Juneau, Alaska

Juneau isn’t the most accessible of cities: you can’t reach it by road and every year 200 scheduled flights never make it into the city due to bad weather and tall mountains. Once there, though, you’ll find much to like in this ‘little San Francisco’ with its hilly streets and winding staircases.

Getting There and Around

The main airline serving Juneau is Alaska Air (800-426-0333; www.alaskaair.com). Smaller companies like Wings of Alaska (907-789-0790; www.wingsofalaska.com) provide service to isolated communities.

The ferry terminal is located 14 miles from downtown; M/V LeConte (907-465-3941) runs to Hoonah ($33), Angoon ($37), and Tenakee Springs ($35), while the high-speed M/V Fairweather (907-465-3941) connects to Skagway ($50) and Haines($37).

Juneau’s public bus system, Capital Transit (907-789-6901), can take you from the airport to the city center ($1.50), but not the ferry terminal; buses run from 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday. Numerous car-rental places offer pick up/drop off and unlimited mileage. Compacts at Rent-A-Wreck (907-789-4111, 888-843-4111; 2450 C Industrial Blvd) are $40, while Evergreen Ford (907-790-1340; 8895 Mallard St) rents them for slightly more.

Sights

Tracy Arm: This steepsided fjord, 50 miles southeast of Juneau, has a pair of tidewater glaciers and a gallery of icebergs floating down its length. Tracy Arm makes an interesting day trip, far less expensive and perhaps even more satisfying than a visit to Glacier Bay. You’re almost guaranteed to see seals inside the arm, and you might spot whales on the way there. The full-day cruises leave from the Juneau waterfront.

This book will help you romanticise Juneau. Clear and tangy with sea salt and cold air. Maybe even more beautiful than the actual Juneau.

Source/s: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/

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