Sandy Beaches By the Coastal Trail

The Tony Knowles Coastal Trail is one of Anchorage’s greatest assets, providing exercise opportunities coupled with spectacular views. But most people who come here don’t embrace the easy access to the coast—and it’s simple to follow one of the many side trails down to the beach where miles of sand are available for walking, picnics, and watching the summer sun set over The Sleeping Lady.

Where To Go

The easiest access points to the beach are at Lyn Ary Park and Pt. Waronzof Park, but anywhere in between is great, too, when you can find a suitable access point. For a fun long walk—but only when the tide is out— get on the beach at Lyn Ary Park and walk to Pt Waronzof (or the other way around) and return by way of the paved trail. Keep in mind that there are dangerous mud flats in the area, so if you do go adventuring on the beach be sure to stay on the sand and don’t venture out into the mud.

Best for Birding

Between Pt. Waronzof and Kincaid Park is another stretch of beach and grassy tidal plains that is more difficult to access—but the payoff can be greater, since fewer people come here and there’s a greater chance of seeing shorebirds and waterfowl. There are a few “secret” access points that snake down through the trees, and you can find them at a number of the small pullouts along the trails. These areas are can also be great for winter adventures and photography—just be sure to check the tides before leaving, and always go with a buddy.

Getting There