I’ve been trying to think about an Alaska Top 10 list of what we’ve learned and loved in the last 2 months, but it’s really difficult as every town and experience is different and special in its own way. But here’s my attempt, for what it’s worth! But I’ve loved it all…
Best Place to LIVE: Seward – because it has the most to offer year round (hiking, restaurants, brewery, services, mountains/sea, proximity to skiing and to Anchorage airport, etc) without the summer tourist hordes
Best Place to VISIT: Denali (simply a must for visitors), and Valdez/McCarthy for a true Alaskan experience. Or just head to Hyder!
Favorite Unique Experience: Ice climbing a glacier in McCarthy! (flightseeing in Denali and landing on a glacier was pretty badass too)
Most Scenic Drive: the road into Valdez. Simply STUNNING. Runner up: the Glacier Hwy to Stewart/Hyder.
Best Beer/Brewery: Broken Tooth (Anchorage), although our favorite of the whole trip is still Lone Peak in Big Sky, MT!
Best Meal(s): Chinooks (Seward), 229 Parks (Denali)
Best Bar with Character: Double Musky Inn (Girdwood); Runner up: the Lynx (Denali) – best bartenders!
Favorite Hot Spring: Chena hot springs (Chena) – great place to spend a whole weekend & hang out
Most Touristy: Skagway and Denali (runner up: the Homer Spit)
Best Place to View Wildlife: Yellowstone (seriously) or Canada – where is the wildlife in Alaska (other than bald eagles)?!
When we return to Alaska, we’ll hit Kodiak Island, Katmai National Park, and some of the Inside Passage islands (Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan, etc). And chase those elusive Northern Lights (with Annie in Fairbanks)!
Meantime, we have new friends to visit in Whidbey, Scotland, and Switzerland! (and Rex/Geri – I can’t remember where to stalk you!) 🙂
I truly love Alaska. It’s a very special place! Sad to leave…