The City of Juneau is ideally located between Mount Juneau and the Gastineau Channel. For thousands of years, the indigenous peoples of the area have fished and hunted in the abundant natural setting. Since the late 19th Century, the Port of Juneau has been a magnet for fur traders and gold prospectors. Visitors to the Port of Juneau can enjoy the Alaskan wilderness as they fish, kayak, dog-sled, watch whales, and hike the glacier at the Juneau Icefield. The Port of Juneau can be reached only by air or by sea, making it a wonderful place for exploration and adventures. For more information on the things to see and do in the Port of Juneau, please visit the city's tourism website.
The Port of Juneau has a humid continental climate. Both the warmest and the wettest part of Alaska, Juneau enjoys milder winter temperatures than elsewhere in the State, and it is wet most of the year. It is located in Alaska's only region where the average daytime temperature rises above freezing during the winter. Temperatures range from an average high of 18 °C (64 °F) in July to an average low of -6 °C (21 °F) in January.
Visitors to the Port of Juneau will want to see the Tongass National Forest, the nation's biggest national forest, that covers most of southeast Alaska including Juneau. The forest offers abundant wildlife including spawning salmon, bears, and majestic eagles. It also offers some of the most fantastic views of the Alaska wilderness. Visitors to the Tongass National Forest can take a dog sled ride on a glacier, fish in the ocean or inland streams, or find a hide-away in a remote cabin. The forest is a wonderland of islands, trees, and rain where most of the roads are deer crossings, and bears stroll the trails. Covering an area the size of West Virginia, the Tongass National Forest is home to more than 400 species of wildlife, fish, and shellfish. Bald eagles and the endangered brown bear thrive there. Visitors can camp in a campground or a cabin. They can hike through thick forest, alpine meadows, or peat bogs. They can explore amazing caves or canoe or kayak the almost endless waterways. Whatever they do while there, visitors will never forget their visit to the Tongass National Forest.
Southeast Alaska's oldest continuously operating church is the Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church in the Port of Juneau. Built in 1893 by Tlingits who had been dreaming of a short white-bearded old man, they built the church to honor St. Nicholas the Wonderworker who they believed was the man they dreamed about. Some 700 Tlingit converted to the Orthodox Christian faith. The small octagonal building has been a refuge for native peoples who were not allowed to use their own language in other churches. Funded by local Port of Juneau residents and the Orthodox Church in Moscow, the many of the interior furnishings (candle stands, censers, chalice sets, festal icons, banners, etc.) are still in use in the church today.
Located near the cruise ship terminal in the Port of Juneau, the Alaska State Museum tells the story of the native cultures, wildlife, history, industry, and art of the State. Russia controlled Alaska for more than a century, and museum collections include items from both the Russian and American colonial periods. The Russian objects include a very rare double-headed eagle emblem that was given to Alexander Baranov by Catherine the Great as well as weapons, tools, utensils, religious icons, and documents from the Russian era. The American collection covers the exploration, transportation, commerce, government, and domestic culture of the first settlers from the United States in the Port of Juneau. The museum also contains artifacts from shipwrecks, the gold rush, mining, mountaineering, fishing and whaling, World War II, and the Exxon Valdez oil spill. The majority of the museum's collection features indigenous life in early Alaska with items from daily life and from ceremonial and sacred native cultures, including three baskets dated to 5000 years ago. The museum also contains a wonderful collection of works by modern Native artists as well as artwork from Alaska's history. The natural history collection contains about 1200 objects.
Travelers who want to visit the Port of Juneau by sea can find a long list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.
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