Destinations

Sitka National Historical Park – Sitka, Alaska

Sitka National Historic Park - Sitka, Alaska

Sitka was probably the town I’d most like to live in that we visited on our southeastern Alaska cruise. There’s so much to do there and it is just beyond beautiful. We made it to Sitka National Historical Park on the day that we were there.

Sitka National Historical Park is the site where a battle between invading Russian traders and indigenous Kiks.ádi Tlingit took place, known as the Battle of Sitka. The park commemorates the history and culture of the Tlingit and Russian experiences that took place on the island.

The park’s most iconic features are the several totem poles strewn about the park. Walking around the park, one would think that they have been there since the Tlingits dominated the area, but that is not the case – as there once was a time not too long ago that these totem poles did not adorn the surrounding forest. Though one of the area’s most recognizable features, the totem poles were shipped here from different areas of southeast Alaska in order to draw people to the exhibit. Many of them have to be re-carved and re-painted because of being in the harsh outdoors, but they still hold cultural significance and tell of history.

The area of Sitka National Historical Park is very beautiful, with trails through the forest, along a stream, and against the rising and lowering tide. We saw many bald eagles while walking through the park, and there are great views of the town of Sitka from the beach.

The area was vivid and full of life despite the cultural hardships that took place here long ago, and to an extent, still take place among the Tlingit.

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Sitka National Historical Park is a great place to visit to learn of southeast Alaska’s history and culture, along with being a relaxing trek through nature.

[All photos were taken in May 2014.]

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12 Comments

  • Reply
    Nadya's Side Of The Road
    June 6, 2016 at 11:55 pm

    I am planning to go to Alaska next year. I will remember to visit this spot!!!

  • Reply
    Izzy
    June 2, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    I’m greatly interested in indigenous artifacts, especially totem pole structures so to see all your photos of these beautiful carvings just made me soooo excited! Alaska is definitely high on my list! The more I’ve been abroad, the more I want to go exploring the States a bit more when I get back. It’s so diverse and really special given everything you can find in one country. Reallyc ool!

  • Reply
    Paige Brown
    June 2, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    I didn’t make it to Sitka on my travels in Alaska, but I totally wish I had. It sounds and looks incredible! I studied cultural and linguistic anthropology, so every time I saw traditional totem poles, I went a little crazy. These photos are totally taking me back to that! I want to drive to Alaska again with my fiancé, so Sitka is going to be a must-see! Cheers!

  • Reply
    Cassie
    June 2, 2016 at 3:24 pm

    Wow this is gorgeous!! It reminds me a little of where I grew up, I haven’t seen totem poles since then. I’d love to check Alaska out one day.

  • Reply
    Colby
    June 2, 2016 at 10:34 am

    Incredible photos! Sitka looks like an amazing place to visit…so quiet and serene.

  • Reply
    Jasmine (@restlesshrts)
    June 2, 2016 at 9:05 am

    Beautiful pictures, I’ve really want to visit Alaska because I’ve fallen in love with that northern spirit while working in subarctic Quebec and would love to visit as many northern places as I can.

  • Reply
    Meg Jerrard
    June 2, 2016 at 6:36 am

    Stunning photography – we recently visited Alaska though only spent time in Anchorage and then drove up to Denali. Would love to spend more time and be able to take in Sitka 🙂

  • Reply
    Chantell Collins
    June 2, 2016 at 2:03 am

    Very pretty! I just went to Alaska for the first time last year by plane and rental car. We only got to visit Anchorage and Fairbanks but I would love to go back and do a cruise to see the other seaside towns like Sitka. It looks absolutely gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Katie
    June 2, 2016 at 1:13 am

    Super crisp and gorgeous photos! I have yet to visit Alaska, but sounds like I too would enjoy Sitka! Getting so close to wildlife and nature is what intrigues me the most about visiting Alaska, and looks like you got to experience it!

  • Reply
    Megan Indoe
    June 2, 2016 at 12:56 am

    Wow! Stunning photos and I love those totem poles! I really want to do an Alaskan cruise as well! Looks like you saw some great places! Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Laura @ Grassroots Nomad
    June 1, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    It is so interesting that they moved the totum from other parts of the state to bring people there – I think it is important that all countries value and honour their Indigenous history. This must have been a wonderful place to visit!

  • Reply
    Mar @ T.O. & fro
    June 1, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    We used to live in Alaska, but never made it down to the SE. Sitka looks and sounds amazing, and these photos are beautiful.

    Have a great day, Mar
    toandfroblog.com

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