Explore Anchorage -12 Months of the Year

Author: Doug Bardwell
Published: November 01, 2012 at 5:38 am
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Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city, with more than 40 percent of the state’s population, is a unique metropolitan city. Less than 500 miles from the Arctic Circle, Anchorage still enjoys reasonably moderate temperatures and is blessed with beautiful natural surroundings; set between Cook Inlet and the rugged Chugach Mountains. It’s one of only 11 cities to have been awarded the All-American City designation four or more times.

You’ll most likely fly into Ted Stevens International Airport, and from there it’s a 15 minute ride into downtown. If you are cruising, you’ll probably dock at Whittier or Seward. Seward is about 2-1/2 hours away and Whittier is about 1-1/2 hours.

The Alaska Railroad operates between Seward and Anchorage and is a not-to-be-missed ride if Seward is in you plans. Views of wildlife and glaciers, along with ultra-comfortable “Adventure Class” coach cars make for a great trip. Or splurge and get the giant viewing windows of the two-decker,“GoldStar Dome” cars with their fine dining options.

Like most other metropolitan cities, there is the official visitor center downtown – at the corner of 4th Avenue and F Street. It’s a great place to start with brochures, maps and suggestions for whatever type adventure you seek.

Not far away is the Anchorage Museum with interesting exhibits all year long. Alaskans don’t hunker down in the winter time, so expect something interesting to always be available at the museum. There are four major permanent exhibits – the Alaskan Gallery, Art of the North, Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center and the Imaginarium Discovery Center with its 80 hands-on exhibits. Kids will love the totem poles, woolly mammoth tusk, moon rock and touch tank with Alaskan sea-stars and crabs.

Consider the Alaska Culture Pass where you get two admissions for one price including a shuttle from one to the other. The Alaska Native Heritage Center honors native culture and traditions with inside and outside exhibits. Experience story telling, song, dance and artist demonstrations.

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Article Author: Doug Bardwell

Doug Bardwell is a writer, photojournalist and world traveler who covers tech, photography and travel for print and online publications around the world. Follow him at http://DougBardwell.com or on Twitter @PhotoDB.

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