Glacier Bay, Alaska © National Park Service
More than twice the size of Texas, Alaska is the largest state in the USA, known as a land of vast natural splendour, abundant wildlife and few people. It offers unique experiences such as walking in unspoilt wilderness, spectacular cruising through the fjords of the Inside Passage, and frontier towns rich in gold rush history. Alaska's sense of undiscovered wilderness and promise of adventure is as prominent now as it was when it attracted thousands of pioneers in search of gold, fur, fishing, logging and oil. Today, this 'Last Frontier' lures travellers in search of unspoilt beauty and close encounters with nature. In fact, Alaska's three largest cities - Fairbanks, Juneau, and Anchorage - are home to fewer than 370,000 people between them.
The southeast epitomises classic Alaskan scenery, with its fjords, mountains, forests and glaciers. Alaska is one of the top cruise destinations in the world, and the main drawcard for visitors to this region is the wonderous scenery along the waters of the Inside Passage; a major marine highway ideal for ship travel. The number one attraction in the interior heartland is Denali National Park, an area of untamed magnificence that also encompasses North America's highest mountain, the snow-covered Mount McKinley. Arctic Alaska in the frozen north is less well-travelled, and few venture as far as Barrow and Nome.
Due to its northern location, Alaska is the land of the 'midnight sun', and visitors can experience the odd phenomenon of having over 21 hours of sunlight each day in the summer. Despite a reputation for high prices and inhospitable weather, millions of people have found Alaska to be a unique piece of the US that is worth every dollar.