Guides

Where to Stay in Anchorage

A panoramic view of Anchorage, Alaska, showcasing the city skyline with tall buildings against the backdrop of the Chugach Mountains and a cloudy sky.A panoramic view of Anchorage, Alaska, showcasing the city skyline with tall buildings against the backdrop of the Chugach Mountains and a cloudy sky.

Anchorage in Alaska, is a place with some of the most scenic landscapes – which is why it attracts such a large number of visitors. If you’re wondering where to stay in Anchorage, I’m here to recommend the absolute best Anchorage areas and hotels!

I’ve carefully compared the accommodations in Anchorage and handpicked only the very best options for you. I also went ahead and divided it by areas (we have 4 tourist friendly neighborhoods in total) and by price as well! 

So, read this post if you want to book your ideal accommodation in just a couple of minutes, I’ve done the research for you!

For now, Downtown Anchorage is THE place to stay since it’s extremely walkable, has some top-rated hotels, and most of the city’s attractions. Scroll down to see more detailed info and see my top list of the other areas!

But before you start planning your trip, you need to keep in mind that you have to book well in advance. This is especially true if you’re planning a trip during summer, specifically in August; this is the most popular month to visit Anchorage, so even the not-so-great hotels will be super extensive. By booking in advance, you choose a great hotel and save some money, too! 

If you are in a hurry

Take a look at the best hotels in downtown Anchorage:


Watch my video, it will give you a visual explanation of all the areas:


Here’s a map of the 4 Anchorage areas I’ll be talking about in this post:

1. Downtown Anchorage – where to stay in Anchorage for the first time

Aerial view of downtown Anchorage during twilight, with the city lights starting to shine against the backdrop of the Chugach Mountains.Aerial view of downtown Anchorage during twilight, with the city lights starting to shine against the backdrop of the Chugach Mountains.

Downtown Anchorage is the heart of the city! This is where you’ll find all the main attractions – museums, art galleries, parks, shops, restaurants and breweries! So, if you are traveling to Anchorage for the first time, Downtown is perfect! 

Downtown is also for you if you are visiting without a car – it is very compact and extremely walkable!

FUN FACT: on the summer solstice (June 20th), Anchorage gets as much as 22 hours of daylight, and even when the sun sets, it’s barely just below the horizon! 

If you decide to visit Anchorage during the summer solstice, you’ll get plenty of time to explore the city in the light of day, and you can also attend The Summer Solstice Festival, which takes place primarily in downtown Anchorage. 

The first stop on your itinerary should be the Anchorage Museum, dedicated to rich Alaskan history and culture; then, you should check the schedule at the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, and if you find something to your liking, attend an event there. 

A vintage black locomotive on display, fenced off and set against a park background with trees and a cloudy sky.A vintage black locomotive on display, fenced off and set against a park background with trees and a cloudy sky.

While downtown, you have to visit Delaney Park (map), the largest green space in the city center, and the Centennial Rose Garden (map), located within the park. Other noteworthy spots are the Town Square Park (map) and the Captain Cook Monument (map), both easily accessible from anywhere in the downtown area. 

One of the things Anchorage is known for is the breweries – and you have to visit at least one during your stay here. I highly recommend visiting the 49th State Brewing and trying one of their delicious, refreshing lager beers. 

You may be surprised to see an airport just around the corner of Downtown. Merrill Field Airport is a public general aviation airport, mostly used for training. So, you won’t be able to land in the city center, after all. If you’re flying to Anchorage, you’ll touch down at the Spenard airport – more on that later!For those who want to explore the beautiful outdoors of Anchorage, you should definitely take advantage of the Flattop Mountain Shuttle to go hiking and see the scenic views of the city. If you want to go somewhere further away, you can visit other Alaskan cities – I recommend Fairbanks! It’s a lovely city and there are also a lot of amazing Fairbanks accommodations.

Luxury hotel

A luxury hotel offering stunning views of the Chugach Mountains and Cook Inlet and features an indoor pool, a separate male and a female gym, a conference center, and as many as 4 restaurants on site. Guests can benefit from massage services and go shopping at one of the 15 retail stores.

Other accommodation in Downtown Anchorage

Mid-range

This centrally located stay in Anchorage has comfortable rooms, a fitness center, free Wi-Fi and is near the main attractions

Budget

Although a bit lower-rated, this hotel provides a daily hot breakfast, in-room movies, and relaxing spa baths

Airbnb

This Airbnb offers nicely decorated rooms and a fully furnished kitchen right across the street from the Anchorage Museum

Things to do in Downtown Anchorage

2. Midtown – best area for families

Downtown street scene in Anchorage with traffic signals, a bear sculpture on a building, and pedestrians crossing the street.

Downtown street scene in Anchorage with traffic signals, a bear sculpture on a building, and pedestrians crossing the street.

The Midtown part of Anchorage is located 3 miles (5 km) south of Downtown and is the best place for families to stay in Anchorage, thanks to its laid-back atmosphere, family-friendly hotels, and fun attractions. However, if you decide to stay here, you’ll need a car if you want to make the most of your visit – you can either drive there or rent a car

Don’t let the necessity of a car worry you! Anchorage is not a very large city, so you’ll only need to drive a short distance to get to your desired destination. Plus, if you’re staying in Midtown with a car, you’ll have the freedom to explore other parts of Alaska, so I highly recommend having a vehicle at your disposal – unless you’re there for a day or staying in the downtown area. 

So, when you’re looking for things to do with your family in Midtown Anchorage, your first stop should be Cuddy Family Midtown Park (map)! Here, the kids will enjoy the playground, but there’s also a pond within the park and an ice rink in winter! 

FUN FACT: more than 40% of Alaska’s residents live in Anchorage, which is the second-highest percentage in all of the US after New York. 

Midtown is also the best location to take day trips to all the best family-oriented attractions in Anchorage. You can drive to the Alaska Botanical Garden and the Alaska Zoo or explore some of the easier hiking routes in Chugach State Park (map). 

In case you don’t want to go anywhere outside Midtown for the day, you can spend the time shopping at the or grab a meal at one of the cool restaurants such as the Moose’s Tooth Pub & Pizzeria

If you’re in Alaska to see the Northern Lights, then staying in Midtown is a good idea – the accommodations are much more affordable than those downtown, and most of the tour operators offer hotel pickup from Midtown hotels. 

Luxury hotel

Even though it’s not as luxurious as my usual recommendations in this category, Hyatt Place has an excellent range of amenities, including a fitness center, an indoor pool, a hot tub, a bar, a restaurant, and a shared lounge – available to all guests. 

Other accommodation options in Midtown

Mid-range

Nestled in beautiful nature, this hotel offers a free airport shuttle, comfortable rooms, and an indoor swimming pool

Budget

Located near Anchorage University, My Place Hotel has spacious rooms, a free airport shuttle, and free parking

Airbnb

A spacious suite with 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, a living area, and a kitchen equipped with necessary appliances and utensils

Things to do in Midtown

3. South Addition – where to stay in Anchorage on a budget

A vibrant landscape of a lake with calm waters, lush greenery, and the Alaskan mountain range under a dynamic cloud-filled sky.A vibrant landscape of a lake with calm waters, lush greenery, and the Alaskan mountain range under a dynamic cloud-filled sky.

South Addition is the area adjacent to downtown; this is primarily a residential neighborhood, so there aren’t as many hotels as in the other areas, but there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities – overall, a great choice when traveling on a budget. 

The highlights of the South Addition neighborhood are its parks! If you’re wondering where to start, I suggest Margaret Eagan Sullivan Park (map), a lovely park overlooking the Westchester Lagoon (map) and boasting spectacular mountain views. However, if you want the very best views, I suggest you head to the Woodruff Overlook (map) across the lagoon from the park. 

About 250 black 55 grizzly bears reside within the Anchorage city limits!

You don’t have to be too worried about this, as the bears tend to avoid urban and residential areas, but it never hurts to be cautious. 

Another spot you have to visit in South Addition is the Valley of the Moon Park (map). There are numerous hiking trails within the park and a large playground if you’re traveling with kids. And there’s a dog park, too, so it definitely warrants a visit. 

I have to tell you that there aren’t too many dining options in South Addition, but one place you shouldn’t miss out on is Simon & Seafort’s Saloon & Grill, where you can try the finest cuisine Anchorage has to offer! 

A scenic view of an empty road curving beside a railway track, with snow-capped mountains in the distance and a partly cloudy sky.A scenic view of an empty road curving beside a railway track, with snow-capped mountains in the distance and a partly cloudy sky.

You’ll definitely need a car if you’re staying in South Addition, that is unless you’re based in Bootleggers Cove, a part of the neighborhood that directly borders the city center. And if you’re wondering where to stay before a cruise, I think South Addition is the best place for it; from here, you can easily get to Whittier, where most cruises depart from. 

Better yet, the South Addition neighborhood provides easy access to the Seward Highway! This is the quintessential highway for any Alaska road trip; get on the highway at South Addition and drive to Chugach National Forest, Bear Creek, Whittier, or ultimately, Seward. 

NOTE: unfortunately, there are no luxury hotels in South Addition, which makes this the ideal destination for budget travelers. Although there aren’t any upscale accommodations, there are some lovely B&Bs – check out my top picks below. 

Other accommodation options in South Addition

Mid-range

This lovely B&B offers free breakfast, free Wi-Fi and parking, laundry facilities, and luggage storage

Budget

The bed and breakfast offers rooms overlooking the garden, which has an outdoor fireplace and barbecue facilities

Airbnb

A private room in a B&B property with a queen-sized bed, plus access to a shared bathroom

Things to do in South Addition 

4. Spenard – where to stay in Anchorage near the airport

A red seaplane flying over a lake in front of a large lodge with the Alaskan mountains reflecting in the still water.A red seaplane flying over a lake in front of a large lodge with the Alaskan mountains reflecting in the still water.

Spenard is located 4 miles (6 km) Southwest of Downtown and just 2 miles (3 km) from Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. Set your expectations aside – this is not your typical airport area! Centered around the lovely Lake Hood, dotted with parks, nature trails, and quirky restaurants, it’s a great place to relax and unwind

If you’re staying in Anchorage for just a day, or you’re worried that you might miss your flight, you have to stay in Spenard. It has a variety of great hotels, most of which offer free airport shuttles (no need to worry about getting to and from the airport), and there are plenty of ways to spend your time. 

The first thing I advise you to do is go for a walk around Lake Spenard (map), which is a part of the larger Lake Hood. While you’re exploring the area around the lake, you’ll come across the Alaska Aviation Museum – I suggest you stop for a visit there. Finally, you’ll reach the Turnagain neighborhood and Earthquake Park (map), a very unique space shaped by an earthquake!

If you have a free evening in Spenard, you have to see a screening at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub, an indie movie theater that also serves craft microbrews and delicious food. The best part about it? You can eat and drink while watching the movie – I don’t think it gets much better than that!

One of the things that makes this area so special and different from other airport neighborhoods is the abundance of restaurants, specifically American and Korean restaurants. I’d recommend the Spenard Roadhouse for a fusion of flavors – you can have everything from Thai curry to the classic, all-American burger. 

Without further ado, let’s check out the best places to stay near Anchorage airport!

Luxury hotel

The Lakefront is not as well-rated (or as luxurious) as my other recommendation in the category, but it’s the best upscale option close to the airport. Situated on Lake Hood, the hotel has on-site dining options, a gym, concierge services, private parking, and even a float plane dock! There’s also a 24-hour shuttle service to the airport.

Other accommodation options in Spenard

Mid-range

Marriott Anchorage Airport offers a nice indoor pool, free airport shuttle, spacious rooms, and free parking

Budget

This hotel features an indoor swimming pool, a very good breakfast, a free airport shuttle, and a nice bar

Airbnb

Just minutes away from the airport, this suite has a private entrance, a private bedroom, and 2 bunk beds

Things to do in Spenard

  • Spend a relaxing afternoon at Kincaid Park (map)
  • Hike the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail (trail map)
  • Enjoy the all-day breakfast at Gwennie’s Old Alaska Restaurant (map)

FAQs about where to stay in Anchorage

Visitor information center in Anchorage with a multi-directional signpost in the snow, indicating various global destinations.Visitor information center in Anchorage with a multi-directional signpost in the snow, indicating various global destinations.

🗺️ What part of Anchorage should I stay in?

🤔 Is downtown Anchorage safe at night?

Yes, Downtown is a safe area to walk at night and a great place to stay in Anchorage. It is one of the safest neighborhoods in Anchorage together with Midtown.

❌ What are the bad parts of Anchorage?

Anchorage is, in general, a safe city with a low crime rate, but you should avoid walking at night in the Fairview and Mountain View areas as they can be unsafe for people walking alone.

🛣️ What are the best places to stay in Anchorage without a car?

Due to its proximity to the main attractions, shops, and restaurants, downtown Anchorage is the best area to stay without a car in Anchorage.

🛎️ What is the best boutique hotel in Anchorage?

☀️ What is the best month to visit Anchorage?

The best time to visit Anchorage is between July and August, as that is when the weather is warmest. However, accommodations can be pricey during these months, so you either need to book in advance or consider going earlier, in June, for the summer solstice.

✨ Can you see the Northern Lights in Anchorage, AK?

Yes, you have a chance to see the northern lights if you stay in Anchorage between late September and April.

🚶🏽 Is Anchorage a walkable city?

The Downtown of Anchorage is very walkable; it’s not too large and the main sights are within a short distance of each other. However, the rest of the city is not as walkable –  you’ll need a car if you want to see everything without exhausting yourself.

📅 How many days should I stay in Anchorage?

You should set aside at least 2 days for your stay in Anchorage. This should give you enough time to visit all the main sights and get a feel of the culture of the city.

⚖️ Should I stay in Midtown or Downtown Anchorage?

If you want to walk everywhere, you should stay in downtown Anchorage; here, you’ll be close to top attractions and the best eateries. However, if you’re traveling with family, you should stay in Midtown, as I’m sure you’ll enjoy the activities and the laid-back atmosphere. 

💰 Is it expensive to stay in Anchorage?

The hotel prices in Anchorage can be on the expensive side, especially during summer, which is considered peak season. However, you can find accommodation at a reasonable, affordable price if you book the trip a few months in advance.

🏨 Where to stay between Anchorage and Seward?

If you’re on a road trip from Anchorage to Seward (or vice versa), you may want to stop somewhere along the way. I suggest staying in Whittier, a wonderful port city,  almost right in the middle! As for accommodations, I recommend The Inn at Whittier

Conclusion

Yellow Alaska Railroad train traveling along the coastline with mountains in the background and a cloudy sky overhead.Yellow Alaska Railroad train traveling along the coastline with mountains in the background and a cloudy sky overhead.

I hope you enjoyed my guide on where to stay in Anchorage and decided on an area and a hotel for your upcoming stay – there’s plenty to choose from!

But in case you have any trouble deciding on a hotel, here are my top 2 picks, both in downtown Anchorage:

I’d like to remind you again that in order not to miss your favorite place to stay in Anchorage and get better deals on hotels, do not forget to make a reservation in advance!

If you have any other suggestions or questions about Anchorage, Alaska, please do not hesitate to leave a comment below. I’ll be glad to get back to you!

Have fun on your Anchorage adventure,

Hristina


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Promotional image for MissTourist.com with the text "Where to Stay in Anchorage" over a background showing a room with large windows overlooking the Anchorage skyline and mountains.

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Cover image for a travel guide by MissTourist.com with the title "Where to Stay in Anchorage – 5 Best Hotels" featuring a scenic view of Anchorage's cityscape and distant mountains.





Cover image for a travel guide by MissTourist.com with the title "Where to Stay in Anchorage – 5 Best Hotels" featuring a scenic view of Anchorage's cityscape and distant mountains.

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