Easy Sitka: Historic City Highlights & Russian Dance

3.5 hours | Sitka | S I T - 1 0 0
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Points of Interest

  • St. Michael's Russian Orthodox Cathedral
  • Sheldon Jackson Museum
  • Sitka National Historical Park
Easy activity

Description

Be sure to read the Special Notes further down this page for important requirements and restriction.

WHAT YOU VISIT
Sheldon Jackson Museum
Founded in 1888, some of the museum's best-known pieces are totem poles, masks, baskets, and beautifully adorned clothing, and full-size kayaks known as baidarka. There is also a fine collection of Haida argillite carvings - sculptures carved from fine-grained sedimentary rock unique to the Pacific coast.

Sitka National Historical Park
Sitka's Russian heritage is on display at the picturesque park, once the site of a fierce battle between Tlingit and Russian forces in 1804. Dominated by an old-growth forest of Sitka spruce and western hemlock trees, here you'll find totem poles representing Tlingit and Haida tribes.

St. Michael's Cathedral
The onion-domed roof and golden crosses of St. Michael's Cathedral are unmistakable links to Russia's colonial past. Originally built in 1848, it's acclaimed as the earliest Orthodox cathedral in the New World and a National Historic Landmark. Destroyed by fire in 1966, the structure you see today houses many of the treasures that were rescued including icons that date back to the 18th century. Once inside you'll marvel at the priceless collection of Russian religious art and the Madonna of Sitka, which has been credited with miraculous healings.

Harrigan Centennial Hall
Overlooking the oceanfront in downtown Sitka, Centennial Hall is the perfect venue for a look at Russian culture. Once settled into your seat, you'll be entertained with a rousing performance by the New Archangel Dancers. Dressed in bright and lively costumes, you'll be enthralled as they perform 18th and 19th century folk dance with a presentation of the Alaska flag and song.

PHOTO OPPORTUNITY
The totem collection at Sitka National Historical Park are replicas of the poles first erected in 1906 but they continue to stand as a powerful representation of Alaskan Native art. Some of the original totems can be found inside the visitor center.

Your visit to St. Michael's Cathedral includes a peek at the breathtakingly beautiful ikonostasis screens that divide the nave and chapels from the altars.

The New Archangel Dancers repertoire includes over 35 dances from the lively polka to the serene gypsy dance and the elegant "beryozka" where dancers mysteriously glide across the stage.

WHAT YOU SEE ALONG THE WAY
One of the Russian landmarks inside Sitka National Historical Park is the beautifully restored 158-year-old Russian Bishop's House, one of the few surviving examples of Russian colonial architecture in North America.

Then, with the incredible imagery of Sitka's history and heritage in mind, enjoy an idyllic drive back to ship.

Special Notes:

Tour order may vary.

Unaccompanied Minors Policy: Children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Tour timeline may vary to avoid overcrowding, etc.