There’s no better place to discover the rich culture and history of the 49th state than at Alaska Museums. Alaska is full of fascinating cultures. Its history ranges from ancient civilizations, to the gold rush, to the pioneers that built the state we all know today.
The museums range in price from free admission to $25. Most are open year-round, but during the winter season, many will have limited hours.
Alaska is a state steeped in rich history. Incredible natural resources brought people from far and wide to try and make a living. Alaska’s breathtaking landscapes are home to some fascinating stories.
By no coincidence, the state is home to an array of museums, curated and detailed with education and informational learning. While many come to Alaska to experience the wild landscape, learning about history can help broaden our understanding of how Alaska, as we know it, came to be. Ranging from cars and airplanes, to art and historic artifacts, there is a museum out there for everyone.
Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum – Fairbanks
This museum houses almost 100 pre-World War II automobiles. The collection displays the first car built in Alaska, as well as several one of a kind models. In addition, the museum is home to an extensive collection of vintage garments ranging from the 18th-mid 20th century.
University of Alaska Museum of the North – Fairbanks
This research based organization is a great opportunity to learn a little bit about both native and pioneer history. Explore the multiple levels of exhibits and an upstairs art gallery. When you arrive, check showing times to see the documentary on the aurora borealis!
Anchorage Museum – Anchorage
This is the largest museum in Alaska, the Anchorage Museum features exhibits on art, history, and science. Make sure to watch some of their films and visit the planetarium. This collection is located right in the heart of Anchorage and might be a great stop when you land or before you’re set to take off.
Alaska State Museum – Juneau
Focused largely on history, the Alaska State Museum aims to educate visitors about the different cultures that shaped Alaska. It follows indigenous people, the Russian occupation, and the US purchase of Alaska. Artifacts line the rooms to give a modern day look at how Alaska’s culture has blended and morphed over centuries.
Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum in Anchorage
Located on the largest float plane base in the world, the Alaska Aviation Museum has several hangars filled with exhibits and vintage airplanes. This unique space quickly helps you dive right into aviation history. In addition, this museum has a flight simulator to experience!
Totem Heritage Center – Ketchikan
Visit the Totem Heritage Center to see one of the biggest collections of 19th century totem poles in the world. This center has collected totems from all over Alaska so as to display the multi-faceted lives and unique attributes from each tribe represented. This space provides an expansive collection of Pacific Northwestern artwork as well.
This house was built in 1915 when Anchorage was barely developed. It’s one of the oldest houses in the entire state. Visit and discover what was considered “wealthy” in these times.
Exploring is great, but taking the time to learn about a place can help you gain a much greater understanding about the many intricacies that Alaska holds. Connect your modern day experiences to the lush history of Alaska. Adding a museum to your trip provides a perfect opportunity to do that.