As if Alaska didn’t offer enough in the form of natural beauty and culture, the summer’s midnight sun also graciously extends the hours of daily light into a seemingly endless opportunity for fun. Here are eight of our favorite things to do during the Last Frontier’s midnight sun hours.
Play a round of golf
You know how it feels to try to squeeze in all the things you want to do during daylight hours. During Alaska’s summers, you don’t have to! If you’re craving hitting a few golf balls—or playing a whole round—you don’t have to worry about getting shut down by an early sunset. Check out one of Alaska’s many scenic golf courses to find one where you want to play on into the night.
Go on a multi-day hike
When the sun barely goes down, the only limit on your hiking adventures is how far your legs can carry you in one day. Alaska’s long summer days are perfect for exploring as far into the backcountry as you dare. Pack your backpack, grab your bear spray and hit the trail for a memorable time. If you want to hike into the mild, gorgeous evenings and nap during the daytime, there’s nothing to stop you.
Seek out some wildlife
Whether you join a guided tour or simply take your binoculars out for a look, Alaska’s long days offer the perfect opportunity to spy wildlife like bears, caribou, elk, wolves, beavers and eagles. If you dream of seeing whales, book a midnight sun whale watching tour and keep your eyes peeled for humpback, blue whales and orcas during the high summer months.
If in-town festivities sound more fun to you, head to a party like Fairbanks’s Midnight Sun Festival. Dance, enter raffles, sample local specialty foods and shop local artisans all during the summer’s longest days.
Float into the night
Peep wildlife, taste a little adventure and relax into the wilderness on a river trip under the late-night light. Whether you rent a kayak to paddle a section of river or join a guided raft trip, floating along late into the evening is nothing short of magical. Check out special trips like the Princess Lodges’ Midnight Sun Dinner And River Raft Float Trip near Fairbanks or rent a boat.
Enter a race
Got the itch to compete? Enter a running race like the Midnight Sun Run in Fairbanks or the Mayor’s Midnight Sun Marathon and Half Marathon in Anchorage. How many people can say they’ve run a marathon under the midnight sun?
Watch a game
Alaska folks love their midnight sun events. Fairbanks, for example, is “Home of Midnight Sun Baseball.” Nab tickets to watch the Alaska Goldpanners swing—and hopefully hit and run.
Take a hot springs dip
The long Alaska days can wear an adventurous person down. If you’re ready to relax, but not ready to turn in for the night, head to the hot springs. You’ll be able to soak your sore muscles and relax into your vacation—or day off—under the magical midnight sun. And luckily Alaska is home to many different hot springs, scattered throughout the state.
Whether you’re in the mood for sampling local foods, dancing the bright night away or quietly observing animals in their natural habitat, there’s something bucket-list worthy for everyone during Alaska’s midnight sun.