When you think of a spectacular Alaska vacation, what comes to mind? Witnessing glaciers calve into the sea? Riding the world-famous Alaska Railroad? Seeking out wildlife in Denali National Park? Or maybe it’s cruising through the sea to watch for seals, sea otters, birds, and even whales. Whatever it is, this tour through Alaska is sure to delight!Board the Alaska Railroad to Denali National Park, where you’ll hear a private presentation by a Denali park ranger. Seek out grizzly bear, caribou, moose, and more on a wilderness expedition. Take a cruise on Prince William Sound and along Columbia Glacier, the second-largest tide-water glacier in North America. Just imagine the gorgeous scenery you’ll see! You’ll also take a cruise on Kenai Fjords National Park to see glaciers calving into the sea and hear the thunderous roar. Photos and videos cannot adequately capture the experience—you must witness it in person. On both cruises, be sure to watch for wildlife.See the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Terminal near Valdez, take a sternwheeler cruise in Fairbanks, visit the home of four-time Iditarod champion Martin Buser near Anchorage, and enjoy all the scenery and majesty that only a vacation to Alaska can offer. Grab your camera and get ready for a trip that will leave you breathless and inspired—a travel experience of a lifetime.
Day #1 Arrive in Anchorage. Welcome to Anchorage! Meet your Tour Director this evening between 5 pm and 8 pm in the hotel reception area.
Day #2 Anchorage–Valdez. Meet your fellow traveling companions at this morning’s welcome orientation. Travel through Palmer in the Matanuska Valley, where cabbages can grow to an amazing 70 pounds in the 24-hour daylight, up over Tahneta Pass with wonderful vistas of Matanuska and Worthington Glaciers. Stop at Bridal Veil Falls before arriving in the seaside port of Valdez, often referred to as the “Switzerland of Alaska.” (B,D)
Day #3 Valdez. Cruise on Prince William Sound. Board your boat for a CRUISE on Prince William Sound and along the 3-mile face of Columbia Glacier, keeping a watchful eye out for wildlife, including seals, sea otters, birds, and even whales! Before returning to Valdez, see the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Terminal, where supertankers are loaded with crude oil from Prudhoe Bay. (B,L)
Day #4 Valdez–Delta Junction–Fairbanks. Great scenery all the way as you travel along the Richardson Highway. Stop at DELTA JUNCTION, a living history homestead with a museum, original roadhouse, and farm animals. Then, head west on the Alaska Highway to Fairbanks, the state’s second-largest city. (B)
Day #5 Fairbanks. Visit GOLD DREDGE #8 and ride the narrow-gauge railroad. Try your luck as you pan for gold. Later today, board the sternwheeler DISCOVERY for a cruise on the Chena and Tanana Rivers with a stop at the Chena Indian Village to learn about Athabascan Native culture. You will also have the chance to meet Iditarod mushers and their famed dog teams to learn about breeding, training, and the big race! This evening, enjoy a special Alaska salmon bake. (B,D)
Day #6 Fairbanks–Alaska Railroad–Denali National Park. Board the world-famous ALASKA RAILROAD for a journey through untamed wilderness. Today’s ride ends at DENALI NATIONAL PARK, where North America’s highest peak, 20,320-foot Mount McKinley, majestically dominates the park’s 6 million acres. The afternoon is free. This evening, enjoy dinner at the Murie Science Center followed by an exclusive [LF] PRESENTATION on Denali National Park by a local Naturalist. (B,D)
Day #7 Denali National Park. Morning at leisure. Optional activities include a float trip down the Nenana River and a helicopter ride over the park. Then, dress comfortably for a WILDERNESS EXPEDITION into Denali National Park to seek out grizzly bear, caribou, moose, and other wildlife. (B,L)
Day #8 Denali National Park–Big Lake–Anchorage. Continue your exploration of Denali National Park as you head south toward Anchorage. Stop along the way at [LF] HAPPY TRAILS KENNELS, home of four-time Iditarod Champion Martin Buser and his dogs. Meet an Iditarod competitor and learn how they race and care for their dogs. You will also see a demo on mushing, complete with a mock Iditarod checkpoint and get a chance to play with the sled dogs! Upon arrival in Anchorage, take a city sightseeing tour. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a special farewell dinner. (B,L,D)
Day #9 Anchorage. Cruise in Kenai Fjords National Park. Witness one of the world’s most scenic drives as you follow the south shore of lovely Turnagain Arm. Upon arrival in Seward, board your vessel for a cruise of KENAI FJORDS NATIONAL PARK and the opportunity to see glaciers calving into the sea, orcas, humpback whales, sea otters, and more! (B,L)
Day #10 Anchorage. The tour ends this morning with guests departing on individual schedules. Airport transfers are provided. (B)