Weekend in Anchorage, Alaska | A Full 2 Days Winter Travel Guide

If you have been wanting to travel to Alaska, the best way to make the most of your travel budget is to visit Anchorage. Check out our winter travel itinerary for a weekend up to Anchorage, Alaska. 

When you ask someone where they'd like to travel to or what their 'bucket list' travel destinations are, most of the time they will either say Alaska or Glacier Bay. Having been to Glacier Bay, I can say without a doubt that it's gorgeous. But the cost of an Alaskan cruise can be a price tag most of us can't afford with a standard, domestic travel budget. Do I think that the price of a cruise just to get access to Glacier Bay is worth all of the money that it costs? Honestly, no. While I do think that cruises are an excellent way to explore multiple locations, I would vouch for you to experience Alaska in an alternative way. Having seen different parts of Alaska now, I could recommend so many other spots in this gigantic state that are worth seeing that will let you get close to glaciers and get you closer to so many authentic Alaskan experiences. 

Anchorage is a large Alaskan city, and around it are a dozen neighboring areas that are within an hour or two of incredible sights like the Matanuska Glacier or the Alaskan Railroad that will take you up to Denali by a beautiful train ride. Sure, Glacier Bay is beautiful. But you can see a glacier or take an excursion right from within the city of Anchorage, and then beyond that, you can explore and experience just what there is to do and see and why the locals love Alaska.

Make the most of your travel budget and travel to Anchorage during the winter. 

Here, you can see Alaska in its beautiful wintery state and take part in the outdoor winter sports you love. Home to Alyeska, arguably one of the best ski resorts in the country, is just a short drive from Anchorage. But if you'd rather not stay in a ski lodge, there's still plenty to do and see and get you to enjoy the winter excursions that Anchorage has to offer. Hilltop Ski Area is located right in Anchorage, and they offer ski programs like any other ski resort would. The city of Anchorage itself has trails that are regularly groomed for winter sports--you can check out the Municipality of Anchorage website for more information about parks and hours as well as what kinds of trails and parks you can access for activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, skiing, skijoring, dog mushing, etc.

If you've always wanted to travel to Alaska but find that it's a bit too expensive to travel to, the most reasonable way to save money and cross this travel destination off of your bucket list is to visit during their off-season: winter.

Now, I know what you may be thinking. Maybe you're like me and maybe a little worried it will be too cold, too snowy, or too little to do while visiting in their winter season. In all honestly, while the activities can be a little bit limited at times and weather permitting, there is so much to do and see in the wintertime and if you enjoy any winter sports you will absolutely love visiting Anchorage in the winter months!
Pro Tip: while there are ride-sharing apps that are active and sometimes available in Anchorage, not every neighborhood around Greater Anchorage will have a driver ready to pick you up when you need it. Most of the time you can get away with not renting a car for a quick trip, but for this case and making a winter trip to Anchorage, it is strongly encouraged that you do rent a car.
Anchorage 2 Days Weekend Winter Travel Itinerary

Day 1:

Morning: Take the scenic drive through Turnagain Arm out to Girdwood, Alaska

Afternoon: Enjoy a morning and afternoon at Alyeska/Ride the Tram

Early evening: Grab a glass of wine or a warm scallop bisque atop Alyeska at Seven Glaciers 

Evening: Drive back to Anchorage and enjoy dinner at Seward's Folly

Late evening: Keep your eyes out for the northern lights
Pro tip: There are an assortment of northern lights/Aurora Borealis weather apps you can download for your smartphone. These will help you figure out what day/time the best chance to see the sky light up while you are visiting Anchorage. 

Day 2:

Early morning: Grab a coffee at one of the many coffee huts you will see while driving around Anchorage (they look like backyard sheds parked right in the middle of a parking lot or shopping center). These are family-owned and are where the locals buy their real coffee. My favorite one that I went to was called Cafe Loco Espresso

Morning: Breakfast at Little Dipper Diner (I highly recommend their reindeer eggs benedict!)

Afternoon: Snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, or ice fishing at one of Anchorage's parks

Pro Tip: you must purchase a sport fishing license if you wish to go fishing in the state of Alaska. Be sure to check with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game before your visit to secure whatever licensing you will need.
Early evening: Test your lumberjack axe throwing skills at Alaska Axe Co

Evening: Have dinner and sample a beer flight of local beers at Matanuska Brewing Company in Midtown

Late evening: Looking for a dive bar with pool and darts? Head to the Flight Deck Bar and Lounge 

Are you headed to Anchorage this winter, or do you want to travel to Alaska for the first time? Save this travel itinerary on Pinterest or Facebook while planning for your adventure to Anchorage!

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  1. This looks like an amazing experience. I would love to visit with my family. Thanks for sharing this guide.

  2. How cool! I've always wanted to visit Alaska. I know it's beautiful there. I'd love to try skiing.

  3. Alaska looks amazing and it certainly is on my list of places I would love to see These ideas and tips for enjoying the trip will help all Alaska travelers.

  4. This sounds like such a beautiful getaway. I would love to visit this destination some day!

  5. I have always wanted to travel to Alaska, it looks like a great place to visit.

  6. I would like to pass a weekend in Alaska. I think it's wonderful!

  7. As a Texan it's really hard for me to imagine winter in Alaska!! I loved it in the fall when I was there. How my kids would love these winter activities though. I don't think they even remember snow.

  8. Alaska is on our travel bucket list, so beautiful, we would love to follow your itinerary

  9. Looks like really fun. Alaska in my wishlist, I don't know when I can make. Glad you guys enjoyed the trip.

  10. Looks like real fun. Alaska is in my wish list. Hope someday I can make a trip. Looks like you guys had fun.


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