Alaska is a land of extremes. It’s had the coldest temperature recorded in the USA, is the least densely populated State on the largest land, and has the longest coastline. It's attracted diverse ... read morepeople from around the world such as gold and coal miners, oil engineers, and spiritual seekers. There is definitely something spiritual about the great wilderness. Winter here is definitely not something you should take lightly, but don't let it discourage you from visiting. In fact, Alaska is one of the best places to put on your winter adventure list. From dog mushing (sledding) to Aurora Borealis viewing, Alaska's long and dark winter is filled with exciting adventures.
You’ll find a sample of everything Alaska has to offer in Anchorage. The wildlife, landscape, cultural diversity, cuisine, friendly attitude, and Alaskan pride; Anchorage has it all. It is the best ... read moreplace to start your Alaska tour. Also, you will find more than enough options for restaurants in downtown Anchorage alone. Because of the city's diversity, it's not hard to find your favorite cuisines here, especially Asian. Anchorage's weather changes quickly and fast. Summer is gorgeous, no doubt, but in winter, the average temperature goes down to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit, nice and crisp. All the trees become covered with hoarfrost. It's an urban winter wonderland.
- Historic Anchorage Hotel330 E St., Anchorage, AK 99501The oldest hotel in Anchorage, the Historic Anchorage Hotel, is located in the heart of downtown. It’s been Alaska's central meeting place since it was built in 1916. It’s an excellent place to stay ... read morefor families or groups, and the dining room is a good location to host a small party.
- ACVB Log Cabin Visitor Information Center524 West Fourth Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501-2212Visit Anchorage prepared this amazing information center in five different locations through out the city. The authentic sod-roofed log cabin is the cornerstone of Alaskan adventure. They offer free ... read moreWi-Fi to all the visitors, and everyone is welcome to stay as long as they want. Ask the guides anything, from the history of Alaska to trivia questions, they know it all. You can get tour information here for not just Anchorage, but for all of Alaska. You can also pick up clothing if you need some extra warmth to get you through the Alaskan winter. I picked up a pair of wool socks in their gift shop, and it saved my life!
- Urban Greens304 G St, Anchorage, AlaskaThis business started with a simple philosophy: They like food, they like people who like food, and they like feeding people who like food. With its faultless motto, Urban Greens has been born. The ... read moresoup of the day always runs out during lunchtime - we all know that's a sign of good food. They also have a diverse menu of sandwiches and salads. The bread is baked daily and delivered every morning, and they handpick every leaf of lettuce for their salads.
- Anchorage Museum625 C Street, Anchorage, AK, United StatesBefore starting your Alaskan tour, pay a visit to the Anchorage Museum, especially to the Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center. The only Smithsonian Exhibit outside of Washington D.C. is located here, ... read morewith 600 artifacts from 1893. Visitors can learn about objects through touch screen explanations. The artifacts are in extremely good condition. Here you’ll find the world's first high-tech quick-dry, thermo- and waterproof outdoor gears. The 'gut parka' made from seal guts was widely used by native men to keep them dry and warm when they went out kayaking or hunting. It’s an example of how Alaskans used every part of an animal and wasted nothing. Some of the body parts like the puffin's beak and seal's tail were used to decorate a chief's hat, mask, and cape. At the museum, you will also find a showcase of short videos of stories from the native people.
- Tony Knowles Coastal Trail900 West Second Ave, Anchorage, AK 99501-2030Alaskans surely know how to keep themselves busy year round. The popular Tony Knowles Costal Trail is visited by the people of Anchorage daily, and is only 5 minutes away on foot. The trail goes on ... read morefor about 11 miles from downtown to the chalet at Kincaid Park, and is by far Anchorage's most popular trail. There are several access points between West 2nd Ave and the Kincaid Chalet. The trail is full of skiers in the winter. All the frozen creeks, snow-covered lagoons, and of course the coastline shine bright with fresh powder. On a bright day you can also view North America's highest mountain, Mount McKinley, also known as Denali. Don’t forget to look out for moose!
- Hotel Alyeska1000 Arlberg Avenue, Girdwood, AK, United StatesAlyeska Mountain is one of the most popular winter destinations for both locals and visitors. The Alyeska Resort runs year round, with its high-quality ski slopes. The luxurious accommodations offer ... read morethe best views of Alaska. There are more activity options here than just skiing or snowboarding. The travel experts at the concierge desk can help plan your winter activities such as snow-shoeing, cross-country skiing in the nearby meadow, snowmobiling, and more. The nearby meadows are excellent for cross-country skiing and running, with the backdrop of glaciers between the mountains.
- Alaska Wildlife Conservation CenterMile 79 Seward Highway, Portage, AK, United StatesA place of hope and refuge for injured animals, the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center is a great place to get a close look at native Alaskan animals. They have brown bears, black bears, moose, elk, ... read morelynx, caribou, must ox, red fox, and a one-winged eagle. The center hosts educational and guest programs, offering self-guided, driving, or walking tours. You can explore a 1.5-mile loop through 200 acres of the AWCC campus with the backdrop of the Chugach Mountain Range. Their long-time on-going project, the Wood Bison Restoration Project, is about to launch into the next big step of re-releasing Wood Bison into the wild.
- Alaska SeaLife Center301 Railway Avenue, Seward, AlaskaLocated in downtown Seward, the SeaLife Center is Alaska's only public aquarium and ocean wildlife rescue center, giving home to injured or rescued marine animals. It is a non-profit organization, and ... read moreall sales go directly to support the marine ecosystem of Alaska. Visitors can have close encounters with coastal birds like puffins, and observe sea lions and seals under water through the window on the sea. Their educational programs expand public knowledge of Alaska's marine ecosystem.
- Hatcher Pass State Recreation areaFishhook Willow RoadIf you want to get away from all the hustle and bustle of the city (not that there's a lot of hustling and bustling in Alaskan towns), head to Hatcher Pass. Originally used by the gold rush miners in ... read morethe 1930s and 1940s, the area is now a peaceful recreational area. To those of who love winter sports, Hatcher Pass would be your ideal playground. Sledding, snowmobiling, snowcat skiing, backcountry skiing, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing—there are limitless things you can do.
Fairbanks is the city of Aurora Borealis. From late August to April, you have the chance to see these great shimmering lights. Fairbanks is also a central location for winter adventures, not only in ... read morethe city, but also as far as the Denali National Park and the Arctic. The great wilderness is right on their doorstep. As the host of the Yukon Quest (the 1,000 mile international sled dog race), the city brims with excitement in February. Also in February is the BP World Ice Art Championships, where world-famous ice sculptutors showcase their talent.
- Paws for AdventureGeorge Rd, Fairbanks, AK, United StatesPaws for Adventure is your best option for dog sledding (mushing) in Fairbanks. From a short ride to a multiple-day tour, they offer diverse options for your Alaskan winter adventure. The tours are ... read moreavailable from when the snow falls until the first week of April when there's enough snow to sled. This dog-powered transportation is very much still in use in Alaska. A lot of small villages don't have road access, and are only reachable by snow mobile or dog sleds. You can get a glimpse of true Alaska through the experience. Paws for Adventure offers parkas, hats, gloves, and shoes to those who are not prepared to be out in the cold for an hour. Dogs usually run between 6 - 12 miles/hour.
- Slate Creek Inn Coldfoot CampP.O. Box 81512, Coldfoot, AK 99708Coldfoot Camp is a good 10-hour drive away from Fairbanks, even further north of the Arctic Circle. The road is not so easy to drive in the harsh winter, but there are many reasons to take the trip. ... read moreNow it is one of the crucial stops for Dalton Highway truckers (the was a show, 'Ice road Truckers,' that featured Dalton Highway truckers). There is also a high-quality temporary home for short-term visitors. This is the only food stop between here and Fairbanks.Comefoot Camp is also a good place to base yourself for Arctic activities. The Northern Alaska Tour Company, the only tour operator who runs tours this far up north, offers three official tours: Arctic Village and Aurora Tour, Dog Mushing (sledding) Tour, and Mountain Safari. Once the clock hits 11 pm, if the weather is clear, the sky is covered with a shield-like magnetic field, well known as the Aurora Borealis or the Northern Lights. Its appearance is highly unpredictable, but between October and April, the chance of seeing the Aurora is quite high. It's all up to the sun and wind.
While the Alaskan winter is beautiful, it felt good to go to Homer to get away from the freezing cold for a few days. Located at the "End of the Road," 225 miles south of Anchorage, Homer lies among ... read morerolling hills by the sea. The five-hour drive provides stunning views of southwest Alaska. As a popular summer destination, many of the small businesses close for the winter, but that doesn't change the fact that it is still a beautiful, laid-back town. Its landmark beach, called Homer Spit, has been recognized as one of the top 100 beaches in the US.
- Seward HighwaySeward Highway, Anchorage to Seward, Alaska, USAIf your goal is to take the perfect photo of the landscape along Seward Highway, you may be driving for awhile, since this road is overloaded with perfect spots. The Seward Highway, connecting the ... read moretowns of Anchorage and Seward, is a destination all to itself. It passes some of the most scenic places in Southwest Alaska, including Chugach State Park, Girdwood, Alyeska, Turnagain Pass, and Moss Pass.
The 12 hour train ride from Anchorage to Fairbanks was one of the most amazing adventures I did in Alaska. If you are lucky to have a clear day, you won't be bored at all. The train travels through ... read moreChugach Mountains, frozen rivers, and finally, the Denali National Park. Enjoy the view of the highest mountain in the North America, Mt. McKinley and the Alaska Range. The train slows down if we spot something interesting, caribous for example.
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