If you’ve never been to Alaska, you may be wondering: “When is the best time is to visit?” While the Land of the Midnight Sun is a great place to explore any time of the year, we recommend late winter/early spring. The months between February and April bring more daylight, less extreme temperatures, and plenty of things to see and do! Tear up the ski trails at Alyeska Resort, or attend the world-famous Iditarod. You can even take a whale watching tour. Whatever you choose, we promise your vacation will be one for the books! Here are some of our favorite ways to experience spring in Alaska.
This list is just the start! Find out what else is happening this spring in Alaska when you download our free Vacation Guide. Our guide is full of recommendations for local events, attractions, and activities in the Mat-Su Valley. It’s the perfect resource for your getaway!
What You Should Know About Spring in Alaska
Weather & Daylight
Spring is arguably the most picturesque season in Alaska. The Mat-Su Valley gains an extra hour of daylight each week and the northern lights can be seen at night. Temperatures range from 35 to 50 degrees, but there’s still plenty of snow on the mountaintops. On spring evenings, the sky explodes with shades of orange, pink, and red. Don’t forget to bring your camera!
Another reason to consider a spring vacation in Alaska? The prices! From cheaper airfare to lower ski rates, Alaska in March and April is a bargain compared to the more pricey summer months. Be sure to check out our vacation packages and specials for the best deal on accommodations while you’re in town.
Events & Attractions
If attending “The Last Great Race” is on your bucket list, you’re in luck! The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is held on the first Saturday of March and runs approximately 1,000 miles from Anchorage to Nome. Thousands of spectators travel to Alaska each year to watch as mushers and their four-legged teammates battle the elements. You can even meet some of your favorite competitors on the trail! The 2018 race gets underway at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 3rd.
Whale Watching & Glacier Cruises
Spring is ideal for whale watching in Alaska. These gentle giants begin their annual migration from the warm waters of Mexico in February and arrive in Alaska in April. Various species can be seen during this time, including gray whales, humpbacks, orcas, and more. We recommend taking a guided tour for an incredible close-up view! Read our blog for details.
Alyeska Resort holds its annual Spring Carnival and Slush Cup in early April. Here, visitors can celebrate the end of ski season with the perfect combination of sun and snow. The weekend-long event features a wide range of activities, including a costume party, mountain bike race, tug-of-war, and more. The best part? It’s all free!
Northern Lights Viewing
As we mentioned above, the aurora borealis is still visible during spring. In fact, Alaska’s northern lights season peaks in March due to the Earth’s tilt in relation to the sun. Combine that with a higher chance of clear skies, and March is the best time to maximize your chances of seeing this spectacular natural phenomenon.
What to Pack
Packing for a trip to Alaska can seem daunting. Whether you want to explore the glaciers or stroll through a museum, it’s important to be prepared for all of your adventures. We suggest packing clothes you can layer, like long underwear, a fleece, and a waterproof/breathable jacket. Gloves and a scarf are also a good idea in case it gets unseasonably cold. Sun protection is very important in the spring, so grab a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen.
Book Your Stay at Alaska Garden Gate B&B and Cottages
Now that you know a little bit about spring in Alaska, it’s time to start planning your trip! Alaska Garden Gate has everything you need for a relaxing getaway, including comfortable accommodations and top-notch amenities. Choose a cottage, apartment, or bed and breakfast room and get ready to make some incredible memories.
One of our most popular accommodations is the Midnight Sun Guest Apartment. It’s located in the main house and offers a king bed and two single beds, plus a living room, full kitchen, and private entrance. Enjoy a glass of wine by the fireplace after a long day outdoors or slip into the bubbling bathtub. We promise you’ll leave feeling refreshed and restored!
Need some help planning your spring vacation? Check out our awesome day trip itineraries.