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Overview

One of the most remote parts of Alaska, the Pribilof Islands are 300 miles west of mainland Alaska in the middle of the wild Bering Sea. Flying here can be a gut-wrenching experience — you're over the ocean in a small PenAir plane for two hours. Pribilof weather is notoriously wet and foggy, forcing many flights to turn back after being unable to land. The two main islands — St. Paul and St. George — are best known for their massive concentrations of seabirds and seals. St. Paul is the more accessible, with scheduled trips through Native-owned St. Paul Island Tours. Each island has limited lodging (one simple hotel on each island) and pricey ...

One of the most remote parts of Alaska, the Pribilof Islands are 300 miles west of mainland Alaska in the middle of the wild Bering Sea. Flying here can be a gut-wrenching experience — you're over the ocean in a small PenAir plane for two hours. Pribilof weather is notoriously wet and foggy, forcing many flights to turn back after being unable to land. The two main islands — St. Paul and St. George — are best known for their massive concentrations of seabirds and seals. St. Paul is the more accessible, with scheduled trips through Native-owned St. Paul Island Tours. Each island has limited lodging (one simple hotel on each island) and pricey groceries. The islands are especially popular with birders in search of unusual Asian species and photographers who find puffins, kittiwakes, murres, and other birds on the steep cliffs ringing the islands. Thousands of northern fur seals also haul out on rocky beaches. Fewer than a thousand people (mostly Aleuts) live on the islands, primarily on St. Paul. Both St. Paul and St. George have historic Russian Orthodox churches.

Don Pitcher
About the Expert

Don Pitcher has written or photographed 10 travel guidebooks to Alaska, Wyoming, Yellowstone-Grand Teton, and the San Juan Islands for Avalon Travel Publishing, Random House, and Sasquatch Books.

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Don Pitcher for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Tours offered mid-May through mid-October