Eielson AFB – Fairbanks, AK
Until 2007, Eielson was a front line base, deploying fighter and bomber units around the world and providing for the defense of Alaska. Because of BRAC 2005 the base went off deployment status in 2007. Its primary mission is to support Red Flag-Alaska, a series of Pacific Air Forces commander-directed field training exercises for U.S. Forces, joint offensive counter-air, interdiction, close-air support, and large force employment training in a simulated combat environment. These exercises are conducted on the Joint Pacific Alaskan Range complex with air operations flown out of the two bases. Alaska’s size enables the military to have the largest air-ground training complex in America
Eielson AFB is located 26 miles southeast of Fairbanks, in the interior of Alaska, about 110 miles south of the arctic circle. Fairbanks has about 88,000 people and boasts many of the services you would find in a similarly sized city in the lower 48. The city of North Pole, where the spirit of Christmas lives year round, is located just 8 miles from Eielson. North Pole is a small friendly community with a basic selection of services such as: dining, service organizations, parks, churches and events throughout the year. Fairbanks boasts hiking, fishing, canoeing, dog mushing, cross country skiing, snowmobiling and some of the best Northern Lights Shows in the world.
Ask any local where you should eat first and they will tell you the Turtle Club. You should listen to them, and you should try the prime rib and king crab. Another place to try is The Crepery. It was voted #1 restaurant on Yelp and Tripadvisor. The smoked salmon crepes will give you the perfect taste for Alaska, and you can wash it down with a sweet crepe after. Gambardella’s pasta Bella is where you go for italiano, and Pike’s Landing is where you go for seafood. The Cookie Jar is the best place to grab breakfast, and Lavelle’s Bistro is best for 5pm drinks and appetizers. Upscale dining is scarce here, but hey, that means you’ll never be spending too much on a meal. Enjoy!
Shopping – Because Fairbanks is a bit smaller, the shopping options are limited. Bentley Mall is small, but you can find a good selection of mainstream options here. Unfortunately, our best advice is online shopping for your favorite brands. Of course, there are grocery stores and a Walmart for all the essentials.
Our Top Recommendations for Things to do in Alaska
See the Northern Lights
Totem Bight State Historic Park
Kenai Fjord Wildlife Cruise
Denali National Park
White Water Rafting