Making Friends in Fairbanks
What’s on the Menu?
Pike’s Landing Restaurant and the Pump House have casual decks that overlook the river.
Leave the PB and J for another day. Use your day off to get out, indulge your “epicurious” side and sample truly Alaskan Fairbanks fare. Our mini-boomtown has a wide array of restaurants only minutes from Fairbanks Lodge. A few recommendations from past Princess employees:
Falafel – A summer-only stand on College Road that serves yummy falafels al fresco. Also, it’s next to a smoothie stand for a cold, fruity drink to accompany the meal.
Chowder House – It’s cheap and has really good soup and sandwiches. Yum!
Silver Gulch Brewery – Great place for Alaskan food and beer! Provides a wide assortment of international beers and wines.
Hot Licks – Best Fairbanks ice cream at two locations off College Road and Old Chena Pump Road
Hot spots for hot beverages
The Alaskan Coffee Roasting Company (a.k.a. ACRC): Many would argue that the ACRC serves the best coffee in Fairbanks. Take a sip or savor a sandwich – the Alaska Roasting Company dishes up flatbreads, sandwiches, salads, desserts, and more. It’s the perfect hub to gather with your new summer pals and gossip!
The College Coffee House: Live entertainment, free WiFi, Italian cream soda, an eclectic menu that includes burritos, quiche, waffles and more make the College Coffee House the place to dine and dish in Fairbanks.
“Nightlife” in the Land of the Midnight Sun
There’s no true “nightlife” in the land of the Midnight Sun. You don’t have to dance until the sun comes up – it stays shining. Welcome to Fairbanks! Meet your new buddies at one of these establishments, highly recommended by our summer crew.
Kodiak Jack’s Country Bar and Club: Boogie down and then test your bull riding prowess at Kodiak Jack’s Country Bar and Club. A little bit country, a little bit Rock N’ Roll, Kodiak Jack’s features a full bar, mechanical bull, dance floor, and dining room. Yee-haw!
Blue Loon: Touted as the “cultural epicenter” of Fairbanks, Blue Loon has all the nighttime entertainment you’re looking for, including dining, dancing, comedians, plus $6.00 movies. It’s everything you need to kick-back in one loony location.
The Marlin: Located in the basement of a rickety hostel on College Road, the Marlin is where bohemians take to the mic with music, poetry, and other arts. The Marlin party never stops – it’s open until 3:30 am on Friday and Saturday.
University of Alaska Fairbanks has a huge trail system and Birch Hill is a beautiful spot to hike. Also check out Angel Rocks off Chena Hot Springs Rd.
Fishin’ Near Fairbanks
The Chena River bank, located 26 miles east of Fairbanks, is a great spot to linger peacefully on your day off. Chena Lakes is another great Fairbanks-area fishing spot touted by Fairbanks locals.
Golf in the Golden Heart
With its gentle rolling hills, extra, extra, extra hours of sunshine, and breathtaking scenery, Fairbanks is a great place to fore ’til you’re fried. If frisbees are more your style, Birch Hill and the University of Fairbanks Alaska both have 18-hole disc golf courses.
Rollin’ on the River
When all you need is a lazy day, head to the Chena River and leisurely drift along in a kayak or canoe. Breathe in the fresh mountain air and rejuvenate. Or just reflect on your Alaskan summer, pensively taking in nature’s splendor. Even in summer, the water is mighty chilly to take a dip, so those who “run cold” may want to rethink river-tubing plans.
Play at Pioneer Park
Beach volleyball, miniature golf, and fields upon fields of fun activities make Pioneer Park the place to be when the weather forecast is all sun. Gazebos and grills are available for barbecues and get-togethers.
After a long day spent working away, there’s nothing quite like tossing back a cold one on a deck with your friends. Pike’s Landing Restaurant and the Pump House are the best bets for dining al fresco in Fairbanks.
Can’t Miss Events
If you’re lucky enough to have a day-off during a Fairbanks festival, definitely check out one of these summer soirees:
During the third-week in June, Fairbanks has a slew of celebrations to bring in the midnight sun. See a midnight baseball game. Dosey-doe during the midnight sun square dance at the Alaskaland Dance Center. And if you want to get out of town, there’s always the impromptu tailgate party and camp-out that occur every solstice at Eagle Summit, 107 miles up the Steese Highway. Whatever way you choose to celebrate, be sure to carry a camera.
Fairbanks Summer Art Festival
Held annually in July on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus, the Fairbanks Summer Art festival is a jovial display of literary arts, music, and more with over 45 different performances.