Juneau Nightlife

It’s probably fair to say that Juneau nightlife isn’t quite up there with other cities in the U.S. After all, this is the most remote state capital to be found, accessible only be sea and air—no roads lead in to Juneau. Still, that’s not to say there’s a dearth of things to do here come nightfall. In fact, given the range of theaters, clubs, and bars in Juneau that are available, this really isn’t a bad place to be at all.

An evening out in Juneau often begins with a cultured trip to a cinema or theater. There are some great places here, especially small, atmospheric movie houses that prove to be a far cry from your average impersonal multiplex. The Gold Town Nickelodeon, for example, is a small affair that shows predominantly independent films, and you can normally find a selection of movies showing at various times across its two comfortable screening rooms. On the theatrical side of things, meanwhile, the Perseverance Theatre is well known in town for showing Juneau’s best professional productions.

Having checked culture off your list in one of these establishments, nights out in Juneau proceed onto more down-to-earth pleasures. The Juneau nightlife boasts a great selection of evocative spots in which to have a beer or four. The local drink is named (with a great deal of creativity) Alaska; it’s a tasty and ice-cold beer that goes down a treat.

Many of the best bars in Juneau are to be found in the downtown area, which is just next to the Juneau dock. The Red Dog Saloon is one such example. An authentic Alaskan drinking hole, replete with a sawdust laden floor and wall-hung memorabilia, it’s a favorite of cruise ship passengers exploring Juneau nightlife. The Red Dog is famed for its live music, with performers often playing into the early hours of the morning.

Another of the best bars in Juneau is simply named The Alaskan. This is a friendly place that loves to chat and drink; it’s a perfect place, then, for the freshly arrived visitor looking to meet some locals and get a sense of daily life in Juneau.

In truth, many people don’t get as far as the entertainment options listed above as they have another, equally enjoyable outlet to frequent. That outlet is the cruise liner they arrive on. Many of the travelers come to Juneau do so on a liner, with cruise companies such as Holland America Line plying a route along the coast here and stopping off for a night or two at Juneau.These liners are invariably packed with things to do, from going to a cabaret show to dining and drinking in style. It may not be authentic Juneau at its nighttime best, but living it up on a liner while in dock is certainly a great way to enjoy your evening while spending time here, especially given the convenient location of Juneau's cruise ship dock.

Image: Alaska Division of Tourism
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