Alaska (July 17-24, 2018)
If you desire to see Alaska (the REAL Alaska), then this is the trip for you. You will have the opportunity to experience what few will ever see. This trip is casual, meaning no formal dinners, no lines, and no crowds – just magnificent scenery around every turn, the chance to meet real Alaskans and the opportunity to really learn about this great land. Come with us to visit some of the most unspoiled land and seascapes in North America. You’ll come away knowing you have seen the REAL Alaska!
- Round Trip Flight From Des Moines/Chicago to Fairbanks and Return From Anchorage
- Private Motorcoach Transportation
- 7 Nights’ Accommodations
- 12 Meals (7 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 3 Dinners)
- Admission to Attractions and Activities as Stated in Itinerary
- Professional Tour Manager
- Gratuities for Driver/Guides
- Porter Service of One Bag Per Person at Hotels
- Taxes and Gratuities for Included Services
Fairbanks – We depart today on our flight to Fairbanks, the ‘Golden Heart City.’ Upon arrival we will meet our local tour director and transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is at our leisure to explore and have dinner on our own.
Fairbanks – Following breakfast we will board our deluxe motorcoach for a city tour of Fairbanks, including a visit to the Fairbanks Auto Museum. The museum has a unique and extensive collection of cars, period clothing, amazing photographs and more. Several of Alaska’s earliest cars are on display, including the Territory’s very first automobile – built in 1905 by a man who had never seen a car before! After lunch on our own we will visit the Running Reindeer Ranch where we will learn about these animals and the boreal forest on a personal encounter. This evening we will enjoy a private welcome dinner at a local dog musher’s kennel.
Denali – Today we board a deluxe dome railcar for a scenic train journey south to Denali National Park, home to Mt. Denali, the highest mountain peak in North America at 20,310 feet. Upon arrival, time will be available to visit the Denali Visitor Center. The center offers visitors a chance to learn more about the park by speaking with park rangers, viewing the film Heartbeats of Denali and exploring the variety of exhibits. We’ll end our day with a ‘Welcome to Denali’ presentation to learn more about Denali National Park before tomorrow’s tour.
Denali – After breakfast we will travel deep into Denali National Park on a six hour tour with the Murie Science and Learning Center staff. Our driver/guide and naturalist will narrate the journey, showcasing Denali’s vast beauty and providing information on the wildlife, flora and history of this spectacular region. Keep an eye out for moose, sheep, caribou and grizzly bears along the way! The remainder of our afternoon is at our leisure to relax or participate in optional excursions such as rafting, flightseeing, jet-boating, hiking, a dinner theater experience and more.
Anchorage – This morning we board our motorcoach for the scenic transfer to the quaint town of Talkeetna. Time will be available for lunch on our own and optional tours including jet-boating, flightseeing and more. Later we will again board our motorcoach for the relaxing journey to Anchorage.
Girdwood – Breakfast will be available at the hotel this morning before we make the drive south to the coastal community of Seward. Here we will board a vessel for a full day of cruising through Kenai Fjords National Park to see the towering glaciers and the wildlife that thrives in the icy waters and lush forests. Lunch is included on board. This evening we will settle into our Alaska Railroad Goldstar-Deluxe Dome railcar for the scenic journey north to the community of Girdwood. Dinner will be enjoyed on the rails before our arrival.
Girdwood – Enjoy breakfast this morning before boarding our motorcoach and touring south to the Portage River for a scenic float trip and salmon bake lunch. This afternoon, take a ride on the aerial tram to the top of Mount Alyeska to enjoy the incredible views of Turnagain Arm and Chugach Mountains. Or you may choose to relax at the hotel, hike or enjoy one of a variety of optional tours. This evening our group will gather together for a special farewell dinner to reminisce about our exciting tour of Alaska!
Home – Following breakfast we will transfer to the Anchorage International Airport for our return flight home.