Anchorage and Area
Get to know Anchorage with one-hour Trolley Tour from the 4th Avenue Theatre. Stop by the Alaska Aviation Museum for a glimpse at Alaska’s fascinating aviation history. See historical Alaska aircraft, rare film footage of Alaska’s pioneer aviators, and take a narrated vintage seaplane tour year-round. Capture the magnificence of Alaska on a flightseeing tour from Anchorage. Go bear viewing, land on a glacier, find a remote fishing spot, or just soar above Chugach Mountains, Denali, Prince William Sound or the Harding Ice field. At night, take your seat for The Hullabaloo on Third Avenue–a hysterical, historically accurate history lesson about everything important that shaped Alaska held almost nightly at the Snow Goose Theatre.
Rent a car and follow the shores of Turnagain Arm on the nationally recognized, 127-mile Seward Highway that connects Anchorage to the Kenai Peninsula. First stop is the Potters Marsh boardwalk through wetland habitat. Down the road, pull over at Beluga Point and look for bald eagles, beluga whales and Dall sheep. Nearby, McHugh Creek Recreation Area offers a picnic area, scenic views and a link to 9.4-mile Turnagain Arm Trail. Stop by the Indian Valley Mine for an introduction to Alaska’s gold rush history and gold panning before continuing south to Portage Glacier for a one-hour cruise to get up close to the face of an icy-blue glacier. Be sure to step by the Begich, Boggs Visitor Center to learn about glacial and geological history and ask about naturalist programs before crossing the Seward Highway to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center–a wildlife rehabilitation center and spot for safe wildlife viewing within their natural habitats. Overnight in Girdwood.
Wake up in Girdwood, home to Alyeska Resort–a world-class ski destination–unique restaurants, great hiking, mountain biking and many more outdoor activities. Board the *Alyeska Resort Tramway for a climb up to the top of Mount Alyeska with lunch. Thrill-seekers can launch off the mountain for an amazing tandem paraglide or ultra light glider trike. Added activities include ATV tours to the high alpine meadows of Hidden Valley, snowshoeing with a naturalist guide through alpine meadows, rock climbing, dog sledding, snowmobiling and more. At night, revel in 360-degree views, 2,300 feet above sea level, at the four-diamond, award-winning Seven Glaciers Restaurant. Overnight in Girdwood. *Aerial Tram is open at various times spring and fall during shoulder seasons.
Explore the *Crow Creek Gold Mine, an original mining camp dating back to the 1890s. Stop and shop the Kobuk Valley Jade Co. and Alaska Candle Factory. Enjoy lunch at Girdwood’s funky restaurants, which offer appealing menus featuring Mediterranean, New Orleans-style dishes or “fat and lean world” cuisine, famous steaks, Alaska seafood, gourmet burgers, sushi and more. Drive back to Anchorage and look for beluga whales and Dall sheep along the way.
Relax in Anchorage. Pick up a gourmet coffee and a good book at a locally owned bookstore. Get pampered at a local spa in the most tranquil and serene atmospheres. Explore Anchorage art galleries and gift shops. Feast on wild Alaska salmon, king crab and other culinary delights offered on a variety of fine dining menus before you tee off at an Anchorage golf course–where play can range from as early as 4:30 a.m. to after midnight.
Pack up a picnic lunch and head north to the Eagle River Nature Center for engaging year-round natural history events, kid activities and guided summer nature walks. Snowshoe rentals and Nordic ski trails are available in winter. Enjoy Eagle River on a half-day float or whitewater adventure. Continue north. Exit the Glenn Highway at Arctic Valley Road: fall for berry picking, summer for a hike to Rendezvous Peak or winter for alpine skiing at Alpenglow at Arctic Valley. East Anchorage offers plenty of restaurants with national flair to the neighborhood bar and grille. End your day with a live local theater performance at Cyrano's Playhouse or live music at a downtown club.
Start the day at the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson with a docent tour of the Alaska Gallery, world-class art, exhibits and the Children’s Gallery, followed by lunch at the Muse Restaurant, located in the Museum. Take the courtesy transport* to The Ulu Factory for an Ulu Knife demonstration, then shuttle to the Alaska Native Heritage Center and explore Alaska’s cultural heritage while experiencing the passing of traditions between generations. Make advanced arrangements to pick up the Grizzly Junction shuttle to the Sourdough Mining Co.-restaurant shuttle from downtown for dinner, The Adventures of Dusty Sourdough show* and stop by Alaska Wild Berry Products. The shuttle is available to transport guests to their accommodations or directly to the airport.