Complete GuideAlaska Trip With Toddler
Here are some recommendations of 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 . Can get on the water.
The state is full of whitewater, and Denali National Park is one of the easiest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Road by the national park entrance, and providers typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the faster 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 provided drysuit.
Fishing can be another popular on-the-water activity. There are salmon in the streams, trout in the lakes, and creature halibut and cod out at sea.
A wildife/glacier-viewing time cruise out of Seward is also enjoyable. The Alaska Native-owned Kenai Fjords Tours offers a few different routes, from four to nine hours. You’re likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald silver eagles, seals, sea lions, whales and maybe a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery islands, and shoreline highs of Resurrection Gulf.
Rafting the Nenana River
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours
2. Hike with a guide.
Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people that hiked out, found a piece of ground that looked good and built a family cabin on it. You can get a sense of the vastness from the land by taking place your own backcountry trek. Denali is a good place for it – the National Park covers more than 2 million hectares and has relatively few established trails. There are endless opportunities for shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.
Regardless how long you’re around the trail, it’s good to go with a guide. Having 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 property, its history as well as flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t get otherwise.
ANG is definitely one of few companies with Gold Level Certification in the Adventure Green Alaska program, which recognizes them as an industry innovator in environmentally and culturally sustainable practices. They run well guided 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 State Park
View of Denali National Recreation area
Alaska Nature Guides
Experience Green Alaska
3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.
The Alaska Range identifies 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 in the mouth of Make Inlet. The section most people know and visit, though, is the area surrounding Denali, North America’s highest peak at six, 193. 5 metres, and its two neighbors, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).
Catching the view can be nice; one of the best places to do so is in the back deck area of the Talkeetna Alaskan Villa. But you get an entirely 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 will need a plane.
A handful of companies run “flightseeing” tours out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation becoming the biggest. It’s also possible to soar in from the Denali area. Whoever you fly with, sign up for a glacier getting for the full impact.
This is also how climbers access the mountains. For information on climbing, check the Country wide Park’s mountaineering useful resource page.
A float plane in Alaska
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
K2 Modern aviation
Denali National Park Mountaineering Resource Web page
4. Stay at a boat/plane-accessed resort.
Fox Island can be a stop on two Kenai Fjords time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Villa. The property comprises 8 cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up between rocky beach as well as the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight remains that feature a day cruise on leaving day start are available. Kayaking and fishing trips are available at additional cost for overnighters; they’re part of the offer if you stay more than one night.
On the reverse side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Gulf Lodge has an a lot more remote feel to it, accessed simply by water taxi from your Homer Spit or sea plane. Tutka is one of the fjords cut into the southern part of the larger Kachemak Bay, and the entire area features snowy peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The lodge is set back on a beach opposite a little headland – you can’t see it until you’re almost on top of it. 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 villa building and six luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) probably has the best watch.
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 led activity you can think of — kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain bicycling, local fishing and boat trips, nature walks, and cooking classes.