Wonder Lake in Denali National Park, Alaska

A question that many people ask is ‘how big is Alaska’ and here we give you the answer. The state is bigger than most people realise and to give you an idea of just how large it is, we share some interesting facts that you might not know.

Going on an Alaska cruise is one of the many things the state is famed for, but it is enormous and there are so many places you can explore. Read on to find out just how big the state is.

How big is Alaska?

It is the biggest state in the US and if you want to know how big is Alaska in miles, then according to USA Today the 49th state spans 586,000 square miles of land. To give some extra context, Alaska is two-and-a-half times larger than Texas, which is the second-largest state in the USA.

How big is Alaska compared to the UK?

The UK is around 93,000 square miles and comprises four countries: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, but as this article in the Daily Mail reveals, Alaska is more than seven times the size of the UK!

To demonstrate the size of Alaska, we have used The True Size to compare it to the UK.

Graph shows how big Alaska is compared to the UK

We have also compared the size of Alaska to other countries around the world.

Alaska is bigger than France

France’s land area is around 212,000 square miles, which means Alaska is more than double its size.

Alaska is much bigger than France

Alaska is bigger than New Zealand

According to Worldomter.com, the land area of New Zealand is approximately 101,665 square miles, meaning Alaska dwarfs the island country in terms of size.

Image shows Alaska is much bigger than New Zealand

Other countries that Alaska is bigger than include:

  • Germany (134,580 square miles)
  • Spain (192,588 square miles)
  • Turkey (297,156 square miles)
  • Thailand (197,256 square miles)

ALSO READ: What is Alaska famous for?

What is the population of Alaska?

The 2020 Census revealed that Alaska had a population of 733,391, making it the least densely populated state in the US. To put this into perspective, in Alaska there are 0.93 square miles for each person in the state, whilst New York has 0.003 square miles per person.

Although Alaska is more than seven times as big, the UK’s population in 2021 was estimated to be around 67 million.

What is the largest city in Alaska by population?

Anchorage at sunset

Before travelling to the state, many people ask what big cities are in Alaska. Here we take a look at the big towns and cities in Alaska in terms of population.

Anchorage is the biggest city in Alaska with an estimated 291,247 people living there in 2020, according to Wikipedia. The second largest is Fairbanks (32,515) and the third largest is Juneau (32,255), which is the capital of Alaska.

Below are other big cities in Alaska which have the highest populations in the state:

•Wasilla (9,054)

•Sitka (8,458)

•Ketchikan (8,192)

How long is Alaska’s coastline?

A Harbor Seal mother and pup rest on an iceberg in Glacier Bay, Alaska

Alaska has an estimated 33,904 miles of shoreline, including islands. The Official Alaska State Website adds: “Estimated tidal shoreline, including islands, inlets and shoreline to the head of the tidewater, is 47,300 miles.”

On an Alaskan cruise, you can see some of the world’s most spectacular coastline along the Inside Passage as you will see breathtaking glaciers and spectacular scenery.

What is the tallest building in Alaska?

Standing 296 ft tall, the Conoco-Phillips Building is the tallest building in Alaska. It is a 22-story which was built in 1983 as the ARCO Building, at 700 G Street in downtown Anchorage.

What is the largest national park in Alaska?

Mount Drum in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve is not just the largest national park in Alaska, but it is the largest in the whole of the United States!

The National Park Foundation says: “The uncontested heavyweight champion of the National Park System is Alaska's Wrangell-St. Elias National Park & Preserve. At 13.2 million acres, it's larger than Yellowstone National Park, Yosemite National Park, and Switzerland combined.”

What is the longest river in Alaska?

Two canoes paddling down the Yukon River

The Yukon River is the longest river in Alaska, and it is the third longest in the US, stretching almost 2,000 miles long. From its source in British Columbia, Canada, it flows through Canada's territory of Yukon, which is named after the river, and the lower half of the river continues westwards through Alaska.

Travel blogger Vicky, who is the founder of the Vicky Flip Flop Travels blog, talks about her experience of kayaking along the Yukon River with Maureen, another solo traveller: “The silent calm was broken by a bald eagle swooping in a few feet over my head. And then I spotted another perched on a branch as we floated on underneath.

“Even a moderate animal lover like me gets butterflies when I’m that close to a creature so majestic.

“As well as steering the boat wonderfully, Maureen was knowledgeable enough about the Yukon river banks that in between the silence I was getting a guided tour too. I soaked up her facts about the Canadian wildlife, and the Yukon, but it was when she was finally shushed into silence that the canoeing really felt magical.”

ALSO READ:  A guide to Alaska’s Glaciers

What is the highest peak in Alaska?

Alaska also boasts the highest peak in North America, Denali which is 20,320 feet above sea level. Denali as it is now known was previously called Mount McKinley and it is the third-highest of the Seven Summits (the tallest peaks on all seven continents).

Alaska is home to the largest bears in the world

A Kodiak Brown Bear in Alaska

Alaska is famed for its wildlife, but one of its most famous residents is bears.

Alaska is home to some massive bears, including Kodiak bears, which are the largest bears in the world. A large male can stand over 10 feet tall when on his hind legs, and 5 feet when on all four legs. They weigh up to 1,500 pounds.

Kodiak bears are a unique subspecies of brown or grizzly bears (Ursus arctos middendorffi). They live exclusively on the islands in the Kodiak Archipelago and have been isolated from other bears for about 12,000 years.

These are some fascinating facts about the size of the 49th State and how big it is in comparison to other countries around the world. If you are now tempted to visit the state and want to book an Alaskan cruise you can contact us and speak to one of our experts who can help you organise a trip of a lifetime.

For more tips, guides, and advice, make sure to visit our blog.

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