Stop number two on the epic Alaskan cruise was the capital city of Juneau! 9/10 times when writing the word capital I have to Google the difference between capitAl and capitOl. A for city, O for building – got it. Until I have to Google again.
We had nearly a full day to spend in Juneau, unlike the shorter half day in Ketchikan. This worked well because Juneau is a bit bigger, and we were able to explore more. The weather was overcast, but comfortable most of the day. I admit a good majority of the things we did in Alaska were hot ticket tourist items, but in Juneau we had a nice balance of tourist and local adventures.
First up was a trip on The Blue Bus headed towards Medenhall Glacier. With a nice easy trail allowing for some exploring on foot. For the super adventurous (aka those that want to spend $$$$) there is an option to take a helicopter ride to the glacier and walk around.
Us peasant folk were happy to save some pennies and view the glacier from a distance.
We spent enough time here to see a porcupine and a brave kayaker. Back on the bus, and back towards town. Next up – a trip up the Mount Roberts Tramway for a better view of the city. I’ll admit I was sold on this view after creepin #Juneau on Insta. I mean, once you see the view you’ll understand. This is a must when visiting Juneau, and it’s right in the heart of the town.
No excuses to miss this one.
The funny thing about this tram trip, is that you spend $34 and can ride the tram as many times as you want. We didn’t even utilize a full round trip ticket, because instead of riding the tram back down we hiked back down. Shout out to my dad for being such a trooper, this was HIS idea despite the fact he has a bum knee.
He wasn’t so jazzed about this idea after we ended up walking over 11 miles for the day.
Funny story: we got momentarily lost on this trail and I used my spider senses to get us “un-lost.” By this I mean I called the visitors center to ensure we turned right at the fork instead of going straight. Praise Jesus for cell phones. This was the moment we went from tourist to local. Kinda. It took us a bit longer than expected to get back to town, but we made it mostly unscathed.
The view of the above mountain was more enjoyable once we were back in view of the cruise ship, no longer lost.
This was a long day, but oh so enjoyable. We saw 11 miles worth of Juneau that I’d confidently say most of our shipmates did not see. Something I will reiterate multiple times in these Alaska posts is that September is an ideal time to visit. The temperatures are lower, but the fall colors are U N R E A L.
You’ll see this more in my last few posts.
Q: Would you ride the tram multiple times to view the city, or would you hike the trail to the view point? Next time I’ll be hiking both up and down. Grab a map, and find a trail!