Anchorage– Anchorage is a city (population 300,000) in southern Alaska on Cook Inlet Bay (Pacific Ocean). It is the most populous center of the state, its economic activities are based on the port (fishing) and industry (food, coal, gold, oil). Although this coastal urban agglomeration is not considered typical of Alaska, this Nordic metropolis is worth a visit. Anchorage was born as a military base (1914), built to defend the Alaska Railroad. The importance of the site increased during the Second World War when the military defenses were strengthened with the construction of Fort Richardson and the Elmendorf Air Base. Parallel to the growth of its strategic importance, the development of the inhabited center was recorded,
Much of the center was destroyed by the 1964 Good Friday earthquake: in that circumstance the north part of 4th Avenue sank 3 m. Earthquake Park, west of downtown towards the airport, illustrates the story of the earthquake. One of the most prestigious museums in Alaska, the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center has a large collection of paintings dedicated to this region and the Alaska Gallery with interesting exhibits that tell the story from prehistoric times to today. In the Alaska Native Heritage Center, costumed actors perform traditional dances. II Portage Glacier is constantly retreating and is now distant from the tourist center, 80km southeast of the city. You can take a boat trip in the lake near the glacier.
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Fairbanks– Fairbanks is a city in central Alaska, located on the Chena River, about 180 km south of the Arctic Circle. Fort Wainright and Eielson Air Force Base are located near the city. Surrounded by a subarctic landscape, Fairbanks is Alaska’s second largest city and one of the most populated in the world at this latitude. It is located just 241 km from the Arctic Circle and here the sun sets just below the horizon during the summer solstice period, June 21st. The long hours of darkness in winter make it a great place to observe the Northern Lights. Fairbanks is also known for temperature changes, with a summer temperature that can exceed 32 ° C and a winter one that drops to -15 ° C. Among the most unique attractions of the town there is the Ice Museum, with a huge freezer that holds impressive ice sculptures. Another museum houses a mummified bison dating back to 36,000 years ago. Pioneer Park preserves historic buildings from all over Alaska in an effort to rebuild a gold rush town. Fairbanks was founded in 1902 after gold deposits were discovered nearby.
Alaska travel itinerary
The tourist who wants to go to this distant region will be well rewarded by the grandiose spectacles offered by the boreal nature, with the gigantic glaciers, the mountain peaks and the great forests. It is a visit to be made of course in the summer. In Juneau you can go on excursions to the nearby Menden-hall glacier, Auke Lake and the gold mines.
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We advise you not to leave Juneau without first making a trip by boat or plane to Glacier Bay, which is 85 km from the capital of Alaska. Here immense glaciers slide into the sea along the valley. In this huge bay, which only 100 years ago was still completely covered with ice, 16 glaciers flow. The ice has since retreated by more than 100km, at a speed unmatched anywhere else on the planet. From the end of May to mid-September, boat and plane excursions of one or more days are organized from Juneau to Gustavus, a small settlement at the mouth of the huge bay. Other interesting destinations are Skagway (mementos of the gold rush; excursion to Whitehorse in the Canadian outback) and nearby Haines. From this last and from Whitehorse a road leads west to Fairbanks, the city owes its birth to the 1903 gold rush. Today Fairbanks is a modern metropolis, if you are interested in the history and culture of the Alascan natives we recommend you visit Otto William Geist Museum. Other tourist attractions in the city are, The Alaska Museum, Pioneer Park Open Air Museum, Alaskaland Park and it is not recommended to leave the city without taking a boat ride on the Chena River. From Whitehorse another road passes through Valdez, Anchorage, Seward and Homer. A spectacular maritime route connects Seward, Whittier, Valdez and Córdoba, offering the possibility of making a sea and land circuit in this southwestern part of Alaska. Anchorage, is a ‘ airy American-style city with no other interests than the many possible outings in its near and distant surroundings. A road and a railroad link Anchorage with Fairbanks by touching the entrance to Denali National Park and thus offering the way to make another circuit in the western part of the country.