Popular Things to Do in Skagway
Food and Drink in Skagway
For such a small town, you won't be hurting for lunch or drink options during your day in port.
No trip to Skagway is complete without popping into the Red Onion Saloon (205 Broadway) for a bite and a brew. Built in 1897, Red Onion was the finest brothel in town and a behind-the-scenes tour reveals original wallpaper and cheeky humor from "in character" guides.
Skagway Brewing Company has outgrown its original location and expanded operations to 4th Avenue off Broadway. Lunch is served daily, from 11 to 5, and it's locally sourced pub fare with crab artichoke dip, fish sandwiches, salads, burgers, pastas (with gluten-free options) and more. But come for the beer, made in house, and don't leave without trying the spruce tip blonde ale, a local specialty.
Sweet Tooth Cafe is right on Broadway and offers "home cooking" in the form of hamburgers and sandwiches on homemade bread, doughnuts, milkshakes and more.
Skagway Fish Co., near the Railroad Dock, offers terrific seafood as the name would suggest (get the fish and chips), along with marina views.
For a snack between sightseeing, stop in at Klondike Doughboy, offering a local sweet treat called fry bread. You can also pick up Alaskan honey, tea, syrups and other specialty items to bring home for friends and family.
Olivia's at Skagway Inn is the place for a white tablecloth lunch, offering local fare with a nouvelle twist from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
For a cocktail and a spirited souvenir, head to Skagway Spirits (941 Alaska Street) for a spruce gin and tonic. Family-owned and -operated, the small but thoughtful tasting room offers a one-of-a-kind cocktail list along with bottles of gin and vodka. Everything is made in house.
Don't Miss in Skagway
A Ride on the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad: This sightseeing train excursion was created as a result of the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898, though it wasn't completed before the rush ended. The narrow-gauge train follows the path that pioneers in search of Klondike Gold climbed in order to get to Dawson's Creek in nearby Canada. The tracks wind around granite mountains, trundle across steep gorges and pass through two tunnels. Virtually all visiting cruise lines offer the train ride; it's the most popular tour here.
Historic Tour of Skagway: Pick up a map at the Skagway Visitors Center for a self-guided walking tour. The building itself is distinctive because its builder collected more than 8,800 sticks of driftwood -- and then nailed them to the building's front.
If you prefer a drive, fast-talking guides in period garb lead the Skagway Street Car Tour, a two-hour look at the port's Gold Rush history onboard a restored yellow Mac Model B.
Gold-Panning at Liarsville Gold Rush Trail Camp: A stop at this recreation camp, which was set up by press men who were supposed to be reporting from the front lines of the Gold Rush (thus Liarsville), is often packaged with the train tour if you go one way by rail and one way by bus. As part of the setup, today's Liarsville also features a campfire, salmon bake and a ragtag band of entertaining storytellers.
Dog Sledding and Glacier Flightseeing: This combo tour is a budget-buster, but it's a unique way to experience the glaciers. You'll get a turn at mushing the dog team. It's available onboard, as well as through Temsco Helicopters (1-866-683-2900).
Ferry to Haines: If you've been to Skagway many times before, the town of Haines is a quick passenger ferry ride away. Go whale-watching and visit the American Bald Eagle Center downtown -- just factor in 45 minutes each way and ferry schedules that change daily.