Routes to the Klondike Gold Strike
Skagway boasts some of the most dramatic terrain in all of Southeast Alaska and may be the best-preserved artifact from North America’s biggest, most storied gold rush. This combination offers unparalleled sightseeing and recreational opportunities.
The town sits nestled at the northernmost point of a narrow glaciated coastal valley. Formed during the last ice age it is the largest and deepest fjord in North America. In 1897, this distinctive location along the main transportation corridor to the Klondike gold strike, made the settlement the perfect port destination for people from all over the world in search of a quick fortune.
Thousands of hopeful stampeders landed on the shores of Skagway. The town was a true Wild West Outpost, home to good-old western-style shootouts, and lawless during its biggest years. Jack London described Skagway Alaska as "a little better than hell on earth."
Almost as quickly as it started, the rush ended, but it wasn’t long before tourists arrived (1903) to see where the gold rush happened. Today, the cities “Boomtown” era remains alive.
Most of the downtown district forms part of the Klondike Gold Rush Historical Park and showcases the preservation efforts made in the many turn-of-the-century buildings that survive. The atmosphere is fascinating and there is so much to see. The lively saloons and bars are full of artifacts and local heritage, historic cemeteries and interesting museums.
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Skagway was the first incorporated city in Alaska. In Native Tgingit language the name means “home of the North wind.” Today, the city hosts over half a million tourists annually and has a year round population of approximately 850.
The downtown area is compact and all of the best sights are reachable on foot. Download a walking tour map courtesy of the Skagway Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Right-click to download this PDF file here.
Explore on your own or select one of your ships shore excursions. Either way, you’ll be rewarded.
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The average summer high-temperature is approximately 62 F°; the average low is 47 F°. Precipitation averages 2 to 3 inches yearly. Skagway receives less rain than most of its neighboring towns, averaging 26 inches of precipitation yearly.
Ships dock at one of three piers all located a short walk from downtown. Small ships may be moored at the Ferry Dock also an easy walk into town.
What time is it?
Skagway is located in the Alaska Time Zone.
- Standard Time difference compared to UTC/GMT is -9 hours.
- Daylight Saving Time difference compared to UTC/GMT is -8 hours.
- Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday, March 8 and ends on Sunday, November 1. The rest of the year is on Standard Time.
As part of the continental United States, English is universally spoken.
How To Pay
U.S. currency is used and accepted, as are all major credit cards. Sales tax is 5%.
Where's The Money
An ATM is available at the Wells Fargo Bank located at Broadway and 6th Avenue.
Staying In Touch
The Post Office is on Broadway between 6th and 7th avenues.
Internet Access is available through Seaport Cyber located on 3rd Ave. Purchase an access card for use in the ports of Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan.
Just In Case
Hospital - The Dahl Medical Clinic can be reached at tel. 907/983-2255 during business hours. The facility is staffed by a physician's assistant.
Police - The station is located just south of 1st Avenue at State Street. For nonemergency business, call tel. 907/983-2232.
Return from the port of Skagway to Alaska ports...