Talkeetna, Alaska… A Must Stop When Visiting Alaska
First published: 7/23/15, updated 3/19/17
Disclosure: This post not only talks about my favorite tiny town in Alaska, but also has Affiliate Links that I earn commissions from. This is how I make a living and keep this little blog running. Thank you for supporting me! I appreciate it. Much love, Kristi.
Alaska is an incredibly large state and I’m often ask where should people go to see Alaska culture. Hands down, don’t come to Alaska and not visit one of the quirkiest, most awesome towns – Talkeetna. This charming town is a 2.5 hour drive north of Anchorage. You can also jump on the Alaska Railroad as there is a train stop right in the middle of town.
When visiting Talkeetna, it is hard not to look up and be inspired by seeing Denali, the tallest peak in North America. You can see the entire Alaska Range on a clear day and it is quite breathtaking. If you want a closer look, you can hop onto a flightseeing tour that can land on the glacier in the middle of Denali. It is one of the most awe-inspiring and amazing views in the world.
During the summer, you can take a float tour of the three rivers that meet up in Talkeetna. You can try your hand at salmon fishing, hiking, or even visit a dog mushing kennel to see Iditarod sled dogs. Talkeetna is nestled in the middle of some of the most beautiful scenery in Alaska and it would be a shame if you didn’t get up there to see it.
Where to Eat in Talkeetna
Talkeetna is also the home of the Denali Brewing Company, the second largest brewery in Alaska. I love their Chuli Stout, Louisville Sour, Saison La Coq, and the Flag Stop is to die for. You can stop at the brewery on the way into Talkeetna or have dinner on their patio at Twister Creek in the heart of town. Talkeetna Roadhouse is the best stop for breakfast as it is the only way to start the day – don’t forget a slice of pie. Trust me on this! I have a hard time visiting Talkeetna and not stopping at Mile High Pizza Pie for a slice or a whole pizza. So good!
Denali Brewing Company during a cold winter day. Still perfect time for a beer!
Where to Stay in Talkeetna
I have stayed at quite a few places in the Talkeetna area. If you want an unforgettable experience, you have to check out the Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge. Walking into the lodge you are greeted by this impressive 46-foot rock fireplace! All of the rocks are from the nearby Matanuska River and it took five workers nine weeks to build this impressive fireplace. They built the foundation under a tent at 40-degrees below zero!! The Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge is full of Alaskan pride from the beautiful birch from Trapper Creek to the white spruce sourced from the Matanuska Valley.
Seriously, this fireplace has seen me in front of it quite a few times. So peaceful, especially with a glass of wine in hand!
Sit out on the patio and take in the wonders of the Alaska range with Denali Mountain coming out to welcome you throughout the day. There is an onsite coffee shop as well as a first-class restaurant that has phenomenal food. This is my Go To Place to stay when I am bringing friends and family up to Talkeetna.
Check out my post about the first time I stayed at the Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge and their infamous wine dinner.
Now the Lodge is about 10 minutes outside of town and sometimes, like during the Talkeetna Brewfest (held in early fall), I want to stay smack dab in the middle of town.
September is Talkeetna Brewfest time – my favorite time of year!
Talkeetna Cabins – in the heart of Downtown Talkeetna
I have stayed at the Talkeetna Cabins that were created one log at a time, by hand. They have full kitchenettes and are so cozy that I have to force myself to go out and see the town! They are quite large and can fit different size parties. Definitely worth giving them a call to see if they have any openings.
When I was in Talkeetna for Beer Trippin (home brew event held in March), I had the absolute pleasure to stay at Talkeetna Chalet Bed & Breakfast. This place is ultra luxury in the woods. The cabin I stayed in blew me away and I wished I had a +1 to share it with. The bed was extraordinarily comfortable and everything in the cabin was carefully selected.
They had a robust breakfast selection in the morning – no one dares leave hungry. When I stayed there, the Northern Lights were going to make an appearance in the wee hours of the morning. The wonderful owners offered guests the opportunity to use their telescopes and made the upstairs balcony available to anyone who wanted to take in the amazing view. Such a class act place, no wonder they book up so quickly. I would stay there again in a heartbeat! Here is their website for more info.
I stayed in a cabin, and they also have rooms available in the main house. Look at that view!
Check out Talkeetna’s Chamber of Commerce as it is a great resource of everything going on in the town. Oh, and say Hi to Stubbs the Cat, the Mayor of little Talkeetna since 1997. He hangs out most days at Nagley’s General Store… he can be bribed with catnip btw.
Whether you visit Talkeetna in the summer or wait until wintertime, there is always something to do in this small town. From the Bachelor Auction (um, hello) and Wilderness Woman Contest (badass women right here!) in the winter to everything possibly imaginable in the summer. For my fellow craft beer lovers, the Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge has a Craft Beer Dinner with Denali Brewing Company in May. Then they end the season with a Fall Wine Dinner in August. Two of my favorite events in Alaska right there! Sign up here for the culinary events newsletter.
Remembering the Talkeetna Bachelor Auction still brings a smile to my face!
I love Talkeetna. It is my favorite small town in all of Alaska. The people are amazing, the surroundings are utterly gorgeous, and it is where I love to go to escape from it all.