17 Best Things to Do in Wasilla, AK

Wasilla, AK

Welcome to Wasilla, Alaska, my hometown in the heart of the Matanuska-Susitna Valley.

This place is known for its beautiful landscapes, from majestic mountains to serene lakes.

I've spent countless hours exploring the nature trails, fishing in the sparkling lakes, and soaking in the captivating views.

The sights and sounds of the Alaskan wilderness will make your heart race with excitement.

I'd love to share some of my favorite spots and activities in this charming city.

So, buckle up as I take you through the 17 best things to do in Wasilla, Alaska!

About this article: This article was written by a local contributor based on their own experiences and those around them. While this list showcases some remarkable places, it's important to note that this is an opinion piece, and there are many other exceptional places to visit that are not featured here.
Our aim is not just to guide you to popular places but to encourage you to venture out and experience the city for yourself.

Spend an Afternoon at Lucille Lake

The waters of Lucille Lake
Traveling Alaskan / Shutterstock.com

I'll never forget the first time I stumbled upon the serenity of Lucille Lake.

You could say it's a hidden gem, a 350-acre oasis fringed by private homes, offering an idyllic escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Whenever the sun shines on Lucille Lake, the view is nothing short of mesmerizing.

Picture this: glossy waters reflecting the sun's brilliance, families picnicking under the shelter of towering trees, kids laughing as they play on the well-maintained playground.

And, if you're lucky, you might just get a glimpse of the local wildlife – frogs leaping from lily pad to lily pad, or cranes gracefully soaring overhead.

Have a Unique Experience at the Salt Cave of Alaska

A tranquil oasis right here in our bustling city, that's what The Salt Cave of Alaska is all about.

My partner, kids, and I, along with a few friends, recently booked a private session at this hidden gem.

Believe it or not, despite having three toddlers in tow, we all found the experience immensely relaxing!

The Salt Cave of Alaska, nestled amid local businesses in the clock tower, provided an excellent opportunity to disconnect from the constant hum of technology and simply unwind.

The place was spotlessly clean, and the welcoming aura made us feel at home instantly.

As we settled in, we noticed that our kids seemed to adore the environment too!

To them, it was like a healing sand box - a place where they could play without a care in the world.

Aside from the children-friendly aspect, it was the calming environment of the Salt Cave that truly won us over.

Breathing in the salty air while listening to the soothing sounds of the waterfall was a truly unique experience.

It's a place that might make for an ideal date night, or perhaps a quiet, personal retreat if you're looking to get away from it all.

Explore the Alaska Live Steamers Inc

Last weekend, I decided to treat my family to a day out at Alaska Live Steamers Inc.

The ride lasted about 45 minutes, with a short pause halfway through to stretch our legs and snap a few photos.

We were blessed with clear skies, and the views were stunning.

The seat cushions could have been a little more comfortable, but trust me, the exciting experience more than made up for it.

The friendly and dedicated volunteers deserve a big shout-out.

They did a fantastic job running the place and ensured the trip was enjoyable.

Wander at the Palmer Hay Flats State Game Refuge

Living here in Alaska, I'm always in awe of the natural beauty that surrounds me.

I often find myself packing up my camera and heading out to Palmer Hay Flats State Game Refuge for a day of peaceful exploration.

Whenever I need to clear my mind, I find solace in the refuge's winding trails.

These paths are perfect for a leisurely walk or a quick jog.

They also prove to be excellent paths for my friends who frequently come here to give their dogs the exercise they need.

One thing I always carry with me on these adventures is bear spray and personal protection, a wise precaution in these woods teeming with wildlife.

The thrill of the unknown, I've found, adds an exciting edge to the serene landscape.

The refuge is also a popular spot for families.

The scenic beauty offers the perfect backdrop for family pictures or senior photo shoots.

I've seen many families set up impromptu shoots, capturing their smiles against the picturesque background.

See the Wonders of the Museum of Alaska Transportation

Exterior of the Museum of Alaska Transportation
Jeffrey Beall, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

I've always been passionate about history, especially when it comes to transportation, and there's no better place to explore that than at the Museum of Alaska Transportation.

From the moment I step through its doors, I'm transported back in time, surrounded by the grandeur of vintage trains and the elegance of old-school planes and automobiles.

It's a real, tangible connection to the past - these are not replicas, they're genuine pieces of history.

The museum's interior is always immaculate, a testament to the hard work and dedication of the staff.

The family-friendly pricing is another aspect I appreciate about the museum.

It's an affordably fun and educational outing that offers plenty of value, especially when you have kids in tow.

My little ones are always thrilled to see the transportation relics, sparking their curiosity and imagination.

It's a joy to see their fascination, and it's made even better knowing that it's teaching them about the history of our beautiful state, Alaska.

The museum also offers self-guided tours, which are a wonderful way to explore at your own pace.

Unwind at Settlers Bay Coastal Park

Whenever I need to reconnect with nature and breathe, I head to Settlers Bay Coastal Park. It's my little sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle of life.

I love spending my weekends here, walking the trail and soaking in the serenity of the park.

It's a relatively short trail, perfect for a leisurely hike, and even manageable for the youngest members of our family.

There's a separate path for biking, which allows for both hikers and bikers to enjoy the park without getting in each other’s way.

One of my favorite things to do is bring a packed lunch and enjoy it at the picnic benches while gazing out at the stunning views of the hayflats.

It's a peaceful experience that never fails to clear my mind.

The park is always well-maintained too; the restrooms are clean and the trails are kept in great condition.

The park itself may not be huge, and if you're an avid hiker looking for a long trek, you might have to do a few laps around the trail to get a good workout.

However, the beauty and tranquility of the surroundings more than make up for its size.

Grab Some Drinks at Bearpaw River Brewing Company

The first thing that hits your senses when you walk into Bearpaw River Brewing Company is the mouth-watering aroma of pizzas baking.

Their amazing culinary spectacle of baking pizzas right in front of you is a sight to behold.

You can't beat the combo of their delicious drinks and pizzas!

I remember ordering the beer mosa with their special railroad beer, a unique concoction that had my taste buds tingling with delight.

What makes Bearpaw River Brewing Company stand out is not just the food and drinks.

The atmosphere is simply delightful.

Comfortable seats and tables perfect for games make it a versatile space.

Whether you want to unwind, catch up on some work, or simply hang out with friends, it's the ideal spot.

I can't wait for summer when they open up the seating and garage doors, it's going to be a treat!

Don't even get me started on the Green Apple Cran Salad and the spicy Hawaiian pizza.

Both are equally mouth-watering and leave you craving for more.

The beer is top-notch and they serve some of the best kombucha in city.

You definitely don't want to miss out on this place!

The pizzas and salads are not just delicious; they're satisfying as well.

Enjoy the Simple Pleasures at Newcomb Park

View of Newcomb Park during winter season
Sun Oh / Shutterstock.com

There's something incredibly soothing about the early morning calm at Newcomb Park.

The way the sun's first rays shimmer on the surface of Wasilla Lake, the playful sounds of the local wildlife waking up, it's a sight to behold.

Over the years, I've found that starting my day with a jog here sets the perfect tone for the rest of the day.

The park itself is a well-maintained open area with a playground that, while a bit on the smaller side, is a magnet for the city kids.

The laughter and joy that fill the air when they're around make this place feel alive.

And it's not just the kids who have all the fun.

With beach access, adults get to join in too.

On hot days, the cool lake water provides much-needed relief.

One thing I really appreciate is the regular patrols by fish and game officials who ensure the fish and ducks are not being harassed and that dogs are on leash.

It's comforting to know that our local wildlife is being looked after.

This park is more than just a green space; it's a community hub.

Throughout the year, it plays host to various seasonal activities.

Have Fun at Settlers Bay Golf Course

If you're looking for an unparalleled golfing experience right here in our breathtaking Alaskan outdoors, look no further than Settlers Bay Golf Course.

Nestled in the heart of the Last Frontier, this course is nothing short of spectacular.

I still remember when I first set foot on its lush grass - the pristine fairways and the greens, slow but generously sized, presented a unique challenge that I thoroughly enjoyed.

A day at Settlers Bay means not just a round of golf, but also an immersion into the beauty and ever-changing weather of Alaska.

No two days on the course are ever the same, which keeps even us locals on our toes.

But don't let a cloudy day deter you; a round in the rain can really amplify the thrill of the game.

One of the things I appreciate most about Settlers Bay is the exceptional customer service.

The staff are just as warm and welcoming as the stunning views.

And if you, like me, sometimes forget to pack your clubs, worry not.

The course offers the option to rent premium clubs, a perk that has saved my game more than once!

But the experience doesn’t end at the 18th hole.

The clubhouse, which I’ve frequented many times, serves delicious food.

After winding down a great day of golf, there's nothing like a hearty meal at the clubhouse to round off the day.

For you RV explorers, there's also the added benefit of the available electrical and water hookups on site.

It's an added convenience if you’re planning to play for more than just one day.

Spend an Afternoon at Iditapark

I always insist on daily fresh air, and the Iditapark provides just that.

It is the largest park in the valley and a favorite among the kids, including mine.

The joy on their faces as they run around, swing on the swings, or slide down the slides, is simply priceless.

Plus, a fascinating little parkour section always grabs their attention.

Dine at Evangelo's Restaurant

If there's one place in the city that makes my taste buds jump with joy every single time, it's undoubtedly Evangelo's Restaurant.

I end up here quite frequently, so much so that I'm starting to feel like a regular.

Their enticing drink specials never fail to catch my attention and the lavender steak sauce?

It's the stuff of dreams, I tell you.

A word of caution, though: their breadsticks with white sauce are so delicious, you might just find yourself addicted!

Stroll Down Wasilla Creek Boardwalk Trail

Scenic view of Wasilla Creek Boardwalk Trail
Paul Racenet / Shutterstock.com

There is something magical about discovering the beauty of nature tucked away in the heart of Wasilla.

I never get tired of wandering along the Wasilla Creek Boardwalk Trail.

This place is a hidden gem that offers an enjoyable, family-friendly experience.

The trail is well-maintained, beginning with cedar planks before transitioning to metal.

My dog, Max, always accompanies me on these walks, and he seems to thoroughly enjoy the experience.

If you're planning to bring along your furry companion, you might want to consider dog booties, as some might find the metal portion a bit uncomfortable on their paws.

A charming feature of this trail is the wheelchair accessible picnic table located at the end of the trail.

After a leisurely stroll, it's the perfect place to unwind or enjoy a little picnic before making the journey back.

The trail is short, approximately a quarter of a mile one way, and offers some fantastic nature views.

While it may not be wide enough for two wheelchairs to pass comfortably, it's doable with crutches.

The first part of the trail is a short flat dirt path, transitioning into a boardwalk for the rest of the journey.

A ride down to the end on my Onewheel is always an experience that's both exhilarating and calming.

Preserving spaces like Wasilla Creek Boardwalk Trail is so important.

Not just for us, but for wildlife habitat, pollution detoxification, and flood control.

It's a little oasis amidst the sprawl, a place that reminds us of the importance of nature in our lives.

Visit the Wasilla Museum & Visitor Center

I still remember my first visit to the Wasilla Museum and Visitor Center.

It wasn't just a regular museum visit; it was a journey through time, a story that unfolded right before my eyes.

The museum was like a treasure trove, packed with relics and displays that trace the history of our quaint city, Wasilla.

From its early Athabaskan roots to the mining boom and beyond, every artifact told a story.

A calendar dating back to 1947, memorabilia from the mining era, and so much more, it was like stepping into a time machine.

Explore the Extreme Fun Center - Wasilla

I'm always looking for a fun day out for the kids, and Extreme Fun Center - Wasilla hits the spot perfectly.

With a military background, I can't help but appreciate their VIP plan.

It's an absolute treat for military folks like me, and the discounts make it all the more worthwhile.

Right from the moment we step in, the kids are on cloud nine, with so much to do.

They can't get enough of Wizard of Oz.

Collecting all the cards while they play is a quick and easy way to snag a whopping 5,000 tickets.

And let me tell you, there's nothing like seeing your kids' faces light up when they hit that jackpot.

Extreme Fun Center is not just about arcade games.

My kids are huge fans of their XD ride and Go Kart.

The adrenaline rush is real and it's just the right blend of thrilling and fun.

It's a place where you'll find a bit of everything.

Whether it's bowling, laser tag, indoor electric go-kart, rock climbing, bumper cars or a 4D theatre experience, it's all there to make your day unforgettable.

And who could forget the kids' play center, aptly named 'jungle'.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Have Fun Adventures at Kepler Lake

The waters of Kepler Lake
Cristy Cowitz / Shutterstock.com

Isn't it wonderful to rent a rowboat and escape to a serene lake, leaving the hustle and bustle of everyday life behind?

That's exactly what I do at Kepler Lake. The gentle breeze blowing across the lake keeps the bugs at bay, and the friendly staff is always ready to assist.

Every season, new fish are added to the lake, making it a wonderful spot for fishing enthusiasts like myself.

I've spent countless hours sitting in a rowboat, rod in hand, waiting for a catch.

The thrill of reeling in a fish is something that never gets old.

But even if fishing isn't your thing, the lake itself is so beautiful that it's worth a visit.

It's run by a lovely family who keep it in pristine condition.

I remember a time when we rented boats with trolling motors and spent the entire morning exploring the nooks and crannies of the lake.

Trust me, it was an adventure well spent.

One of the added bonuses of Kepler Lake is the abundance of wildlife.

You can't use motorized boats, so the lake remains peaceful and calm, attracting a variety of birds and animals.

I've lost count of the number of times I've spotted a deer drinking from the lake or a hawk swooping down to catch a fish.

Experience Dog Sledding with Alaskan Husky Adventures

You can't quite grasp the magic of mushing until you've experienced it yourself, and that's exactly what I did at Alaskan Husky Adventures.

The moment I stepped foot on the premises, their friendly staff greeted me enthusiastically, sharing interesting facts about the sport and the dogs.

Underneath the Alaskan sky, I felt a sense of camaraderie, not just among us humans but also between us and the dogs.

I loved how the huskies, brimming with vibrant energy, were so devoted to their sport and their people.

Observing them up-close, it's impossible not to feel a surge of admiration for these dogs.

My heart melted when I held a husky puppy, their innocent eyes sparkling with joy, their fluffy bodies vibrating with excitement.

The biggest highlight? It was the dog sledding run, of course.

The feeling of the wind whipping through my hair as we raced through the stunning landscapes was exhilarating.

Watching my children's eyes light up with unfiltered excitement is a memory I'll cherish forever.

Rain or shine, Alaskan Husky Adventures offers an unforgettable experience.

Go Kayaking at Matanuska Lake

Growing up just a stone's throw away from Matanuska Lake has perks.

Not only do I get to wake up to the beautiful views of the lake each morning, but my family and I also get to enjoy a myriad of outdoor activities year-round.

Despite the lack of a beach, Matanuska Lake is the best swimming spot in the area.

I love the cool, refreshing water, especially on hot summer days.

But that's not all. Come winter, it transforms into a fantastic ice fishing spot.

It involves quite a bit of work hauling the equipment out there, but the thrill of the catch makes it all worthwhile.

The fun doesn't stop there. Surrounding the lake are miles of trails perfect for hiking, biking, and even horseback riding.

They're not overly crowded, which gives me the right amount of solitude to clear my head.

My kids are also in love with these trails. They've become their playground, a place where they can run and play to their heart's content.

Final Thoughts

Whether it's soaking up the tranquility at Lucille or Kepler Lake, getting your adrenaline pumping at the Extreme Fun Center, or immersing yourself in the rich history at the Museum of Alaska Transportation and Wasilla Museum & Visitor Center, there is never a dull moment here in Wasilla.

Every day in Wasilla is a new adventure, and, in my experience, it always leaves you yearning for more.

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