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Fairfield Nana

"Non-Tour" Things to do in Juneau

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Hi. We are in Juneau in mid-May 2020 and looking for out of the mainstream things  to do for 5-6 hours early afternoon. Were fortunate to have been to Juneau last year and visited the magnificent Mendenhall Glacier are and forest, as well as an abundant whale-siting cruise on Auke Bay. Lopopking for some simpler ideas to get a feel for Alaska. Thanks...

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Posted (edited)

Rent a car ;  visit Douglas Island (Treadwell Mine, Sandy Beach) and drive out to the coast (Eagle Beach, Shrine of St Therese),  McCauley Fish Hatchery.  There is very limited road in Juneau so pretty hard to get lost.

There is a map with mileage to popular locations on the town Visitor Guide, pg 26/27

http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/10785063#/10785063/1

 

Also, look at the town web site for ideas: https://www.traveljuneau.com/things-to-do/

 

Borrow an Alaska travel book from the library to get some ideas.  ie Lonely Planet

 

Edited by mapleleaves

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Definitely rent a car and explore.  Juneau is one of the largest cities in the country, go explore it!

 

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The Alaska museum is worth a visit, it was re modeled a couple of years ago and has some interesting exhibits. Just a short walk downtown

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The Alaska State Museum - plan at least an hour. There's lots to see

The Capital Building - great self-guided tour if you are interested in old architecture

Juneau-Douglas Museum - next door to the Capital Building. Takes less than an hour but quite interesting

Whale Statue and seawalk - nice to see. 

 

Karen

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If it's a clear day, take the tram to the top of Mount Roberts. There are hiking trails you can explore. 

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5 hours ago, luvteaching said:

The Alaska State Museum - plan at least an hour. There's lots to see

The Capital Building - great self-guided tour if you are interested in old architecture

 

These would be my recommendations as well.  The Governor's Mansion is very close to the Capitol Building.  May have tours available, but I am not sure.  When I was in that area of Juneau, none were available.

 

Have a delicious lunch at one of the restaurants/cafes that line the Juneau waterfront.  I ate the best halibut that I had on my Alaska cruises at Alaska Fish and Chips which is located along the harbor at the very front of where the cruise ships dock.

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On 8/31/2019 at 8:18 AM, luvteaching said:

The Alaska State Museum - plan at least an hour. There's lots to see

The Capital Building - great self-guided tour if you are interested in old architecture

Juneau-Douglas Museum - next door to the Capital Building. Takes less than an hour but quite interesting

Whale Statue and seawalk - nice to see. 

 

Karen

 

+1 on all these suggestions.  https://museums.alaska.gov/asm/

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Following with interest. We are planning to rent a car in Juneau and need ideas!

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Ditto, also thinking of renting for 5-6 hours as it looks like an easy pickup/drop off and the route looks even easier--not possible to get lost. Still checking for points of interest to drive and look around without driving too far. Maybe some folks on this links can tip us to some nice target spots to drive to? Definitely plan to take up on the tip to visit the Gov's Mansion and the State Museum! Also plan to take the 2.5  hour Juneau Bon Apetit Food Tour  around lunch time, to sample a half dozen of the local food & drink establishments.

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6 hours ago, Fairfield Nana said:

Ditto, also thinking of renting for 5-6 hours as it looks like an easy pickup/drop off and the route looks even easier--not possible to get lost. Still checking for points of interest to drive and look around without driving too far. Maybe some folks on this links can tip us to some nice target spots to drive to? Definitely plan to take up on the tip to visit the Gov's Mansion and the State Museum! Also plan to take the 2.5  hour Juneau Bon Apetit Food Tour  around lunch time, to sample a half dozen of the local food & drink establishments.

 

It's really not possible to drive too far.  The roads run out after a short drive.  I think you can maybe get about 30 miles north of town on the Glacier Highway and about 5 miles south on the Thane Road.

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Are the roads paved? Apparently some auto rental agreements are voided if you drive on unpaved roads. When we returned our rental car to a major agency in Anchorage several years ago, I overheard the manager on the phone with a satellite company who was apparently calling him about customers with car trouble. The man on my end said, " What road did they say they were on? I have never heard of it and if it is unpaved, they are SOL." Since we never read our contract carefully, I was stunned.

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11 minutes ago, lynncarol said:

Are the roads paved? Apparently some auto rental agreements are voided if you drive on unpaved roads. When we returned our rental car to a major agency in Anchorage several years ago, I overheard the manager on the phone with a satellite company who was apparently calling him about customers with car trouble. The man on my end said, " What road did they say they were on? I have never heard of it and if it is unpaved, they are SOL." Since we never read our contract carefully, I was stunned.

 

I'm sure unpaved roads exist in Juneau, but the Glacier Highway is paved and all the roads in town are.  We didn't see any unpaved roads.

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39 minutes ago, lynncarol said:

Apparently some auto rental agreements are voided if you drive on unpaved roads.

 

Can't say for all of the Alaskan car rental companies, but my rental agreement with Avis made that point very clear.  

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On 9/8/2019 at 3:35 PM, ParrotRob said:

 

I'm sure unpaved roads exist in Juneau, but the Glacier Highway is paved and all the roads in town are.  We didn't see any unpaved roads.

 

We drove up to the Shrine of St Therese, all paved.

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Agree with the museum, definitely worth visiting.  We also walked around town on our own.  We walked up to the Governor's mansion, up to the State House and basically just around.  We also did a helicopter tour to one of the smaller glaciers and did a glacier trek, which was amazing. 

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The roads are easy to navigate and are paved.  We also drove to The St. Therese Shrine.  There was a bit of road construction on the highway but it's easy and not too bad on the traffic when getting near the port.

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second the tram ride and hike around.  You can hike down if you're a reasonably experienced hiker. 

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On 8/31/2019 at 8:05 PM, geoherb said:

If it's a clear day, take the tram to the top of Mount Roberts. There are hiking trails you can explore. 

But in May they usually aren’t open very far and good portion of mud trails 

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On 9/5/2019 at 9:15 PM, Fairfield Nana said:

Ditto, also thinking of renting for 5-6 hours as it looks like an easy pickup/drop off and the route looks even easier--not possible to get lost. Still checking for points of interest to drive and look around without driving too far. Maybe some folks on this links can tip us to some nice target spots to drive to? Definitely plan to take up on the tip to visit the Gov's Mansion and the State Museum! Also plan to take the 2.5  hour Juneau Bon Apetit Food Tour  around lunch time, to sample a half dozen of the local food & drink establishments.

With your list you don’t need a car. And it’s actually useless for the Governors house.   Both are walkable with no limitations.    There is a lot more that can be added.  

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