Why you’ll love Southeast Alaska

Gloriously, the largest temperate rainforest in the world surrounds Juneau. The glaciers are bigger than any other in the U.S. in a state that boasts the country’s longest coastline. The word “phenomenal” barely does Southeast Alaska justice. Confined by water and landlocked by glacial mountains, Juneau doesn’t even have a road linking it with the outside world. Air and water are the only ways to come in and get away.

Landscape

With more wildlife than people, more miles of trails than roads, and more glaciers than you can see in a day, Juneau is Alaska’s wilderness capital. It’s surrounded by inter-coastal waterways, dense rainforest, steep mountainsides, and wild flower-filled alpine meadows. Juneau offers every legendary Alaska experience you can think of (even paddle boarding!).

Weather in Juneau

Despite being known as “rain country,” the sun in Juneau shines against bluebird skies, even in the middle of a temperate rainforest. Conveniently, it never gets scorching hot in Juneau, except on those few days each year when the temperature exceeds 80F (27C). During the summer season between May and September, expect average highs in the mid-60s F (high-teens C), and evening lows in the high 40s F (about 9C).

Wildlife in Juneau

Undoubtedly, you’ll find a wealth of wildlife here in Juneau. After all, there are more animals than people. Expect to see many humpback whales and the occasional orca on our whale watching tours, between May and September. Juneau’s nutrient-rich waters are also home to Dall’s porpoises and harbor porpoises, Steller sea lions and harbor seals. Furthermore, Juneau provides natural habitats for sea otters, beavers, porcupines and many other creatures.

Mountain goats can be spotted grazing on the side of Mt Juneau. And gloriously, Juneau boasts an abundance of bald eagles and other birdlife, resident and migratory. Of course, Juneau and its borough is Bear Country so black bears live here too, which are attracted to the salmon when they come into spawn.

Why you’ll love Juneau

Juneau is many things: a natural wonder; a wildlife viewing paradise; an outdoor Utopia; a cultural jewel rich in history, art, music, and Native heritage; a shopper’s trove; a fisherman’s dream; and a food lover’s marvel. Juneau has it all, year-round. It’s not just the state capital, it’s the heart of Southeast Alaska. Pretty good for a tiny oasis of civilization in one the largest wilderness areas in the United States.

So, if you’re drawn to roads less traveled, isolated frontier regions where spontaneity and excitement rule over routine, then Juneau fits all those requirements. Between food trucks, art walks, open mic nights and beyond, the streets of Alaska’s capital city are humming with activity. Indulge your bucketlist with one of our incredible whale watching tours. Or experience the glory at one of the world’s most accessible glaciers, the Mendenhall Glacier. Without question, Juneau is your Alaskan event hub.

See How to spend your time in Juneau and the Local events in Juneau this year.