Russian America and Raptor Center
Duration: 4 hours
Tour Code: sit-001
This unique excursion explores the historical highlights of this former "Russian" capital city and includes a tour through the Alaska Raptor Center. The Bald Eagle Center operates with bird care professionals assisted by volunteers to rescue birds, provide them with rehabilitative care and hopefully release them back into the wild. After your introduction to the center, a presentation with one of the Center's educational birds will take place. Time will be available to view the flight center, clinic window, outside deck habitat areas and gift shop.
Next, you'll visit the Sitka National Historical Park, where the 1804 "Battle of Alaska", was fought. The park hosts totem lined trails, cultural exhibits and carving rooms where native Alaskan artisans demonstrate their totemic art form. Time may be spent walking the forest trail, viewing cultural exhibits and video presentation, or talking with local native artists about their cultural art form.
Your next stop will be at the Sheldon Jackson Museum. Several distinct periods of Alaskan history are preserved within the island community of Sitka, from the early Native American civilization through the Russian Colonial period and the Pacific Theatre of World War II. Before the European colonists arrived in Alaska, the Eskimo, Aleut, Athabaskan, and Tlingit native groups lived off the land here. At the museum, view artifacts from that period that reside in the Sheldon Jackson Museum, showcasing the ingenuity and skill of the native settlers living in a very unforgiving land.
After leaving the Museum your guide will drive you by Castle Hill, site of the 1867 land transfer ceremony. Upon conclusion of the drive you will make the final stop at St. Michael's Cathedral and view original Icon Artwork dating back to the early 16th Century. The Cathedral is the mother cathedral for orthodoxy for all of America. After the church you may disembark on the main street to shop or be returned directly to the tender pier.
Please note: This tour involves walking of up to 1 mile (approximately 1.5 hours). The order of sites visited may be reversed.