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Nature & Wildlife

Top Rated Attractions in Anchorage

Search Radius (Miles)
Chugach State Park

In 1970 this magnificent area was declared a state park. Located within the municipality of Anchorage, Chugach State Park includes roughly 500,000 acres (202,343 hectares) of the Chugach Range and the surrounding landscape. The Eklutna Lake is the park's most unique proposition that beautifully mirrors the surrounding environs over its glassy surface. With a 5,000 foot (1,524 meters) vertical rise and three major campgrounds to the north of Anchorage, this wilderness area is filled with wildlife including moose, wolves, brown and black bears and more. It's a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts offering a plethora of activities that allow one to get up, close and personal with nature.

Alaska Zoo

View 85 species of wildlife from the Arctic, including glacier bears, grizzly bears, and black bears, on this 25-acre wooded area. Other creatures that can be found here include caribou, moose, Dall sheep, wolves, musk oxen and many others. Some non-Alaskan species such as elephants, Bactrian camels and even a Siberian tiger are housed in the zoo as well. A gift shop and a refreshment stand are on the premises for anyone who needs a little pick-me-up.

Kincaid Park

Kincaid Park is home to the city's largest moose population, but bipeds also enjoy the beauty of this former glacial area. With more than 1,400 acres (6.1 square kilometers), this wooded park has trails that wind throughout. Many interpretive sites and frequent postings allow for navigation through this beautiful, hilly place. You may access the park either from the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail or by Raspberry Road. There is a large interpretive visitor's center available and many wide open areas where festivals are held. These trails are home to local and national skiing competitions and have also hosted Olympic tryouts.

Alaska Botanical Garden

This 110-acre (44.5 hectares) garden includes native perennials, an enclosed herb garden and an outdoor rock garden. Created in 1991 by volunteers, the garden has become an educational resource as well as a stunning showcase of Alaskan plants and wildflowers. Paths throughout allow for easy travel and a 1.2-mile hike provides views of the Chugach Mountains, a natural wetland and nearby Campbell Creek. One unusual feature is a still-used dog-mushing trail that travels through the garden. For the kids, ask to borrow a free Discovery Duffel from the garden store, packed with games and activities that tie in to the exhibits. Guided tours are available upon request.

Salmon Berry Travel & Tours

Salmon Berry allows adventurers to go dog sledding through snowy regions north of Anchorage, search for northern lights, explore glaciers on foot, and venture out to a frozen lake for ice fishing. Locally-owned and operated, the adventure tour company is one of the best organized and comprehensive in the area, and offers hospitable, customized trips based on a small tour philosophy throughout the year.

Tony Knowles Coastal Trail

This coastal trail offers 11 miles (18 kilometers) of paved walking, skiing, biking and in-line skating heaven. It also provides unbelievable sunset views. The trail, built in honor of one of the city's former mayors and the former governor, is joined by many side trails that come from the midtown and south Anchorage districts. Along the way are mile and trail markers and, at Westchester Lagoon (one mile south of downtown), built-in fitness centers with pull-up bars, sit-up benches and general fitness information.

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