Ketchikan, alaska

Alaskan Cruise with Kids – Part 5, Ketchikan

Day 5

Ketchikan. We found ourselves in Ketchikan on day 5 with nothing planned. So we just decided to see what there was to see.

sea plane
Watching sea planes land and takeoff never gets old.

Tongass National Forest Visitor Center and City Park

Our first stop was the Tongass National Forest Visitor Center where we learned a bit more about the history of the area (mining, logging, fishing), the native peoples, and the forest itself—the Tongass is a temperate rainforest (I didn’t even know there was such a thing). And the kids were able to earn more Junior Ranger badges.

Tongass National Forest

Tongass National Forest Junior Ranger badges
Taking their Junior Ranger oath at Tongass National Forest Visitor Center, Ketchikan, AK

From there, we decided to take a walk in the rain. Doesn’t sound too exciting, but just experiencing the fresh air and the smell of this little town in the rain was very refreshing. And my children loved seeing slugs all over the sidewalks instead of worms like we have here in Chicagoland.

Tsunami evacuation
Here’s a sign you never see in Chicagoland.

Our destination was a fish hatchery, but unfortunately it was closed for remodeling. We did happen upon beautiful City Park, though, with ponds dating back to the 1900s when they were used as fish ponds for the hatchery.

City Park Ketchikan
City Park, Ketchikan

Since Ketchikan was our final stop in Alaska, we took the opportunity to visit a few of the tourist shops to purchase T-shirts, an Alaskan fidget spinner (which is no different than a lower 48 fidget spinner), and a pair of earrings (and my husband just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to buy some Alaskan canned salmon) before returning to the boat.

To be continued…here. Follow our Alaskan adventure from the beginning here.

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Janette DeFelice

Janette DeFelice, MD, MA is a writer currently focusing on how the changing environment affects our health. Her essay collection Resistance Essays from the Heartland and her new novel Delia Rising: A Ballet in Three Acts are both available now. She has also published at Be The Change Mom, ChicagoNow, and She holds a Doctor of Medicine degree from Chicago Medical School and a Master’s degree in Humanities from the University of Chicago, where her major essay was Hegel and Ibsen: The Evolution of Consciousness in Ibsen’s Prose Play Cycle. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Indiana University. A former professional dancer, former adjunct Humanities professor, and former lecturer in Medical Clinical Skills, as well as a mom of 9-year-old twins, she currently finds herself at a career/life crossroads at which she is trying to figure out how to use all aspects of herself (her art, her medical and scientific knowledge, her philosophical explorations, her interest in popular culture as a teaching tool, and her unique perspective) for the good of humanity.

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