It’s hard to mark exactly where Midtown begins and ends, but the neighborhood runs between Minnesota and the Seward Highway, and along Northern Lights Boulevard, Tudor Road and International Airport Road. Many financial institutions and corporations are headquartered in Midtown. Much of the commercial activity also relies on nearby hospitals and Anchorage’s two universities, the University of Alaska Anchorage and Alaska Pacific University. In part because of these institutions, Midtown has seen as spike in the number of hotels in the area. Since 2009, 600 new hotel rooms have opened in the neighborhood, providing business travelers and leisure visitors with accommodations nestled in the geographic center of the city.
Don’t underestimate the dining scene in Midtown. Even innocuous looking storefronts can give way to some of the best eats in the city. For example, Jens’ Restaurant sits in the same complex as a furniture store and a tanning salon, but since 1988, the restaurant has garnered rave reviews for its fresh fish dishes and legendary pepper steak. Jens’ isn’t the only “must” on the Midtown menu: Moose’s Tooth Pub & Pizzeria , Kinleys, Doriolas and Table 6 draw hungry office workers as well as travelers.
Those hidden finds aren’t limited to food though; Midtown is also the place to go for black light indoor miniature golf at Putters Wild. One of the top spots to find Alaska Native artwork is actually inside a hospital; the Craft Shop at the Alaska Native Medical Center is a trove of artwork by masters from across the state. The Alaska Heritage Museum at Wells Fargo is another stop for Alaska history and culture in this unassuming neighborhood. Bibliophiles will want to swing by the nearby Loussac Public Library. The Alaska collection is not to be missed by any visitor, with 20,000 books on Alaska and the North, including rare maps and manuscripts not found anywhere else.
Nor are Midtown’s treasures all manmade. Even in the center of the city, parks and trails mean plenty of green spaces to explore. Chester Creek and Campbell Creek both cut across Midtown and paved multiuse trails follow each stream. Cuddy Family Midtown Park is a perfect spot for kite flying and model boats in the summer; in winter, speed skaters take to the track of an Olympic-size oval while kids of all ages hone their skills on the nearby pond.