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9621’s Guidebook

John

9621’s Guidebook

Best places to get a (safe) close-up view of Alaskan wildlife, ranging from brown bears to bald eagles.
Located an easy one-hour drive from Anchorage along the scenic Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet, the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center (AWCC) is a great experience for all ages. If you're on the hunt for souvenirs, don't miss the gift shop.
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Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center
Mile 79 Mile 79 Seward Highway
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Located an easy one-hour drive from Anchorage along the scenic Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet, the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center (AWCC) is a great experience for all ages. If you're on the hunt for souvenirs, don't miss the gift shop.
If you want to see a polar bear in Alaska without heading up to the Arctic, look no farther than the Alaska Zoo.
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Alaska Zoo
4731 O'Malley Road
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If you want to see a polar bear in Alaska without heading up to the Arctic, look no farther than the Alaska Zoo.
Sightseeing
Honestly, one of the great things about the Alyeska resort is that it could fit in either the sightseeing or the food scene categories. In addition to the views from the tram and from the observation deck, small bars and cafes are abundant on-site, but the jewel of the resort is Seven Glaciers restaurant. While you're in Girdwood, don't miss the Double Musky Inn for some of the greatest cajun food you'll find outside the Pelican State.
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Alyeska Resort & Hotel Alyeska
1000 Arlberg Ave
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Honestly, one of the great things about the Alyeska resort is that it could fit in either the sightseeing or the food scene categories. In addition to the views from the tram and from the observation deck, small bars and cafes are abundant on-site, but the jewel of the resort is Seven Glaciers restaurant. While you're in Girdwood, don't miss the Double Musky Inn for some of the greatest cajun food you'll find outside the Pelican State.
Getting to the top of Flattop Mountain is a vigorous climb, but if you're inclined to take on the challenge then it's worth the effort. Boasting perhaps the best view of the Anchorage Bowl, Flattop Mountain also has stunning views of the Chugach Mountains, the Cook Inlet, and the Kenai Peninsula.
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Flattop Mountain
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Getting to the top of Flattop Mountain is a vigorous climb, but if you're inclined to take on the challenge then it's worth the effort. Boasting perhaps the best view of the Anchorage Bowl, Flattop Mountain also has stunning views of the Chugach Mountains, the Cook Inlet, and the Kenai Peninsula.
While a train depot may seem like an odd recommendation, the Alaska Railroad is hardly typical rail travel. No matter the time of year, this is the best way to see some of Alaska's wild spaces without having to worry about mosquitoes carrying you away or getting frostbite. During the summer season, you can enjoy a leisurely ride in a glass-top car to Talkeetna, Denali, Fairbanks, and beyond. During winter, you can take in scenes you would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere—a true winter wonderland.
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Anchorage Depot
411 West 1st Avenue
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While a train depot may seem like an odd recommendation, the Alaska Railroad is hardly typical rail travel. No matter the time of year, this is the best way to see some of Alaska's wild spaces without having to worry about mosquitoes carrying you away or getting frostbite. During the summer season, you can enjoy a leisurely ride in a glass-top car to Talkeetna, Denali, Fairbanks, and beyond. During winter, you can take in scenes you would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere—a true winter wonderland.
Anchorage loves its trails, and Campbell Creek Trail is a popular choice. If you'd like to get out of the city without leaving the city, take advantage of our maintained trails.
Campbell Creek Trail
Anchorage loves its trails, and Campbell Creek Trail is a popular choice. If you'd like to get out of the city without leaving the city, take advantage of our maintained trails.
Scenic Hikes
Here you'll find recommendations for local easy-to-intermediate hikes. As with any outdoor activity during the summer, bear spray is a must. It's available locally at REI and just about anywhere else that caters to the outdoorsy sort. We can even loan you a can, if you'd like.
Byron Glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers near Anchorage. Located in Girdwood, the Byron Glacier Trail is an easy one-mile hike along Byron Creek to the face of the glacier. With everything to do in Girdwood year-round, you can easily make a memorable day of it.
Byron Glacier Trail Head
1500 Byron Glacier Rd
Byron Glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers near Anchorage. Located in Girdwood, the Byron Glacier Trail is an easy one-mile hike along Byron Creek to the face of the glacier. With everything to do in Girdwood year-round, you can easily make a memorable day of it.
If a great view sounds better to you than a climb up Flattop, the Glen Alps Trail is the next best thing for a fantastic view of the Anchorage Bowl and the Cook Inlet. On most days, the Kenai Peninsula is visible in the distance. Primarily an easy hike after one moderate uphill climb, the trail is suitable for most adults and teens. The elderly, small children, and anyone with difficulty standing or walking should opt for one of the other trails in the area.
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Flattop / Glen Alps Trailhead Parking
13101 Glen Alps Road
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If a great view sounds better to you than a climb up Flattop, the Glen Alps Trail is the next best thing for a fantastic view of the Anchorage Bowl and the Cook Inlet. On most days, the Kenai Peninsula is visible in the distance. Primarily an easy hike after one moderate uphill climb, the trail is suitable for most adults and teens. The elderly, small children, and anyone with difficulty standing or walking should opt for one of the other trails in the area.
Kincaid Park is the place to be outside for many Anchorage residents, no matter the time of year. During the summer, you can hike, bike, or run the trails. During the winter, you can snowshoe, ride a fat-tire bike, or enjoy some Nordic skiing on the groomed trails Kincaid has to offer. Keep in mind that, during the winter months, some trails are reserved solely for Nordic skiing. They will be marked accordingly.
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Kincaid Park
9401 Raspberry Road
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Kincaid Park is the place to be outside for many Anchorage residents, no matter the time of year. During the summer, you can hike, bike, or run the trails. During the winter, you can snowshoe, ride a fat-tire bike, or enjoy some Nordic skiing on the groomed trails Kincaid has to offer. Keep in mind that, during the winter months, some trails are reserved solely for Nordic skiing. They will be marked accordingly.
Alaska Native History and Culture
Located downtown, the Anchorage Museum is a hidden gem. Featuring art from Alaskan artists, numerous Alaska Native cultural exhibits and artifacts, and a can't-miss, hands-on exhibit covering Alaska's natural history and geology, the museum has something everyone can enjoy as they learn about the 49th state.
Anchorage museum
406 W 5th Ave
Located downtown, the Anchorage Museum is a hidden gem. Featuring art from Alaskan artists, numerous Alaska Native cultural exhibits and artifacts, and a can't-miss, hands-on exhibit covering Alaska's natural history and geology, the museum has something everyone can enjoy as they learn about the 49th state.
Food scene
A fully functioning brewery is downstairs, but The Loft is upstairs and offers everything brewed by Midnight Sun, of course. The food is more bistro than bar, and you can take a growler home with you.
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Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
8111 Dimond Hook Drive
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A fully functioning brewery is downstairs, but The Loft is upstairs and offers everything brewed by Midnight Sun, of course. The food is more bistro than bar, and you can take a growler home with you.
When you see a restaurant claim to be world famous, it can sometimes seem like a bit of an empty boast. Not so with Moose's Tooth. Consistently ranked among the top three independent pizza places in the nation, Moose's Tooth will be a pleasant surprise if you think you're going to get another average pizza. No matter the time of year, expect at least a 20-minute wait. Locals love it, too.
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Moose's Tooth Pub & Pizzeria
3300 Old Seward Highway
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When you see a restaurant claim to be world famous, it can sometimes seem like a bit of an empty boast. Not so with Moose's Tooth. Consistently ranked among the top three independent pizza places in the nation, Moose's Tooth will be a pleasant surprise if you think you're going to get another average pizza. No matter the time of year, expect at least a 20-minute wait. Locals love it, too.
Bear Tooth is the sister restaurant to Moose's Tooth, except it offers the option to watch a movie—from classics to first-run films. Choose a standard sit-down meal, or have your meal as you enjoy a film. The full menu (including Moose's Tooth's world-famous pizza) is available for movie-goers, and there's even a beer station in the back of the theater. A few booths are available for reservations, and they seat four comfortably. Call early to make sure you get one.
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Bear Tooth Theatrepub
1230 West 27th Avenue
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Bear Tooth is the sister restaurant to Moose's Tooth, except it offers the option to watch a movie—from classics to first-run films. Choose a standard sit-down meal, or have your meal as you enjoy a film. The full menu (including Moose's Tooth's world-famous pizza) is available for movie-goers, and there's even a beer station in the back of the theater. A few booths are available for reservations, and they seat four comfortably. Call early to make sure you get one.
Anchorage's food scene is surprisingly diverse. Queen of Sheba Ethiopian Restaurant is one of its hidden gems. While the storefront eatery may look unassuming, don't let appearances deceive you. The food is spectacular.
Queen of Sheba Ethiopian restaurant
2813 Dawson St
Anchorage's food scene is surprisingly diverse. Queen of Sheba Ethiopian Restaurant is one of its hidden gems. While the storefront eatery may look unassuming, don't let appearances deceive you. The food is spectacular.
For the Adventurous
Here you'll find a selection of more challenging outdoor activities. As with any outdoor activity during the summer, bear spray is a must. It's available locally at REI and almost anywhere else that caters to the outdoorsy types, which is most of us who live here. We can even loan you a can, if you like.
If you'd like to get a little farther out of Anchorage during your stay, consider Moose Pass on the Kenai Peninsula. The scenic drive is just over 90 minutes, primarily along the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet. Your patience will be rewarded, however, with some of the greatest views anywhere in the state.
Moose Pass
If you'd like to get a little farther out of Anchorage during your stay, consider Moose Pass on the Kenai Peninsula. The scenic drive is just over 90 minutes, primarily along the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet. Your patience will be rewarded, however, with some of the greatest views anywhere in the state.
Whether you want to see Alaska's largest glacier accessible by road or you want to raft down the river flowing from beneath it, the Matanuska Glacier in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley is not to be missed. Just 90 minutes from Anchorage. Tours are available from a number of companies. Check Groupon for special deals on rafting and walking tours.
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Matanuska Glacier
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Whether you want to see Alaska's largest glacier accessible by road or you want to raft down the river flowing from beneath it, the Matanuska Glacier in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley is not to be missed. Just 90 minutes from Anchorage. Tours are available from a number of companies. Check Groupon for special deals on rafting and walking tours.