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Surrounding Area, Anchorage

There are a number of towns and attractions in the Anchorage surrounding area which can be accessed by road or air.

Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge

The Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge encompasses more than 2,400 islands and reefs off the Alaskan coast. The area stretches from Cape Lisburne to the tip of the Aleutian Islands and covers 4.5 million acres. The area is particularly known for sea birds. Over 40 million are provided nesting habitats in and around the refuge.
Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge has active volcanoes, forests of kelp and beaches of sea lions and fur seals.
Official site: alaskamaritime.fws.gov
Address: 95 Sterling Highway, Suite 1, Homer, AK 99603, United States

Chiswell Islands

The Chiswell Islands are located southwest of Kenai Fjords National Park and are part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. The islands are rocky and rugged with steep cliffs and serve as a nesting site of seabirds. Sea lions are also a common sight in the area.

Kenai Peninsula

The Kenai Peninsula is a known for the glaciers and fantastic scenery of Kenai Fjords National Park.

Girdwood, Alaska

An old miners shack in Girdwood.
Girdwood was originally named Glacier City and was a prosperous gold mining town until the 1930s. Mine closures left the community a virtual ghost town. In 1964, the Good Friday earthquake turned the town to rubble and forced it to relocate 2 1/2 miles inland.
Today the town is primarily a recreation area and known as one of the premier Alaskan ski resorts. Girdwood is located at the base of Mount Alyeska, with opportunity to ascend to 2,300 feet on the 60 passenger tramway and enjoy panoramic views.

Alyeska Ski Resort

Climbers on the Alyeska Glacier in the Girdwood Valley.
In 1959, the first chair lift and a day lodge was built at Alyeska. It is now is Alaska's largest ski resort, with an elevation of 3,939 feet. Five double chair lifts service the hill which consists of large open bowls above the tree line and some tree lined runs at the lower levels.
Official site: www.alyeskaresort.com
Address: Box 249, Girdwood, AK 99587, United States

Palmer - Musk Ox Farm and Museum

The Musk Ox Farm is a non-profit organization located in Palmer. Visitors can view the animals and photograph one of the Arctic's oldest living species. Tours are available offering details on the history of the musk ox as well as how they have been domesticated.
The Musk Ox Project promotes the use of qiviut (the fine under-wool of the musk ox) in the Arctic native textile industry. Villages throughout Alaska create scarves, nachaqs (Eskimo smoke rings) and luxurious caps using traditional designs.
Official site: www.muskoxfarm.org
Address: Box 587, Palmer, AK 99645, United States

Valdez, Alaska

Shoup Glacier in Valdez.
Valdez (pop. 4,100) was relocated 4 miles west of its original location following the tsunami produced by the Good Friday earthquake in 1964. It is the southern terminus for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Narrated tours of the Alaska Pipeline and some of the Valdez facilities are available through local tour agencies.
Valdez is home to 5 glaciers which can be reached by by cruising, flying, walking or driving. Summer activities include flightseeing by helicopter, spectacular views of mountains, glaciers, historical sights, and a visit to Prince William Sound.

Valdez Museum and Historical Archive

The Valdez Museum features displays on the local history, including pioneer, the gold rush, the pipeline, the Exxon Valdez oil spill, and the 1964 Good Friday earthquake.
The historical collections of the Valdez Museum contain artifacts, textiles, photographs, and documents that trace the history of the community.
Remembering Old Valdez is located several blocks away from the museum and it highlights the period in time surrounding the Good Friday Earthquake.
Official site: www.valdezmuseum.org
Address: Box 8, Valdez, AK 99686, United States

Maxine & Jesse Whitney Museum

The Maxine & Jesse Whitney Museum was made possible through the generous donation of Mrs. Maxine Whitney. Reportedly the largest private collection of Native Alaskan art and artifacts, the Whitney's collected works of art from local artists over a 50 year period.
The museum is located at Prince William Sound Community College.
Address: 303 Lowe Street, Valdez, AK 99686, United States

Cordova, Alaska

Waterfall at Prince William Sound.
Cordova (pop. 2,454) is a small fishing town which was once the terminus of the Cooper River Northwest Railroad. Located along Prince William Sound, the nearby surroundings consist of the Chugach Mountain Range and Chugach National Forest. Today Cordova's main focus is commercial fishing.
An awesome sight are the tens of thousands of shorebirds that frequent Hartney Bay, the salmon found at Alaganik Slough and visitors can explore Orca Inlet.

Cordova Museum

The Cordova Museum offers a variety of displays on Native heritage, European exploration, mining, and railroading. Art by Alaskan artists is also displayed, including works by Sydney Laurence, Eustace Ziegler and Jules Dahlager.
Official site: www.cordovamuseum.org
Address: Box 391, Cordova, AK 99574, United States

Lake Clark National Park and Preserve

Calm day on Lake Clark.
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve offers a variety of landscapes and ecosystems. The park encompasses areas of the Chigmit Mountains and the Aleutian Ranges, with glaciers, volcanoes, and the 40 mile long Lake Clark. The area offers great fishing and wildlife viewing opportunities.
Within the Lake Clark National Park, the Telaquana Trail is an historic Dena'ina Athabascan route that connected the Dena'ina with major villages. Today backpackers mainly use the trail.
Official site: www.nps.gov/lacl
Address: Field Headquarters, 1 Park Place, Port Alsworth, AK 99653, United States

Chugach State Park

Powerline Pass, Chugach Mountains.
Chugach State Park near Anchorage covers 700 square miles, making it the third largest state park in the United States. The terrain of mountains, rivers, lakes and glaciers is home to wolves, moose, bears, beavers, lynx, and other wildlife. It is a popular area for hiking, skiing, and camping.
Potter Point Section House, at mile 115 on the Seward Highway is the park office.
Official site: www.dnr.state.ak.us/parks
Address: 550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1260, Anchorage, AK 99501-3557, United States

Wolf Song of Alaska, Eagle River, Alaska

Wolf Song of Alaska has a museum and education center to educate the public about the wolf. There are dioramas to show wolves in their natural habitat along with other species that call Alaska home. Exhibits focus on interactions between wolves and their prey as well as wolves' behavior and the social structure of their packs.

Wasilla, Alaska

The city of Wasilla tooks its name in honor of Chief Wasilla, a local Dena'ina Athabascan Indian Chief. It served as an ideal supply staging point for the Kantishna Gold Mining area, mines in the Talkeetna area, and eventually grew to a population of over 7,000 through the Alaskan oil boom of the 1970s and 1980s.

Museum of Alaska Transportation and Industry

Numerous outdoor exhibits explore the history of transportation and industry in Alaska. The Museum of Alaska Transportation and Industry in Wasilla displays aircraft, boats, tractors, snowmobiles, dog sleds, railroad cars, automobiles, and other related articles.
Official site: www.museumofalaska.org
Address: 3800 West Museum Drive, Wasilla, AK 99687, United States

Dorothy G. Page Museum & Historic Town Site

The Dorothy G. Page Museum was created to preserve, research, and exhibit the cultural and historical heritage of Wasilla, Knik and Willow Creek. Visitors can also explore historic homes and buildings in Wasilla.
Address: 323 North Main Street, Wasilla, AK 99654, United States

Whittier, Alaska

The ocean front at Whittier.
In the summer of 2000 the Anderson Memorial Tunnel for trains, was opened to automobiles. The single lane, 2.5 mile tunnel, which allows access to the town of Whittier, now services both trains and automobiles at alternating times. The town itself (pop. 1,855) offers beautiful mountain and coastal scenery.

College Fiord

Alaska College Fjord with surrounding mountains.
College Fiord is an isolated bay with dramatic scenery. It is frequently visited by cruise ships which come into this area for close up views of glaciers.
College Fiord is ideal for kayakers looking for a more remote location. There is hiking opportunities and evidence from the gold rush days.
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