Map of Best of Alaska including United States Of America

Explore Alaska from Anchorage through the Alaska Range and down the Kenai Peninsula

Prepare to discover the captivating beauty of Alaska on this 10-day journey through its icy heart. Travel from Anchorage through forests, around mountain ranges and down the spectacular coast to the Kenai Peninsula. Explore the unspoilt woodlands of the Denali National Park, and keep your eyes open for grizzlies, caribou and moose. Cruise past icebergs and glaciers in Valdez, and experience the quiet, majestic calm of this vast wilderness with its unique wildlife and striking landscapes.


Start
Anchorage, United States
Finish
Anchorage, United States
Destination
United States
Style
Comfort
Theme
Explorer
Code
SSKT
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Experience the rugged scenery of Alaska by land from the most populous city of Anchorage, through quaint towns like Palmer, all the way to the untouched back country.

  • Head on an Alaskan safari for a unique chance to see moose, caribou, grizzly bears, Dall sheep and wolves in their natural habitat in Denali National Park.

  • Witness the land mammals of Denali before getting up close to sea otters, puffins and humpback whales on a boat trip among glaciers in Valdez.

  • Discover Seward, one of Alaska's oldest and most scenic communities, which offers a bustling harbour, quaint shops and galleries, and is a great base from which to explore Kenai Fjords National Park.

  • Sit back and take in stunning views along the dramatic coastlines of the Turnagain Arm from Seward to Anchorage, while someone else does the driving.

Is this trip right for you?

  • As Alaska is a huge state with long distances between towns and cities, be prepared to spend a lot of your time in the car. Some journeys can take up to eight or nine hours, but there will be breaks along the way. This is all part of the adventure and a great way to see a variety of Alaskan landscapes.

  • While Alaska can experience warm summers, you should still be prepared for cold temperatures, especially at night, and also rain, which can (and does) happen year-round. Bring warm clothing with you, including base layers, a warm hat, gloves and a thick coat, as well as a rain jacket and waterproof shoes.

  • There are far more optional activities available on this trip than included activities. As not all of them are suitable for all budgets and activity levels, we prefer to leave the choice up to you.

  • Mosquitoes are found across the USA, even in the colder regions. They can be a problem a lot of the time, especially in July. It’s recommended that you bring insect repellent with you and anything else you think is applicable.

  • The summer months in Alaska see very long daylight hours, with the sun not completely setting until after midnight. As most people are likely to sleep before midnight, you might want to bring an eye mask to block out the light.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2023 to 31 Dec 2023.
View the 2022 itinerary
Welcome to Anchorage, USA. Located in south-central Alaska on the shores of Cook Inlet, Anchorage is a unique urban environment in the heart of the wilderness. Your Best of Alaska adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. If you arrive early enough, perhaps head to the Anchorage Museum or check out the sights and try spotting a moose wandering the streets of town (yes, really). This evening, celebrate the beginning of a new adventure with an included dinner with your group.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time for the group meeting, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).
After breakfast this morning, you’ll head north along the Parks Highway to Denali National Park. During the drive keep an eye out for caribou and other wildlife hanging out in the unspoiled environment. Stop by charming Talkeetna for a coffee and pastry (if you like) along the way. On arrival at the park, head to the visitor centre to plan your next day’s activities, then your evening is free to relax – perhaps sit down for dinner with the group and prepare for your days of exploration ahead.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Denali National Park - Entrance Fee
  • Denali National Park - Visitor Centre
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Throughout the year the Denali Visitor Center building may be closed, but there are rangers outside, who you’ll gain further information from.
Rise and shine early this morning to prepare for a scenic drive Denali National Park after breakfast. You’ll take the Tundra Wilderness route, narrated by a trained driver-naturalist, that will take you to mile 43 of the Park Road. With Denali Mountain towering in the background, picture yourself winding along a road hugged by mighty pine trees and framed by snow-capped mountains as you stare wide-eyed from the window in search of local wildlife. You could be lucky enough to see moose, caribou, grizzly bears, Dall sheep and wolves (amongst a long list of other wildlife) on your journey today. Yep, if nature had a highlight reel, Denali National Park might just be it.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Denali - Tundra Wilderness Bus Tour
Optional Activities
  • Denali NP hiking - Free
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total narrated driving tour is approximately 5-6 hours.

Rest stops occur around every 90 minutes throughout the bus trip. Bus riders are permitted to leave the bus to hike in the park (restrictions apply). Please be aware that if you wish to participate in some of the optional activities available, you may find there’s not enough time to also complete the included bus trip.
This morning, enjoy a long scenic drive over the Thompson Pass and down the valley to Valdez, visiting the Worthington Glacier along the way. Surrounded on three sides by steep, snow-capped mountains, the blue-water port town of Valdez is best known as the southern terminus of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System. On arrival in Valdez, check in to the hotel, and spend some time discovering this port town.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 7-8 hours.
Today you’ll hit the water for an incredible cruise into the Prince William Sound, heading deep into the epic landscape and arriving at the Columbia Glacier. As one of the world’s most active glaciers, you may be lucky enough to see huge chunks of ice fall into the still waters below – a pretty unforgettable sight! Be sure to keep an eye out for marine wildlife, including whales, sea otters, seals and puffins, as your boat navigates the Chugach Mountains and a rugged coastline of rocky outcrops, beaches and fjords. Enjoy lunch on board the boat, then return to Valdez for an afternoon at leisure. Perhaps pay a visit to the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive and step back in time to discover the town’s history.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Valdez - Glacier cruise with lunch
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Today, you can enjoy a free morning in Valdez to explore at your own leisure. With a number of fantastic hiking and walking trails, you’re never far from an adventure that’s framed by scenery that’ll take your breath away. With so many activity options to choose from, your leader will be on hand with suggestions on how to get the most out of this beautiful place. In the afternoon, settle in for another scenic drive, arriving at your local lodge in the Palmer region. Fringed with picture-perfect mountains, the atmosphere here is really something special.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 5 hours.
After breakfast this morning, take a scenic driving tour to soak up the scenery of Palmer and nearby Wasilla before continuing south along Turnagain Arm, an All American Road, famous for its incredible views of Cook Inlet and the surrounding Chugach Mountains. Look out for Dall sheep in the cliffs along the road and beluga whales in the inlet. In the ski town of Girdwood board the Mount Alyeska tram and ascend 2,300 feet to the chalet at the top where you'll be awed by sights of the mountains and glaciers below. Pause for lunch before continuing the drive down the Parks Highway to Seward, one of Alaska's oldest and most picturesque towns. The town itself boasts galleries, boutique shops and a bustling harbour but it's perhaps best known as a gateway to Kenai Fjords National Park.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Anchorage - Alyeska Tram
Optional Activities
  • Seward - Wildlife marine tour - USD200
  • Seward - Alaska SeaLife Center - USD28
  • Seward - Hiking - Free
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Today is free for your own explorations in this scenic wonderland. Perhaps head out on a wildlife marine boat tour exploring Kenai Fjords National Park. Set out among the fjords and glaciers, keeping an eye out for humpback whales, orcas, sea otters, harbour seals, sea lions, and puffins. On land, you may like to check out the Alaska SeaLife Center, dedicated to the protection and rehabilitation of Alaska’s marine wildlife, or perhaps take a hike to experience stunning views of the Kenai Peninsula. The choices today are endless, we won’t blame you if you simply can't decide which experience to take – be sure to ask your legendary leader for their advice.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After breakfast, you’ll venture north this morning and return to where your adventure began in Anchorage. Keep an eye out for wildlife on the drive, you'll get the chance to stop off to take photos of whales, waves, and volcanoes. On arrival in Anchorage, you’ll get to know this eclectic city during a tour with your leader, where you’ll learn more about its history and special points of interest. During the tour you’ll visit the Alaska Native Heritage Center where you’ll get the chance to learn more about Alaska’s cultural heritage, hear the stories of the Indigenous people and have all of your questions answered. Discover 10,000 years of Alaska Native history on this fully-immersive tour that features demonstrations, art, dance and more. As this is your final night, after your walking tour and heritage centre visit, you may like to get together with the group for dinner to reminisce about the highlights of your epic journey through Alaska together.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Anchorage- Alaska Native Heritage Center
  • Anchorage - Leader-Led City Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 2.5 hours.
As our adventure wraps up today, the morning is yours to enjoy at leisure before you check out. The authentic old-school charm of Anchorage is yours to explore, so take your time check out the sights and sounds of the city and its nearby inlets and communities.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner

Transport

Private Van, Boat

Accommodation

Hotel (6 nights) Lodge (3 nights)

Included activities

  • Denali National Park - Entrance Fee
  • Denali National Park - Visitor Centre
  • Denali - Tundra Wilderness Bus Tour
  • Valdez - Glacier cruise with lunch
  • Anchorage - Alyeska Tram
  • Anchorage- Alaska Native Heritage Center
  • Anchorage - Leader-Led City Tour

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Best of Alaska trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

Prices may go up, so secure your trip today!
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Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips that start on or before 31 December 2022 are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Learn more about Intrepid’s COVID-19 policy.

1. This trip starts with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1 in Anchorage. This trip ends on the morning of Day 10 in Anchorage.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

Essential trip information

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