Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center, Juneau

4.8
#1 of 241 in Parks in Alaska
Located just 19 km (12 mi) from downtown Juneau, Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center attracts visitors with its deep blue sheets of ice. Begin your icy adventure at the visitor center, which offers interpretative programs and features an observatory with telescopes trained on the blue ice. Remember that despite their undeniable natural beauty, glaciers are constantly shifting and can be extremely dangerous. Always think of safety first and arrange for a guided trip to the glacier with any one of a dozen tour operators working in the area. Professional guides can show you the most convenient trails for taking photographs from a distance, and lead you safely right up to the ice itself. Make Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center a part of your Juneau vacation plans using our Juneau tour itinerary planner .
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Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
6,307 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • There is a lot of information about glaciers, and the Mendenhall Glacier in particular. Naturalists are on site to help explain what you are seeing. A worthwhile stop!  more »
  • Our family of 11 (ages 7-82) visited here on a cruise stop. The visitors center has a lot of great information about the glacier and some really good views of the area. There is a nice short film abou...  more »
  • Lots of great information, photos and a brief video. You can see the glacier from the walking trail, as well as travelers near the glacier walking and kayaking.  more »
Google
  • Take tour bus for $35- or take public bus for $2-. We chose the latter and were able to visit with Tlingit workers rather than other tourists. The Mendenhall Glacier is easier to get to from Juneau, and its a big one. However, since tourism began in 1900, the glacier has melted so much that a lake has formed in front, and visitors hike an extra mile to view it. The geology, flora, and fauna is very impressive.
  • Beautiful glacier with nearby Nugget Falls. It is about a 1 mile trail to get to the falls but worth the walk. The visitor center is also worth visiting. Look for porcupines in the trees along the trail. Also see salmon spawning in a stream near the parking lot. Some in n our party saw a black bear on one of the trails.
  • The center was great. It is a 4 only because you cannot get close to the glacier. I loved their movie, that they had 2 telescopes trained on an eagle and on mountain goats, that there were short trails that afforded great views of the glacier. You can walk to the base of the waterfall but it is a 40 minute walk (total) walk. A very short walk from where the buses drop you off you there were salmon spawning and a ranger to explain it. This was August 30.
  • We visited the Mendenhall Glacier while on an Alaskan cruise with Norwegian. It is a bit of a walk to get from where the buses drop you off down to the waters edge by the waterfall and glacier. The walk is worth it though if you are a waterfall lover. The glacier was really pretty. It was different shades of blue. The water was, of course, ice cold and very clear. The visitor center was a decent size. It held a LOT of people. There are stairs and/or a ramp that you have to walk up to get into the building. I believe we saw elevators too but we didn't use it.There was a short video that talked about how the glacier has gotten smaller over time. There was a person that worked there doing a small tour inside the center going over the different educational displays and answering questions. I browsed the gift shop. Quite a few unique and "locally made" items (soap, lotions, etc). Prices were a bit high but we had already we anticipated that.
  • Amazing sight to see! There was a decent amount of people but I was able to snap plenty of photos without them getting in the way. I'd highly recommend checking this out, before it is gone! We didn't have the time to hike to the falls but we did walk down to the lake, snapped a few pics, and headed back up. Note: we got here as part of a bike excursion from our cruise ship. We got bused to a starting location and then rode 8 miles to get to the visitor center. Then the bike guys bused us back to the pier. This was a very good experience for us.
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