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Summer Vacation Ideas

Valdez is one of the most active summer communities in all of Prince William Sound. The town and the surrounding Chugach Mountains offer such an amazing alpine scenery that this community has come to be known as “Little Switzerland.”


It is host to the oldest fish derby in Alaska and has a reputation of being the pink salmon capital of the world. Anglers can fish in either salt or fresh water while being surrounded by some of the most magnificent mountains and glaciers in the state. The area salt waters offer pink, silver, king, chum, and an occasional sockeye salmon. Pinks and silvers can be caught directly from shore or by boat.

Anglers who aim for the adjacent seas will encounter all four of these species, along with rockfish, ling cod, and Pacific halibut. Dolly Varden char can also be found in the same waters. Some nearby ponds and lakes are stocked with rainbow trout and anglers that head for the interior will also find arctic grayling along the way.

Glacier Tours

Day-long or extended tours of Prince William Sound are ready to take you to the best vantage points for any of the five glaciers, sea life, and shorebirds. Rental boats, charters, sail boats, and excursion vessels depart from the Small Boat Harbor for sightseeing, fishing, and lodge transport. Flightseeing trips over some of the most magnificent mountains and glaciers anywhere are regularly available all summer in helicopters and planes.

Raft Trips

Outdoor lovers will find both ocean and inland options in Valdez. Guided raft trips are ready to take you past the waterfalls of Keystone Canyon. Fly-outs and drop-offs are available to remote locations in the Sound and Chugach Mountains. Tourists can take part in guided nature kayak tours, as well as extended camping trips.

Other Ideas

Or, take in the rich history while visiting one of three local museums and collections displaying Alaska Native artifacts dating from early to recent days of the previous century. Other summer activities include fishing, hiking, biking, and glacier trekking, and rappelling. Others enjoy the large amount of birding the area has to offer. For those who enjoy bird watching, there are numerous species of year round and migratory birds that fly above the waves. On the waves float sea otters, harbor seals, and Stellar sea lions. Below the waves you can find Dall porpoise, Humpback and Orca whales. The land is equally interesting. Mountain goats and Dall sheep find their home on nearby cliffs and heading further to the interior the landscape holds populations of both black and brown bears.