Pioneer Park picture
Nicholas Jacobs/FCVB

Key Info

2300 Airport Way

Details

Parks and Gardens, Recreation Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
3.9scorecard
  • 3.5Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

Part-theme park and part-historic park, the 44-acre Pioneer Park – built in honor of the 100th-anniversary celebration of Alaska's purchase from Russia – showcases the history of Fairbanks through several museums, including the Tanana Valley Railroad Museum, the Alaska Native Museum and the Pioneer Museum. A replica steamboat and two historic houses also give a glimpse of life in past eras. The park features several restaurants and shops, as well as kid-friendly activities, including a train ride, mini-golf and a playground area. Although many attractions and concessions close during the winter, RV parking is available year-round.

Families who visited recently called Pioneer Park a "gem" for kids and complimented the playground area, train ride, train museum and shops. Other reviewers enjoyed the replica steamboat, original historic homes and museums, and some were surprised to find affordable overnight RV parking for only $12 per night. However, some travelers noted that the grounds – particularly the mini-golf area –were in need of some maintenance. 

The park, located by the Chena River, is open daily year-round, although concessions and some attractions are closed between Labor Day and Memorial Day. Summer hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day) are noon to 8 p.m., and during the winter, the Bear Gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. Admission to the park is free, but some of the property's attractions charge a nominal fee. You'll find the park about 2 miles west of downtown; it's reachable by car or bus (the blue line makes a stop here). For a park map or information on RV parking, visit the park's website.

See all Hotels in Fairbanks »

More Best Things To Do in Fairbanks

Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center1 of 9
Aurora Borealis Tours2 of 9
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center

The Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center is a great first stop to pick up maps and information on things to do in Fairbanks. In addition to exhibits on the natural history of the region and the cultural history of Alaska natives, the center offers a free film on Alaska's history and nature. What's more, on the first Friday of every month, the center hosts a free reception featuring the work of an Alaskan artist from the interior region. This is also where you'll find the city's famous Antler Arch, a piece constructed with more than 100 moose and caribou antlers collected from all over interior Alaska.

Most recent visitors said this free museum was an ideal first stop for learning about Alaskan life, with a good mix of history and culture. Many found the central downtown location convenient, and families particularly enjoyed the interactive displays for kids. Some visitors were disappointed that the informative movie only runs once per day, but all travelers complimented the friendly and knowledgeable staff.

Read more
Angie Cerny/Explore Fairbanks
See full list of Best Things To Do in Fairbanks »

Explore More of Fairbanks

If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.

Recommended

30 Top Florida Weekend Getaways

Spend sun-filled days exploring Florida's beautiful beaches, cities, parks and small towns.

Gwen PratesiDecember 9, 2019

The Best Travel Backpacks for 2020

U.S. News rated the best travel backpacks using recommendations from experts and consumers.

Lyn MettlerNovember 25, 2019

30 Top Wellness Retreats

Rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit at one of these relaxation-focused properties.

Kyle McCarthyNovember 21, 2019

30 Fun All-Inclusive Family Vacations

Book one of these all-inclusive trips that cover food, accommodations and activities galore.

Holly JohnsonNovember 14, 2019

5 Ways Cruise Lines Are Becoming More Environmentally Friendly

Industry considers impact as it looks to the future.

Gwen PratesiNovember 12, 2019

11 Unique and Quirky Cruise Destinations

Venture off the beaten path for an authentic cruising experience.

Christine SmithNovember 12, 2019

The 2020 Best Cruise Lines for Families

Gather up the gang and head out to sea with one of these six kid-friendly cruise lines.

Nicola WoodNovember 12, 2019

The Top Pyramids in Mexico to Visit

Add these ancient marvels to your Mexico vacation itinerary.

Lyn MettlerOctober 28, 2019

30 Top Babymoon Destinations, Trips and Ideas

From romantic beach getaways to big city adventures to glamping in the forest, these locales will inspire your babymoon planning.

Gwen PratesiOctober 15, 2019

15 Tips for Traveling While Pregnant

These tips will help pregnant women travel the world in comfort and style.

Holly JohnsonOctober 10, 2019