Alaska is on the northwest extremity of the country’s West Coast, just across the Bering Strait from Asia. A semi-exclave of the U.S., it borders the Canadian province of British Columbia and the territory of Yukon to the east and southeast. Alaska deserves its reputation for being cold. Much of the state is covered in a layer of permafrost—permanently frozen soil—and it’s home to the largest glacier in North America.
Alaska is by far the largest U.S. state by area and is the third-least populous and the most sparsely populated state with an estimated population of approximately 750,000 people. Approximately half of Alaska’s residents live within the Anchorage metropolitan area. The state capital of Juneau is the second-largest city in the United States by area.
While it has one of the smallest state economies in the country, Alaska’s per capita income is among the highest, owing to a diversified economy dominated by fishing, natural gas, and oil, all of which it has in abundance.