Big Experiences, Small Prices
Alaska adventures in Anchorage may be beyond belief, but they don’t need to be beyond your budget. The sights and experience here dwarf the price tag; you get an amazing time for the money. Consider just a few of the big experiences with small prices.
Glide over a boreal forest for breathtaking views of hanging glaciers, the Chugach Mountains, and Turnagain Arm. The scenic journey aboard this alpine ascent in Girdwood rises 2,300 feet above sea level and pulls up to two mountaintop restaurants where you can appreciate the seemingly endless views in comfort. Stop off at the Bore Tide Deli at the top station for a million-dollar view paired with economical eats.
Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center
Meet and greet Alaska’s world-famous stars. Visit the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center for a closer look at moose, bears, eagles, wolves, musk oxen, and many other species. Feel like a VIP without paying the premium; daily programs are included in admission, and share a wealth of information about Alaska animals, and even better opportunities to see them up close.
Portage Glacier Cruise
Get up close and personal with Portage Glacier, one of the most easily reached glaciers near Anchorage. Stand just 300 yards from the face of this icy wonder after a short cruise across Portage Lake. Narration by the U.S. Forest Service further enrichens this tour. Embark on this epic expedition for a modest sum. If you’re itching for more glaciers after the cruise, Byron Glacier Trail is a short walk away, and there’s no admission fee.
Eagle River Nature Center
See for yourself why survey crews likened this secluded valley to Yosemite. For a small parking fee, gain access to a sense of solitude and an intimacy with wilderness without venturing too far. Learn more about this natural wonder by speaking to the naturalists on staff and enjoying family-friendly programming while you’re here.
Paddle and Pedal
Combining two physical activities – biking and kayaking – generates some sweat equity at Eklutna Lake. The Paddle Pedal combo kayaks along the glacially fed Eklutna Lake, then bikes back along the trails flanked by mountains. People power is one of the best ways to explore this secluded gem north of the city.
Drive to the mighty Matanuska for highway-accessible glacier views. A large, state-maintained overlook is just off the Glenn Highway. To get a closer look, pay a modest access fee and continue along a short, one-mile path through a forest of quaking aspens for a self-guided walk atop the natural frozen phenomenon. Trade up to a guided tour for more insights. You’ll get a dedicated expert, and transportation to and from is taken care of to boot.