How was the capital of Alaska chosen
Valdez: Alaska's little Switzerland
The general rule for the best clothing in Alaska is "onion principle". This means that you wear a first layer directly on your body (avoid cotton if possible), over it a second warming layer (e.g. a fleece jacket or similar) and as a third layer a jacket that protects against wind and rain. This makes it easy to put on or take off a layer when the temperature changes.
VUSA tips for sightseeing and excursions in Valdez
Meares glacier excursion
The 9-hour tour is perfect for travelers who want to experience Prince William Sound with its glaciers, exciting wildlife and rich history. The ship takes you through the majestic waters of Prince William Sound - from Valdez to the Meares Glacier. You can see sea otters, seals, sea lions, humpback whales, orcas, porpoises, eagles, puffins and cormorants. The Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises tour takes place from June 1st to August 31st, departure is at 10:00 a.m., arriving back at 7:00 p.m. (Note: the tours do not take place daily!). www.stephenscruises.com
Prince William Sound and Columbia Glacier Tours
Take a ride to the floating icebergs of Columbia Glacier, which you can only see from a small ship, not from the ferry. Stan Stephens offers the 9½ hour Meares Glacier Tour (June 1st to August 31st daily at 10am) and the 6½ hour Columbia Glacier Tour (May 19th to September 16th daily at 12pm). www.stephenscruises.com
Kayak tour providers like Pangea Adventures offer tours of different lengths. For example the 3-hour Duck Flats Tour, the 8-hour Shoup Glacier Tour or the 10-hour Columbia Glacier Tour. www.alaskasummer.com
Small museum with an interesting exhibition about the history of the place, the earthquake of 1964 and the effects of the “Exxon Valdez” oil disaster. Open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. from mid-May to early September. (217 Egan Drive) www.valdezmuseum.org
Valdez Old Town Site
Memorial and remains in the original place of Valdez before the earthquake. To get to the “old” town, take the Richardson Highway about 3 miles north to Mineral Creek Road, turn onto Mineral Creek Road, and continue towards the sea. One arrives directly in the “center” of the former Valdez.
Prince William Sound Community College / Whitney Museum
Large collection of native Alaskan art and artifacts, as well as stuffed wildlife, donated by Jesse & Maxine Whitney. Open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. in summer. www.mjwhitneymuseum.org
Pangea Adventures offers various walks around Valdez. An easy 4-hour glacier hike on the Valdez Glacier and a moderately strenuous to strenuous 5-hour hike on the Worthington Glacier are available daily from mid-June to mid-September.
© Photos Paul Haselmayr, Peter Buocz
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