It may of been more than a century ago since the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898 but if you are a history buff now is your time to relive it in Alaska and Canada's Yukon Territory.
Visit Skagway, Alaska
Many of the Cruise ships dock in Skagway on the northeastern tip of the Inside Passage, just like the many steamships that transported gold-hungry prospectors from Pacific Northwest ports in the late 19th century. Today the town retains some of its 19th century charm with shops and bars in vintage style and original buildings.
Hike the Old Prospector Trail
You can relive some of the original journey that gold rush seekers would of had to do on foot, heading up north from Skagway. Parts of the original trail can be done on the Chilkoot Trail (which requires preparation and a permit from the National Park Service) or parts of the White Pass Trail.
Explore Dawson City, YT
The heart of the Klondike Gold Rush was in Dawson City, where $29 million worth of gold passed through. At it's peak the town was dubbed the "Paris of the North," for its vibrant community. Though it is no longer in it's heyday it still has an old, wild west charm to it and a popular place to experience it is Diamond Tooth Gerties. It was a former community gathering space-turned-retro-gambling hall, where one can still drink and gamble while watching a cancan girl show, as prospectors did more than a century ago.
The dogs were an integral part of cargo transportation during that time and still remain an important part of Dawson City today. There are plenty of places in the Yukon and Alaska to try dog sledding or for a real dogsledding spectacle check out the Iditarod, which takes place from Anchorage to Nome each March.
See Chicken, AK
While a lot smaller than Dawson City, the town of Chicken (population between 17 and 37 people) oozes with quirky charm. Chicken has remained an active mining town since the Klondike Gold Rush and has also become a tourist attraction when people are passing between Fairbanks and Dawson City to buy souvenirs and eat the famed chicken pot pie.
Visit Dredge No. 4
This National Historic Site near Dawson City is a big pull for history buff with much of the big metal gears still remain in what was once the largest wooden hulled dredge in North America. While gold is no longer dredged and processed here, the old industrial mining site is still impressive.
Look for Gold at the Discovery Claim
The Discovery Claim near Dawson City is where the whole Klondike Gold Rush began, when prospectors Skookum Jim, Dawnson Charlie, and George and Kate Carmack struck gold on August 17, 1896. The area is now open to the public for gold panning at Bonanza Creek, provided you have your own gear. Otherwise the Klondike Gold Fields in Skagway is always a good stop for tourist panning.