Sitka, Alaska's historic Russian-American island city, is situated on the west side of Baranof Island. Mt. Edgecumbe, a dormant volcano that looks like Japan's Mr. Fujiyama, dominates the horizon and tiny islands dot the harbour.
Once called "the Paris of the Pacific," Sitka stands out among other ports as a city rich in culture. Built on the empire of Russian fur trade, Sitka is Alaska's fifth-largest city and has grown to be the cultural and artistic center of the Southeast.
The local economy is strongly centered on the timber, fishing and tourism industries. Famous for its sport fishing, Sitka's two harbors are dotted with brightly colored boats that look out over the pine-covered islands of the Tongass National Forest.
At Sitka National Historical Park (Totem Park), visitors can recapture Sitka's Native and Russian history and see a collection of totem poles, a fort site and the battleground of 1804. Also, it is home to the Southeast Alaska Indian Cultural Center where visitors can watch and talk to Native artisans.
Port Location - The ship will anchor up in one of the channels outside of Sitka and tender into the main wharf (just below Castle Hill). Downtown Sitka is a 2-block walk from the tender port and the balance of Sitka's sites are within easy walking distance.
Transport Links - Sitka is best reached by boat, either cruise ship or the Alaska State Ferry. Air taxis are also a popular mode of transportation. Small boat charters are necessary for exploring the many historical sights accessible only by water.