🇺🇸 United States of America
Gateway to the Misty Fjords National Monument

Ketchikan - Vacation Briefing

Ketchikan, United States of America, is a picturesque coastal town in southeastern Alaska. Nestled along the Tongass Narrows, it offers stunning natural beauty and authentic Alaskan experiences. Known as the "Salmon Capital of the World," Ketchikan boasts an abundance of fish which attracts both anglers and wildlife enthusiasts. With its rich Native American heritage, visitors can explore the vibrant culture through art galleries, totem poles, and cultural shows. Immerse yourself in the wilderness by hiking through the Tongass National Forest, or marvel at the magnificent glaciers nearby. Ketchikan is truly a nature lover's paradise.

Popular Sights in Ketchikan

Things to do during your Ketchikan vacation

Ketchikan is a charming city located in the southeastern part of Alaska. Known as the 'Salmon Capital of the World,' Ketchikan offers a wide range of activities for nature lovers, history enthusiasts, and adventure seekers. From exploring the beautiful Misty Fjords National Monument to visiting historic landmarks and indulging in delicious seafood, there is something for everyone in Ketchikan.

  • Misty Fjords National Monument: Embark on a scenic boat or seaplane tour to explore the breathtaking Misty Fjords, with its granite cliffs, waterfalls, and untouched wilderness.
  • Totem Heritage Center: Learn about the rich Native American heritage of the region through a collection of intricately carved totem poles and cultural artifacts.
  • Creek Street: Take a stroll along the charming wooden boardwalks of Creek Street, once a notorious red-light district, now lined with shops and galleries.
  • Cape Fox Hill and Deer Mountain Trail: Hike to the top of Cape Fox Hill or Deer Mountain for panoramic views of Ketchikan, its surrounding islands, and the Tongass National Forest.
  • Southeast Alaska Discovery Center: Immerse yourself in the natural and cultural history of Southeast Alaska through exhibits, films, and interactive displays at the Discovery Center.
  • Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary: Join a guided tour through the Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary and spot wildlife such as bald eagles, black bears, and salmon spawning.
  • Ketchikan Museums: Visit the Tongass Historical Museum and the Dolly's House Museum to delve deeper into the history and heritage of Ketchikan.
  • Commercial Fishing Tour: Hop aboard a commercial fishing boat and experience the life of a fisherman, learning about sustainable fishing practices and enjoying a fresh catch.
  • Potlatch Totem Park: Explore the Potlatch Totem Park, home to a collection of totem poles, traditional longhouses, and cultural exhibits showcasing Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian heritage.
  • Ketchikan Food Tours: Indulge in a food tour to sample delicious local seafood, including fresh Alaskan salmon, halibut, Dungeness crab, and more.

Why you should visit Ketchikan


Ketchikan, United States of America, is a moderately desirable destination with a variety of attractions and activities.


Ketchikan has a moderate safety rating. While the crime rate is relatively low, precautions should be taken to avoid theft and ensure personal safety. Additionally, the region is prone to natural disasters such as heavy rainfall and landslides.


Ketchikan offers a decent cultural experience with its historical sites, art galleries, and local museums. Visitors can explore the rich indigenous culture and learn about the heritage of the area.


Ketchikan has a limited nightlife scene. It may not be the best destination for those seeking vibrant nightlife or a bustling entertainment district.


Adventure enthusiasts can enjoy various outdoor activities in Ketchikan, including fishing, kayaking, and wildlife watching. The surrounding wilderness and pristine waters make it an ideal destination for outdoor adventures.


Ketchikan is known for its serene natural beauty. With picturesque landscapes, scenic trails, and charming waterfront, it provides opportunities for relaxation and unwinding amidst nature.

Best time to visit Ketchikan

Ketchikan offers a unique travel experience all year round. However, the best time to visit is from June to August, with comfortable temperatures and a variety of outdoor activities to enjoy.

Winter wonders await
-2°C - 4°C
Embrace the winter beauty
-1°C - 6°C
Transition to milder weather
0°C - 8°C
Blooming beauty and fewer crowds
3°C - 12°C
Pleasant temperatures and outdoor adventures
7°C - 16°C
Peak travel season and abundant activities
11°C - 19°C
Ideal weather and wildlife encounters
13°C - 21°C
Sunny days and vibrant festivals
12°C - 20°C
Beautiful autumn colors and tranquility
8°C - 16°C
Off-peak travel with enchanting scenery
5°C - 12°C
Quieter and colder days
2°C - 8°C
Winter wonderland and festivities
-1°C - 5°C

A guide To your first day of Ketchikan vacation


  • Start your morning with a stroll along Creek Street, a historic boardwalk lined with charming shops and galleries.
  • Visit the Totem Heritage Center to learn about the rich Native American history and art of the region.


  • Take a scenic flightseeing tour over Misty Fjords National Monument for breathtaking views of glaciers, waterfalls, and fjords.
  • Explore the Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary and enjoy a guided nature walk through the lush temperate rainforest.


  • Enjoy a delicious seafood dinner at one of the local waterfront restaurants, offering fresh catches from the surrounding waters.
  • Take a leisurely evening kayak tour and experience the serene beauty of the coastal waters and islands.


  • Catch a live performance at the New York Hotel & Restaurant, known for its cabaret-style shows and vibrant nightlife.
  • Join a guided ghost tour and explore the haunting history of Ketchikan, including tales of local legends and ghostly encounters.

How to get to Ketchikan

By Plane

Ketchikan is best accessed by flying to Ketchikan International Airport (KTN), which offers frequent connections to major cities like Seattle and Anchorage. The airport is conveniently located just a short drive from the city center, making it a hassle-free option for travelers. It's recommended to book in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to secure the best fares and availability.

By other means

While Ketchikan doesn't have a railway station, it is well-connected by local buses and ferries. The Gateway Transit Center serves as a central hub for buses, providing convenient transportation within the city and to nearby areas. The Alaska Marine Highway System operates ferries that connect Ketchikan to other towns and cities in Alaska, offering scenic journeys through the Inside Passage.

Tips for Booking Your Trip

Planning a trip can get tricky, right? Don't worry, we've got some solid advice to make your life easier. Here's how you can find flights and accommodations without a hitch.

Flights: How to Score the Best Deal

First things first, check out Google Flights. Their price calendar and nearby airport options are really useful. Found a good deal? Great, but hang on a sec—make sure you compare it with prices on Kayak, Skyscanner, Momondo, and Kiwi. A little research can go a long way.

Accommodation: Find Your Ideal Spot

For places to stay, start by scanning and Airbnb to get an idea of what's out there. Then, level up your search by looking at Hostelworld and Agoda. Oh, and a quick tip: the hotel's own website might have some special offers, so give that a look too.

Ready to make some moves? The links you need are right below. Happy booking!



Best for travelers who are ...

Nature enthusiasts, wildlife lovers, and adventure seekers

How long to stay in Ketchikan?

A minimum of 2-3 days to fully experience the natural beauty and cultural richness of Ketchikan.

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