Fairbanks boasts many fine attractions and amenities, and is Alaska’s second largest city. With its thriving downtown area, many art galleries, varied activities to suit every taste and need, fine places to eat, and, of course, the Aurora Borealis (Alaska’s Northern Lights) in the winter, it is a wonderful destination year round.
The winters are generally long here and temperatures often go to 40 below zero, but this year has seen record highs and many native Alaskans are wondering what happened to the winter. But cold or warm, Fairbanks has so much to recommend it to both the visitor and the resident that the weather won’t matter.
Anne Kristoff, Special Correspondent for Pop Candy says, “Downtown…is where it all began with a trading post on the banks of the Chena River….downtown Fairbanks is an active and evolving mix of art galleries, coffee shops, restaurants, and cute clothing and antique stores.” If you are interested in an eclectic mix of sights, sounds, and things to do in a family friendly and welcoming atmosphere, Fairbanks just might be the place for you.
There is plenty of pop culture here, including a host of public art projects, the performing arts – concerts, theatre, symphony – and popular music. Fairbanks “has played host to everyone from Snoop Dogg and Taj Mahal to Flogging Molly and The Wailers. It’s also a great place to catch a first-run flick while noshing on pizza and beer”, Kristoff adds.
On the Chena River, which runs all the way through town, you can rent a kayak in the summer and in winter watch the Yukon Quest sled dog race. And of course there are winter sports such as sledding and ice skating.
For kids of all ages there is the “North Pole” – not the real one mind you – on Saint Nicholas Drive where Santa has a house, and there is a 42 foot, 900 pound statue of Jolly Olde St. Nick waiting there to greet you. Since 1952 they have mailed letters from the big guy.
Fairbanks is delightful in all its aspects. There is plenty to see, and whether winter, spring, summer or fall, there is a ton of stuff to do for adults and children alike. From its stunning scenery to its wonderful restaurants, Fairbanks has a lot to offer to you and your family.