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Completed in 1923, the Alaska Railroad's main line extends from tidewater at Seward north to the Interior city of Fairbanks, about 470 miles of track.

Operating year-round passenger service between Anchorage and Fairbanks, the Alaska Railroad also offers service via Talkeetna, Denali, Seward and Whittier during the summer. Amenities available (not on all routes) include glass-domed luxury railcars, gourmet cuisine and a wide variety of overnight adventure and sightseeing packages. The Alaska Railroad is one of the last surviving 'flag stop' passenger rail lines in the U.S. - trains that will stop where and whenever passengers want to get on or off.

Byway Highlights

photo Alaska Railroad in the fall.
© Alaska Railroad
  • View the Bartlett and Spencer Glaciers within 48 miles of Seward.
  • A short rail spur tunnels through the rugged Chugach Mountains to Whittier.
  • Watch for bore tides and beluga whales as the rail runs along beautiful Turnagain Arm.
  • Now Alaska's largest city, Anchorage began as a construction camp for the railroad in 1914.
  • Visit the charming town of Talkeetna, the base of operations for climbing expeditions to Mount McKinley.
  • At Milepost 284 don't look down at Hurricane Gulch!
  • Denali National Park is the destination of many rail travelers.
  • Nenana is where President Warren G. Harding drove the golden spike to complete the railroad in 1923.
  • Disembark in Fairbanks for endless adventure opportunities in Alaska's vast north.

Calendar of Annual Events

January

  • Anchorage Folk Festival
    Anchorage, 907-566-2334
  • Polar Bear Jumpoff Festival
    Third Saturday in January
    Seward, 907-224-5230

February

  • Yukon Quest Int'l Sled Dog Race
    Fairbanks, 907-452-7954
  • Tesoro Iron Dog Snowmachine Race
    Fairbanks, 907-563-4414
  • Anchorage Fur Rendezvous
    Anchorage, 907- 274-1177

March

  • Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
    Anchorage, 907-276-4118
  • World Ice Art Championships
    Fairbanks, 907-451-8250

May

  • Harbor Opening Weekend
    Third weekend in May
    Seward, 907-224-3160

June

  • Mayor's Midnight Sun Marathon
    Anchorage, 907-276-4118

July

  • Fourth of July celebrations Regionwide
  • Golden Days
    Fairbanks, 907-452-1105

August

  • Tanana Valley Sandhill Crane Festival
    Fairbanks, 800-327-5774

November

  • Annual Crafts Emporium
    Anchorage, 907-263-2800

December

  • Annual Holiday Train Ride
    (roundtrip Anchorage-Seward)
    Anchorage, 800-544-0552

Visitor Contact Information

 

photo
Alaska Railroad © AKRR

 

Questions about the Scenic Byways web site? emaildot.scenic.byways@alaska.gov