Donna Dewhurst

About Anchorage


301,000, according to a 2014 U.S. Census estimate. Anchorage is Alaska's largest city with 41 percent of the state's population.

Time Zone

Anchorage, and virtually all of Alaska, is in Alaska Standard Time, one hour behind Pacific Standard Time and four hours behind Eastern Standard Time. Alaska observes daylight savings time during the summer.


Anchorages stretches from Portage Glacier to Eklutna, encompassing 1,961 square miles (507,923 hectares) - about the size of the state of Delaware.


Anchorage sits at the base of the Chugach Mountains along the coast of Cook Inlet in Southcentral Alaska. 


The Dena'ina Athabascans called the Anchorage area home long before Europeans arrived. What is now Anchorage was the site of many summer fish camps and trapping locations. Europeans first arrived in the Anchorage area in 1778, when British explorer Captain James Cook sailed the inlet (which now bears his name) on his third and final voyage. While prospectors trickled into the region in the late 1800s, Anchorage wasn't a permanent settlement until 1915, when the federal government selected Ship Creek as the headquarters site for construction of the Alaska Railroad. In its first 100 years, Anchorage grew from a tent city on the banks of the creek to the most populous city in Alaska, and the center for railroad and air travel in Alaska.

Sales Tax

There is no sales tax in Anchorage. Shopping in Anchorage makes sense; you'll find better prices here than in other parts of Alaska.


You can see the Chugach, Kenai, Talkeetna, Tordrillo, Aleutian and Alaska mountain ranges from Anchorage. Denali, once known as Mount McKinley, 130 miles (208 km) north of downtown, can be seen on clear days. This 20,310-foot peak is the tallest mountain in North America. The mountains surrounding Anchorage aren't just big, they're the place to go for big adventures.


Alaska has about one registered pilot for every 58 residents, six times as many pilots per capita and 14 times as many airplanes per capita as the rest of the United States. Aviation is a vital link to remote areas and also a great way to see the state for visitors. Many flightseeing tours offer an eagle's-eye view of Alaska wildlife, glaciers and landscapes.