Dawson City

Population: 1,879

Dawson City is located on the Yukon River, approximately 335 miles north of Whitehorse via the Klondike Highway and 187 miles from Tok, AK, via the Taylor and Top of the World Highways (the Klondike Loop). 

Visitor Information: The Visitor Information Centre, operated by Yukon Government and Parks Canada, is located at the corner of Front and King Street. Housed in a replica of the 1897 Alaska Commercial Co. store, the Visitor Centre provides tour and accommodation information; a Dawson City street map; and a schedule of daily programs.

Parks Canada walking tours are available daily from mid-May to late September, either with a costumed guide or as a self-guided audio tour (fee charged). Movies on Dawson City history are also shown at the Centre and there is a model railway of the historic Klondike Mines railway on display. Open daily, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., from May through September; and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays in off-season. Phone 867-993-5566. Tickets for Parks Canada tours may be purchased at the Parks Canada information desk at the Centre; phone 867-993-7210. Also contact the Klondike Visitors Association; phone 867-993-5575.

Accustomed to a summer influx of visitors, Dawson has modern hotels & motels (rates average $125 and up), bed and breakfasts and hostels. Dawson City accommodations fill up early in summer and for special events, so make reservations in advance. Go camping, there are multiple options to choose between.

There are many places to eat in Dawson City, from ice cream shops and coffee houses to fine dining. Many if not most of the hotels also have dining rooms and pubs and saloons.

There is a CIBC Bank/ATM at Second Avenue and Queen. There are 2 laundromats (with showers), grocery store with bakery, a deli/grocery store, general stores, souvenir shops, churches, art galleries, an art school, post office, government offices, government liquor store, Sandy McClintock, Registered Massage Therapist (phone 867-993-5222 or email), doctor services, hair salon, and swimming pool. Chief Isaac Mechanical offers automobile/RV repair and tires, phone 867-993-6552. Many Dawson City merchants abide by the Fair Exchange Policy, offering travelers an exchange rate within 4 percent of the bank rate.

A free government ferry, the George Black, carries vehicles across the Yukon River (6- to 7-minute average ferry crossing time) between Dawson City and the start of the Top of the World Highway into Alaska between mid-May and mid-September (dependent on river ice).

Attractions:

  • Tour the Commissioner’s Residence on Front Street, once home to the Hon. George Black, M.P., Speaker of the House of Commons, and his famous wife, Martha Louise, who walked to Dawson City via the Trail of ’98 and stayed to become the First Lady of the Yukon.
  • Walk the Dike Trail along the famous Klondike and Yukon rivers.
  • Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Casino has Klondike gambling tables, slot machines, bar service and floor shows nightly. Open May to September.
  • Dawson City Museum, located in the Old Territorial Administration Building, features gold rush and First Nation history, and a collection of narrow-gauge locomotives.
  • Tour the magnificently reconstructed Palace Grand Theatre, a national historic site.
  • SS Keno National Historic Site. The SS Keno (pictured at right) was the last steamer to run the Yukon River when she sailed from Whitehorse in 1960 to her present berth on the riverbank.
  • Visit Robert Service’s Cabin.
  • Visit the Jack London Museum.
  • Enjoy annual events: check schedule.
  • Dänojà Zho Cultural Centre reveals the story of the original people of the Klondike: the Tr’ondek Hwëch’in. There are 2 gallery exhibitions, guided tours, special events and film presentations. The gift shop boasts the largest selection of beaded moccasins in the Yukon and specializes in unique jewelry, First Nation gifts, art and books. Open mid-May to September. Adult admission is $7; tickets are valid for 2 days.
  • Pan for Gold on Bonanza Creek Road with Claim 33 Gold Panning (Mile 6).
  • See Dredge No. 4 (pictured here), the largest wooden hull bucket-line dredge in North America, at Mile 7.8 Bonanza Creek Road.
  • Special events from April to September. See the full calendar of events.