Set among majestic mountains and pristine waters, Anchorage offers all the perks of a thriving urban center. Museums, restaurants, city parks, and markets abound, but Alaska's biggest city has a humbly personable disposition, with friendly locals openly welcoming visitors. It's a rare harmony of nature and urban life, and one of the only places where you'll find moose enjoying the city as much as people.
Depending on the season, activities in Anchorage vary, but you can always count on being fully engaged- either by enchanting museums or the magical lure of Mother Nature.
Outdoor enthusiasts, try an alpine hike on the popular Flattop Mountain Trail, or a bike ride on the 11-mile Tony Knowles Coastal Trail. Wildlife viewing at close proximity is guaranteed year-round in Anchorage - animal lovers can visit hundreds of local species at the Anchorage Coastal Wildlife Refuge or the 25-acre Alaska Zoo. Other Anchorage attractions include Alaska Botanical Garden and Ship Creek Viewing Platform.
After a busy day exploring, Anchorage is home to a number of great dining options, including Sullivan's Steakhouse and the Glacier BrewHouse, or try a basketball game or concert at the Sullivan Arena for a change of pace at night. Other attractions include the Anchorage Market and Festival, where you can shop like a local every Saturday from May to September, or the engaging Alaska Native Heritage Center, a cultural center complete with games, demonstrations, crafts, and other hands-on activities.
Photo 2: By Wayne Johnson