More ships sailing to Anchorage, new history and art galleries arrive, new tours take off, and hotels open their doors anew. Here’s a rundown of travel news in Anchorage for 2018.
Cross-Gulf Cruise Boom
There will be 20 percent more cruise capacity into the Anchorage area in summer 2018. The addition of an extra ship by Princess, the substitution of a larger ship by Holland America Line, and a longer season by Celebrity combine to make up most of the increase in berths for Seward and Whittier.
Anchorage Museum Expands
Alaska’s largest museum is even larger after completion of a $24 million expansion. The Anchorage Museum added 25,000 square feet of gallery space to display more of the permanent collection publicly. The expansion coincides with a new, permanent Alaska exhibition, chronicling the state’s history from the first Alaskans to contemporary times.
Bike Tours Gear Up Girdwood
Guided cycling tours hit the trails of Anchorage and Girdwood, taking advantage of the city’s more than 135 miles of paved trails. Girdwood Bike Adventures offers fat tire bike tours in Glacier Valley. Trips include Bird to Gird – a longtime favorite of local cyclists – a fat tire foodie tour and private, custom offerings.
Big Swig Offers New "Alaska Crafted" Tours
Big Swig Tours, long a great choice for multi-stop Anchorage brewery tours, adds a new option in 2018. The Alaska Crafted Tour includes stops for tastings at Girdwood Brewing, Anchorage Distillery and Double Shovel Cider Co. It's available as a day trip from Anchorage or with a cruise transfer from Seward or Whittier ending at an Anchorage hotel or airport.
Are you smart enough to solve the puzzles and make it out? Alaska’s first escape room comes to Anchorage. Each physical adventure game lasts around 90 minutes, pitting teams of players against the clock in a host of creative scenarios.
Salmon Berry Adds New Tours
Salmon Berry Tours adds a new, local eco tour to their roster. The half day trip explores Anchorage’s natural side, with visits to a salmon stream and Anchorage Coastal Wildlife Refuge alongside taste of salmon and chaga tea, brewed with a birch fungus.
Salmon Berry and family travel experts at AKontheGO also team up in 2018 for a new Ultimate Family Field Trip. The 10-day winter trip includes time chasing both the Iditarod and the northern lights.
Sheraton Anchorage Hotel puts the finishing touches on a major remodel. Work finishes in spring 2018 on an extensive top-to-bottom renovation.
La Quinta Inn and Suites opens its doors in Anchorage. The 84-room property on Minnesota Drive is just a few minutes from downtown, and includes shuttle service, parking, free breakfast and high-speed internet.
Anchorage favorite Crush takes over the space on G Street once occupied by Sacks Café. The move gives Crush a bigger kitchen, more tables, and space to grow their bottle shop. Long known for enticing wines by the glass, Crush’s new liquor license allows them to add new cocktails and drink specials.