Fairbanks
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Things to do in Fairbanks

Things to do in  Fairbanks

Welcome to Fairbanks

Alaska’s gateway to the Arctic Circle, Fairbanks offers a lot more than its urban sprawl might initially suggest. Seemingly endless summer days (it’s not called the Land of the Midnight Sun for nothing) are best spent panning for gold, floating or fishing along the Chena River, and hiking in the nearby White Mountains National Recreation Area. Come winter, northern lights expeditions, road trips along the Dalton Highway to the Arctic Circle, and snow sports like ice fishing, dog mushing, and cross-country skiing top the list of the most popular things to do.

Top 13 attractions in Fairbanks

Chena Hot Springs Resort

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An hour’s drive from Fairbanks, Chena Hot Springs Resort is renowned for its natural hot-springs lake, year-round ice museum, and Northern Lights viewing opportunities. Discovered over a hundred years ago by gold miners who saw steam rising from the Chena River Valley, the curative waters have been soothing weary travelers ever since.More

Trans-Alaska Pipeline Viewpoint

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The Trans-Alaska Pipeline traverses 800 miles (1,287 kilometers) through the Alaska wilderness from the oil fields of Prudhoe Bay to Valdez where it is shipped to refineries. Built between 1974 and 1977 and requiring over 28,000 people to build, the pipeline is considered one of the world’s most amazing engineering marvels and the viewpoint outside of Fairbanks is one of the best places to view it.More

Dalton Highway

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The Dalton Highway runs for 414 miles to Alaska’s northernmost mountains in the Brooks Range and nearly all the way out to the Arctic Ocean. Running through valleys surrounded by jagged peaks, the highway connects Interior Alaska to the Prudhoe Bay oil fields and is technically part of the northernmost highway in the U.S. Also one of the most remote, the Dalton Highway parallels the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Visitors who take the drive themselves will need to note that much of the road is still mostly gravel. Unless you’ve appeared on Ice Road Truckers, you might want to skip the ride in winter.Public access ends at the small town of Deadhorse, just before the Arctic Ocean, and if you want to reach those last 8 miles of private road out to the coast, it’s possible to join private tours from Deadhorse. At the Coldfoot truck stop, 250 miles north of Fairbanks, the Arctic Interagency Visitor Center gives details on road and backcountry conditions along the Dalton Highway, as well as information on recent wildlife spottings of the likes of grizzlies, black bears, and dall sheep. There’s also a picnic area and sign showing where the road crosses the Arctic Circle.More

Aurora Ice Museum

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Made from over 1,000 tons of ice and snow, the Aurora Ice Museum is the largest year-round ice structure in the world. Completed in 2005 by world ice-art-carving champion Steve Brice and his wife, Heather, the museum features furniture, life-size knights on horseback, chandeliers shifting colors to mimic the Northern Lights, and even a bar, all made of ice.More

Pioneer Park

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Opened in 1967 as part of the Alaska 67 Centennial Exposition to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Alaska purchase, Pioneer Park is a historical theme park featuring museums, gold rush era relics, amusement rides, restaurants, and more. The 44-acre (109-hectare) park is one of the city’s most popular destinations, drawing visitors and locals interested in reliving Alaska’s early years.More

University of Alaska Museum of the North

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For a swift introduction to Alaska’s culture, wildlife, and landscapes, a visit to the University of Alaska’s Museum of the North is a must. One of Fairbanks’ most popular attractions, the museum features exhibits on everything from native cultures and the gold rush to dinosaurs, polar bears, and wooly mammoths. Daily films feature adventures into the arctic and the mysteries of the northern lights.More

Tolovana River

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Starting in the Yukon-Tanana Upland, 57 miles from the town of Fox, the Tolovana River is known for its grayling and northern pike fishing and flows southwest for 116 miles through the Tolovana Valley and its abundance of birch and spruce trees.With little to no light pollution, the area surrounding the Tolovana River is a particularly good place to see the Aurora Borealis, and while you’re in the area, look out for typical Alaskan wildlife, including moose, bears, eagles, and martens. Tucked into the mountains near the river, you can also visit Tolovana Hot Springs. The most remote of the region’s “big four” hot springs, the site is only accessible via cross-country skiing, hiking, dog-sledding or helicopter.More

Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center

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The Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center is the go-to place in Fairbanks for tourist information, maps, and a brief introduction to Alaskan Native history and culture. The center features films and exhibits showcasing the culture, wildlife, and landscapes of the Alaskan Interior and is home to the Alaska Public Lands Information Center and the Tanana Chiefs Conference Cultural Programs.More

Chena River State Recreation Area

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Comprised of the rolling hills, forests, and alpine tundra surrounding the Chena River outside of Fairbanks, the Chena River State Recreation Area offers visitors a host of outdoor adventures in any season. The recreation area’s abundant wildlife draws visitors hoping to spy bears, moose, and wolves; and the river attracts paddlers and anglers hoping to hook a grayling in one of the stocked ponds.More
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Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum

Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum

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Vintage cars, history, and fashion collide at the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum. Located in Fairbanks, this museum traces the evolution of fashion and cars, from the Victorian Age to the 1930s. Visit to see its collection of more than 95 vintage cars and the largest display of vintage fashion in the Pacific Northwest.More
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Large Animal Research Station

Large Animal Research Station

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Founded in 1979 on an old homestead ranch gifted to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the Large Animal Research Station (LARS provides visitors the chance to see muskox, reindeer, and caribou. The muskox completely disappeared in Alaska in the mid-1800s due to overhunting and climate fluctuations and the center is dedicated to both the study and protection of these large Arctic mammals.More
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Gold Dredge 8

Gold Dredge 8

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Take a journey through Alaska’s gold rush history aboard a replica Tanana Valley Railroad narrow gauge train to the historic Gold Dredge 8. This ladder-style dredge extracted millions of ounces of gold while in operation from 1928 to 1959 and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. You’ll learn how to pan for gold and get to keep whatever treasures you find.More
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Georgeson Botanical Garden

Georgeson Botanical Garden

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Located on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus, the Georgeson Botanical Garden is one of the northernmost gardens in the world and features an array of flowers, vegetables, herbs, and Alaska native plants. Considering Fairbanks receives over 21 hours of sunlight during the summer months, the garden acts as an experimental plot to see what can grow in this extreme subarctic environment.More

Top activities in Fairbanks

Arctic Circle and Northern Lights Tour from Fairbanks
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Aurora Lodge Viewing
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Aurora Lodge Viewing

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$130.00
Chena Hot Springs Tour

Chena Hot Springs Tour

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Dog Sled Adventure

Dog Sled Adventure

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Fairbanks Snowmobile Adventure from North Pole
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Guided Fairbanks Snowmobile Tour
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Northern Lights Viewing including Dinner and 1-Hour Dog Sledding
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Northern Lights Viewing at Murphy Dome
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Northern Lights and Arctic Circle Trip from Fairbanks
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Northern Lights Lodge Viewing in Fairbanks
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Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Recent reviews from experiences in Fairbanks

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It was very foggy in...
Ivy_C, Oct 2022
Aurora Viewing - Aurora Husky Lodge , Great view from top of the ridge
It was very foggy in Fairbanks, I didn’t expect to see the Aurora.
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We particularly enjoyed...
Denise_F, Oct 2022
Alaskan Heritage and Sightseeing Tour in Fairbanks
Our guide Cole was very personable and gave recommendations for other activities.
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Most excellent!
Tina_E, Nov 2022
Northern Lights Viewing at Murphy Dome
She took us to another location because Murphy’s Dome would have been too cloudy to see the aurora.
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Amazing tour. Love it
Sanka_W, Oct 2022
Angel Rocks Hike and Chena Hot-Springs Soak Guided Tour
Meanwhile had our lunch from chena hot springs restaurant.
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Ideal spot to see the Northern lights
WARUNI_S, Oct 2022
Aurora Viewing - Aurora Husky Lodge , Great view from top of the ridge
He showed few videos about Aurora and attractions around fairbanks.
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It was amazing
Valeska_O, Aug 2022
Incredible Aurora Viewing Adventure
I am from south America and it was a long trip to Alaska to not have the chance to see the northern lights but thanks to Nick , it was possible 😃
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Highly recommend this tour
Cheryl_L, Jul 2022
Chena Hot Springs Tour
I took this tour in April, during what's called the "shoulder season" in Alaska (meaning that the time is between the winter and summer peak tourist seasons).
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Highly Recommend
Adell_C, Apr 2022
Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis Viewing) Chasing with Photography in Fairbanks
I came to Fairbanks just to see the Northern Lights.
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Hot springs tour
Gina_S, Feb 2022
Hot Spring and Northern Lights Photography Tour
It was our best tour in Fairbanks , everything was wonderfull, don’t miss the hot springs tour !!
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We saw the lights! Amazing beauty
Lorrie_K, Feb 2022
Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis Viewing) Chasing with Photography in Fairbanks
It truly is amazing to see in Fairbanks.
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Northern Lights @ Chena Springs
LNBS, Nov 2021
Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks
What an amazing tour i reccomend it for anyone who visits Fairbanks in the winter, our guide Jacob was incredible from start to end took us to places until he successfully found the Lights.
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Northern Lights @ Artic Circle
LNBS, Nov 2021
Arctic Circle Winter Drive Adventure
What an amazing tour i reccomend it for anyone who visits Fairbanks in the winter, our guide was incredible from start to end took us to places with extraordinary sights until he successfully found the Lights while all while educating us on the history of the artic and surroundings.
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Highly recommend!
Rungploy_Y, Nov 2021
Aurora Lodge Viewing
We got to see the Aurora on our first night in Fairbanks.
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Chena Hot Springs Resort
Elizabeth_E, Sep 2021
Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks
The ice museum was a great visit to see the sculptures, bar, bedrooms, and a man at work.
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A great spa experience!
Ronald_T, Aug 2021
Chena Hot Springs Tour
The hot springs were wonderful.
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Museum of the North a must see
lismitx, Feb 2020
Fairbanks Autumn/Winter City Tour
This tour was a great way to see Fairbanks.
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Fairbanks delight
quan258, Jan 2020
Fairbanks Autumn/Winter City Tour
We didn’t rent a car, so this tour was a wonderful overview of the city highlights of Fairbanks and a great way to visit Northpole, AK.
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A must do. The tour director was a...
Denyse L, Oct 2017
Arctic Circle Day Trip from Fairbanks with Transportation
Looking to visit Fairbanks and go on some of the other available tours.
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Our tour of Fairbanks was...
Mary_L, Jun 2016
Fairbanks City Highlight Tour
Both museums were very interesting, and it was a lot of fun to visit the North Pole and help Santa to mail customized letters to our grandchildren.
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Chena Hot Springs was great! We were...
Linda_C, Aug 2016
Chena Hot Springs Day Tour from Fairbanks
Chena Hot Springs was great!
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All about Fairbanks

Currency
US Dollar ($)
Time Zone
AKST (UTC -10)
Country Code
+1
Language(s)
English
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