These Are The 20 Best Small Towns In Alaska For 2018


We used science and data to determine which small towns in Alaska are the best of the best..

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Data updated for 2018.

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You’ve seen these lists before: Best places to live in Alaska, Most Beautiful Downtowns, etc., etc. But all of them focus on major cities and towns in the Last Frontier and no one pays attention to the little guy.

Well, that’s all about to change as we put together a list of the best small towns in Alaska based on numbers–not opinions or hearsay.

We’ll dive right into our methodology in the next section; but first, we thought you might just want to know which places in Alaska ranked the based–you know, based on science.

Before we get to the top 20, here’s a look at the 10 Best Small Towns To Live in Alaska for 2018:

  1. Farmers Loop (Homes For Sale)
  2. Cordova (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Haines (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Goldstream (Homes For Sale)
  5. Farm Loop (Homes For Sale)
  6. Unalaska (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Diamond Ridge (Homes For Sale)
  8. Healy (Homes For Sale)
  9. Dillingham (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Ester (Homes For Sale)

If you live in one of these small towns like Farmers Loop, chances are, you’re not surprised. After all, you know how great you have it.

But for the rest of you–keep reading and we’ll get to just why these small towns made our list.

For more reading on the Last Frontier check out:

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How We Determined The Coolest Towns In Alaska

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent data from the Census’s 2012-2016 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (Higher is better)
  • Lowest Unemployment Rates
  • Housing costs (Higher is better. More demand.)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Higher is better)
  • Highly Educated Adults (Higher is better)
  • Insurance Rates (Higher is better)
  • Commute Times (Lower is better)

We looked at places with populations lower than 5,000 people and greater than 1,000, of which, there were a lot – 41 to be exact.

We then ranked each place in each category with scores from 1 to 41, averaged them out, and the lowest scores went to our Best Small Towns in Alaska. Top of that list — Farmers Loop.

Keep reading to find out more about our top 20 best small towns in Alaska.

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1. Farmers Loop


Population: 4,517
Median Income: $100,518 (4th Best)
Median Home Value: $243,400 (10th Best)
More on Farmers Loop: Data| Homes For Sale

2. Cordova

Cordova, AK

Source: Public domain

Population: 3,047
Median Income: $107,771 (2nd Best)
Median Home Value: $299,500 (2nd Best)
More on Cordova: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

3. Haines

Haines, AK

Population: 1,838
Median Income: $69,292 (23rd Best)
Median Home Value: $219,900 (14th Best)
More on Haines: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

4. Goldstream


Population: 3,960
Median Income: $83,599 (8th Best)
Median Home Value: $209,100 (19th Best)
More on Goldstream: Data| Homes For Sale

5. Farm Loop


Population: 1,119
Median Income: $88,125 (6th Best)
Median Home Value: $240,900 (11th Best)
More on Farm Loop: Data| Homes For Sale

6. Unalaska

Unalaska, AK

Source: Public domain

Population: 4,710
Median Income: $92,083 (5th Best)
Median Home Value: $339,900 (1st Best)
More on Unalaska: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

7. Diamond Ridge


Population: 1,201
Median Income: $78,553 (12th Best)
Median Home Value: $251,900 (7th Best)
More on Diamond Ridge: Data| Homes For Sale

8. Healy


Population: 1,115
Median Income: $101,136 (3rd Best)
Median Home Value: $248,100 (9th Best)
More on Healy: Data| Homes For Sale

9. Dillingham

Dillingham, AK

Source: Public domain

Population: 2,296
Median Income: $71,146 (20th Best)
Median Home Value: $255,500 (6th Best)
More on Dillingham: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

10. Ester

Ester, AK

Source: Google Maps

Population: 2,727
Median Income: $69,076 (24th Best)
Median Home Value: $195,300 (25th Best)
More on Ester: Data| Homes For Sale

11. North Pole

North Pole, AK

Population: 2,300
Median Income: $69,806 (22nd Best)
Median Home Value: $217,000 (15th Best)
More on North Pole: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

12. Soldotna

Soldotna, AK

Population: 4,471
Median Income: $67,434 (27th Best)
Median Home Value: $223,000 (13th Best)
More on Soldotna: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

13. Ridgeway


Population: 2,338
Median Income: $108,409 (1st Best)
Median Home Value: $251,400 (8th Best)
More on Ridgeway: Data| Homes For Sale

14. Lazy Mountain


Population: 1,538
Median Income: $74,886 (18th Best)
Median Home Value: $268,500 (3rd Best)
More on Lazy Mountain: Data| Homes For Sale

15. Seward

Seward, AK

Source: Public domain

Population: 2,714
Median Income: $70,000 (21st Best)
Median Home Value: $192,500 (27th Best)
More on Seward: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

16. Valdez

Valdez, AK

Population: 3,930
Median Income: $80,357 (10th Best)
Median Home Value: $189,000 (28th Best)
More on Valdez: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

17. Nome

Nome, AK

Population: 3,782
Median Income: $78,507 (13th Best)
Median Home Value: $209,700 (18th Best)
More on Nome: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

18. Deltana


Population: 2,409
Median Income: $75,250 (17th Best)
Median Home Value: $264,600 (5th Best)
More on Deltana: Data| Homes For Sale

19. Butte


Population: 3,905
Median Income: $77,750 (15th Best)
Median Home Value: $238,300 (12th Best)
More on Butte: Data| Homes For Sale

20. Salcha


Population: 1,068
Median Income: $77,917 (14th Best)
Median Home Value: $207,600 (21st Best)
More on Salcha: Data| Homes For Sale

Science Can Tackle Any Issue, Even Small Ones

We said it once and we’ll say it again — this list: it’s just science. We did the research, we crunched the numbers, and it turns out, these 20 small towns in Alaska are the best, in which to live.

And who can argue with that?

If you’re curious, here are the worst small towns in Alaska:

  1. Sutton-Alpine
  2. Houston
  3. Hooper Bay

For more Alaska reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Small Towns In Alaska

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Value
1 Farmers Loop 4,517 $100,518 $243,400
2 Cordova 3,047 $107,771 $299,500
3 Haines 1,838 $69,292 $219,900
4 Goldstream 3,960 $83,599 $209,100
5 Farm Loop 1,119 $88,125 $240,900
6 Unalaska 4,710 $92,083 $339,900
7 Diamond Ridge 1,201 $78,553 $251,900
8 Healy 1,115 $101,136 $248,100
9 Dillingham 2,296 $71,146 $255,500
10 Ester 2,727 $69,076 $195,300
11 North Pole 2,300 $69,806 $217,000
12 Soldotna 4,471 $67,434 $223,000
13 Ridgeway 2,338 $108,409 $251,400
14 Lazy Mountain 1,538 $74,886 $268,500
15 Seward 2,714 $70,000 $192,500
16 Valdez 3,930 $80,357 $189,000
17 Nome 3,782 $78,507 $209,700
18 Deltana 2,409 $75,250 $264,600
19 Butte 3,905 $77,750 $238,300
20 Salcha 1,068 $77,917 $207,600
21 Fritz Creek 2,043 $67,969 $267,800
22 Delta Junction 1,050 $76,667 $198,300
23 Kotzebue 3,288 $85,278 $194,900
24 Bear Creek 1,389 $82,788 $153,300
25 King Cove 1,080 $72,679 $128,500
26 Barrow 4,316 $78,804 $177,800
27 Craig 1,257 $62,500 $210,900
28 Wrangell 2,401 $52,986 $183,300
29 Sand Point 1,248 $65,764 $128,300
30 Salamatof 1,074 $57,250 $208,900
31 Anchor Point 2,018 $54,855 $180,400
32 Big Lake 3,552 $68,875 $195,600
33 Metlakatla 1,620 $53,846 $141,700
34 Cohoe 1,321 $63,929 $212,500
35 Susitna North 1,332 $45,781 $199,300
36 Tok 1,239 $59,018 $159,700
37 Chevak 1,194 $41,417 $89,200
38 Willow 2,081 $53,958 $150,300
39 Hooper Bay 1,114 $37,000 $101,300
40 Houston 2,028 $52,500 $175,200
41 Sutton-Alpine 1,564 $39,063 $162,500

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