Happy Fri-yay! Exactly two weeks ago I was stepping off of a plane in the northern-most city in the United States, located less than 200 miles south of the Arctic Circle – Fairbanks, Alaska! One of my husband’s dreams has been to see the Aurora Borealis, aka the Northern Lights, and its found its way onto my bucketlist as well. Periodically from time to time I check fares to Iceland and Norway with our Aurora dreams in mind but fares are always a bit pricey or we simply don’t have the time, especially now that we live on the West Coast crossing the pond aint so quick or easy! I randomly saw a great fare to Anchorage, Alaska from LA and I started to get curious and got my Google on. Can you see the Northern Lights in Anchorage? Oh, faintly? Well, where in Alaska can I get good viewings? Fairbanks! <– That was my train of Googling & internal thoughts. Turns out Fairbanks is an amazing place to catch the Aurora Borealis as it lies within the Aurora Oval. Places within the Oval will have viewings directly overhead – from further away you can view them closer to the horizon. Apparently there were gorgeous sightings in the horizon from our connecting flight from Seattle but of course we were sitting on the opposite side of the plane, womp womp. To make a long, bummer of a story short, the entire weekend was too cloudy to see anything and although I was so disappointed over it we seized our time and had an amazing weekend getaway together! Fairbanks is so beautiful and peaceful we had an amazing time just driving around, flying our 3dr Solo drone, and filming. Apparently Alaskans like to shoot drones out of the sky lol.. luckily our bird made it home safe and sound!
We stayed at Pike’s Waterfront Lodge which was literally a mile from the airport.. sooo convenient! They offer a free shuttle to and from the airport but we did rent a car. We ended up having to swap out our car for an all-wheel drive after not being able to drive uphill so being so close was so great.. not much time wasted at all!
So cute, Pike’s has a little ice cream social every evening from 6pm-8pm for guests where we enjoyed a free scoop of ice cream!
After we swapped out our sedan for an all-wheel drive SUV we ventured back on the same drive as the day before. We headed up to Murphy Dome which is an old US Air Force Station. People head up there now to hike, ride their ATVs, and gaze at the gorgeous views. The winter is a great time to catch the Aurora from up there.. unfortunately for us, again, it was too cloudy! The views were still breathtaking though!
Probably one of the most charming places I’ve ever seen.. North Pole, Alaska! Just 15 minutes south of Fairbanks, North Pole is in the Christmas spirit all year round with decorations, candy cane motifs, and themed streets like Santa Claus Lane, Kris Kringle Drive, Mistletoe Lane.. so so cute! The most popular destination in North Pole is Santa’s house which has grown so much over the decades after beginning as a trading post in the 50s. Every year before the holidays the local post office gets hundreds of thousands of letters to santa and a community service project responds to them!
We couldn’t believe how beautiful Fairbanks was! When people ask what we did on our trip we can’t say much but “look at trees” haha but it was nothing we’ve ever seen before. We will definitely be back to experience the summer, I can even imagine how gorgeous it is when its green everywhere; and hopefully one day the weather will be on our side to catch the Aurora! xo