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  • Attractions

    Castle Hill

    This is the spot that, on October 18, 1867, Alaska was handed over to the United States and where the first 49-star U.S. flag was flown on January 3, 1959. History aside, it is also one of the best views in town. Climb a lengthy flight of stairs from the western end of Lincoln street and your reward will be a panoramic view of downtown Sitka.

    Isabel Miller Museum

    The museum portrays the city's history with art and artifacts. There is a large diorama of Sitka depicting the town as it was in 1867. The Museum shares space with the New Archangel Dancers in the Harrigan Centennial Building.

    New Archangel Dancers

    This dance troupe is a very energetic group of all women dancers. They play all the required parts including those of bearded men if the story requires it. The troupe was organized in 1969 with much ridicule and pooh-poohing from the male poplulation who said the idea would never work. By the time the men of the town realized that it could work and that they maybe would join after all, the women decided that they didn't need the men and kept the show all female.

    Russian Bishop's House

    One of the few remaining Russian log structures in Alaska, this house was built in 1842 and today is completely restored using original Russian furnishings and artifacts. A portion of the house's interior has been peeled away to expose 19th-century construction techniques. Located on Lincoln Street.

    Sheldon Jackson Museum

    This museum is located on the grounds of the first educational institution in Alaska, a college founded in 1878 by a Presbyterian missionary by the name of Sheldon Jackson for a vocational school for young Tlingits. The museum now houses a fine collection of Native artifacts including baskets, masks, totems and hand-sewing. They also have frequent Native art demonstrations. (104 College Drive).

    Sitka National Historical Park Visitor Center

    Exhibits and audiovisual programs of Native and Russian artifacts give an overview of Southeast Alaska cultures. Demonstrations and interpretations of traditional crafts of the Tlingit people are given by Native artists. Some of the crafts that may be demonstrated are weaving, basketry and silversmithing. You can also take a forest trail leading to the site of the Tlingit Fort. On this trail you will pass by exquisite carved totem poles some of which date back almost a century. The trail is self guided but maps can be picked up at the visitor center. There is also a gift shop selling Native jewelry and handicrafts.

    St. Michael's Cathedral

    Originally a frame-covered log structure built in the 1840s, the church burned to the ground in 1966. Sitkans, whether Russian Orthodox or not, formed a human chain and rescued many of the cathedral's precious icons, paintings, vestments and jewelled crowns from the flames. In 1976 it was re-created on the same site with contributions of cash and labour from all over the country.

  • Shopping

    Impressions

    If you are looking to purchase some Southeast Alaskan art, you may very well find what you are looking for here. This gallery has art prints and limited editions from many Alaskan artists. (239 Lincoln St.)

    Russian-American Company & the New Archangel Trading Co.

    Both of these fine establishments sell imported Russian items including the very popular nesting dolls called matryoshkas. Russian-American Company is located at 407 Lincoln Street and the New Archangel Trading Co. is located at 335 Harbor Drive.

  • Activities

    Hiking

    The 2 mile (3 km) rain forest trail located in Sitka National Historical Park is probably Sitka's easiest hiking. Along the way you can view some spectacular totem poles, stop for a leisurely picnic lunch and, during the summer runs, watch salmon spawning on the Indian River.

    Sport Fishing

    If you pride yourself on your fishing abilities then perhaps a guided sport fishing trip is the excitement you are seeking. An experienced captain will guide your fully equipped boat to a good spot for halibut and salmon. How successful your trip is entirely up to you! If you are lucky and catch your limit, it can be frozen or smoked and shipped to your home. For a 4 hour trip you will pay $145 - $170. A $10 fishing license and a $10 king-salmon tag are extra.

     

    Alaska Shore Excursions

    Go on a widlife tour or kayaking adventure in Sitka. Our shore excursions department can help you book your exciting adventure at a of cost that's less than what the cruise lines charge.

  • Wildlife

    Sea Otter & Wildlife Quest

    The operators of this tour are so confident that you will see a whale, bear or otter, that they offer a partial cash refund if you don't. A naturalist will accompany you to explain the delicate balance of the area's ecosystem and to point out the various animals you will encounter.

    Silver Bay Nature Cruise

    The 2 hour trip takes you through beatiful Silver Bay to view wildlife, scenery, a salmon hatchery and the ruins of the Liberty Prospect Gold Mine.

  • History

    History of Sitka

    For centuries before the 18th century arrival of the Russians, Sitka was home to Tlingit people. Sitka's protected harbor, mild climate and economic potential inevitably caught the attentions of outsiders. Alexander Baranof, Russian territorial govenor, saw raw materials for shipbuilding in the massive timber forests of the island. He also saw potential as a trading route to California, Hawaii and the Orient.

    Baranof established an outpost in 1799, 6 miles north of the existing town and moved many of his Russian and Aleut sea otter and seal hunters there from Kodiak Island. In 1802, the Tlingit people took umbrage at this and attacked his people and burned the buildings to the ground. In 1804 Baranof returned and attacked the Tlingits using shipboard cannons. The site of the battle is the site of the present day, 105-acre Sitka National Historical Park. He managed to drive the Tlingits 70 miles northwest of Sitka to Chichagof Island. Finally, in 1821 the Tlingits and the Russians made peace and the capital of Russian America was moved from Kodiak to Sitka.

  • More Information

    Sitka.com

    Visit this website for the people, about the people and by the people of Sitka, Alaska.

  • Image Gallery