5 Best Things To Do in Dawson City

View of multicolored buildings in Dawson City, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The first thing to know about Dawson City, Yukon, is that it’s a small town by most standards, with a population just over 1,500. But for a small town, it has a booming personality, leftover from its days of gold-rush glory, when fever and fortune ran high.

For a few glorious months in 1898, Dawson City held the nickname, the Paris of the North. Though it may have fallen off the radar as a world capital, it oozes charm.

Dawson has eight National Historic Sites of Canada, including Dredge No. 4 and Tr’ochëk, the site of a traditional Hän fishing camp. There are bawdy vaudeville shows, a thriving farmers market and it’s surrounded by breathtaking northern wilderness. If you need even more convincing that the Yukon is amazing, read the top 5 reasons to visit the Yukon.

Here’s what to do in Dawson City:

1. Go to the Top of the Dome

Enjoy splendid river and mountain views with a visit to the Midnight Dome, just outside of town. The Dome is a popular spot to view the Northern Lights in autumn (though this spectacular sight is never a guarantee) or to watch the sunset. It’s tempting to scream, “I’m on top of the world,” because you literally are, but sitting on a log bench and gazing at the Yukon wilderness is just as nice.

View of Northern Lights above trees in Alaska.

2. Take a Tour of Dawson City and the Gold Fields

Go back in time on a tour of Dawson City and the Gold Fields. Explore a bank of brightly colored, gold-rush-era buildings along Dawson City’s historic boardwalk. Visit Bonanza Creek, which was named Rabbit Creek until miners gave it a more fitting name after finding gold along its banks. You’ll see where the discovery began and a preserved dredge.

3. Share Some Laughs at Diamond Tooth Gerties

With cancan shows and casino games, Diamond Tooth Gerties is irresistible. Tap your toes to nostalgic tunes, watch dazzling high kicks from the Gold Rush Girls, maybe even share some laughs with Diamond Tooth Gertie. It’s an unforgettable night of entertainment at Canada’s first casino.

4. Visit Tombstone Territorial Park

Tombstone Territorial Park, one of the most popular attractions in the Yukon, offers 1,304 miles (2,100 km) of pristine wilderness, the sawtooth Mount Monolith and Tombstone Mountain, and Big 5 wildlife (moose, bears, Dall sheep, caribou and wolves). The Tombstone Park Tour offers a comfortable ride right into the park, a stop at the Tombstone Interpretive Center and a one-hour guided hike to a lookout point that will leave you breathless.

View of people overlooking valley in Canada from hillside.

5. Try Gold Bottom Mining

Feeling lucky? Head to the Yukon’s historic gold fields to an operating placer gold mine, where you can learn how placer gold mining is done and try your hand at panning for gold. Whether you strike gold or go home empty-handed, you’ll enjoy the experience and learn a lot about one of history’s most fascinating time periods.

View of person panning for gold.

Ready? Visit the incredible Yukon and charming Dawson City on our Alaska cruisetours.

Article by Amanda Halm


Join the Discussion

Leave A Comment

Sign up for special offers and announcements