A day in Fairbanks, Alaska

In Alaska Travelgram by scott

An aerial view of Fairbanks from above the Chena River. Photo: Scott McMurren

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT Juno Kim spent some time in Fairbanks. She’s a fan. Check out her report, below. Then, set your sights on a visit to the “Golden Heart City”. –Scott

You have an extra day in Fairbanks. What to do?  Of course there are big activities like northern lights viewing, dog sledding, and hot springs, but that’s not everything you can do in Fairbanks. Fairbanks is full of innovative businesses and interesting activities. Here are some of the highlights that you should include in your Fairbanks adventure this summer. 

Breakfast Crepe from “The Crepery”. Photo: Juno Kim

Breakfast at The Crepery 

Start your day with an Alaska crepe. That’s right, a savory crepe from The Crepery. There are more than enough options to choose from, and I went with the Alaskan Breakfast Crepe (that has reindeer sausage). But there are many sweet crepe options as well. You can watch the masterful creation of your crepe through the window. But what about vegan options? Of course, they have vegan crepes (with vegan cheese!).  

Wedgewood Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Courtesy Wedgewood Resort

Birding and nature walk at Wedgewood Wildlife Sanctuary 

This is for you, birders. I never considered myself a birder, although I always enjoyed watching birds. Is that the definition of a birder? Ever since I moved to Alaska, I dove deep into the world of birds. We have so many migratory birds, beautiful and rare birds, and they are so easy to see thanks to our pristine nature. If there’s one thing I want to return to Fairbanks for it’s to visit the Wedgewood Wildlife Sanctuary. This beautiful natural reserve connects to Creamer’s Field Migratory Waterfowl Refuge, providing outstanding birding and wildlife viewing opportunities. There are more than 120 bird species, 15 kinds of mammals, three species of fish, one amphibian and a wealth of insects and plants have been recorded in the sanctuary! Walk the nature trails around Wonder Lake during your morning break. 

Stay at the adjacent Wedgewood Resort, with fully-equipped suites for either a short visit or an extended stay. Click through for specials and save 10-15 percent.

Coffee from the “Little Owl Cafe”.

Afternoon snack at Little Owl Cafe

Find this charming cafe in Artisan’s Courtyard. They have an amazing bakery with lots of goodies (also gluten free available!), healthy wraps and sandwiches, and great coffee and tea. If you’re looking for Fairbanks-themed coffee souvenirs, this is also a good place to shop. Don’t forget to pick up their cute owl sticker! 

The Great Alaskan Bowl Company. Photo: Juno Kim

Shopping at the Great Alaskan Bowl Company 

If there’s one place to get Alaska souvenirs, this should be your stop. Head down to the Great Alaskan Bowl Company. If you’re lucky enough to run into Emily, the owner of the shop, talk to her to learn more about this interesting place. The Great Alaskan Bowl Company is one of only a few operating mills left in the country that manufactures these unique bowls, using equipment designed from machinery that was developed over 100 years ago. They have so many different products made with wood (such as a wooden stein!) and all sorts of other Alaska souvenirs from all over the state. They only carry Alaska-made products directly from the manufacturers. This is the place to get your shopping done. 

Sipping Streams. Photo: Juno Kim

Afternoon tea at Sipping Streams Tea Company

Time for an afternoon break. Sip delicious tea and learn about the tea blending process at Sipping Streams. Jenny’s enthusiasm for tea is infectious! There are unique blends of tea that you can’t find anywhere else, such as 1,000 mile tea. It was created for Yukon Quest dog mushers and perfect for those who are looking for high energy! I’m a lover of tea myself, so I thoroughly enjoyed my visit with Jenny at Sipping Streams

Thai food in Fairbanks, Alaska. Photo: Juno Kim

Dinner: choose from a variety of world cuisine in Fairbanks 

What are you in the mood for today? Spicy and savory Thai food (pictured, above)? Comforting Moldovan cabbage rolls? Alaska seafood? Classic American-style burger and fries? There are many options out there. Some of my favorites in Fairbanks are Thai and Moldovan food (you can read about it on my last post: CLICK HERE ) . But no matter what you choose, it will be delicious. I’m always pleasantly surprised that we have so many great places to eat in Alaska!  

A pint of IPA from HooDoo Brewing. Photo: Scott McMurren

Finish your day with Hot Licks ice cream or a cold pint of beer at Hoodoo Brewing

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