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Travel Guide to Fairbanks, Alaska: The 12 Best Things to Do in Fairbanks

Alaska is as amazing as its winter skies can be. But you need to have a detailed travel plan when you are heading towards the destination.

And while traveling, Fairbanks is a must include in your itinerary. Alaskan coasts are not very mountainous, which makes traveling in this region easy and very time-saving.

You will be enthralled to witness the mesmerizing and incredible northern lights along with hot springs and immense fun activities to keep you occupied throughout.

fairbanks alaska
Frozen river Fairbanks

So anybody visiting Fairbanks around September is surely going to get addicted to the place.

The town is alluring for anybody visiting it for the first time or for any number of times. It has a lot to offer from the explicit nature to museums and truly everything that comes in between.

You sure will not be feeling left out for a single moment.

How Can You Expect the Weather to be in Fairbanks?

This is a serenely ambient location situated at an altitude of 500 feet above sea level that accounts for about 132m high.

A cold and temperate climate embraces the entire area. This not only makes it bearable but also quite enjoyable during the Autumnal months.

The location is very beautiful and can keep you occupied irrespective of the months you are visiting the town in. The best part about the place is that you get to witness activities that vary and diversify as per the seasons.

But there is something every traveler needs to keep in mind: the temperature.

The temperature conditions can be drastic and drops down heavily in the winters.

cold fairbanks alsaka
cold winters in Fairbanks

Travelers and tourists need to understand the temperature differences of the seasons they are traveling in. July is found to be the warmest and most pleasant time to visit.

The temperature then remains at an average of about 52 to 73 degrees Fahrenheit.
Well, on the other hand, winters get as rough as they could be. The temperatures drop to a whopping dip of -15 to 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

These temperatures call you for equipping yourselves with highly dedicated special winter gears that can be rented in the town.

Fairbanks must be thanked for its unbelievable geographical location in the farthest northern hemisphere of the earth. This is one of those few places on the earth that is bestowed with the privilege of witnessing the extraordinary midnight sun.

But the location calls for a trade-off to the travelers. You can witness sunshine the entire day long but that is going to prevent you from experiencing the northern lights.

To the much of the relief of the travelers, the months of July and August help you relax with soothing rainfall.

What is the Best Time to Visit Fairbanks?

If you assess the place just by the temperature variability, summer is undoubtedly the best time to visit Fairbanks.

The temperatures around this time are remarkably mild where you get more of the daytimes to explore the area. You will also find the vegetation in full bloom then.

The peak season for travelers here is however July and August.

You will find a lot of crowd at this time as compared to the winter months.

But besides these, the other seasons that are equally popular among tourists are the time between August to September and through May and June.

fairbanks alaska
Winter in Fairbanks

Visitors, however, find it best to visit this place in complete summer. This way, they get to indulge in a detailed summer tour, along with engaging in all the summer activities.

But it is also to note that the summers are the most expensive period for exploring Fairbanks.

Things are going to be different if you have plans to experience the northern lights exclusively. The best time to witness Aurora Borealis is from September to March.

The time for viewing these lights has shifted to the fall and winter months because the summers have their midnight sun. But you can witness both altogether if you visit the place in the shoulder season of August to September.

But again, with seasons changing, you must keep yourself updated with when are the seasons changing before you make your plans.

These shoulder seasons also help you acquire huge discounts and great deals on your accommodation as well as travel.

What are the Best Things to Do in Fairbanks?

By knowing the ideal time of visit, it is now important for you to chalk out a feasible plan of tour once you are there.

This list is going to help you cover all the major and basic attractions of the place, both for summers and winters.

Watch The Epic Northern Lights

Fairbanks is the biggest attraction for the people wanting to witness the Northern Lights, hence this is something that cannot go without mention.

There can be no experience that can match witnessing Aurora on a very clear night sky. This is a must-have experience when you are exploring Fairbanks.

You will get to experience the northern lights best during the fall and the winters. Due to the visibility, Fairbanks is termed one of the best places to view this natural phenomenon.

Northern Lights fairbanks
Northern Lights in Alaska

The best parts do not just end here. Fairbanks is considered one of the best places to view the lights in the entire USA. This place lies directly under the Auroral Oval.

This is normally a circular zone that lies in the north and that witnesses very high concentrative activities of the concentration and activity of the Auroral light.

The coastal areas of Alaska do not experience such high precipitation and Fairbanks lie at greater distances from the coasts. Hence, the lights and their concentration are that heavier in the oval during clearer nights.

These factors make it very desirable to chase the lights in this part of the north pole alaska.

A three-night stay in this place is going to guarantee you the best of the Aurora Borealis.

Borealis Basecamp

Can watching the northern lights get any better than your bed? Yes, you read it right. You can now experience a gaze at the night lights right from your bed at the lodging unit of the Borealis basecamp.

This is yet one of the most captivating experiences you will get in Fairbanks. This location lies at a distance of 25miles from Fairbanks. Anybody visiting this place has their hearts lied upon it.

basecamps fairbanks alaska

This location is an exclusive collection of modern opulent bubble cabins that are adorned with transparent domes with the best visibilities.

And the cherry on the cake is, these are the only glass-roofed igloos in the entire Alaska. The best does not simply end here.

These igloos are placed strategically in the right position to give you an excellent view of the surroundings and the valley below. These lodgings come with a price of about $400 to $600 in the peak winter season.

Latitude 65`

This is undoubtedly one of the most popular restaurants in Fairbanks. You will find this in the Borealis Basecamp that would serve you thoughtfully crafted meals by Chef George.

The Halibut Chowder is hands down one of the most popular dishes served here. The restaurant also has great views of the igloos and the serene nature surrounding them.


This is an unmissable experience for the snow thrill and adventure seekers. The lodges mentioned above are going to offer you snowmobiling tours as well as rentals on their site itself.

Otherwise, booking them through separate operators is going to charge you a lot. This is a very high sought-after winter activity, which is a must-try.

ATV Tours

Do not get disappointed when visiting in the summer months because ATVing is just the summer version of snowmobiling.

This is going to help you get the hold of speedy and exciting rides, all through the scenic trails of Alaska. You will get the best experience of the Alaskan wilderness and explore the extremely remote areas.

This is going to be very thrilling as you get to go through rocky terrains as well as mud pools. You get to go steep up the cliffs that will give you a view of beautiful sceneries.  

Trans- Alaska Pipeline

The Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline can be best viewed from Fairbanks and you can view and photograph it to your best ability through your ATV tour.

There is something very special about this pipeline that draws explorers towards it.

It stretches from Prudhoe Bay in Northern Alaska to the south to Valdez.

To the surprise of many, this pipeline carries almost 2million barrels of oil in it in a day. This line travels across the mountains and is completely earthquake-resistant.

Some parts of the pipeline are found underground whereas some are found above the ground owing to permafrost prevention.

Trans Alaska Pipiline
Trans Alaska Pipiline

Dog Sledding

One cannot simply miss this activity if you are in Alaska.

Dog sledding has become a quintessential activity to enjoy the winter experience the most and it is undoubtedly one of the most adventurous things you can do here.

This activity will take you closest to the Alaskan wilderness and help you explore the unexplored.

The dog sledding tours normally happen around November to April in the Fairbanks till one can find snow on the ground.

There are numerous operators in and around the town for the same.

fairbanks dogs alaska

Dog Carting

You should not be disappointed if you are missing the opportunity to dog sled. Because dog carting is just the summer version of the same. Instead of a sled, you will be getting to roam in a cart.

These are the tours one can book through the Borealis Basecamp but individual operators are operating too.

Running Reindeer Ranches

This is a very different animal encounter that travelers seem to enjoy on their tour to Fairbanks. You get to approach them very closely and this helps you interact with them.

This family-run ranch is going to enable you to take close strolls with these reindeer and take a tour around the entire place.

fairbanks alaska

Chena Hot Springs

You will get to witness a magical encounter in these hot springs. You can dive into amazingly hot and soothing springs in your swimsuit when it’s freezing outside and snowing beside you.

This place is separated from the Fairbanks with a minimal distance of about an hour. This treasure trove is having a water temperature of around 106 degrees Fahrenheit throughout the year.

And the most amazing thing about these hot springs is that they are very easily accessible and do not require you to hike.

This place is also having its very own ice museum, places to cultivate your interest in geothermal energy, and the outdoor hot spring. You can also spot the northern lights very easily while relaxing from the hot waters.

Geothermal Tours

The hot springs arrange these tours for you exclusively; it is best to unravel more details about renewable sources of energy, conservation practices, and self-sustainability by sitting right at the epitome of natural ambiance.

There you will also get to learn a lot about Chena’s geothermal power plants and understand their ground-breaking upcoming energy projects.

Visit North pole

The North Pole is a magical place and one should not miss out on the opportunity to visit here. It is a mere 20 minutes drive south of Fairbanks and the best time to visit is Christmas.

This is a very charming town loaded with fables about Santa Claus. You will be in awe with the town’s alleys and tinsel decorated road signs that would make you fall in love with this place.

Fairbanks has a lot to offer and awaits to unravel its hidden beauty. With the unending list of things to do, you can casually take a day’s trip to the Arctic Circle that is going to visually reward you the most.

You can plan on your itinerary with the help of our “moving to Alaska guide” that won’t leave you to miss out on anything appealing and worth visiting.

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to pack your bags and set out on a journey to Fairbanks.

Travel guide and top things to do in Fairbanks Alaska USA
Travel guide and top things to do in Fairbanks Alaska USA