Explore Anchorage with Expedia’s Travel Guides to find the best hotels, flights, holiday packages and more!
Alaska’s largest city, Anchorage offers a striking contrast of urban buildings set against a dramatic backdrop of the snow-capped Chugach mountains. Founded in 1941 as a work camp for the Alaska railroad, today the city is home to more than 40% of Alaska’s total population, as well as a diverse range of wildlife including grizzly bears and a large population of moose – a common sight in the area (and something to watch out for on the roads!)
With everything from outstanding national parks to breathtaking glaciers within easy reach, a hire car will help you fully explore this unforgettable area.
Fly into Anchorage International Airport and from there it’s just a 13-minute drive into the centre of Anchorage.
Once you have the keys to your hire car, you will be able to explore beyond Anchorage to surrounding areas of interest such as Seward (two and a half hour’s drive), where you can experience the spectacular Resurrection Bay (guaranteed to deliver beautiful photos) as well as come face to face with rare marine life at the Alaska SeaLife Center, home to everything from sea otters and seals to Beluga whales and the Pacific walrus. On top of this, the city of Kenai is also within easy reach (a three-hour drive) where you can immerse yourself in nature on the Crescent Lake hiking trail or enjoy the spectacular views from Kenai City Beach.
Choose from a wide selection of hire car providers in Anchorage to suit every budget and requirement, from Alamo and National to Hertz.
Surrounded by outstanding natural scenery, Anchorage is a city with countless opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, from glacier and wildlife cruises (where you could be lucky enough to glimpse a whale) to ice-hiking, dog-sledding and even gold-panning. The stunning Chugach mountains are also the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts, where you can hike, kayak and bike your way round the beautiful scenery.
Within the city, you can visit the Alaska Native Heritage Center to learn all about the traditions of the indigenous peoples of the area or catch a dog-sled race at the annual Fur Rendezvous Open World Championship. Browsing the weekly Anchorage market is also a popular local pastime (held every weekend). Beyond Anchorage, your hire car can take you to Homer (four and a half hours’ drive), where you can take advantage of the area’s fantastic seafood restaurants, or Talkeetna (two and a half hours’ drive), where three major glacial rivers converge to form a striking landscape.
In general, Alaskan roads are in good condition, with most highways offering one lane of traffic in either direction (with occasional added ‘passing’ lanes). Traffic is rare, but bear in mind that Alaskans like to drive fast (particularly on the Seward Highway). If there are three or more cars behind you, it is expected that you will pull over when it is safe to do so, to allow faster cars to pass.
Feeling inspired to start exploring Anchorage and other parts of the US? Check out this city guide and use the Expedia search tool to help you find the best car hire, flight and hotel deals and research the best attractions and activities.
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