There is definitely no lack of shopping opportunities if you find yourself in downtown Anchorage, Alaska and want to take some reminders home or bring gifts to friends and family. I was there on a holiday weekend and don’t have a car so these are my personal experiences. First, I Ubered from the Air Force base housing where I was staying and had the driver drop me off at the Anchorage Log Cabin Visitor’s Center (546 W 4th Ave). This little log cabin is the original visitor’s center, which eventually outgrew it’s space. The woman inside guided me to the much larger building just behind which houses all the brochures, travel magazines, and friendly staff to help tourists and visitors.
From the log cabin, there are numerous souvenir shops within walking distance. The first one I stopped at was directly across the street and called Once in a Blue Moose Gift Shop. This shop was quite large and I did find several items I would have bought if I wasn’t traveling by plane. However, as in all the shops I stopped in that day, there were items that were obviously mass produced and not made in Alaska. You will find the pricier local handmade items behind glass cabinets and on the walls. And throughout the store were the more inexpensive items for tourists on a budget.
Just down the street and on the same block is Grizzly Gifts. You can’t miss this store with the large grizzly display just outside on the corner and even more inside. This store had the same types of items as in most of the stores I stopped in — the t-shirts, smoked salmon, keychains, and the like.
Down the street and around the corner (600 W 4th Ave), I found the Polar Bear Gifts Outlet Store featuring a number of clothing items with 50% off stickers. I purchased a stylish lightweight winter jacket for $20, an item I had been needing since I lost weight last winter. I also purchased two t-shirts for $6.99 each.
Sara’s Gift Cache, 408 W 4th Ave, is a smaller store with more local items and none of the mass produced gift items. I enjoyed looking around but just purchased two postcards while there. The owner there is glad to help and answer any questions for visitors.
Downtown also features the 5th Ave. mall, a 4 story shopping experience with department stores as well as smaller souvenir shops. I had been there two days previously and had purchased the always popular Alaska Wild Berries variety box of chocolates. On Memorial Weekend on Sunday before noon, I found many of the smaller shops and art galleries weren’t open and those may have to wait for another visit.