Juneau, Alaska is a popular cruise destination on the stunning Alaska Inside Passage route. Alaska’s capital city is only accessible by sea or air.

This picturesque port of call waits to be explored. Here are the top things to do in Juneau.

Top things to do in Juneau, Alaska

  • Mendenhall Glacier is located in the Tongrass National Forest and is spectacular. You can take a cruise ship shore excursion, use public transportation, book tours available at the pier, hire a taxi or take the Glacier shuttle. The shuttle costs about $45 per person. We hired a taxi for the four of us. Moraine Ecology Trail is most easily accessed from the paved Steep Creek Trail near the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center. The easy trail is well worth the time and effort. We saw a bear in a tree, large salmon swimming, Sandhill Cranes, herons and other birds. On the trail, there is a ranger on hand to answer questions.
Spectacular Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau. Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do while in port. Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

Spectacular Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau. Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do In Juneau. Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

  • Nugget Falls is a short walk from the Mendenhall Visitor’s Centre.
Nugget Falls flowing into Mendenhall Lake, next to the Mendenhall Glacier, Mendenhall Valley, Juneau, Southeast Alaska USA, Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Blaine Harrington III©e of Alaska, Blaine Harrington III

Nugget Falls flowing into Mendenhall Lake, next to the Mendenhall Glacier, Mendenhall Valley, Juneau, Southeast Alaska USA, Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Blaine Harrington III©

  • Mount Roberts tramway provides sweeping views of snow-capped mountains, city and Gastineau Channel. The tram takes visitors up Mount Roberts 1,800 feet.
Take a trip up Mount Roberts Tramway. Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do in Juneau.

Take a trip up Mount Roberts Tramway. Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do in Juneau.

  • The Red Dog Saloon is a well-known place to check out. You feel the lively atmosphere as soon as you walk through the swinging doors and onto the sawdust covered floor. Find a table, sit back and enjoy a few old songs played on the upright piano. Take a look around at the decor of furs, guns and antiques. The saloon has a gift store where you can purchase t-shirts and other items stamped with their logo.
Have some fun at the Red Dog Saloon. Explore top things to do in Juneau while in port. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

Have some fun at the Red Dog Saloon. Explore top things to do in Juneau while in port. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

 

Have some fun at the Red Dog Saloon. Explore top things to do in Juneau while in port. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr

Have some fun at the Red Dog Saloon. Explore top things to do in Juneau while in port. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr

  • Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure – Tongass National Forest is home to Glacier Gardens rainforest adventure. Learn about the southeastern Alaska’s temperate rainforest while walking through a botanical garden of unique upside down hanging baskets known as “Flower Towers”. The grounds also offer waterfalls, ponds and panoramic views of the surrounding inlets.Steve Bowhay came up with the “Flowers Towers” idea after he turned a landscaping equipment disaster into a beautiful opportunity. Frustrated by the mishap, he picked up a large tree with the equipment and flung it into the air. The tree landed upside down into the soft mud. With the tree’s root ball now suspended in the air, Bowhay imagined the hanging roots looked like hanging vines of a petunia. Every year about 30 blooming “Flower Towers” come to life. Each tower has 75-100 flowering plants growing at the top of the uprooted trees in the root ball bed of moss and soil. The gardens are about 10 minutes from the cruise ship terminal.
Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure is one of the top things to do in Juneau Alaska Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Brian Adams©

Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure is one of the top things to do in Juneau Alaska Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Brian Adams©

  • Whale Watching excursions offer a chance to view humpback whales, migrating gray whales and orcas. Some tours offer a combination of land wildlife viewing and an ocean experience.
Take a whale watching shore excursion. It is one of the top things to do in Juneau, Alaska Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Reinhard Pantke©

Take a whale watching shore excursion. It is one of the top things to do in Juneau, Alaska Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Reinhard Pantke©

  • Take a walking tour of downtown Juneau. Here is a map.
Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do in Juneau, Alaska. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr

Take a downtown walking tour of Juneau. Explore top things to do in Juneau, Alaska. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr

  • Dog sled on a glacier. Check with local guides or look for the tours available with your cruise.
Dog sledding on a glacier near Juneau. Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Brian Adams©

Dog sledding on a glacier near Juneau. Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Brian Adams©

  • Drink a local beer made in Alaska.
Eat drink and be merry. Discover the breathtaking scenery of Alaska wilderness. Explore top things to do in Juneau. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

Eat drink and be merry. Drink a beer made in Alaska. Photo Credit: Wendy Nordvik-Carr©

Quick Facts:

  • Juneau became the capital of Alaska in 1906. Get an official guide planner
  • The largest temperate rainforest in North America is on Admiralty Island.
  • Mendenhall Glacier is 13 miles long.
  • Mendehall Ice Caves melted and no longer exist at the present time. They only live on through the stunning images on the internet.
  • The trek to the Mendenhall Glacier can take up to eight hours.
  • Southeastern Alaska has the highest concentration of grizzlies in the world. Peak viewing season is July and August.
Spot a grizzly on your trip to southwestern Alaska. It is one of the top things to do in Juneau. Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Reinhard Pantke©

Spot a grizzly bear on your trip to southwestern Alaska. Photo Credit: State of Alaska, Reinhard Pantke©

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