The Ultimate Guide ToAlaska Cruise Round Trip San Francisco
Here are a few 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 views from a drift plane, there is lots of adventure to be found in Alaska. Take a look at a few of them here.
1 . Get on the water.
The state is full of whitewater, and Denali National Park is one of the simplest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Freeway by the national recreation area entrance, and workers typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the quicker Canyon Run, including several class III and IV rapids. You can raft the Canyon with Denali Raft Adventures ($89, 2 hours) — you’ll appreciate the supplied drysuit.
Fishing can be another popular on-the-water activity. There are trout in the streams, trout in the lakes, and monster halibut and cod out at ocean.
A wildife/glacier-viewing day cruise out of Seward is also enjoyable. The Ak Native-owned Kenai Fjords Tours offers a couple of different routes, from four to 9 hours. You’re likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald silver eagles, seals, sea elephants, whales and maybe even a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery island destinations, and shoreline highs of Resurrection Gulf.
Rafting the Nenana River
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours
2. Hike with a instruction.
Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people who hiked out, found a piece of ground that looked good and built a family cottage on it. You can get a feeling of the vastness of the land by taking place your own backcountry trek. Denali is an excellent place for it — the National Park 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 around the trail, it’s all set with a guide. Using a company like Ak Nature Guides, you will be led with a local, someone who blazed their own trail and made a home in the bush. Their information about the land, its history and its particular flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t get otherwise.
ANG is usually one of few businesses with Gold Level Certification in the experience Green Alaska plan, which recognizes all of them as an industry leader in environmentally and culturally sustainable methods. They run well guided hikes in Denali State Park (east of and adjacent to the National Park), as well as around Talkeetna Lakes Park, just outside of town.
Watch of Denali State Park
View of Denali National Recreation area
Alaska Nature Guides
Adventure Green Alaska
3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.
The Alaska Range defines the topography from the state, a crescent spine that figure from the southeastern boundary with Canada, up to just south of Fairbanks, and back down to the sea at the mouth of Cook Inlet. The section most people know and visit, though, is the area surrounding Denali, North America’s highest peak at six, 193. 5 meters, and its two neighbors, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).
Getting the view is nice; one of the best places to do so is through 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 will need a plane.
A handful of companies run “flightseeing” trips out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation becoming the biggest. It’s also possible to journey in from the Denali area. Whoever you fly with, sign up for a glacier landing for the full impact.
This is also how climbers access the forest. For information upon climbing, check the State Park’s mountaineering resource page.
A drift plane in Ak
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
Denali National Recreation area Mountaineering Resource Page
4. Stay at a boat/plane-accessed hotel.
Fox Island can be a stop on two Kenai Fjords time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Resort. The property comprises 8 cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up between your rocky beach and the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight remains that feature a day cruise on reduction day start can be found. Kayaking and fishing trips are available at extra cost for overnighters; they’re part of the offer if you stay more than one night.
On the opposite side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Bay Lodge has an even more remote feel to it, accessed by water taxi from the Homer Spit or sea plane. Tutka is one of the fjords cut into the southern side of the larger Kachemak Bay, and the whole area features wintry peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The resort is set back on a 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 lodge building and 6 luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) most likely has the best watch.
Rates start $1, 300 per night 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 food preparation classes.