The largest city in Alaska, Anchorage is home to 40 percent of the state’s population. Only New York has a higher percentage of the state's population in its largest city. For travelers, it’s usually the first stop for those who've come to explore the vast and wild expanse of Alaska.
The city is known around the world for outdoor pursuits, such as the annual Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race each March. In December, when the nights get long and cold, the November-December Anchorage International Film Festival, featuring ten days of the best international and independent cinema, provides a good excuse to stay indoors at the BearTooth TheatrePub.
Anchorage is a small city with a small gay community. The few bars, as in most such cities, tend to mix everyone of all ages, genders and affinities together. There are also membership clubs to provide fellowship and organize events throughout the year. The annual June Alaska Pridefest events bring the whole rainbow community together.
Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport is about 6 miles south of downtown Anchorage. It’s the biggest airport in the state, but welcomes mostly regional flights. Buses and taxis take you downtown.
A car is usually your best bet for getting around this sprawling city. For info on public transit and general city info see Municipality of Anchorage.
Media & Resources
See Identity for details on the Anchorage Gay and Lesbian Community Center at 336 East 5th Avenue, plus other local background information.
Bent Alaska online source of Alaska gay news and events is "on indefinite hiatus" but their Facebook group continues to share news, events, and discussions. The Anchorage Press is the local alternative weekly with listings, events, news and reviews.
The Last Frontier Men's Club, has campouts, movie nights, dining out, seasonal theme parties and contest including Mr Bear Alaska, and Mr Leather Alaska. Food is provided at most events. One regular night is every first Wednesdays at Mad Myrna’s, for fun with half-naked men.
In November 2014, Alaska legalized the production, sale and use of marijuana by adults 21 years of age or older - see Potguide/Alaska for details. Alaska Cannabis Club members have access to the private Clubhouse in downtown Anchorage and consume cannabis freely; also to cannabis-themed education courses and recreational events along with the Clubhouse dispensary.
For map locations and website links to the businesses below, and more, see our gay Anchorage listings pages.
Things to Do
The Alaska Center for the Performing Arts (621 W 6th Ave) four-theatre complex serves as the city's social and cultural meeting place, with music, dance and theatre including ballet and performances by the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra.
The Anchorage Museum at Rasmusin Center (625 C St) displays the art, history and natural wonders of Alaska, and offers a journey to the stars in their new Thomas Planetarium.
Cyrano's Off-Center Playhouse (3800 Debarr Rd, Midtown) volunteer group produces professional quality works with Alaskan talent; something for everyone variety of plays, original to Shakespearean classics.
Alaska Bear Company B&B (535 E. 6th Ave) downtown by businesses, restaurants, tourist district, open year-round, continental-plus breakfast, single or queen size beds, private or shared bathrooms, off -street parking.
City Garden Bed & Breakfast (1352 W 10th Ave) downtown, comfortable rooms overlooking Parkstrip; Cook Inlet and Mt. McKinley views, beautiful garden.
Copper Whale Inn Bed & Breakfast (440 L St) West End, convenient to restaurants, galleries, museums, attractions. Cook Inlet and Alaska Range views, Coastal Trail access. Bald eagles, beluga whales among the passing wildlife. 14 guest rooms, common room fireplace, lush summer garden.
Hotel Captain Cook (939 W 5th Ave), downtown, 547 luxury rooms and suites offering stunning views of neighboring Cook Inlet or Chugach Mountains. Gym and spa; four restaurants.
Jewel Lake B&B (8125 Jewel Lake Rd) quiet, five-room, year-round alternative to standard busy hotel, 3 miles from airport; last-minute rate specials, late check-ins, delicious breakfast, free WiFi.
Marriot / University Lake SpringHill Suites (4050 University Lake Dr) at base of Chugach Mountains, easy access to nature and city; lake and mountain views, larger than standard-size rooms, wireless internet throughout hotel, shuttle to local university and hospital campuses.
Millennium/ The Lakefront Anchorage (4800 Spenard Rd) on Lake Spenard, mile from airport. Alaskan décor 248 guest rooms; health club/sauna. Shuttle to airport and downtown. Restaurants, seasonal patio; concierge for fishing, hunting, flight-seeing, cruises, hiking, jogging, Iditarod Race; on-site floatplane dock.
Wildflower Inn (1239 I St) easy stroll to downtown events, shopping, restaurants; breathtaking vistas along walking and bike trails.
Bernie's Bungalow (626 D St), restaurant with late-night menu, bar, huge outdoor patio, live music entertainment, mostly 20s mixed crowd.
Mad Myrna's (530 E 5th Ave), cabaret/ nightclub and cafe, informal LGBT community center bar for all, open daily from 4pm; dancing, pool games, karaoke, nightly Divas variety shows.
Raven (708 E 4th Ave) relaxed gay neigborhood tavern, men/women mix, theme parties.
CLOSED: Kodiak Bar & Grill (225 E 5th Ave), cafe/bar, gay/lesbian monthly dance parties.
Cafes and Restaurants
Alaska Cake Studio (608 West 4th Ave) cakes, chocolates, baked goods, custom desserts for any occasion. Also take-out breakfast pastries from 7am, mid-afternoon snacks, coffee, tea and chocolate.
Bear Tooth Theatrepub Cafe & Grill (1230 W 27th Ave), specialty, alternative, foreign art-house movies; at your seat pizza, burritos, tacos, salads, appetizers, desserts, smoothies, draft sodas, all-ages balcony; 21-plus main theater beer, wine and margaritas.
Crow's Nest (939 W Fifth Ave), Captain Cook Hotel fine dining, French and New American cuisines, 10,000-bottle wine cellar, stunning views.
Ginger (425 W 5th Ave) Pacific Rim cuisine, classic Asian specialties, lounge, local mico-brewery beers.
Marx Bros. Cafe (627 West 3rd) innovative contemporary cuisine, fresh Alaskan seafood, finest meat. Revised nightly menu reflects unique ingredients and imaginative preparations; extensive wine selection.
Modern Dwellers Chocolate Lounge (751 E 36th Ave & 423 G St) chocolate lounge amidst contemporary artworks and gifts. Hand crafted artisan truffles, rich drinking chocolate, chocolate bars from around the world, full espresso bar.
Muse Restaurant at Anchorage Museum (625 C St) fresh Pacific NW ingredients; Asian, European flair; imaginative, elegant cuisine. Amuse bouche "tongue teaser" palate pleasers include Ahi nachos; tea-smoked duck spring rolls with plum sauce; venison brochettes with raspberry-citrus demiglace.
Snow City Cafe (1034 W. 4th Ave) popular downtown breakfast/lunch spot; gourmet soup, pastas, sandwiches, salads, fresh baked goodies, vegetarian and healthy options, breakfast all day, beer and wine, free WiFi.