14 Fun Things To Do In Fairbanks Alaska

Chatanika Goldrush Days


Fairbanks is often overlooked as a tourist destination in Alaska, but it has some of the best things to do in the state. Fairbanks is located in interior Alaska, which means it’s north of Anchorage and south of Canada. It’s also close to Denali National Park and Preserves. Fairbanks has a population of about 32,000 people but with more than 1 million visitors each year. The city has many great attractions for both residents and visitors alike including museums, festivals, and outdoor activities like dog mushing tours and snowmobiling trips along Chena Hot Springs Road

Chatanika Goldrush Days

If you’re a history buff, then you won’t want to miss this annual event. It’s a celebration of the gold rush and features activities for all ages. Chatanika Goldrush Days are held in August and are known as one of Alaska’s oldest annual festivals.

It’s often referred to as “Chatanika Gold Rush Days” or “Chatanika Gold Rush Festival.”

If you are looking for something fun and educational, this festival offers that opportunity! There will be games, food vendors, and live music performances (both on stage and off) along with demonstrations like blacksmithing or panning for gold at the river’s edge. There will also be an antique car show where visitors can see restored vehicles from different eras throughout history up close—talk about an amazing way to learn about history!

The Museum of the North at UAF

The Museum of the North at UAF is a great place to learn about Alaska’s history. The museum has exhibits on Eskimo and Aleut cultures, wildlife, and natural history. There are also several hands-on activities for kids that allow them to explore Alaska’s natural environment.

The planetarium in the museum shows films about space for children aged 3 to 8 years old once a month during school hours. The observatory on campus is open to the public every Friday night between 8 pm and 10 pm so you can look up at stars through telescopes provided by UAF staff members at no charge!

Chena Hot Springs Resort

Chena Hot Springs Resort is a great place to relax and enjoy the hot springs. The resort has a range of accommodation options, including cabins and RV hookups. It also features a variety of activities and attractions, including guided tours that take you on an hour-long hike through the woods or down to the Chena River for some fly fishing; kayaking on Lake Lucille; tubing in the river; horseback riding through fields in summer or cross-country skiing during winter; snowmobiling trips on nearby trails; and more!

You’ll find plenty of restaurants serving up local favorites like smoked salmon burgers along with American favorites such as chicken wings or pizza.

Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival

The Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival is a celebration of the arts in Fairbanks, Alaska. The event will be held at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, open to all ages, and will be a week-long event.

Founded in 2001 by Dr. John and Trudy Cobb, it has grown into one of the most popular annual events in Fairbanks. The festival consists of art exhibits from both local artists and nationally renowned sources; musical performances; film screenings; author presentations; theater productions; dance classes and much more!

There are many different ways to get involved with this great community-wide event: become an exhibitor or sponsor yourself or someone else’s work (the deadline for this is May 1st), volunteer your time at one of many booths set up throughout campus during the festival hours (which will run from June 16-22nd), attend any one or more than two dozen shows offered during fair hours (these begin at 10 am each day) or just enjoy yourself as an observer!

Peeler Environmental Magnet School

Peeler Environmental Magnet School is a K-12 public school located in Fairbanks, Alaska. The school has a focus on the arts and the environment, which makes it one of the best schools to attend in the city. Students can take classes that teach them about their local environment, as well as classes that will help them develop their creativity. In addition to these great programs, Peeler also offers several sports teams for students to participate in after school or during lunch breaks!

Farmer’s Market

You’re in Fairbanks, and you’re hungry. What do you do? Stop by the local farmer’s market to buy some fresh produce, meats, and baked goods. This is also a great place to meet the locals and learn about their culture. You can find unique gifts here too!

Paddle with Paws for Adventure

Paddle with Paws for Adventure is a great way to get outside and explore the outdoors with your dog, as well as spend time together. Your pup will love it, as it’s a fun way to get exercise and meet other dog owners. It’s also a great way to stay healthy and have fun, so sign up today!

Alaska Salmon Bake

This is a must-do on your list of things to do in Fairbanks. The Alaska Salmon Bake offers up a culinary experience that you won’t find anywhere else. Your meal starts with freshly baked bread and homemade butter, followed by your choice of either salmon or halibut, prepared to perfection. You then have the option of choosing from four different salads: Caesar salad, spinach salad with cranberries and feta cheese, arugula salad topped with tomatoes and an aged balsamic vinaigrette dressing, or baby greens topped off with sun-dried tomatoes and dried cranberries. The main course comes next with your choice of potato (mashed potatoes or hash browns), plus grilled onions if you want them!

For dessert there’s ice cream served up in three different ways: vanilla ice cream over chocolate fudge cake; chocolate chip cookie dough served over vanilla ice cream; or hot apple cobbler served over vanilla ice cream—you’ve got options but no matter what way they serve it up at this restaurant there’s nothing like it out there!

Arctic Winter Games International Competition

The Arctic Winter Games is an international sporting competition for athletes from the Arctic region. It was conceived in 1977 by Canadian Olympic Committee president Phil Esposito and Nenana Native Corporation chairman Jack Firth to promote Arctic sports and culture. The games have been held every two years since 1979, with the most recent games being held in Fairbanks, Alaska, in the United States in 2017.

The Arctic Winter Games features 19 sports across four disciplines: 1) Alpine Skiing & Snowboarding; 2) Biathlon; 3) Cross-Country Skiing, and 4) Ice Hockey (5a). At the 2017 edition of the event, there were a total of 1,500 participants representing Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Finland (Åland Islands), Iceland, Norway, and Sweden as well as 17 other nations.

The events take place over 10 days at venues throughout Fairbanks with closing ceremonies held at Millennium Park Arena on March 11th-13th with more than 25000 spectators expected over those three days alone!

Hunker Down in a Cabin

In Fairbanks, the “cabin” is a small house—but it can be so much more than that. If you want to escape the city and experience all that Alaska has to offer, there are plenty of options for getting away from the hustle and bustle. From a cabin on a lake or in the woods to one in the mountains or desert or even on an island (yes, really), there’s no shortage of places to hunker down while you’re here.

Geocaching in Interior Alaska Parks & Trails

Geocaching is a treasure hunt that uses GPS to find hidden caches. Geocaches can contain a wide range of items, including toys and trinkets, but many geocaches are equipped with small treasures like coins or stamps. The goal of geocaching is to find the cache and trade something you have for whatever’s in it.

Geocaching is popular throughout Alaska, with many parks offering unique caches that highlight the area’s natural attractions. If you’re visiting interior Alaska parks or trails this summer, check out these three great options:

  • Denali State Park – There are over 200 caches in this park alone! You’ll be able to explore Denali while searching for unique geocaches like “The Lost Dutchman Mine” or “The Secret Trail.”
  • Talkeetna – Talkeetna has some unusual caches too—including one called “Alien Invasion,” where you’ll find alien memorabilia from around the world! It may sound silly but it can be fun to see what other people have brought back with them from their travels (and maybe even score yourself an alien figurine). Don’t miss out on this little adventure before heading home!

Aurora Ice Museum and the igloo bar

Aurora Ice Museum and the igloo bar: This is a great place to visit in Fairbanks. It is located on the Chena River and it is open from May to September. You can go for a walk around the ice sculptures and you can drink cocktails in an igloo, which feels quite warm due to all of the lighting and heaters that they have inside it.

Drive the Alaska Highway, discover Carcross and retrace the footsteps of Sourdoughs and Pioneers.

A must-do for any visitor to the area is to drive the Alaska Highway from Fairbanks to Carcross, a historic town on Bennett Lake. The route will take you through some of the most spectacular scenery in North America. Here, you can learn about the history of this region and retrace the footsteps of pioneers and sourdoughs who made their way through these mountains on their way to Dawson City in search of gold during the Klondike Gold Rush.

Carcross was once a vital stopover point for prospectors making their way north toward Dawson City, YT, as well as for American troops during World War II who were stationed here during the construction of nearby Whitehorse Airport (now Canadian Forces Base located approximately 6 km away).

Today Carcross is home to more than 60 heritage buildings that have survived from those days including four hotels; three churches; several stores; government offices; homes built by miners & merchants whose families still live there today! You’ll find yourself surrounded by beautiful scenery with lakeside views wherever you look!


  • Visit Fairbanks Ice Museum.
  • Visit the Chena Hot Springs.
  • Learn about the history of Fairbanks at the Gold Rush Trail Center.


If you’re looking for things to do near Fairbanks, Alaska, this list is a great place to start. We hope it inspires you to plan your next adventure in interior Alaska!

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