WELCOME TO WHITTIER, ALASKA
Just an hour’s drive south of Anchorage lies Whittier, a very colorful Alaskan town with a unique history. Once a secret World War II military base, it’s remained virtually off the map and unchanged to this very day.
The majority of Whittier’s 300 year-round residents live together in one building, The Begich Towers, earning us the distinction of being “Alaska’s Only Town Under One Roof.”
How do I get to Whittier?
Whittier is accessed through the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel.
With a distance of 2.5 miles, this innovative roadway has the distinction of being the longest combined rail/highway tunnel in North America.
Travelers can drive a single direction through the tunnel once per hour. During our summer months, these tunnel openings begin early in the morning and stretch late into the evening. The Alaska Department of Transportation provides a schedule for tunnel use on its website. Please note there is a small toll to enter the tunnel.
The following quick links will help you find the most important details concerning Tunnel travel:
- Download a PDF of the Full Tunnel Schedule
- Download a PDF of the Tunnel Toll Rates
- Take a Virtual Drive!
- Read about the Tunnel’s History
Simply traveling around Alaska can be an adventure in itself! Please explore the following links to discover a little bit more about the logistics, weather, and current transportation options:
- Alaska Highway Conditions
- The Seward Highway
- Alaska Marine Highway System
- Ted Stevens International Airport
Staying in Whittier
Whittier has a range of accommodations both within town or nearby communities:
- Anchor Inn Hotel
- June’s Bed & Breakfast
- Sound View Getaway B&B Waterfront Condo Suites
- The Inn at Whittier
If the great outdoors is more your style, the city campground can be found behind the Begich Towers. In the past, other visitors have chosen to set up camp on the beach at the head of Portage Canal.
During the summer season, there are a number of great places to dine out in Whittier. Your options include fresh-caught local seafood (and awesome blues music) at Varley’s Swiftwater Cafe, the wonderful cuisine at China Sea Restaurant, gourmet west-coast fare at the Inn at Whittier, or the tastiest burger in town (among other things) at the Wild Catch Cafe. Whittier might be small, but there’s no shortage of good eating here!
Recreational activities include day cruises to tidewater glaciers, kayak rentals, flight-seeing, fishing charters, hiking and so much more.
For the most comprehensive information on our area, we definitely recommend that you visit the following sites first:
The Whittier Business Map: Created by the Whittier Chamber of Commerce, this colorful PDF document provides an excellent look at the locations ofall of the businesses, recreational activities, and events in Whittier.
The Greater Whittier Chamber of Commerce
The city’s webcams are perfect for getting a quick glimpse of the local weather. “Camera 1” is located on the 14th floor of the Begich Towers. It usually overlooks Whittier and Passage Canal in a northerly direction, but will change from time to time over the summer months to showcase the harbor or the cruise ship dock.
“Camera 2” generally faces east and is located on the 10th floor of the Begich Towers. It primarily shows the Lynden Transport barge docking facility. There are usually two arrivals each week, one from Seattle and another from Canada, bringing in supplies and goods to be distributed across the entire state of Alaska.
These last few links will hopefully keep you up to date on what sort of weather to expect on the days of your reservation!
- Local Forecast with Tally of Daylight Hours
- Current NOAA Marine Forecast
- Extended NOAA Marine Forecast: Featuring all of Western Prince William Sound