The second largest city in Alaska, Fairbanks is located in a unique part of the world just short of 200 miles south of the Arctic Circle, meaning the summer days stretch on for hours, while the winter days are exceptionally short. This is one of the few places in the world where you can experience a midnight sun, but it is also a city of extremities, with temperatures ranging from as high as 90° in the summer, to 60° below zero in the winter. Initially founded in the early 20th century as a trading post for river traders, it swiftly transitioned into a boom town when gold was discovered in 1902. Since then, it has developed over the years into a major city for the state of Alaska, straddling the Chena River on the confluence of the Tanana River in the Tanana Valley, which is one of the most important agricultural centers in the state.
Fairbanks offers a wide variety of outdoor adventures that can only be experienced in Alaska. From places like Chena Hot Springs to actually visiting the North Pole, or simply taking in the Northern Lights between September and April, there is a lot going on beneath the surface. The hills just north of the city actually connect to the White Mountains and the Yukon River, and the Tanana Flats stretch south of the city nearly 100 miles until they climb up into the Alaska Range, and there are plenty of valleys and ridges surrounding on either side, meaning there are literally thousands of acres of hiking territory to be covered. Keep in mind that the winter months can be exceptionally cold, so if you are coming here to experience the beauty of the countryside during the summer months you will be well enough off, but if you come here in the winter you better be someone who loves the cold and loves the snow.