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Local Flair

  • Writer's pictureMarcy Lytle

Juneau in June

We had eight days, two of those were filled with traveling, so six in the actual city of Juneau, Alaska. And there were ten of us, including 3 kiddos and a baby. We did not cruise there, but flew. And it turned out to be a great decision for what fit our family and all the fun we had!

The airbnb where we stayed was near the Mendenhall Glacier, just north of town. Everywhere we went wasn't more than 20 minutes max. And the glacier was our first excursion. We hiked to Nugget Falls, and took the Trail of Time hike as well. What a spectacular site to see the glacier and the falls in all the glory of this amazing "Last Frontier."

The next day we visited Glacier Gardens, where upside down trees that had been uprooted became something breathtaking, as we ascended 580 feet up a mountain to a beautiful view down below. We all rode in a tram through the forest and loved every minute and every photo we took!

That afternoon, we boarded a ship for a whale-watching tour and were not disappointed. A mom and her baby surfaced for us multiple times, it was so fun. And we had a sea otter swim alongside on our return to shore.

Hangar on the Wharf was a good dinner option, right on the water, that evening.

(Yes, it was cold this week...and sometimes rainy...but we came prepared!)

Downtown Juneau was our excursion the following day, it's such a cute and cool city lined with shops, eateries, coffee stops, all sorts of treasures. We enjoyed walking around and ate at Deckhand Fish Tacos - outside - yum.

That night we had reservations at a salmon bake - it was one of my faves! Every excursion started in town and for this one, we rode in a bus up a mountain to where a sort of mining town had been set up. A full buffet of grilled salmon, ribs, all the sides and blueberry cake...and a fire afterwards for roasting marshmallows. Also a trail to another falls - so so cute and such great ambience - even live music.

We rode the tram up Mt Roberts and enjoyed a film up there, as well as a "surprise" trail that led us up where the snow graced the top - everyone loved this trail! It was amazing.

Then we stopped by the Salmon Hatchery to learn about the fresh salmon, saw tanks of baby ones and touched live sea creatures!

Our airbnb was a great place to hang at night and take our time each morning, and had a few meals there - one was a taco night!

The next day we had reserved a shelter through the parks and recreation down at Lena Beach - it had a fire pit and a wood burning stove, and a place to play by the water. It was pretty cold, but we took snacks and made the most of it at least for a while!

We also had reservations for dogsledding - at the Iditarod training camp - and this turned out to be a family fave. Riding with the mushers, meeting them and their dogs, and petting puppies - what was not to love? It was the best.

Our last full day we visited Douglas Island and walked the Treadwell Mine Historic Trail. What an amazing place to hike - among the ruins still there - with all the history told as we walked...on plaques among the woods...and near the water. It was fascinating.

Ate at Island Pub in town, and then headed to the AJ Mining Tour - where we donned hard hats and learned so much about miming, as the rain poured and temps fell!

Juneau did not disappoint, we had plenty to do and enjoyed every minute. The airbnb had a great backyard with a trampoline and treehouse, and trails for exploring (had to watch out for bears!)

Food, groceries, excursions - they were all pricey - but we made family memories and liked Donna's Restaurant the most (if you see a family member, ask them about it.) We laughed so much.

Our youngest was 8 months old and he was a trooper, and the other three were so fun to watch. And we, the parents, loved taking our kids and their families along on the adventure of a lifetime.

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