Anchorage is the most populated city in the state of Alaska with a population of around 290,000 residents (roughly the population of Lincoln, Nebraska) and contains over 40% of the state’s entire population.
For those visiting Alaska, Anchorage offers a unique blend of experiences from quiet wilderness getaways and impressive vistas along the many trails through the city to modern conveniences and amenities.
If you are RVing to Alaska and end up base-camping out of the Anchorage area, there are some fantastic day trips that can enhance your visit and give you a real taste of Alaska during your stay.
The Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center near Portage on the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet south of Anchorage is a sanctuary for Alaska’s orphaned and injured wild animals. The AWCC focuses on research, education, and animal care.
Sixteen different species, including wolverines, bears, porcupines, wolves, muskox, caribou, and moose are cared for in large, natural environments. Year-round guided tours and educational programs give visitors a chance to get up close and gain a better understanding of the wildlife of Alaska, as well as amazing photography opportunities.
Wilderness, Wildlife & Glacier Experience tours allow visitors a genuine wilderness experience in a small group setting. Over a five hour span, you will be picked up and taken to Chugach State Park, Beluga Point, and Portage Glacier. Visitors will get opportunities to view and photograph wild animals and landscapes with experienced and knowledgeable guides.
The Great Alaska Beer Train offered by the Alaska Railroad and Glacier BrewHouse is a Special Event day trip event in October. Ride the Alaska Railroad along the Turnagain Arm from Anchorage to Portage and back (about a 4 ½ hour trip) while enjoying an assortment of local microbrews and tasty multi-course dinner while sight-seeing as the sun sets.
One of the best ways to see the impressive landscapes of Alaska is with a flightseeing tour. Rust’s Flightseeing Tours has been around since the 1960s and offers tour packages as well as custom flight experiences for those who may want a fly-in fishing trip or to visit any part of the 90% of Alaska that is not accessible by road. Fly over Denali National Park or the Prince William Sound to see some of the most amazing natural scenes you can imagine.
Hike up Flattop Mountain in Chugach State Park for an inexpensive way to experience Anchorage from above. The Flattop Mountain Shuttle offers a round trip shuttle service (or one-way if you are taking your bike) with a low-key tour through Anchorage. After hiking the 3-mile round trip, 1,350 vertical feet to the top of Flattop, the shuttle picks you up and returns you to Anchorage. The views from the top are one of the reasons why this is a popular hiking route.
Also be sure to check out some of the fantastic museums and cultural experiences that Anchorage has to offer!