Map of Sitka National Historical Park
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National Historical Park
In southeastern Alaska, near Sitka
Sitka was the cultural and political hub of Russian America in the early 19th century. In 1867, Russia ended its 126-year New World enterprise with the sale of Alaska to the United States for $7.2 million. In addition to commemorating the battle of 1804 between the local Tlingits and the Russians, the park's 107 acres were set aside in 1890 to preserve and interpret numerous totem poles in the park as well as the Russian Bishop's House and czarist Russia's exploration and colonization of Alaska. The park was placed into the National Park System in 1910, making it the oldest and smallest national park in Alaska. The temperate rain-forest park consists of the fort site, a sizable totem-pole collection, the Southeast Alaska Indian Cultural Center (housed in the visitor center), and the restored Russian Bishop's House, which was built in 1842. The site was proclaimed in 1910 and designated a national historical park in 1972.
WHAT TO SEE & DO
Bird- and wildlife watching, picnicking, touring the restored living quarters in the Russian Bishop's House, viewing exhibits and salmon-spawning stream, walking, watching film and local artisans at work in the cultural center. Facilities: Visitor center, Russian Bishop's House, cultural center, trails, interpretive signs. Bookstore, picnic area. Programs & Events: Russian Bishop's House tours (mid-May-Sept. 30, daily; rest of year, by appointment), film (upon request). Tours of the Bishop's House and battle walks (June-Sept.), other programs (depending on staff availability). Tips & Hints: Bring rain gear and rubber boots. Visit June-Aug. Busiest July and Aug., least crowded Dec. and Jan.
FOOD, LODGING & SUPPLIES
Camping: None in park. In Sitka: Starrigavin Campgrounds (204 Siginaka Way, tel. 877/444-6777; 22 sites; pit toilets). Hotels: None in park. In Sitka: Westmark Shee Atika (330 Seward St., tel. 907/747-6241 or 800/544-0970; 101 rooms; $139-$159). X Restaurants: None in park. In Sitka: Channel Club (mile 3.5, 2906 Halibut Point Rd., tel. 907/747-9916; $15-$25). 6 Gear: None in park. In Sitka: The Work & Rugged Gear Store (407 Lincoln St., tel. 907/747-6238).
FEES, HOURS & REGULATIONS
Entrance fee: $3 for Russian Rishop s House and $3 for visitor center. Fishing restricted to Dolly Vardens only. Alaska state fishing license required. Leashed pets only. No bike riding. No camping. No fires, outside grills. No motorized vehicles on trails. Park grounds open summer, daily 6 am-10 pm; fall-spring, daily 7 am-8 pm. Visitor center open mid-May-Sept., Mon.-Sat. 8-5; Nov.-mid-May, weekdays 8-5. Russian Rishops House open late May-Sept., daily 9-5; rest of year, by appointment.
HOW TO GET THERE
0.3 mi from downtown Sitka. The Rishop s House is downtown. Closest airport: Sitka (?1//2] mi).
Sitka National Historical Park (103 Monastery St., Sitka, AK 99835, tel. 907/747-0110, fax 907/747-5938). Sitka Convention & Visitors Rureau (303 Lincoln St., Rox 1226, Sitka, AK 99835, tel. 907/ 747_5940, fax 907/747-3739).
Sitka National Historical Park. How to get by car to the Gates of the Sitka National Historical Park. How to book a room and its price in the Sitka National Historical Park