Best Things To Do In Skagway

Main Street in Skagway lined with Gold Rush era buildings

Stroll down the streets of this charming town

1. Sightsee in Skagway

Tiny in size but big on preservation, Skagway offers an authentic glimpse of the Gold Rush era. Take a downtown walking tour and get a feel for what it was really like. (Pro tip: Use Alaska.org’s exclusive Skagway Audio Guide!)

2. Go Beyond the Town

Make Skagway your launching pad to scenic adventures. Travel to the Yukon border—or spend a whole day there—with Midnight Sun Excursions. Love to cycle? Rent a bike or take a guided tour. If trains are more your thing, this is your chance to ride into the Yukon on the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad, built in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush. Or improve your camera skills on a photography tour and capture winning images of the unique wildlife here.

The train moving along the White Pass & Yukon Route surrounded by Alaska mountains and steams

Relax and soak in the stunning views while aboard the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad

A group of people gold panning

Liarsville Gold Rush Trail Camp will assist you in searching for treasure of your own

3. Catch Gold Rush Fever

Hiking the 33-mile Chilkoot Trail is no small feat, but it’s a fascinating journey: So many Gold Rush artifacts line the route that it’s known as a “very long museum.”

The good news is, you don't have to hike all of it to experience the wonder. You can join Sockeye Cycle Co. for their Skagway Triple Adventure. You'll bike through a temperate rainforest, hike 2 miles on the Chilkoot Trail, then take a relaxing float trip down the glacially-fed Taiya river.

You can also experience the thrill of finding gold firsthand on a gold panning tour, where you’ll eat fire-grilled salmon and learn about Gold Rush history in addition to panning for the precious metal!

A helicopter landed on a glacier

TEMSCO lands on a glacier during their Glacier Discovery Helicopter Tour

4. Explore a Glacier

Glacier-filled valleys abound outside Skagway, and it’s a great chance to go explore one of these icy blue behemoths by taking a scenic helicopter ride and touching down on one. Then you can go on a guided glacier hike, where you’ll walk around and drink glacier water. Or experience the thrill of glacier dog sledding, where you’ll spend time at a dog camp that plays host to 300 Alaskan sled dogs!

5. Get Out on the Water

With calm waters and scenic mountains, Skagway is a great place to take a sea kayaking tour and look for wildlife as you paddle. You can also easily hop over and visit the charming town of Haines—the quickest way to do it is on the Haines Skagway Fast Ferry—then take advantage of all the fun things to do in Haines!

A person in a kayak on the water with snow capped mountains in the background

Alaska Mountain Guides will lead you through scenic passages on a sea kayaking tour

Skagway Day Tours & Attractions View All

Season: May 01 to Sep 30 $61 2 hrs

Walk the fine line between folk­lore and gold fever. The Liarsville Camp, near Skag­way, was orig­i­nal­ly named after jour­nal­ists who came here dur­ing the Klondike Gold Rush and cooked up all man­ner of tall tales. The event begins with an all-you-can-eat feast in the for­est. Then explore the old trail camp and fin­ish off your day with a vis­it the Fan­cy Goods store. You can also have your pic­ture tak­en with one of the dance hall girls or the camp’s  ...more

Season: Jun 04 to Oct 19 $130 2.5 – 2.75 hrs

Ride the rails on a real gold-rush era, nar­row-gauge rail­road from Skag­way into the heart of the Yukon. On the White Pass & Yukon Route Rail­road, you’ll have sev­er­al trip options, tak­ing you past glacial rivers, water­falls, and gorges for a real taste of wild Alas­ka. You’ll feel like you’ve gone back in time on this authen­tic train, as you climb 3,000 feet to scenic vis­tas and past apt­ly-named spots named Inspi­ra­tion Point and Dead Horse  ...more

Season: Apr 27 to Sep 29 $339+ 80 minutes

Tak­ing a TEM­SCO heli­copter tour shows off the Gold Rush lands around Skag­way in a new light, reveal­ing gor­geous, glac­i­er-filled val­leys, tum­bling water­falls and peak after icy peak at the north end of the Juneau Ice­field. Then land on a remote glac­i­er for an excit­ing guid­ed jour­ney on ice that was formed thou­sands of years ago!

Season: May 15 to Sep 23 Private excursions, group rates for up to 14 passengers 5 - 7 hrs

Mid­night Sun Excur­sions will reopen in 2022. Skag­way may be a quaint small town, but it offers a big lens into the Alas­ka fron­tier. This tour oper­a­tor — run by a cer­ti­fied Nat­u­ral­ist for the state of Alas­ka — offers a friend­ly and fas­ci­nat­ing way to explore some sur­pris­ing depths of the Alas­ka wilder­ness. Options include pri­vate tours rang­ing from 5 to 7 hours that explores the sights of British Colum­bia and the Yukon

Season: May - September $114+ 4 hrs - 8 days

Guid­ed sea kayak­ing in Alaska’s South­east opens up the mag­i­cal world of water-based tour­ing. Glide through a marine envi­ron­ment with gor­geous views in every direc­tion, and many oppor­tu­ni­ties to spot wildlife – from eagles and salmon to bears, whales and sea lions. Options include day tours for busy sched­ules and mul­ti-day immer­sions, all under the expert guid­ance of nat­u­ral­ists who help you under­stand the com­plex work­ings of a unique and amazing  ...more

Season: Apr 27 to Sep 29 $74 Round Trip 45 mins one-way

Oper­at­ing from May to Sep­tem­ber, this pri­vate fer­ry ser­vice is the eas­i­est and fastest way to trav­el between Haines and Skag­way. The 45-minute ride pass­es through Taiya Inlet, a steep-walled rocky fjord just out­side of Skag­way, and then opens up to the Lynn Canal near Haines. As you ride, look for seals and sea lions, as well as hump­back, minke, and orca whales. Don’t for­get to look up from the water from time to time to check out the  ...more

Season: Jun 04 to Oct 19 $39+ 4 hrs

Take the train out of Skag­way to some of Alaska’s best hik­ing. Not just any train, though, but a Gold Rush-era, nar­row-gauge train that winds through gor­geous scenery and drops you off at the trail­head. The White Pass & Yukon Route Rail­road winds through stun­ning scenery on its way to drop you off on hik­ing trails that offer water­fall, moun­tain, and glac­i­er views. It’s a fun way to gear up for a day or two of great hik­ing. The train is an  ...more

Season: May 12 to Aug 19 $549+ 2 hrs

Dog sled­ding on a glac­i­er is the ulti­mate blend of Alaskan adven­ture, as you also get there by heli­copter! Board a TEM­SCO flight that whisks you thou­sands of feet above sea lev­el to the Den­ver glac­i­er and a dog mush­ing camp hid­den away on a snow field, where Alaskan sled dogs will greet you ener­get­i­cal­ly, ready to take you on the ride of your life.

Season: May 01 to Oct 01 $89+ 3 - 8 hrs

Some peo­ple love the view of Alas­ka from the side of a ship, or from above in a bush plane. But this cycle shop and tour oper­a­tor based in Haines and Skag­way proves that there’s noth­ing quite like the view of Alas­ka from atop two wheels, as you glide through the gor­geous­ly unique scenery. Its day trips are a fab­u­lous way for inde­pen­dent trav­el­ers and cruise pas­sen­gers to take a detour on their voy­age, enjoy­ing a dif­fer­ent pace and per­spec­tive on  ...more

Season: Mid-May to Mid-September $899+ 3 - 12 days

Sock­eye Cycle offers fab­u­lous­ly in-depth trips that stretch across the state, and even into Cana­da, and last any­where from 3 to 12 days. Cycling around Alas­ka is spe­cial in a few ways. The roads can some­times be quirky, and some­times a lit­tle more rugged than a fresh­ly paved road some­where else. But on the oth­er hand, you‘ll like­ly get the road to your­self, so you can relax and spend more time enjoy­ing the scenery. These mul­ti-day trips offer a  ...more

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Skagway Parks & Trails View All

This park across from the Skag­way Riv­er offers ball­fields, horse­shoe pitch­es, a BMX trail, and a disc golf course. Out­door town events and con­certs, includ­ing the annu­al sol­stice cel­e­bra­tion, are held at the park’s stage/​amphitheater.

Difficulty: Moderate Distance: 33 miles

An amaz­ing look at the his­to­ry of the Alaskan Gold Rush, with the added nov­el­ty of hik­ing from Alas­ka to Cana­da. This trip offers a vari­ety of scenery and dis­tinct­ly dif­fer­ent ecosys­tems: riv­er val­ley, coastal tem­per­ate rain­for­est, exposed alpine, and arid bore­al forest.

If you’re in Skag­way for a sum­mer job or just a week­end fling, take your bike. Most­ly flat ter­rain and a com­pact urban lay­out makes this town a fan­tas­tic spot to see on two wheels. There’s even a free bike-repair sta­tion out front of Skagway’s pub­lic library.

Difficulty: Moderate Distance: 8 miles

Tucked on the moun­tain­side over­look­ing the cruise ship docks, this mod­er­ate hike offers great views down Taiya Inlet and an idyl­lic camp­ing spot. This 8‑mile round trip trail is unknown even to some locals. It leads through a mixed stand of trees and descends to a beach­front jut­ting south towards Haines on Lynn Canal.

Difficulty: Difficult Distance: 33 miles

This trail is con­sid­ered to be a very long muse­um and the old arti­facts left over from the Gold Rush Days must be left alone. Adven­ture­some trav­el­ers can retrace the stam­ped­ers’ route to the gold mines by back­pack­ing the 33-mile climb up and over the Gold­en Stairs,” immor­tal­ized in Char­lie Chaplin’s silent film, The Gold Rush”. The trail begins nine miles out of town in Dyea and on aver­age the trek takes five days to com­plete, but…  ...more

Difficulty: Difficult Distance: 10 miles

Com­plet­ing this all-day climb, a 10-mile round trip climb­ing near­ly 5,000 feet, isn’t for begin­ners. But at the top, you’ll be on the ridge sep­a­rat­ing the Dyea and Skag­way riv­er val­leys, with an awe-drop­ping, 360-degree view. Once above the tree­line, some rock cairns mark the way, but the trail can be vague due to heavy brush and rocky terrain.

Difficulty: Easy Distance: 2 miles

This mod­er­ate, 2‑mile loop trail near the Skag­way Riv­er cir­cles a boul­der strewn out­crop­ping. It also fea­tures sun­ny look­outs while mean­der­ing through a birch and pine for­est and lead­ing to a pro­tect­ed cove and pic­nic area.

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