This path was constructed to provide a place for hikers to view the plantlife around interior Alaska. This is a unique trail that allows hikers to view things that would be impossible to hike without a trail. There are all types of wildlife and small plants. Waterboots are recommended in spring.
November–March (depending on snow conditions)
Glide over the snow on a sled that’s being pulled by a team of dogs—many of whom have run the Iditarod, Yukon Quest, or other races. Go with Rod’s Alaskan Guide Service and experience the thrill of dog sledding with dogs that love to run and passionate mushers who will offer a deeper understanding of this unique sport.
Come visit and you might see up to 15 different kinds of mammals—from beavers to red foxes, flying squirrels, snowshoe hares, and even moose—and several species of birds. Throughout the Sanctuary’s trail system there are 14 interpretive signs, so you can learn how the birds, fish, frogs, and mammals survive in interior Alaska’s tough climate.
Take a deep breath and explore Fairbanks! With the midnight summer sun shining nearly 24 hours a day, Fairbanks is bursting with energy and things to do. Explore Fairbanks is headquartered at the Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center which is also the hub of year-round staffed visitor information and services.
September to May
Winter in Alaska is a magical time, with fewer visitors and a serene, snow-covered landscape. If you’re here from mid-September to mid-May, you can take it in from the comfort of the Aurora Winter Train, which runs between Anchorage and Fairbanks. It’s an easy and memorable way to travel north and experience the aurora borealis, or even do a weekend getaway to Talkeetna.
Memorial Day - Labor Day
Experience the Alaska of 100 years ago! Pioneer Park is an historic village that features original buildings moved from downtown Fairbanks, as well as museums and a Gold Rush town street. But it’s also a theme park with a carousel and train that runs the perimeter, shops, and restaurants. Stay a few hours or spend a full day; Pioneer Park offers fun for the whole family.
The White Mountains National Recreation Area is home to 200+-miles of trail traversing a million acres of wilderness and a mountain range named for the dominant color of its limestone foundation. To get there, drive 28 miles on the Elliott Highway from Fox (where it splits with the Steese) and look for signs marking the trailhead. The trailhead is the starting point for both the Summit Trail, and the Ski Loop Trail, a 5-mile loop and a nice option for a shorter hike with less elevation gain than the 7-mile out-and-back to Wickersham Dome.
Alaska’s road to modernization a century ago was a dramatic journey, and the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum explores that journey in fun, vivid detail. On the grounds of Wedgewood Resort—a member of the city’s premier, locally owned hotel group—the museum showcases dozens of historically significant pre-World War II automobiles, and offers visitors a trip back to Alaska’s rugged and exciting formative years.
From Alaska native art to polar dinosaurs, you'll find something interesting on exhibit here. Head to the centerpiece of this museum, the Rose Berry Alaska Art Gallery, to see the full spectrum of Alaskan art, from ancient Eskimo ivory carvings to contemporary paintings and sculptures.
May - September
Northern Alaska Tour Company offers several tours that transport visitors to the Arctic Circle. You can fly, drive, or do a combination of the two, depending on your travel preference and how much time you have. The most popular tour is the fly-and-drive excursion, which gives you incredible views from the air and a tour of the town of Coldfoot, followed by a drive back to Fairbanks.
Mid-August to mid-April
Just a short drive from Fairbanks, wait for the northern lights to appear in a warm, inviting space. Cozy up to the fire, sip on cocoa and coffee, and step outside when mother nature puts on a show. Although the center is a short distance from town, it is far enough away so that you won’t have to worry about light pollution interrupting your view as you stand gazing under the vast, starlit sky.
Accessed via the 1.5-mile long Lost Lake Trail, Moose Lake is an excellent place to visit with a camera or binoculars. Knock-kneed moose are a frequent visitors to the area and you're most likely to see them if you arrive early in the morning or about an hour before sunset.
A guided day trip out of Fairbanks reveals the quiet winter landscape of the Tanana Valley and Denali National Park. Walk or snowshoe on picturesque trails through the boreal forest, deep in the heart of the Alaska range.
Aug 21 - Apr 21
Stand out on the Arctic tundra under the northern lights, experiencing their eerie glow on a one-day tour you won’t soon forget. From October to April, you’ll depart from Fairbanks on this one-day adventure and get a majestic flightseeing trip to the remote town of Coldfoot, above the Arctic Circle. Explore this fascinating town and look for the mysterious lights overhead. Then drive south and get a close up of all the terrain in between, seeing the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and crossing the Arctic Circle in ceremonious fashion.
December - March
Plunge into a winter wonderland of spruce forests, wide open spaces and wildlife. This snowmobile tour in North Pole (just outside of Fairbanks) offers an unparalleled peek at Alaska’s interior and a serious thrill, whether you take a first-timer’s tour or embark on an overnight adventure.
Hop aboard a narrow-gauge train and get ready to stake your claim to gold on this two-hour tour of Gold Dredge 8. Learn all about how 100,000 gold rushers fought the permafrost in their quest to get rich. Then grab some gold of your own!
Watch craftsmen turn birch logs into heirloom bowls, browse some 1,500 Made in Alaska products or custom design your own laser engraved bowl while at the Great Alaskan Bowl Company. Started over 20 years ago, this family-run business is one of the last operational bowl mills in America, and it thrives because of the quality products and large selection. Not only will you find unique More...
Climb on board an authentic Alaskan sternwheeler, the Riverboat Discovery, and take a journey back in time along the Chena and Tanana rivers. Sternwheeler boats transport you out into the Alaskan wilderness, and also back to a time when Gold Rush fever was sweeping across the state. The Discovery II and Discovery III offer fully narrated three-and-a-half-hour tour. But all your time isn't spent on the boat. You'll make an unforgettable one-hour stop at Chena Indian Village.
Spend some time above the Arctic Circle under the mysterious, eerie northern lights. From mid-September to late April, when you have the best chance of witnessing phenomenon of the aurora borealis, you’ll fly from Fairbanks to the remote village of Coldfoot, in the Brooks Mountain Range. After the spectacular flightseeing experience, you’ll have either 3 days/2 nights or 4 days/3 nights to explore this rugged, fascinating landscape, with excursions from town. Then you’ll drive back to Fairbanks along the Dalton Highway, with some unique stops along the way.
mid-May to mid-September
You’ll spend three hours, round-trip, in the air with a one-hour walking tour of the community, led by a local Alaskan guide. Learn of the local Nunamiut Eskimo culture and get a firsthand glimpse at village lifestyle as it exists today in rural Alaska.
Winter: November - March | Summer: June - August
Experience Alaska fishing off the grid—whether you want to fish for world-class-trophy pike during the peak summer season or experience the fabulously unique sport of ice fishing in winter. This operator based in North Pole will coach you, based on whatever your skill level, and take you to spots so special that owner, Rod Pangborn, takes his own family there.
From Elton John to Motley Crue, from the Lord of the Dance to Disney on Ice, from the Harlem Globetrotters to Jeff Dunham, the Carlson Center is Fairbanks’—and Interior Alaska’s—premier entertainment and sports facility. With its 35,000 square foot arena, the Carlson Center is host to concerts, conventions, tradeshows, and sporting events. It is home to the More...
Fly from Fairbanks and travel 80 miles above the across the Arctic Circle on a scenic and historic adventure. Departing in the evening, you’ll pass over the stark terrain of northern Alaska and land at the Athabascan village of Fort Yukon. Then, with your guide, you’ll spend an hour learning all about this fascinating area—the history, how people take care of themselves in a punishing environment, and some of the characters who have called this area home. Then, as the midnight sun sets, you’ll board your plane and fly back to Fairbanks.
Plenty of people come to Fairbanks to look at the sky—for northern lights, or to bask in the midnight sun. But this dog-mushing experience outside of Fairbanks is proof that there’s plenty more of Fairbanks to be seen at eye—or even paw—level. May through October, take a a trail ride with 16 dogs hitched up to an ATV. November through April, take a mushing tour through the snow!
Gold Daughters provides a fun, hands-on way to learn about Fairbanks’ gold rush history, and get a glimpse of the same thrill that brought so many people to Alaska in the first place. Your entrance fee provides you with a poke of paydirt with guaranteed gold and lets you pan all day.
You may think of reindeer as flying creatures of the imagination, but here in Alaska they’re very real. And this unique tour gives you the opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent animals. Walk among them and pet them—it’s truly a moment made for Instagram.
Easily one of the most scenic drives in the Interior, the trip out to Table Top Mountain from Fairbanks winds deep into the center of White Mountains National Recreation Area, rising up hillsides and dipping down into valleys for a rolling picture show of spruce forest and snaking riverbeds. The hike to Table Top Mountain is just as spectacular, providing panoramic views of the White Mountains from the center of the range, and is a short “must do” jaunt if you’re spending any time in the area.
May - September
For many guests, this may be their first or last Alaskan meal (the Fairbanks Princess Lodge is the northernmost destination on many Princess Tours), and the Edgewater is a great place to begin or end an Alaskan adventure. The menu features fresh Alaskan seafood and select meats, served with fresh produce from local, organic farms. And the Edgewater staff takes pride in creating More...
Thai people cooking authentic Thai food: it may come as a surprise for this part of the world, but that's exactly what you'll find here. While this is a no-frills restaurant, it serves food that's good, affordable, and (if you like) spicy that's a big hit with the military folks stationed nearby. Try the spring rolls and green chicken curry.
This place is definitely BIG. It's one huge room containing both the restaurant and bar, with TVs everywhere. It gets loud, but it can be fun in that busy sort of way. And it's good for a big feed. They serve house-made barbeque--pulled pork, brisket, ribs, chicken. All the sandwiches are dry, and they give you a choice of sauces to add. It's not the south, but it's good barbecue. And More...
The hot springs were discovered in 1905 by gold prospectors seeking to ease their painful rheumatism brought on by poor diets and grueling work. By 1912 Chena Hot Springs had become the premier resort of Interior Alaska, visitors traveled 4 to 14 days by stagecoach from Fairbanks. Luckily, today it takes less than 2-hours by car.Temperature
153 degrees F
Located on the river, this is where Fairbanks goes to enjoy sunny afternoons and good food. The atmosphere is fun and festive, with people arriving by boat or canoe or snowmachine in winter. Their big deck is packed on nice afternoons. Chef Gabrielle Brooks is a local celebrity and produces consistently good food, specializing in fresh Alaska seafood: cedar plank salmon, fish and More...
This trail starts at Quartz Lake campground and skirts the western edge of the lake for .5 miles before climbimg the hill to Glatfelder Cabin. It continues around the front of the cabin, crests the hill, then enters the Lost Lake Trail and follows this back to the the Quartz Lake campground.
Listen carefully among the wild brush and you can hear the whirl of some of the world's most powerful computers and minds. It's a fascinating look at computers and a fun hands-on visit to see what these magical machines can do. The computers are working on research relating to tsunami early-warning systems, Arctic region climate research, and human-computer interface. But the most fun More...
Summit Trail follows a ridge all the way from Elliot Highway to Beaver Creek. There is a shelter cabin 8 miles from the trail head that is available to hikers on a first-come, first-served basis.
Blueberry and cranberry can be had along the trail, especially once you reach the first summit. Watch closely for bears in the brushy areas.
Outside of Fairbanks in the Goldstream Valley (20 minutes), is this classic Italian Place. It's been around since the 1970s and serves traditional Italian dishes from parmesans to diablos to oreganattos. But, they also have great steaks, seafood and pizza—it's the closest to New York style you'll find in town. The atmosphere is old world, with live piano on the weekends and a comfortable, laid-back sophistication. If you're looking for a long casual meal, this is the place.
The Downtown Association of Fairbanks has knowledgeable, local staff that are working hard to encourage and foster economic growth that will result in a downtown that is a vital, energetic and an attractive center of the community. Their primary focus is to promote, preserve and revitalize Downtown Fairbanks. Among other projects, they are working on a comprehensive, achievable More...
A short or long day hike awaits at Angel Rocks, a scenic drive out Chena Hot Springs Road and within easy range of the rejuvenating waters that have drawn travelers for over a century. The best option for a short day trip in this area is the 3.5-mile loop that begins on even ground along the north fork of the Chena River and then sharply climbs up 900ft. For a longer hike to end with a refreshing dip in natural hot springs, park at the same trailhead and follow the signs to the 8.3-mile (one-way) Angel Rocks to Chena Hot Spring Trail.
The first three miles of each end of the trail lead to the timberline. You begin in verdant spruce forests in the valley and quickly get into expansive alpine tundra. This is a very scenic hike and can be done in three days - though 4-5 may be more comfortable - if you plan to hike it end-to-end, and most locals recommend that you start at the upper trailhead. The trail loops around More...