DescriptionCalled the “Switzerland of Alaska,” Valdez (val-DEEZ) is ringed by snowcapped mountains. As the northernmost ice-free port, the town was established in 1898 as an outfitting point for miners taking the hazardous pack trail over Valdez Glacier to the northern gold fields.
In addition to the gold rush, Valdez's rich history includes the 5-minute, 9.2-magnitude Good Friday earthquake in 1964; construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and Marine Terminal in the 1970s; and the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill and cleanup.
Access into Valdez is by scheduled air service, ferry or via the scenic Richardson Highway. Near Milepost 16 are Bridal Veil and Horsetail falls and the Historic 1899 Trans-Alaska Military Trail & Wagon Road. Thompson Pass, Milepost 26, offers a spectacular view of the Chugach Mountains, valley rivers and historic Keystone Canyon. At Milepost 28.7 is Worthington Glacier State Recreation Site, which has picnic tables and walking trails.
Nearby glaciers in Prince William Sound include Mears, Shoup and Columbia, the second largest tidewater glacier in North America.
InfoOfficeValdez Convention and Visitors Bureau 309 Fairbanks Dr. Valdez, AK 99686. Phone:(907)835-2984
Attraction PlaceHoldersMaxine & Jesse Whitney Museum