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“Bigger than life”

Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center
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Round-Trip Mendenhall Glacier Shuttle Service
Ranked #6 of 96 things to do in Juneau
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Mendenhall Glacier is easily accessible via roads from the local airport, cruise ship terminal and state ferry terminal. Our facility and lands are managed by the federal government through the United States Forest Service. Federal passes are accepted and sold s well as daily passes. There is a visitor center with a theater showing a 15-minute film on Mendenhall Glacier, a bookstore operated by nonprofit organization Discovery Southeast, and exhibits on wildlife, history, and glacial and geological changes. Rangers provide talks at various indoor and outdoor sites in summer. Open hours in summer are daily 8am to 7:30pm. Due to wildlife and bears, no food is allowed outdoors from April-November. There is no beverage or food service available to prevent bears from becoming food-conditioned. Nearby Steep Creek is the spawning stream for wild sockeye salmon from late July through early September. Later in the fall, a run of coho salmon spawn in the creek. Porcupines can be seen foraging on leaves in deciduous trees. Beavers are visible early in the morning and in the evening. Learn about Alaska and the natural world around the glacier and lake. Enjoy a one-hour hike to 400-foot-tall Nugget Falls. Other trails lead to different habitats. In winter, the visitor center is open Friday-Sunday from 10am to 4pm and closed on federal holidays.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Stairs / elevator, Bathroom facilities, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed October 18, 2012

You hear about this glacier but seeing it is out of this world. Almost impossible to believe but proof is right in front of your eyes. Several walkways and paths to get closer views and better photos. A very good tourist center with historical exhibits and info.

2  Thank winwinwin333
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,329 - 5,333 of 6,151 reviews

Reviewed October 17, 2012 via mobile

Unreal .....the perspective of the people looking at it vs the size amazing. It's about a 45 round trip walk to the falls which is just to the left of the glacier. Just missed a bear & it's cub. Just beautiful!

2  Thank Marty P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2012

A short bus trip to the beautiful visitor's center, brings you right up to the glacier without having to set foot onto a boat. There is a path which takes you a bit closer to the glacier and to the foot of a large waterfall. It is about a 30-45 minute round trip on a non- strenuous walk. Once there you cannot see the top of the waterfall without getting into the water however, I always recommend viewing the film at any of the National Park Service's locations and this is no exception.

3  Thank AppliKR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2012

This was definitely the highlight of Alaska, a place like no other. Being able to see the huge beautiful glacier and awesome surrounding scenery. Its so breathtaking. Took a lot of good pictures. . . there are big rocks too, which show scratches on them, due to the movement of the glacier over time. There is a 45 minute walking path to the waterfall too. If you are on a cruise trip, better rent a car and drive here by yourself. Save a lot of $$ and bus waiting time.

5  Thank bthereviewer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 10, 2012

Here's the thing....I'm not a Nature type of girl. I'm more of a museum/coffee/shopping kind of traveler. That being said, Mendenhall Glacier was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. The water near the ice is a clear blue. The glacier itself is imposing and beautiful amongst the trees. There's even a trail you can "hike" to within 30 minutes to get closer to the glacier and its waterfall.

The visitor's center was a pleasant surprise. No scary smelly bathrooms here. It's clean and comes with Purell sanitizer stands everywhere. From the top of the stair case at the visitor's center, you can take some pretty good shots of the glacier.

My daughter (who is an avid mall shopper like myself) surprisingly had a great time, finding rocks, throwing them into the glacier lake, and falling over the small ravine during our hike.

You have to visit here if you're in Juneau.

TIP---Don't automatically assume you have to take the Might Great Trips blue glacier bus. There are now a ton of glacier buses running. Go up to the stands and ask which one is already waiting for customers. They all cost the same. And don't buy the return ticket, since you don't know which bus will be waiting for you when you want to leave. Just save your cash, and pay the bus driver directly on your return trip to avoid waiting for the bus you already paid for.

8  Thank lilpooh108
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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