Traveler’s Guide to Anchorage, Alaska

Anchorage is the bustling heart of south-central Alaska and is home to nearly half the state’s population.  Use Anchorage as your base camp for your Alaskan adventure, but be sure to spend a few days in town.  With an international airport and an array of first-rate hotels, museums and restaurants, Anchorage is as comfortable as any American city, but is situated in the shadow of the Chugach Mountains and is surround by the arms of the shining Cook Inlet. 

Anchorage Alaska Mountain view

Alpineglow colors the Chugach Moutain Range as viewed from Anchorage, Alaska. Photo: Flickr: Wonderlane

Transportation

Driving in Alaska

The Alaskan Highway System is an excellent way to get around the state.  If you are flying or cruising into Alaska there are many ways for you to make use of the nearly 5,000 miles of paved road.  There are companies that offer guide-led transportation, but for those of you who prefer to see things at your own pace, it will be worth the expense to rent a vehicle.

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Accommodations

Hotels, motels, Bed and Breakfasts are available to the traveler in Anchorage. Here are a few of my favorites. I do suggest the Puffin Inn if you are looking for a hotel and the Earth BnB if you are looking forward to meeting some interesting Alaskan characters. Look for accomodations near downtown, Midtown/ Spenard, or near the Airport.

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Restaurants

My mouth water's thinking about the many dining choices in Anchorage. These listings are "Local Favorites" and the places I want to go when I return to Alaska. The Moose's tooth for Thai Chicken Pizza - trust me! - and Artic Roadrunner for burgers. And, Humpy's Fetta. And Taco King! Avoid dieting when you visit.

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Activities

There is so much to do in Anchorage. It's my plan to visit the museum first to get a historic and cultural context to the place and then strike out in search of adventure. The Anchorage visitor information log cabin and the Museum of History and Art are good spots right in downtown to get your bearings. Also, bars and drinking establishments - a few - a listed in case you want to lose your bearings.

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MV Nunatak in Prince William Sound

Anchorage hosts the ceremonial start to the "last great race", the Iditarod dog sled race. Photo: AlaskanDude

Extras and Events

It's always best to visit a place when a special event is happening. The locals are out and you can get a sense of Anchorage at it's best. Fur Rondy in the winter and Midnight sun marathon in the summer are my recommendations. Also included are some tips about wildlife viewing and, of course, shopping!

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