A journey through Alaska is a journey through nature, history, indigenous people, wildlife and unparalleled views. The “High” that Denali means in the language of the local indigenous people is culturally important to many of the natives as it plays a major role in their Athabasque creation story. Wilderness is probably what Alaska is most associated with and the name “The Last Frontier” is a clear description of what awaits. Short for ALAS by abbreviationfinder, the state of Alaska has the largest cities.
Alaska – 15 days
Day 1 Departure from Sweden
Departure from Sweden. Upon arrival in Anchorage, pick up your rental car and head to your hotel located in the center of town. Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska and the obvious hub for getting out into the Alaskan wilderness. As the locals say, “Anchorage is amazing. It’s only 20 minutes from Alaska.
Day 2 Anchorage – Seward
Today’s journey south towards the Kenai Peninsula offers fantastic scenery along the famous “scenic Seward Highway”. You will spend a full day in the area around the Kenai River, which in addition to the exceptional hike offers world-class fishing, horseback rides and sea kayaking. Seward’s biggest attraction besides nature is the “Alaska Sea Life Center”, which serves two purposes. In part, it shows Alaska’s marine wildlife, but it also serves as a research center.
Day 3 Kenai Fjords National Park The
day on its own we recommend a trip to Kenai Fjords National Park, one of the absolute best places in Alaska to see wildlife. You start with a fjord trip and see sea lions, sea otters, puffins, eagles, killer whales or other whales that stay in these waters during the summer. After lunch on board with a view of one of the impressive glaciers, you return to your hotel in Seward.
Day 4 Seward – Valdez
Early in the morning you drive to Whittier and board a ship belonging to the Alaska Marine Highway, Alaska’s own version of the Hurtigruten. The destination is the small port city of Valdez. During the approximately 6-hour sea voyage you will see more of Prince William Sound. With its spectacular location as part of the vast Gulf of Alaska, but well protected by countless islands, it is almost like an aquarium. During your trip you have good opportunities to see whales, killer whales, sea lions, bears and mountain goats. In addition to wildlife, it is the mighty glaciers that contribute to the beauty of the area. Of the glaciers, Columbia is the most dramatic, which is a so-called tidal glacier. Its front facing the sea is about 5 km long and in places about 90 m high. Upon arrival in Valdez, there is time to explore the city on your own, Valdez is often called “little Switzerland” and is beautifully surrounded by the Chugah Mountains at Prince William Sound. During your stay in Valdez there are opportunities for hiking, sea kayaking, deep sea fishing and boat trips to the glaciers.
Day 5 Valdez – Black Rapids
Early in the morning, begin the long journey north on the Alaska Highway, which begins in Seattle and runs through all of Canada to the Fairbanks, through some of Alaska’s most beautiful and varied landscapes. You stop for lunch and photo opportunities along the way. On your way to Black Rapids you see the famous Alaska Pipeline and you stop at the Worthington Glacier for photography.
Day 6 Black Rapids – Fairbanks
After breakfast, continue north to Fairbanks, Alaska’s second largest city, and check in at your hotel for the night. You live just outside the historic center overlooking the Chena River. We recommend a classic “all you can eat” dinner with ribs, grilled fresh salmon and much more before the day is over.
Day 7 Fairbanks – Denali
After breakfast you turn south again towards Denali National Park. In the afternoon there is the opportunity for a first excursion around Denali. For the active, a rafting trip along the Nenana River on the border of the national park can be an option. If you want to avoid getting wet, a flight sightseeing with an experienced bush pilot along the northern slopes of the Alaska Range and Mount McKinley is recommended.
Day 8 Denali National Park
Today you make a guided full day trip into Denali National Park. For many, this national park is the highlight of a trip to these latitudes. As the park is well visited during the short summer, the number of visitors is limited. No private car traffic is allowed, only the park’s own green buses are allowed and a certain limited tourism to a few campsites. The park’s two biggest attractions are Mount McKinley, North America’s highest mountain about 6,700 m high and eternally snow-covered, and its rich wildlife. The chances of seeing “The Big Five: Grizzly, Moose, caribou, wolf and dall-sheep” are great. You will spend the whole day exploring Denali National Park. The park’s own buses are driven by professional drivers who are also trained nature guides.
Day 9 Denali National Park – Anchorage
In the morning you return along the Parks Highway to Anchorage, a journey of about 5 hours. In the afternoon, we recommend that you take the opportunity to visit the largest city in this the largest of America’s states. Start in “downtown”, where your hotel is located and there are shops, offices, restaurants and museums. Stora Torget has a colorful side to city life with many vendors and markets on certain days. The area around Anchorage was hit hard by an earthquake in 1964 and a memorial park has been built over the incident at Earthquake Park. The Salmon Stairs at Ship Creek and Lake Hood Sea Plane Base are other places to visit.
Day 10 Anchorage – Katmai National Park
Early in the morning you fly on a regular flight to King Salmon on Kodiak Island and then continue by seaplane to the heart of Katmai National Park. The park is considered by many to be the world’s best place to see Brunbjörn. Upon arrival at your lodge, you will receive a security check from the staff. The lodge is located directly on the beach and in the afternoon there is the chance to see some of the bears that often show up here to look for food.
Day 11 and 12 Katmai National Park
You spend two full days in the park. Katmai is slightly larger in area than Värmland and home to two thousand bears. The best bear watching is at dawn. With a little luck, you will see bears loitering along the shoreline just a few meters from the lodge and form silhouettes towards the sunrise that shimmers in the mirror-shiny water while the morning mist dissipates. If you are interested in fishing, there is also a chance to try your luck with a fishing rod. The fishing in the sea and nearby lakes is world class.
Day 13 Katmai National Park – Anchorage
Return by sea to King Salmon for further scheduled flights to Anchorage. The afternoon on its own.
Day 14 and 15 Return journey