around the world. But it is also the largest state in the nation, making it easy for people to come enjoy the great 49th state, sans the crowds.
15: The sunsets and scenic vistas—nothing else compares. This is HEAVEN ON EARTH!
Well there you have it, adventure hounds! If you’re planning on traveling to Alaska this summer, don’t be too alarmed if you end up never wanting to leave. North to the future!
Looking for more where that came from? Check out Girdwood, Alaska – Named Among World’s 10 Greatest Mountain Towns. Or, Explore Magnificent Scenery Inside Alaska’s First State Park – Kachemak Bay. Also, check out 55 Ways Alaska Is America’s Outcast… And Why We Love It That Way.