Your guide to giving unique Anchorage experiences

Anchorage experience gift guide


It’s Better Live

The gift guide for unique Anchorage experiences

As The Grinch learned, the best holiday gifts don't need to come in boxes or bags. More memories and time with family and friends can often be the most meaningful gifts of all.

According to a recent study, 74 percent of Americans now prioritize experiences over products or things. And studies have found that spending on experiences brings more lasting joy than spending on things.

Here are some unique Anchorage experiences you can share with your loved ones this year.

Live performances

There’s nothing quite like seeing a live performance. Going to live events and concerts frequently not only improves happiness. It can also boost your self-worth and extend your lifespan up to nine years, according to recent studies.

And in Anchorage, when the temperatures drop, the curtains rise. You’ll find tons of performances during the coldest (and in our opinion, the most wonderful) time of the year, with tickets starting around $30.

For the Broadway lover

Chicago the Musical

Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The King & I

For high-flying family fun

Cirque Dreams Holidaze

For the podcast listener

The Moth

For the oldies lover

The Doo Wop Project

For those who dream of the tropics

Kalani Pe’a

For the adventurer

Las Cafeteras


Eileen Ivers

For the country or folk fan

Music City Hit Makers

Twisted Pine

For the one who loves Hamilton & Mozart

Ensemble Mik Nawooj

For the soul & gospel fan

Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio

We Shall Overcome

For those who laugh at the news

The Capitol Steps

For the rocker

Portland Cello Project celebrates the music of Prince

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Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up Anchorage with seven performances at the PAC Friday, Dec. 27, Saturday, Dec. 28, and Sunday Dec. 29.

Tickets to Anchorage Symphony Orchestra, Perseverance Theatre, and Alaska Dance Theatre also make great experience gifts.

Not sure which show they’d enjoy most? CenterTix gift certificates can be redeemed for tickets to Anchorage Concert Association shows, as well as other local organizations that present shows at the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts.

More Anchorage performing arts: Anchorage Opera, Alaska Junior Theater, Asian Alaskan Cultural Center, Arctic Entries, Parlor In The Round, Sankofa Dance Theater, Mostly Melanin Arts, Scared Scriptless, Pulse Dance Company


Who couldn't use some more dancing in their life? Anchorage has a thriving dance community, with classes and events for a variety of ages and skill levels.

Alaska Dance Theatre

Underground Dance Company

The Drift Gallery Dance Studio

Studio Pulse Center for Dance

Anaya Latin Dance

Food & drinks

Got a foodie on your list? Treat them to dinner at their favorite restaurant or enhance their food & wine knowledge with a class.

La Bodega – beer, wine, or sake club

49th State Brewing Company


Crush Bistro

El Rodeo


Glacier Brewhouse



South Restaurant + Coffeehouse

Tequila 61

Wild Scoops

Food & wine classes/events

South Restaurant + Coffeehouse classes & events

Marx. Brothers classes

Escape room

Escape rooms – games in which a team of players cooperatively discover clues, solve puzzles, and accomplish tasks – are all the rage. Alaska Escape Rooms in downtown Anchorage offers interactive, indoor fun for all ages.


Give them a year of memories and inspiration with a membership to the Anchorage Museum. They’ll have access to 20+ exhibitions exploring the art, history, culture, and science of the North, and hundreds of free and discounted classes, workshops, camps, lectures, tours, symposiums, and parties available to members.

Outdoor activities

Obviously, Alaska has no shortage of outdoor experiences. For some local wildlife adventures, how about an Alaska Zoo annual pass or event tickets, Alaska SeaLife Center membership, or SCUBA diving lessons?


Moments of peace, quiet, and self-care can be few and far between during the busy holiday season. Give a spa treatment at Escape Salon & Spa downtown, or a night’s stay at an Anchorage hotel.

Westmark Anchorage
Historic Anchorage Hotel
Captain Cook Hotel

Also in the #itsbetterlive category: flowers & plants. Schedule a delivery with a local florist like Bagoys and you’ll instantly brighten their mood this season.


Whether it’s a dream vacation or a weekend road trip, travel is an unforgettable experience gift. Alaska Airlines offers travel gift certificates from $25 to $500, and also provides mileage plan members the option to give or transfer miles to someone else.

Donate in their name

The ultimate gift that gives back. Make a donation to a cause they care about in their name.