Alaska is one of the most beautiful places in the world, and a rare region that is full of endless culture, geographic diversity, and astonishing scenic views that offer a range of unique experiences. Alaska is the largest state in the U.S., although most of Alaska’s land is uninhabitable. While Alaska includes several popular hubs for international travelers, such as the well-known city of Anchorage, some of the most breathtaking and exciting destinations in this eccentric state are off the beaten path. To gain the absolute most out of Alaska, explore these four astounding realms that steer clear of the crowds.
Imagine yourself floating along the most peaceful, beguiling, vividly colorful body of water, surrounded by picturesque rolling hills at your leisure. Sounds pretty perfect, doesn’t it? Well, if you’re up for the expedition, this vision actually exists! Beaver Creek, Alaska, is conveniently accessible about 50 miles North of the well known city of Fairbanks.
This region also encompasses about 180 miles of the Yukon River, a gorgeous crystal blue body of water that begins all the way in British Columbia, and dumps out to the Bering Sea. Experience everything from canoeing and kayaking, dog sledding, ice fishing, mountain biking, and more! Be prepared with your bear spray and hiking gear, and get ready to feel like a real Alaskan. While there are various stopping points along Beaver Creek, the scenery won’t let you down at any given moment, as long as you enjoy the genuine outdoors
An end of the road town, enclosed by the Gulf of Alaska and immersed in the wilderness, Homer is a peculiar and culture induced town that strays from the typical touristy attractions in Alaska. Homer is a small town on Kachemak Bay and Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula.
Homer has a local population of almost 6,000, which is the largest of the destinations on this list. In Homer, you can experience the local allure of art, wildlife, unique restaurants, Alaskan beaches, fishing expeditions, and even more. Explore Kachemak Bay State Park, only accessible by sea plane or boat. This remarkable place lacks navigable roads and trails, which means that when you plan a visit to the superior park, make sure you plan well! If you want to check out the town, Homer’s regional museums, like the Pratt Museum, are perfect educational and fun sights to experience and learn about the history of Alaska. After you’ve spent the day hiking and observing the Homer lifestyle, visit the local bars and breweries like the Salty Dawg Saloon. It’s no doubt that when you visit this charming town, you’re in for an eventful time.
A place that appears straight out of a storybook, Cordova is an awe-inspiring venue. From taking a helicopter tour above the ice fields to staying in some of the most unique hotels, Cordova embarks on a true Alaskan experience. Like many other places in Alaska, Cordova is only reached by plane or boat. The Cordova landscape is truly striking, with the appearance of some of the most intimidating mountains and large, icy glaciers. Cordova is also home of Mount Eyak Ski Area, which offers 30 different trails, and options for bikers and hikers in the summertime. If you’re looking to see your first glacier, Child’s Glacier Tour is a perfect choice. To experience this intense tour, board a boat at the Copper River Delta and stop at every viewing area of these frosty, massive glaciers, displaying still peace and beauty.
There’s no Hilton Inn in Cordova, but there are lots of options for distinctive lodges and places to stay. The Reluctant Fisherman’s Inn and the Orca Adventure Lodge are two quaint hotels that offer amazing views of Cordova, as well as easy access to the town attractions. A rustic bayside bar and grill is attached to The Reluctant Fisherman’s Inn, and The Orca Adventure Lodge provides guided fishing trips and remote cabins, hiking, kayaking, and glacier tours. No matter the pursuit, Cordova represents a little bit of everything.
Talkeetna, Alaska, encapsulates the type of scenery that’s printed on wall artwork you’ve always tried to envision yourself in. Ever considered taking a casual helicopter trip around Denali, or strolling around local shops that border glaciers? Talkeetna is that type of place you can’t really go wrong in. The notable peaks in Talkeetna appear almost like they’re floating at a distance during certain times of the year; an indelible pattern of beaming white at the top, escalating to the blue picturesque view. Talkeetna is the definition a small, remote town that has a lot to offer. From ziplining across the famous Denali views, to staying at gorgeous, intimate resorts, this distinct place deserves to be seen! After exploring the great outdoors, visit the Talkeetna local farmers market, the Musk Ox farm, and the long list of dogsled and mining historical museums.
So, what makes Talkeetna different than other prodigious Alaskan towns? Well, Talkeetna is known as being America’s “quirkiest town”, due to the fact that it is in such close proximity to the tallest mountain in the U.S., which is also pushed right outside of the largest national park. However, this little village pulls the strength of its own reputation!
Why Travel to Alaska?
If the “north to the future” state of Alaska isn’t on your list of future travels already, it’s definitely worth adding to the bucket list! Make sure to plan accordingly, since traveling to Alaska can take an entire day or more depending on where you’re coming from. This immensely large state offers the most unusually exciting adventures to kick-start your adrenaline, while also supplying a boost in history and culture. In addition to the travel time, give yourself at least a week to fit in as much as possible! Wherever you end up going, this will be a trip of a lifetime.