A Cosmopolitan City ..... in the Big Wild Outdoors!
Within Anchorage, you'll find the Chugach Mountains to the east and the picturesque waters of Cook Inlet to the west. With more than 500,000 acres of wilderness within the city limits, over 223 parks and 250 miles of off street recreation trails, Anchorage certainly lives up to its big wild outdoors reputation. In the summer months, Anchorage gets 19.5 hours of sunlight. At the start of winter, Anchorage gets about 5 hours of sunlight each day. By mid-February, the days begin to feel noticeably longer. It is a great place to live, work and play.
Whether you are planning a conference, reunion or wedding, Anchorage can accommodate just about any type event at any of their 3 or 4 star hotels and resorts and is a city with its own international airport, posh hotels, five star restaurants and multiple outlets for culture and entertainment. There is business, industry and nightlife here that would rival other American cities with some dozen or so museums, The Alaska Center for Performing Arts featuring three theaters for live performances including the Evangeline Atwood Concert Hall with 2100 seats, the Discovery Theatre with 700 seats, and the Sydney Laurence Theatre with 350 seats.
According to the Anchorage weather and climate guide, the weather in this city is conducive to all manner of outdoor activity, just about year round. "Anchorage has long been plagued with many a misconception about being cold and dark. The truth is, Anchorage is far south of the Arctic Circle. Protected by the Chugach Mountains and warmed by Japanese currents of the Pacific Ocean, the climate is actually quite mild year-round." Spring through fall, Anchorage's climate is similar to San Francisco's spring weather, with temperatures that can reach into the 70's. Summer highs average 65 degrees.
So, during May - September, you will experience some mild weather and be amazed by some of the worlds most amazing and unique attractions so accessible like the humbling presence of the remaining vestiges of the ice age for instance and the spectacular Portage Glacier and Fjord carving ice. By taking Alaska's most popular day cruise aboard the fastest, largest and most luxurious catamaran in Alaska, you can "cruise through the calm, protected waters of Prince William Sound and come face to face with towering masses of ice." As a bonus, the likelihood that you'll happen by all the inhabitants of the glacial area such as whales, puffins, otters, sea lions, cormorants, kittiwakes, is really pretty high. Find more information on what locals have voted the Best Glacial Cruise in Alaska.
As the Glacier tour is best enjoyed in the summer months, the winter season offers renowned attractions like the annual Iditarod dog sledding race. From Anchorage, in south central Alaska, to Nome on the western Bering Sea coast, each team of 12 to 16 dogs and their musher, pitting man and animal against the perils of nature, cover over 1150 miles in 10 to 17 days. Should you choose to volunteer to work at and support the race or come to be part of the excitement as a spectator, you'll be able to choose from several areas in the state to stay as the route encompasses both large metropolitan areas and small native villages. This winter activity attracts thousands from around the world with its seasonal excitement and commemorative traditions. Come next winter to witness an event unique to this part of the world.
The wintertime season not only brings on the snow ideal for the sleds of the Iditarod with high temperatures dipping into the 20s, creating a climate very much like ski resorts in the Rocky Mountains, Canada or Europe, the low humidity also contributes to Anchorage's comfortable climate and clear cold nights just perfect for the magical light show of the Northern Lights phenomenon also known as the Aurora Borealis. Lights can be seen in fall and spring as well but winter is the prime season for viewing as the best displays tend to be accompanied by sub-zero temperatures and moonless skies. The ideal weather and the amenities in Anchorage make it an ideal choice to view the ethereal and mesmerizing lights in the sky.
Airlines that serve Ted Stephens Anchorage International Airport include over 15 different carriers from Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, America West, China Airlines, Continental Airlines, Delta Airlines, Japan Airlines, Hawaiian Vacations, Northwest Airlines, to United Airlines. Anchorage's International Airport is just four miles from downtown Anchorage is Alaska's premiere gateway with about 280 flights arriving daily and sees more than five million passengers each year.
Also located in the heart of Anchorage, is a whole area devoted to business and civic functions aptly named the Civic and Convention District which includes the mentioned Alaska Center for Performing Arts which is connected by skyway to the Egan Civic and Convention Center. Also in this area is the Dena'ina Civic and Convention Center offering 200,000 feet of flexible event space making this area of Anchorage an ideal community for business events, group meetings, conventions, trade shows and any other large gathering while providing nightlife, restaurants, live shows, and entertainment all within walking distance!
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