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Gustavus [7] is a city in Southeastern Alaska. It is the gateway to Glacier Bay National Park.


The town is best known as the gateway to Glacier Bay. The small community (population 450) is located at the mouth of the Salmon River, on the north shore of Icy Strait just 50 miles northwest of Juneau. Incorporated in 2004, the city of Gustavus has a mayor and city council. Many residents are self employed in tourism and service/retail businesses, as well as fishing, power generation and aviation. Glacier Bay National Park employs over half of the residents of Gustavus. Others work for the state or for the Chatham School District.

In the past early settlers called the town Strawberry Point. The U.S. Postal Service renamed the town in 1925. The first successful homestead patent was issued in 1923, although settlers were present here as early as 1917. Historically, the area was used by the Tlingit people for seasonal harvesting and smoking of salmon.

The town encompasses 29.2 square miles of land and 10 square miles of water. The area's maritime climate is characterized by cool summers and mild winters. Summer temperatures range from 52 to 63 degrees; winter temperatures range from 26 to 39.

The geology of the area was influenced by glaciers and ocean. As the glaciers that covered the area 200 years ago have receded, the land in Gustavus has risen quickly – over an inch each year. Land that once was within the tidal zone is now high and dry. Where grasses once predominated, spruce trees now tower.

Get in[edit]

Gustavus Airport (IATA: GST, ICAO: PAGS) fields semi-regular flights to Juneau with several minor airlines, as well as a seasonal Alaska Airlines route to Seattle via Juneau. Alaska Airlines flies daily in summer from Juneau to Gustavus Airport. Air taxis run scheduled and charter flights from Juneau, Sitka, Haines and Skagway.

The Alaska Marine Highway [8] began serving Gustavus at a new stimulus-bill funded new dock, on November 23, 2010. There is also a small boat harbor that has primitive privately maintained floats.

Get around[edit]

Gustavus has only one main road, linking it with Bartlett Cove in Glacier Bay National Park.

See[edit][add listing]

Do[edit][add listing]

You can cruise aboard Wild Alaska Charters (1800-2250748) to Point Adolphus for an unforgettable whale watching experience, hike through an old growth rain forest or kayak through wilderness waters and see magnificent glaciers, whales, bears, sea otters and bald eagles. Explore Southeast Alaska underwater world during Wild Alaska's exclusive diving expeditions. Here you can also enjoy truly world class fishing .Wild Alaska Charters provids all necessary fishing equipment and bait.Your guide is an experienced commercial fisherman and US Coast Guard certified charter boat operator.

Gustavus has a city hall, medical clinic, fire department, library, restaurants, churches, a grocery, taxi service, rental cars, a city park, a nine-hole golf course and a small boat harbor. The state-funded Gustavus School serves about 72 students in grade K through 12.

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Glacier Bay Country Inn Bed and Breakfast, [2]. Glacier Bay Country Inn offers a full service gourmet restaurant to their guests and also any visitors. They've been featured on the national television show "Country Inn Cooking" with Gail Greco on PBS. Glacier Bay Country Inn has also been showcased in publications such as Food and Wine, Travel Age West, Saveur, and Bon Appetit.  edit
  • Gustavus Inn at Glacier Bay, One Mile Gustavus Road (One mile from airport, dock), +1-800 649-5220, [3]. 6AM to 7PM. Named the James Beard "America's Classic 2010", Gustavus Inn serves dinner to the public by reservation nightly during the summer. Large kitchen garden, ocean and wild harvest family style dining. Seafood menus feature Icy Strait salmon, halibut, dungeness crab and sablefish. There is also a six stool bar open for dining patrons. By one day advance reservation only. Call ahead, limited availability for those not staying at Gustavus Inn. $45.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Glacier Bay Country Inn, +1-800 628-0912, [4]. Open from Mid-May to mid-September. Glacier Bay Country Inn offers accommodations, full service gourmet restaurant, gift shop, 150 acre property, bike rides, fishing excursions, and tour guide services.  edit
  • Gustavus Inn at Glacier Bay, PO Box 60, Gustavus, Ak 99826 (Fly from Juneau to Gustavus), 800 697 2254, [5]. Open Mid-May to Mid-September. The building is a historic homestead, completely updated, where the Lesh family has been hosting Glacier Bay National Park visitors since 1965 through 3 generations. Glacier Bay National Park day boat tours, guided and unguided kayaking and saltwater charter fishing, as well as trip planning and air charters will be made by your hosts giving you the best, most efficient trip for your party. 14 rooms and a large kitchen garden are complemented by our ocean harvest family style meals. Wild edibles show off the bounty of our area. A hearth room, naturalist library, fleet of bikes, and homestead grounds provide a home away from home on the edge of the wilderness.  edit
  • Wild Alaska Inn at Glacier Bay (open Mid May to End of August), PO Box 335 Gustavus,Alaska 99826 (Alaska Marine highway(Ferry) or fly to Gustavus), 1855 997 2704, [6]. checkin: Mid- May; checkout: End -August. Wild Alaska Inn located less than a mile to the entrance of Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is a small family run B&B offers lodging as well as free booking services for tours and activities.(Glacier Bay Tour,whale watching .kayaking,fishing)  edit


Cell phone coverage is spotty, constrained by heavy tree cover, but dial-up, satellite, cell phone modems and some broadband LAN allow access to the Internet. (The Gustavus Library is a free hot spot.)

Get out[edit]

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