Anchorage, Talkeetna, Denali National Park & South Central Alaska
Outdoor & Adventure, Nature & Wildlife
Explore treasures of “the last frontier” complete with float plane flights, bear and wildlife viewing, cruises and wilderness walks.
Take a trip to Matanuska glaciers with some leisure time in the quaint town of Talkeetna. Travel deep into Denali National Park on a backcountry lodge, experience Tundra Wilderness adventure and savor first-class luxury Dome Rail service back to Anchorage.
Enjoy excellent opportunities to see an array of wildlife in South Central Alaska and take a float plane into the wilderness to search for Alaskan Bears on this once-in-a-lifetime tour.
Upon arrival, drive to your hotel to settle in from your long journey. Depending on your flight arrival time, you may have time to explore the city at your own pace or get a taste for Anchorage’s vibrant culinary scene.
Travel north 184km/2.5h along the Parks Highway to Talkeetna with your driver-guide. Drive past alpine peaks, rivers streams, spruce and birch forests, as well as Matanuska-Susitna Valley, rimmed by 3 major mountain ranges: Alaska Range, Talkeetna and Chugach. Then, immerse in a world of ice on a 3.5-hour Private Matanuska Glacier Hike. Don crampons, picks and other gear as you traverse crevasses, caves and deep blue pools. You will see the “Ice Falls” phenomenon which occurs when solid ice “falls” over giant boulders, creating intricate natural sculptures.
After breakfast at a 1917 log roadhouse, head north 390km/7.5h on Parks Highway, passing Mat-Su valley before arriving at Denali Park Entrance. Say ‘farewell’ to your driver-guide and check into your lodge naturalist/driver’s shuttle to journey deep into the heart of the 6-million-acre Denali. Stops will be made to take advantage of potential wildlife encounter: bear, caribou, Dall sheep and moose. Weather permitting you may catch a glimpse of the park’s namesake. Denali measures 20,310 feet above sea level and is North America’s highest peak. Your journey ends with your arrival at your wilderness lodging.
Guided group hikes are offered daily for different abilities levels, with knowledgeable guides sharing their love of the region’s wildlife, landscape and history. Retreat by the fire, or if you want more, take in an evening program featuring Alaska’s natural and cultural history.
Depart 6am for a 5-hour guided bus tour to the Denali Park Entrance to board your luxury dome rail cars (First Class Service) with panoramic windows of snaking Indian River and Hurricane Gulch before a scenic stop at Talkeetna. As you approach Anchorage at 8pm, the dramatic Chugach Range welcomes you to Alaska’s largest city, where you will be transferred to hotel to check in. [OPTIONAL: Denali Scenic Express Flight (weather dependent, 11kg checked and hand-carry luggage). Instead of rising early, depart mid-morning on a 35-55m Bush plane over awe-inspiring Alaska Range and north glaciers to Denali’s North Face]
Transfer to the floatplane terminal/airport for your flight to Kenai Peninsula or Southcentral Alaska lodge.
OPTION 1: KODIAK BEAR CENTRE (OPERATING SEASON FROM END JULY TO OCT, FIXED CHECK IN & OUT DATE, 3 NIGHTS STAY ONLY FOR MONDAY OR THURSDAY ARRIVAL)
Board 1h scheduled flight to Kodiak, followed by 45m floatplane (checked baggage allowance of 22kg per person, soft bags) to your all-inclusive lodge (staff gratuities not included). Set at Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge ideal to observe the legendary Kodiak brown bear, there are no roads or personal cabins to limit human-bear interactions. Besides the guests and lodge staff, the only visitors are refuge managers and researchers. Embark on daily guided bear viewing boat excursion (shared). The best season is mid-Aug to Oct. Please note that alcoholic beverages are not available, but guests are welcomed to bring their own.
OPTION 2: TUTKA BAY LODGE (OPERATING SEASON MID-MAY TO MID-SEPTEMBER)
Board 1.5h floatplane (checked baggage allowance of 22kg per person, soft bags).to your remote all-inclusive lodge adjacent to Kachemak Bay State Park on a 7-mile fjord near the glacier-studded Kenai Mountains. This full-service ocean front lodge offers schedule activities (on shared basis) for fishing, kayaking or hiking, tide pooling, cooking class, stretch and yoga classes. Facilities include one complimentary massage, sauna and hot tub. One private bear-viewing helicopter excursion along the Katmai Coast is included in your 3 nights stay. Breakfast and dinner are served family style in the lodge solarium, with wine tasting and cheese pairing in the evenings. Picnic lunches are packed for day excursions.
Enjoy a day of activity provided by respective lodgings.
Transfer to floatplane dock/airport and fly to Anchorage. Join your private driver-guide on a 2.5h Anchorage City Tour. Head to Port of Anchorage at Ship Creek banks where the former tent city was born. You might see Chinook Salmon at the world’s only urban King Salmon fishery (Jun-Jul). Walk to the bronze Arctic art installation honoring Grandma Olga Ezi, the Dena’ina matriarch who settled at Alaskan native village of Eklutna. Travel via Bootleggers Cove, walk the Earthquake Park (site of the word’s second most powerful earthquake), drive around Lake Hood (world’s busiest seaplane base) and Chugach Mountains lookout (weather permitting, you can see mountain ranges and Cook Inlet). It is not uncommon to see an occasional moose or bald eagle.
Note: For guests returning from Kodiak Bear Centre, you will enjoy your Anchorage City tour on Day 11 before your airport transfers.
Transfer to the airport.
Hilton Anchorage • Susitna River Lodging in Talkeetna • Kantishna Roadhouse in Denali NP • Kodiak Bear Centre in Kodiak
Located at the cultural heart of downtown Anchorage within walking distances to restaurants, shopping centers, museums, and galleries, this classic and sophisticated hotel features stunning views of the surrounding landscapes. (Room: 600)View More
A peaceful riverside lodge at the quaint Alaskan town of Talkeetna, filled with birch trees and landscaped grounds, with expansive views of the Alaska Range mountains and Denali National Park in the distance. Open year round, this authentic Alaskan Lodge provides comfortable and clean rooms with traditional log cabin furnishing. Accommodation is based on room only basis, no breakfast provided. (Rooms: 8)View More
Surrounded by wilderness at the heart of Denali National Park away from the crowded park entrance, this modern lodge offers visitors a comfortable exploration of Alaska's most famous National Park. (Rooms: 32)View More
Located in the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge and free of motorized distractions, this refuge is one of the most productive watersheds and home to one of the world’s highest densities of brown bears. Retreat to your deluxe private cabins (maximum capacity of 6 guests) with all meals after embarking on lodge-based guided bear viewing boat excursion. Kayaking, hiking, salmon and lake trout fishing are also available. Exact species will vary depending on the time of year, but spin gear and tackle are available for your use. Stay here if you are keen on an extraordinary bear viewing experience (Rooms: 4)View More
Hotel Captain Cook Anchorage • Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge • Denali Backcountry Lodge or Camp Denali in Denali NP • Tutka Bay Lodge in Kenai Peninsula
The only Alaskan member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts and a Historic Hotel of America, expect a huge range of art, shopping, and dining throughout the property. It is located at the heart of downtown Anchorage. Each classic-styled room offers views of downtown Anchorage, Cook Inlet or Chugach Mountains. There is an option to upgrade your rooms to Captains Deck with secured entry to your rooms on the 16th and 17th floors , admittance to the Athletic Clubs and exclusive access to the Captain’s Deck lounge, which offers complimentary full, hot breakfast, around the clock refreshments, as well as nightly wine and beer reception. (Rooms: 546)View More
Enjoy unforgettable views of Denali and the Alaska Range from this hillside
location only a short 10 minutes’ drive into the centre of Talkeetna. This large hotel is filled with Alaskan art, a massive river rock fireplace, and expansive viewing areas and patios of the surrounding landscape. A popular restaurant and bistro provide on-site dining options. (Rooms: 212)
Set at a remote valley in Kantishna region, enjoy more time to explore the natural beauty the park at a relaxed pace in scenic surroundings. This is truly an opportunity to unplug and experience a few days of peace while you explore the Alaskan wilderness. (Rooms: 42)View More
Originally founded as a 67-acre homestead in 1951 with magnificent Denali views and is now largely run on renewable energy. Each log and timber-frame cabin includes a small wood-burning stove, wall-mounted propane lights, Alaskan artwork and quilts crafted by staff members. Guests share bathing facilities, though each cabin has its own outhouse. Drinking water comes from a spigot just outside and may be heated on your cabin's propane hot plate. A 3-7 minutes’ uphill walk leads you to the dining room, a modern shower facility and an inviting library. Stay here if you appreciate a strong emphasis on learning Denali’s natural and cultural history, enjoy being close to the land and can do without high-end accommodations. (Rooms: 19)View More
Lying adjacent to Kachemak Bay State Park on a rugged fjord reaching seven miles into the glacier studded Kenai Mountains, this remote full-service ocean front lodge offers private guest cabins, a solarium and a main lodge where you will enjoy the award winning cuisine. Enjoy schedule activities (on shared basis) for daily fishing, kayaking or hiking adventures, yoga and cooking classes, plus a complimentary massage. Your 3 nights stay here will include a one-time excursion by helicopter for bear viewing. Stay here, if you are looking for well-rounded coastal experience with premium comfort! (Rooms: 6)View More
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