We have planned out our time in Alaska with the exception of the part around choosing either Seward with kayaking at the Aialik Glacier or Valdez with kayaking at Prince William Sound.
We arrive in Anchorage at 6am in June and the options we are deciding between are:
1. Day 1 Drive to Seward, maybe do a glacier hike at Exit Glacier. Day 2 take the all day water taxi / glacier paddling to Aialik glacier (Liquid Adventures). Day 3 return through Anchorage and drive up to Healy for 2 nights to visit Denali NP. Day 4 shuttle to Wonder Lake in Denali NP. Day 5 drive to Tok. Day 6 drive to Kluane NP, day 6 drive to Haines.
2. Day 1 Drive to Healy to visit Denali NP. Day 2 shuttle to Wonder Lake in Denali NP. Day 3 drive to Valdez. Day 4 glacier paddling to Columbia glacier in PWS. Day 5 drive to Tok. Day 6 drive to Kluane NP, day 6 drive to Haines.
From what we have read, Seward has more wildlife but while the paddling at Aialik may be better it is definitely more expensive, though there may be a reason for this I.e it is better?. We miss out of the scenic Glenn Highway and Richardson Highway.
If we skip Seward and go to Valdez the drive appears to be more scenic but maybe we are sacrificing wildlife and the glacier paddling doesn't seem as good or hyped up.
If anyone has done these 2 variations of itinerary we would really appreciated input as it is hard to sort out the best option with tradeoffs... driving scenery versus best paddling versus wildlife etc. Also the road conditions, Glenn and Richardson Highway to Tok or around Fairbanks, Alaska Highway to Tok.
After Haines, we are dropping the car (one way hire with Avis) and travelling on the AMHS to Juneau, Gustavus (for Glacier Bay), Sitka, Wrangell and Ketchikan. We are not sure if what we may see in the second part of the trip changes which of the options we are best to do out of Anchorage.
I will be going on a cruise May 18-25. We will be making stops in Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan. Are there any places in these towns that do not require taking a boat or plane to view bears (or other animals) in their natural habitat? We are looking for areas, if there are any, where we would be able to stay a respectable distance from them. We have shore excursions booked, but have about 4 or more extra hours available in the towns afterwards. We are planning to use this time to explore the town, the shops, and the scenery.
Any advice or suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thank you!
Was thinking of trying to get my car which is AWD but not a 4x4 up to Nome by ferry this summer, however only way in seems to be by plane. Do the vehicles that are up there come in by ice roads during the winter? If do decide to go now will fly in and just take taxi's and guide services instead, just curious how all the trucks etc up there got there as doubt they would fly them in?
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