Beautiful scenery, lots of photo ops; friendly locals eager to help tourists enjoy themselves; alot of fun summer activities and events.
It rains alot.
Beautiful and pristine wilderness co-existing beautifully with a commercial fishing and logging town.
The third weekend of May, Petersburg celebrates Mayfest, also known as Little Norway. It is the celebration of Syttende Mai - May 17th, Norwegian Independence Day. This is our BIG festival with food and craft booths downtown, parade, pageant, Fish-O-Rama Seafood Feast, dances, and much more! Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. We have Vikings and...more
The weekend after Mayfest (Memorial Day weekend) there is the annual Salmon Derby. It runs Friday through Monday and you have to buy a ticket and make sure you have a current fishing license and King Salmon stamp. You can buy these at both hotels in town and the hardware stores.There are skiffs to rent (Scandia House rents very nice boats) or hook...more
If you are lucky...you'll meet a local fisherman who will want to take you out on a skiff ride to the La Conte Glacier, find some whales or pull up on his crab pots for an evening feast! (BTW...the fisherman in the picture? That's my boyfriend...so of course he had to take me on a skiff ride.)more
I saw this Santa Crossing sign in Petersburg while I was wandering around one March during the St. Patrick's Day parade. Don't remember what street, so looking for it again will be like searching for a needle in a haystack. But I thought it was cute.Incidentally, I brightened up the colors because my picture didn't turn out that great.more
Fedrelandet, Lodge No. 23, of Son's of Norway is located on Sing Lee Alley in Petersburg. Built in 1912, this building is on the National Register of Historic Places. As you can see from this view of the back of the building, it is built on pilings. The buildings sits on Hammer Slough, which makes for lovely photographs. I have a nice picture of...more
Fantastic Mexican food in a dingy old bar. A family set up their little restaurant inside Kito's during the days (Somewhat scary bar at night if you aren't a local). Don't be intimidated to go in...otherwise you will miss out on some of the best food in Petersburg. EVERYTHING is good at this place. A local favorite is the halibut fish tacos. I...more
The Elks and Moose Club have daily specials and The Elks have seafood dishes with the seasons latest catch. So, if you have a membership to either or both, these places are great to eat.Coastal Cold Storage is called "McCoastal" by the locals for the fact that it is set up as a fast food restaurant, but is 10 times better. With local catch...more
There are currently 4 bars in Petersburg, not counting the Elks and Moose Clubs.
The first place to go is the Harbor Bar. Towards the end of town right next door to Coastal Cold Storage. This is where alot of the locals start. It has alot of town history hanging on its walls and not too big. There are two pool tables and a huge tv for when the super bowl is on. Usually closes down around midnight and then it's time to move on to the next bar...
Kito's Kave. Situated down Sing Lee Alley which is one of the oldest streets in town. With no windows, it is a cave! There is usually a live band which makes it more lively. It is bigger than the harbor and can get quite packed due to it being popular with the cannery workers. This place can get quite lively! They shut down at the respectable hour of 2am. If Kito's is too much, it's time to move on...
Ole's is a small bar situated across from the ferry terminal over a pizzaria. It is small with a pool table, a couple of dartboards and guest DJs. Most of the younger crowd hang out here. If you want a little more "self" entertainment head down the street...
Literally, the Joan Mei Karaoke Bar is 3 doors down. No hard liquor, just beer and wine, and a mic calling your name. Jump up and sing us a few tunes won't you?
The pic is of me and a friend as Valkyries. Yes, a night of debauchery with a couple of locals. We were enjoying some really good grog and whooping it up. Ahhh... those ol' rowdy days of mine. lol
Dress Code: A couple girls wandered into the bars in nothing but sneakers and not an eye was batted. However, I recommend at least wearing the standard: shoes, shirt and pants. Please, if not for your own sake, for that of us poor locals!
Most folks fly into Petersburg, but I think the best way to see southeast Alaska, is to take the ferry or a small cruise ship. The ferry is reasonable in price and you can bring a vehicle. A small cruise ship offers more information and exploration of the surrounding areas. Whichever you choose, you are in for a treat. Whales are common sightings,...more
Beautiful artwork done by local artists as well as well known Alaskan artists. "Made in Alaska" labels abound in this shop! No words to describe the many beautiful gifts that you could take home with your, or have shipped! They can hold onto items until your due date of arrival back at home so you are sure to be home for the delivery. You can also...more
Fedrelandet, Lodge No. 23, of Son's of Norway is located on Sing Lee Alley in Petersburg. From this view you can see the Sons of Norway Hall reflection in Hammer Slough. Local crafts. No opinion about if it's too much or too little as it's unique compared to other places.more
This is where I found good souvenirs from "Litle Norway"; local Norwegian cookbooks, rosemaling craft items, or even a krumkake baker (which is what I bought). I bought the krumkake baker. Krumkake is a traditional Scandinavian desert made by baking thin round “sweet waffles” stamped with an beautiful design that is imprinted no the krumkake...more
I'm about as much Norwegian as I am Irish, so I thought it was great that I wound up in Petersburg one March and got to participate in the St. Patty's Day Parade. Everyone had great fun.
While finding yourself within close range to an animal, be it a porcupine or bear, too many people forget they are wild and can be unpredictable. There have been a few incidents where people assume they are experts in how to navigate the wild and wander off trails or away from the tour group they are suppose to be with. They quickly find out that the wildlife don't always conform to popular conceptions of what will or won't keep them at bay. When in the wilds, be prepared with a pack filled with essentials to keep you safe and alive. Whether you feel it is necessary or not, ask any local and 9 out of 10 will probably tell you that if you are headed for the outdoors where you might meet up with a bear, a gun is a good idea. Be smart and aware of your surroundings. Don't crowd a bear who has young or is feeding (like catching salmon) though it may be a great photo op. It is always best to go in groups because you are less likely encounter an agressive animal with more than one person.
This is a general tip when traveling anywhere really.
My biggest pet peeve, came when I was told that for most places that are visited by large cruise companies, in Alaska, THEY own the shops that are most frequented by their passengers. And if you look at where the souviners are made, it says CHINA! This is crazy! I figure, if I want a cheap little souviner to remember my trip by that is made in China, I will go to China! In Alaska, look for "Made In Alaska".
That being said, look very closely at the item you purchase. It depends on where you are shopping too. I won't tell you who sells China made Alaskan souvineres, but I will tell you where to get authentic MADE IN ALASKA treasures: Go to The Framer's Loft. The owner has the same pet peeve as me and strives to sell only Alaskan made items. If it isn't made in Alaska (which is rare), it is made in the USA!
So keep your eyes peeled and watch out for mementos that are true to your journey.
Unique Suggestions: Ask locals where to get authentic "Made In Alaska" items and ask them to show you the labels. Some smaller towns, such as Petersburg, have Alaskan made items mixed with China made items. So, when going into a shop, specifically ask the owner if the items they carry are made in Alaska or not.
A raincoat or poncho and/or a good sturdy umbrella is essential or you may find yourself stuck indoors for much of your visit. Bring galoshes or rainboots unless you like soggy socks. Bring cool and warm weather clothing since the weather can change drastically in the summer.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring mosquito repellent or be eaten alive. Our mosquitoes have been known to carry off small children and animals, much like pteryldactyls.
Photo Equipment: Bring alot of film or be prepared to buy it when you arrive. Video gear is a good idea, especially during Little Norway Festival.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Any outdoor gear is a good bet. Mosquito netting, flare gun, fishing gear is also a must.