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Here are some recommendations of exactly where and how to spend your time in Alaska.
Whether it’s whitewater rafting in Denali National Park or taking in the sights from a drift plane, there is lots of adventure to be found in Alaska. Take a look at some of them here.

1 . Get on the water.

The condition is full of whitewater, and Denali Country wide Park is one of the simplest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Road by the national recreation area entrance, and employees typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the quicker Canyon Run, including several class 3 and IV rapids. You can raft the Canyon with Denali Raft Adventures ($89, 2 hours) – you’ll appreciate the supplied drysuit.

Fishing is certainly another popular on-the-water activity. There are trout in the rivers, trout in the lakes, and creature halibut and cod out at ocean.

A wildife/glacier-viewing time cruise out of Seward is also enjoyable. The Ak Native-owned Kenai Fjords Tours offers a number of different routes, from four to 9 hours. You’re more likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald eagles, seals, sea elephants, whales and maybe even a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery islands, and shoreline highs of Resurrection Gulf.

 

Rafting the Nenana River
Flickr/Katie Loehr
More information
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours

2. Hike with a guideline.

Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people who hiked out, discovered a piece of ground that looked good and built a family vacation cabin on it. You can get a feeling of the vastness from the land by taking place your own backcountry trek. Denali is a good place for it — the National Recreation area covers more than two million hectares and has relatively few established trails. You will find endless opportunities for shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.

Regardless of how long you’re in the trail, it’s all set with a guide. Using a company like Alaska Nature Guides, you will be led with a local, someone who blazed their own path and made a home in the bush. Their observations about the land, its history and its particular flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t obtain otherwise.

ANG is usually one of few businesses with Gold Level Certification in the experience Green Alaska system, which recognizes all of them as an industry innovator in environmentally and culturally sustainable methods. They run led hikes in Denali State Park (east of and next to the National Park), as well as around Talkeetna Lakes Park, just outside of town.

View of Denali Country wide Park
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View of Denali National Recreation area
Flickr/Blmiers2
More information
Ak Nature Guides
Experience Green Alaska

3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.

The Alaska Range describes the topography from the state, a crescent spine that figure from the southeastern border with Canada, up to just south of Fairbanks, and down again to the sea at the mouth of Cook Inlet. The section most people know and visit, though, may be the area surrounding Denali, North America’s highest peak at 6, 193. 5 metres, and its two neighbours, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).

Catching the view is certainly nice; one of the best areas to do so is in the back deck part of the Talkeetna Alaskan Hotel. But you get a completely different perspective once you’re actually in the mountains, standing on a glacier, looking up and around at a jagged world of white. To do that, you need a plane.

A handful of businesses run “flightseeing” trips out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation becoming the biggest. It’s also possible to travel in from the Denali area. Whoever you fly with, sign up for a glacier landing for the full effect.

This is also just how climbers access the forest. For information on climbing, check the State Park’s mountaineering reference page.

A float plane in Ak

Flickr/RLevans
More information
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
K2 Modern aviation
Denali National Recreation area Mountaineering Resource Page

4. Stay in a boat/plane-accessed resort.

Fox Island is certainly a stop on two Kenai Fjords time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Villa. The property comprises eight cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up involving the rocky beach as well as the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight remains that feature a day cruise on starting day start are available. Kayaking and fishing trips are available at extra cost for overnighters; they’re part of the deal if you stay more than one night.

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On the reverse side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Gulf Lodge has an much more remote feel to it, accessed by water taxi from your Homer Spit or sea plane. Tutka is one of the fjords cut into the southern side of the larger Kachemak Bay, and the entire area features cold peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The villa is set back on the beach opposite a little headland – you can’t see it until you’re almost on top of this. But once you’re there it’s quite expansive, with a substantial central deck (with hot tub and sauna), and pathways that connect the main resort building and six luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) probably has the best watch.

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Rates start $1, 300 per night time and include three chef-prepared meals a day, a one-hour massage, wine tastings, yoga, and pretty much any well guided activity you can think of – kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain cycling, local fishing and boat trips, nature walks, and food preparation classes.

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