Anchorage
When to come?: 

The best time of year to visit Anchorage for most outdoor activity is the summer - long days that really never get that dark around the solstice, cool weather, and the city likes to play outdoors. Of course, if you're into cross country skiing or ski-joring, winter would be a lot better.

What to do if you have a sunny Saturday?: 

Anchorage is a great town to ride a comfort or hybrid bike around on the bike paths - two of the best are the Bird-to-Gird trail on the Seward Highway south of town, and the Tony Knowles Coastal Path near downtown.

Just outside of town on the Glenn Highway in Eagle River, you can visit Thunderbird Falls for a hike. In the same area, you can spend a whole day out at Eklutna Lake - do the bike and paddle package trip on the lake, where you ride a mountain bike out on the trail, but paddle back in a canoe or kayak.

Where can I go to get out away from the city, without driving too far?: 

One of the best places to get away from the city is Turnagain Pass on the Seward Highway - you can keep going all the way down the Kenai Peninsula, but near the pass you have access to lots of good hiking trails and campgrounds without much in the way of development.

What are some great weekend getaways?: 

Really, any direction you drive out of Anchorage will be great once you get past the sprawl. Some great places to go are Seward and the Denali State Park within about 2 and a half hours to the south and the north.

Parks: 

Earthquake Park

Description: 

On Good Friday of 1964, Anchorage suffered an earthquake that caused a neighborhood called Turnagain Heights to slide into the Knik Arm. Instead of rebuilding, the area is now a park that connects to the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail. There are some interpretive signs about the earthquake, along with a sculpture that represents the earth shift. For more about the earthquake, visit the Anchorage Museum downtown.

On clear days, you can see the mountains on the other side of the arm, including Mount Susitna, and occasionally, Mount McKinley.

Resolution Park

Description: 

Resolution Park in downtown Anchorage is a series of wooden decks and platforms that offers a view over the Knik Arm. There isn't too much to the park, just the overlooks, some benches some interpretive signs, and a plaque commemorating Captain Cook. He sailed into the Cook Inlet, then turned around and left, later to be killed in Hawaii.

If there is a big wait at Snow City Cafe, this park makes a nice walking destination - it's only a block away.

Kincaid Park

Description: 

Kincaid Park is a large city park in Anchorage, Alaska with lots of recreational oppurtunities, including hiking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing bicycling, picnicking, and disc golf. The 11-mile Tony Knowles Coastal Trail starts in Kincaid Park and ends by downtown Anchorage.

Westchester Lagoon

Description: 

Westchester Lagoon is a man-made lake created out of Chester Creek in downtown Anchorage. The Chester Creek Trail intersects the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail here - also keep an eye out for Jupiter!