One of the most remote cities of North America, Anchorage nonetheless sits at the crossroads of continents and proves as unique as the wildlife and glaciers that surround it. At 1,706 square miles, the city spans an area larger than the state of Rhode Island, with a population of just 291,000. With a half-million-acre state park within the municipality, Anchorage offers easy access to outdoor activities like biking, camping, horseback riding, off-roading and snowmobiling.
Boasting the world’s busiest seaplane base, Lake Hood is far more than a novelty, providing the supply chain and lifeline of the many remote oil rigs, hunting camps and fishing lodges that rely on charter flights for food, equipment, personnel and supplies. Most visitors to Anchorage, however, arrive at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, serving more than 5 million passengers annually and receiving scheduled flights from Asia to the west and Europe to the east, with reliable service from hubs across the United States. Situated almost equidistant from Tokyo, Frankfurt and New York, the airport also serves as a critical hub for FedEx. Warmed by the Pacific marine climate even in the coldest months, the city registers relatively mild mean temperatures for its latitude. Travelers visit Anchorage year-round, often via cruise ships in the warmer months.
In mid-2022 Anchorage will welcome a new airline, Northern Pacific Airways. With Anchorage as its hub, it will connect Asia to the Lower 48. As an added incentive, the carrier will offer stopover options in Anchorage, allowing passengers to explore the city between flights.
The city also welcomes new and expanded hotels and meeting space, including the grand opening of Aloft Anchorage, anticipated for 2023. This 146-room, contemporary boutique hotel will feature the latest connectivity, a 24-hour fitness center and a recharging pool. Meanwhile, Marriott Anchorage Downtown recently completed a comprehensive renovation including a redesign of all 392 guestrooms, dining options and meeting space.
The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, perhaps Alaska’s most famous event, will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year, covering more than 1,000 miles of snowy Alaskan terrain. The ceremonial start is scheduled for March 5 in downtown Anchor- age, with the March 6 official start near Willow. More than 50 teams are expected to compete this year. Typically, the sleds take from eight to 14 days to reach Nome.
Anchorage plans to establish a portion of Fourth Avenue as the Anchorage Mushing District. Permanent attractions will honor the sport and famous dogs with a designated Hall of Fame. This spring and summer are anticipated to be the busiest for tourism in Anchorage history, with new airlines, ships and cruise lines sailing to and from the city, bringing almost 1.6 million passengers to Anchorage and Alaska.
From Anchorage, roads are few and far between; in fact, the entire state has only nine designated highways. But travelers who venture from the convenience and comforts of Alaska’s largest city will discover many rewards.
If you don’t want to navigate by rental car or tour bus, the Alaska Railway provides a comfortable alternative. Opt for the famous railroad from Anchorage north to Denali National Park & Preserve, home of Mount Denali, the highest peak in North America. From there head to Fairbanks, with a stop in historic Talkeetna. Relax and enjoy the scenery from your luxury domed rail car — watch for wildlife and wild rivers teeming with salmon.
Drive south from Anchorage to Portage Valley on Highway 1 (the Seward Highway), along the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet, and you’ll encounter beluga whale sightings, eagles in flight, Dall sheep grazing above in the mountains and Arctic terns cruising over the bay. Stop for an easy hike on the Trail of Blue Ice and then visit Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center. In Whittier you can take a day cruise on Prince William Sound, gateway to more than two dozen glaciers and home to marine wildlife galore. Then see Portage Glacier up close and personal.
Alaska’s Glenn Highway will take you north and east to Eagle River and on to glacier-fed Eklutna Lake, where you can bike, kayak or rent an ATV. But allow time for two important stops. First, the Alaska Native Heritage Center provides an excellent place to experience native culture established long before Anchorage existed. Native artifacts and guides bring life to exhibits and arts from the indigenous people of Alaska. Then on to Eagle River Nature Center for a chance to get up close to local wildlife and hike trails accommodating all levels of ability. If you have time, stay north on Highway 3 heading toward Denali National Park.
Pantone recently unveiled its color of the year for 2023. The highly anticipated announcement has become a tradition, each year introducing a new color to represent the coming year. In 2021, Pantone declared 2022 to be the color of Very Peri 17-3938, a blend of purple and blue. For 2023, Pantone’s Color of the Year is Viva magenta 18-1750. A shade from the red family, this color represents a new signal of strength. Brave and fearless, Viva Magenta is rooted in nature and embraces joy and celebration.
There’s no better time to plan the vacation you’ve been missing. Step aboard with your better half, your friends or the whole family and reconnect, reunite and rejoice with 25 percent off cruise fares for all guests. We’ll also help everyone get there with 25 percent off airfare from 20 major gateways across the country or $100 savings per person on flights from all other gateways when you book your air travel using Flights by Celebrity.*
The UNESCO World Heritage neighborhood of Balat rivals İstanbul’s Old City for its historic significance, with an added splash of color. Its cobbled hilly streets boast a full rainbow of houses, cafés, restaurants and churches painted in pinks, reds, oranges, yellows, greens and blues — parts even surpassing my native San Francisco’s steep, colorful corridors. The most vibrant stretch of homes, dating anywhere from 50 to 200 years old, runs along Kiremit Caddesi.
Icelandair recently announced its newest North American gateway: Detroit, Michigan. The seasonal flights begin May 18, 2023, taking off from Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport to Reykjavik (KEF), Iceland. The four weekly, non-stop flights will run through Oct. 30, 2023. Flight 872 departs Detroit for Iceland Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, at 8:30 p.m., on a 160-seat Boeing 737MAX. The return, from Reykjavik to Detroit, departs 5 p.m. on the same days of the week, arriving at 6:25 p.m.
If your personal travel nirvana involves fabulous scenery and a snappy, reviving hike in bracing winter air, Bannikin Travel & Tourism hopes to make your dreams come true with a selection of new winter walking itineraries in Scotland (other trip options are available in England and Ireland). Here’s what you can look forward to in 2023:
A giant, sparkling white fir tree and decadent holiday brunch in a historic Rocky Mountain setting? Please and thank you! It’s all happening at historic Hotel Boulderado in Boulder, Colorado. Guests will be greeted by sparkle and light as they enter — the hotel’s enormous lobby tree is a local tradition, chosen each year through a partnership with Native Nursery in the nearby town of Golden.
Copa Airlines is celebrating its 75th anniversary by showcasing a Boeing 737-800 NG in an aircraft livery that harkened back to the airline’s look in the 1990s. During that time, Copa Airlines launched an expansion of their network to become the Hub of the Americas®, changing the way to travel to and connect in our Continent.
Travelers constantly look for their next bucket-list vacation, but with Europe getting colder, why not travel to a destination that is sunny year-round? Tel Aviv is the perfect getaway to escape the cold winter months. Whether traveling solo, with friends or family members, here are some must-do activities in Tel Aviv.