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Tours & Sightseeing Trips in
Fairbanks, Denali & the Arctic Circle.

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New “Things to do in Fairbanks” page published

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We just launched a new "Things to do in Fairbanks" page. The page is an overview of the best local attractions, bars, restaurants, tours & lodging options. Check out the page here. Let us know what you think.      
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Midnight Sun

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Summer has finally arrived in Fairbanks! The flowers are blooming and the mosquitoes are out in full force. The days are unending. While many Alaskans use the extra daylight to complete projects and winter preparations, there is still plenty of time to get outside and enjoy a Fairbanks summer. From fishing, rafting, camping, swimming, visiting local parks, festivals and the farmer's market there is no shortage to summer fun in the Golden Heart City. A trip to Alaska is often on most people's bucket lists. Alaska is full of mystery for many. The midnight sun is one of the mysteries…
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April blog post

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Another winter season has come and gone. Winter in Alaska is a magical time of year. Our world is covered in snow white glistening crystals; a true winter wonderland. The aurora twists and turns overhead putting on a show for all who dare to stay up late. The entire sky is filled with sparkling stars waiting their turn to shine. Mushers race through the brisk night air behind howling dogs in delight. Those who brave a trip to Fairbanks in the winter are rewarded with an experience they will not soon forget. We are grateful for all of our guests…
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The Iditarod dog sled race begins in Fairbanks

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It is that time of year again -- the Iditarod Race has begun! For the 3rd time, the famous race started on the banks of the Chena River in Fairbanks, Alaska. About 70 hopeful mushers and their teams departed on March 6 for a grueling race through the Alaskan wilderness.   Every year during this time guests flock to Alaska to share in the magic and excitement of dog mushing. People from all over the world learn about the history of mushing as well as the sport. Races such as the Iditarod and Yukon Quest shine a spotlight on Alaska…
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The Northern lights on Alaska Aurora Tour and Arctic Circle Tours

Arctic Circle – Who Wants to Go?

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The words Arctic Circle may scare some, especially those who aren’t fond of the cold. However, the Arctic has a lot more going on than just a frigid, barren landscape. Don’t confuse it with its (literal) polar opposite, the Antarctic. The Arctic is surrounded by ocean and masses of land, whereas the Antarctic is surrounded by nothing but stormy seas and ice (and penguins!). The Arctic is teeming with life - human, plant and animal (well, a few humans, anyway). The Arctic also experiences a summer and is not continuously shrouded in ice and snow. The Arctic Circle consists of…
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Why the Best Family Vacations Include Outdoor Activities

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Have you ever considered how much time most people spend indoors? If you guessed, you’d probably guess low, like 50% or 60%, but the truth is we pretty much spend about 90% of our time indoors. After all, we sleep indoors, we go to work or school indoors, and our meal time/free time is spent...you guessed it: indoors. It’s no wonder, then, that the best family vacations typically include outdoor activities. Our ancestors used to spend the majority of their time outdoors, and we’re wired to do the same, if needed. The thing is, today so much of life takes…
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Solar Storms Create A “Northern Lights Show” on Jupiter

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One of the benefits to physically being somewhere that lacks people and electric lights is that you can see the heavens at night so well. It’s no wonder that adventurous people flock to Alaska, then, to take in the nighttime sky. Indeed, 1st Alaska Outdoor School’s guides show tourists the “Northern Lights” after they arrive in Fairbanks and then venture out into the wilderness for prime viewing spots. The “Northern Lights” are bright, colorful, dancing lights seen above and below the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres of our planet. They’re breathtaking as they light up the sky…
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What Exactly is Dog Mushing?

Icon 06/11/15
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Reaching its peak in popularity in the 1980’s, dog mushing is a sport or a transport method utilizing dogs, primarily Siberian Huskies. Often times, there is a team of dogs that is pulling a sled which can sometimes be used for races, or for pulling cargo through a snowy area. It’s called mushing because the French word “marche” meaning “to go” or “to run” was used back when it was first popular. However, over time, the English Canadians began to say “mush” instead. The practice of using dogs to pull sleds dates back to 2000 BC. It originated in North…
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The Top Reasons to Visit Fairbanks, Alaska

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Though Alaska may be one of the most remote states in the U.S., it is the largest state according to square mileage, and has some of the most beautiful vantage points and views that cannot be seen from anywhere else in the world. It is not very populated, but to its advantage, Alaska holds many different types of tours, trips, and sights to be seen in person, not just in pictures. For people not living in Alaska, a trip to one of the gems of the United States could easily be a trip of a lifetime. Sights Aurora light display…
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The Benefits of a Guided Fishing Tour

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No matter how you look at it, a fishing excursion is always a good time. You get to spend time with nature, spend time with family and friends, and maybe even earn bragging rights over how large your last catch was. However, as fun as fishing at a local lake in your hometown can be, guided fishing tours make the experience even more memorable. Less Responsibility When you use a guided fishing tour, you no longer have to worry about getting out on the water and endlessly checking over your list of supplies. On the fishing tour, someone else takes…
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Dog Team Dog Sledding Alaska

What to Do When Visiting Fairbanks, Alaska

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1st Alaska Outdoor School is a center for the individuals who are looking to learn about and explore the amazing attractions that Alaska has to offer. Someone could visit Alaska many, many times and still not be able to experience the richness and beauty that the Alaskan environment has to offer. As part of this package, you will be accompanied by Alaskan Outdoor Excursion Experts who will help you to make the most of you Alaskan travels. Because this is such an exclusive program, you will be able to see beautiful sites and experiences that aren’t always toured on a…
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Polar Lights: Aurora Polaris

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Have you ever traveled around the world and witnessed a natural phenomenon, or maybe a wonder of the world? Well, if you haven’t then the one to see is Aurora Polaris, also known as polar lights. These polar lights are a natural phenomenon found in both the northern and southern hemispheres and are caused by an awe-inspiring occurrence. This origin of this began on the surface of the sun when solar activity ejects a cloud of gas, or what scientists like to refer to as a coronal mass ejection. When on of these ejections reaches Earth, it collides with its…
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One World Wonder You Must See: Aurora Borealis

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All of us who travel know that when we look at our criteria for a place to go, it needs to have things to do and places to see there. More often than not we choose places like Arizona where we can see the Grand Canyon and enjoy a Diamondbacks game all in the same day. Better yet, let’s take a trip to explore the Mesa Verde and enjoy an outdoor concert at the Red Rock in Colorado instead. Regardless of the activity, we never hear someone say they want to vacation to Alaska. When people think of Alaska, they…
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The Ultimate Fairbanks Craft Brewery Tour

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Although it’s been around for some time, craft brews are still relatively new when comparing them to “normal” beers like Coors, Miller, Budweiser, etc. And over the past several years, it seems as if you can’t go anywhere without seeing a new craft beer popping up, but we aren’t complaining! Even all the way up here in Fairbanks, Alaska, we love craft beer, and that’s one of the reasons we offer a brewery tour. Stopping at two popular breweries in the area, the tour lasts about four hours with lunch or dinner included. With tours available from Tuesday through Saturday,…
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Benefits of Going on a Guided Fishing Tour in Fairbanks, Alaska

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Have you ever considered taking a guided fishing trip? If not, you should. There are many benefits of going out on the water with someone who knows the area and fishes for a living. There’s an old adage, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”. This is exactly what you’ll get with a guided fishing tour. On a guided fishing tour you can focus on the fishing and leave everything else up to the guide. We’ll provide the ride from your accommodations, the…
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Tips for Saving for a Family Vacation

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A family vacation can be an incredibly fun and memorable adventure. A trip to an exotic place, like Hawaii or Alaska, is a chance to get away from the “same-old, same-old” and explore new cultures, regions and ways of life. Family vacations can get costly, as they typically involve several people like moms, dads, kids, friends, and other family members. One way to save for a family vacation is to open a dedicated savings account at a local bank. Then, every member of the family can contribute to the account on a regular basis, dedicating some of their earnings, paychecks…
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Reasons to Take the Fairbanks, Alaska City Tour

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Fairbanks, Alaska is a beautiful city nestled in the interior region of Alaska with a population of over 32,000 people. What this means is that you’re able to experience the Alaskan way of life but can still have all the amenities of living in a city. Fairbanks is also steeped in a rich cultural history of exploration, and the gold rush. When you visit Fairbanks and book a Fairbanks City Tour with us you can expect to experience the best of both worlds. The tour is meant to give you a fun and educational experience you’ll never forget while learning…
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3 Reasons You Should Try Dog Mushing/Dog Sledding This Winter

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We’re not going to try and pretend this weather doesn’t get on our nerves from time to time. However, instead of complaining about temperatures well into the negatives, we’re going to talk about one of the many great activities you can participate in during these frigid winter months: dog mushing. Fondly called dog sledding by many, this is an adventure that’ll make the coldest days/nights enjoyable! We’ll provide the arctic gear and dogs, you just need to show up and be ready for an adventure of a lifetime in the Alaskan wilderness! If you’re not too sure you want to…
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An Unforgettable Winter Alaskan Experience

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There is no winter vacation anywhere else quite like the one you will receive in Alaska. Winter is the Alaskan season that offers its visitors a truly memorable experience. At the top of the Alaskan list of activities to engage in are dog mushing and dog sledding. Dog mushing and dog sledding are age-old means of transportation, sport and fun in Alaska. The famed Iditarod event held in Alaska showcases the beautiful Huskies and their impressive strength to pull their owner through the crisp and crunchy snow-filled fields. 1st Alaska Outdoor School provides guided dog mushing and dog sledding tours.…
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What’s going on in Fairbanks, Alaska this winter?

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With winter approaching rather quickly, we know it’s only natural for you to start thinking about hibernating for the next several months. However, why would you do such a thing when Fairbanks, Alaska has so much to offer? Sure our Artic Circle and Northern Lights tours are a couple options that we obviously recommend, but there is also so much more this great city has to offer. Although we urge you to visit this page for more options: , we picked out three events that might just be something you’d like to try over the next few months! 1. The…
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Five Things You Can’t Miss In Fairbanks, Alaska

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Fairbanks, like other great American cities, began with a spirit of discovery and adventure. Many of it’ first residents arrived in search of gold, and were surely enchanted by the natural beauty and spirit of the Alaskan frontier. These days, Fairbanks is known more for friendly people and its rich embodiment of Alaskan culture. It also happens to be the second largest city in the state. You could live an entire lifetime in Fairbanks and fall short of experiencing everything it has to offer. Still, most residents and past visitors would point out a few things that you just can’t…
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A Tour That Lets You Touch The Arctic Ocean

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For most of human history, the Arctic Ocean was shrouded in mystery. When cartographers made world maps, they weren’t even sure whether to draw it as land or as sea, as some who managed to make an early trek experienced it as loose, slushy ice.   Now visitors have a chance to see the shallowest, smallest, and coldest of the world’s oceans firsthand. Our three or four day Arctic Ocean/Prudhoe Bay tours take you from Fairbanks, Alaska to the shores of the Arctic Ocean at Prudhoe Bay.   For those who don’t already know, Prudhoe Bay is the largest oil…
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Unique Sporting Event in Fairbanks

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Say you’re planning a November trip to Fairbanks with 1st Alaska Outdoor School, to see the famed Northern Lights. But you can’t see Aurora borealis all the time you are there, so what else can you do? Well here’s a rare sporting event that takes place annually in the heart of Fairbanks that the whole family can enjoy, the Yukon Title Curling Classic. The Yukon Title Curling Classic is a Team USA curling event, also known as a “cash spiel”; which is another name for a competitive tournament in which the winning team receives a cash prize for participating. The…
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Discover Fairbanks: The Golden Heart City

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A visit to Fairbanks is truly a visit to the heart of Alaska. Fairbanks is the largest city in what we refer to as the interior region of Alaska. Statewide, only Juneau and Anchorage boast larger populations. It’s the central location for surrounding Alaskan villages—a major city that can still claim an “old Alaska” feel. At 1st Alaska Outdoor School, we offer Fairbanks City Tours as a way for visitors to get to the core of Alaskan culture and tradition. A visit to Fairbanks is a great way to immerse yourself in Alaska’s past and to discover everything it has…
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Why You Should Visit Pioneer Park in Fairbanks, Alaska

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A theme park in Alaska? Now that’s something somewhat unexpected. Fairbanks is home to Pioneer Park, built in the 1960s, and it’s one of the more unusual things to see in Alaska. Pioneer Park is an old-fashioned theme park, which means it’s not the kind of place to find giant rollercoasters but there is a carousel. The park is generally a depository of Alaskan artifacts. It’s an interesting way to showcase Alaska’s history, where you can see log cabins and rusty equipment from days gone by. There’s even the SS Nenana, a giant old steamship that once plied the Yukon…
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Photographing the Northern Lights

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In late August, we’ll begin our highly anticipated Northern Lights—or Aurora Borealis—tours out of our Fairbanks, Alaska headquarters. Visitors are typically very excited to embark on one of these tours after hearing about the beauty of the Northern Lights for their entire life. They’re rarely let down either, especially when the timing is right. In fact, the allure of the Northern Lights and the effect that they have on people can be quite extreme. One man named Todd Salat, featured in an article in the Laramie, Boomerang, even gave up a promising career as a geologist to become a full-time…
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What Is the Arctic Circle?

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Here at 1st Alaska Outdoor School in Fairbanks, we believe that our knowledge and expertise shine through on each and every one of our exciting excursions. When considering one of our most popular tours that explores the Arctic Circle, many visitors are embarrassed to ask the questions: What is the Arctic Circle anyway, and what’s so great about it? While the question will undoubtedly be answered in grand fashion while experiencing the tour, here’s a brief rundown to get you up to speed. First, a quick geography refresher for those who’ve been out of the classroom for a while. Remember…
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Reasons to Take an Alaska Vacation

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Remember when you were a kid and you had the long summer months to look forward to as you slaved away behind that small wooden desk? Long before “staycations” became a trend for the cash-strapped, every child in the country was taking one on an annual, shedding responsibility and exploring the world immediately surrounding them. Now that you’re all grown up, you probably have much less time off. These days, you’re lucky to have a week or two away from the daily grind. On the other hand, you now have the freedom and independence to really get away from it…
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Pioneer Park in Alaska is a Perfect Family Activity

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Pioneer Park is considered Alaska's only historic theme park. It was founded in late 1960 / early 1961, at a time when pioneers requested public land from the state of Alaska. It was meant to be a tourist attraction that contained exhibits featuring historical Alaska. In 1965, it was requested to be used for the 100th year anniversary of the purchase of Alaska from Russia. It was eventually named "Alaska 67 Centennial Exposition." In 1968, Mayor Red Boucher signed a letter declaring that the park will officially be named "Alaskaland." In July of 2002, the name was changed back to…
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When is the best time to visit Fairbanks, Alaska?

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Of course we think Alaska is amazing every day of the year. But the real answer to “when” you should visit depends on what adventures you are looking forward to. Summertime is probably the best time to visit Alaska if you are looking forward to doing activities such as touring the Arctic Circle, participating in water sports like rafting and canoeing, relaxing at the Chena Hot Springs, or fishing for fresh Alaskan seafood. Visitors are pleasantly surprised by how pleasant the Alaskan summer weather is. During the day, temperatures remain in the 60-80 Fahrenheit range. At night time, it can…
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