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should I add 3 more days ....

Essen, Belgium
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should I add 3 more days ....

Hi everyone,

preparing Alaska trip for decades, guess I have seen every tip in this forum ( thank you for that ) and we finally booked our cruise for next year ( Vancouver to Seward ) and love to add our road trip for a couple of weeks after our cruise

to see as much as we can and enjoy the wildlife and beauty of Alaska.

please take a look at my itinerary and I love to hear your advice on quiet / clean hotels/lodges ( quiet is extremely important but so is clean )

arriving Seward on June 22th in the morning would love to stay for one night.

Best Western plus or Harbour 360 hotel ??

June 23 take the train at 6 pm ( goldstar class diner included ) to Anchorage

(need a hotel near the airport for 2 nights, shuttle included ) the Lakefront ?

June 24 fly with Rust's in the afternoon to Chinitna Bay to do some bear viewing

June 25 pick up our car ( airport ? ) and drive to Talkeetna Fireside cabins ?

June 26 drive to Denali Earth Song Lodge ?

June 27 bustour to Kantishna and flight back.

June 28 take the Denali Highway to Paxson the Lodge at Black Rapids ?

June 29 have a day off

June 30 take McCartny Road to Mc Carthy Kennicot Glacier Lodge ?

Juli 1th have a day off

June 2 drive the Glenn Highway stay at Sheep Mountain lodge ?

June 3 short drive to Palmer stay at Knik river Lodge for 2 nights

( I hope they have availability as website says nothing is available )

June 4 helicopter glacier tour with landing and husky trip

June 5 drive to the airport deliver the car and fly home ( that is Belgium )

we have 2 flights we can book June 5th or June 9th ( Iceland air )

is this itinerary doable ? are we missing anything important or extremely beautiful

as i can add some days and take the flight on June 9th

do I have still some time to book ( getting so nervous )

important for us is a clean comfortable bed private bathroom and a very very quiet room/chalet .

breakfast included and shuttle service included where needed.

I appreciate your advice and time to write me back

and wish you all the best from Belgium


63 replies to this topic
San Antonio, Texas
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1. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

If you can fit it into your schedule and budget... YES! you simply cannot spend too much time in Alaska but you'll always wish you spent more.

Wasilla, Alaska
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for Alaska
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2. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

Denali Highway: most rental agencies prohibit their vehicles on the unpaved road.

New York City, New...
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3. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

I am somewhat confused by your itinerary. When I plan my Alaska trip I decide what I want to do at each point of the trip and then plan out the days needed.

I find your posting short on the details of what you will be doing and why you are taking days off where you are.

Some examples:

1- what do you want to do in Seward? Either of the hotels that you listed are acceptable.

2-What do you want to do in Anchorage? Why not rent a car when you get to Anchorage.? It gives you far more options on things to see and do.

3- What do you want to do in Talkleetna? Why are you staying there?

4- what do you want to do in Palmer that would take 2 days?

You have omitted going to Homer which IMO is the prettiest town on the Kenai with great scenery and lots to do.

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4. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

Please be advised that driving on the Denali Hwy and the McCarthy Road is prohibited by most car rental agencies. Midnight Sun is one of a few who does allow this. If you are going to stay at the Kennecott Lodge in McCarthy/Kennecott, be sure to book in their new building, as their main original building does not have private bathrooms. Not sure why you need to stay in so many different places. If you tell us what activities you would like to do it would be easier for folks on here to streamline your itinerary. I agree that Homer is a place not to miss.

Essen, Belgium
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5. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

thanks for your answers

I hope to find someone who is willing to rent a car for the Denali Highway if not there is the alternative route (Fairbanks )

about our itinerary

due to medical issues and sleeping problems we want to take it easy so that is why we sometimes take a day to rest

for ex

we arrive in Seward very early in the morning, if we take the evening train to Anchorage that day I am afraid we will be too tired and sleep the ride which would be a pity

so in stead we thought of staying the night and leave the day after to Anchorage

not a good idea ?

In Anchorage we intend to fly to Chinitna Bay to do some bear viewing and leave the day after

Talkleetna is just a stop in between a long drive .... not necessery ?

in Palmer we want to do the helicopter glacier tour with landing and husky trip

and yes Homer was on the list but seemed to be too far out therefore I planned the bearviewing trip out of Anchorage

is my itinerary that bad ?

Winnipeg, Canada
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6. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

There's nothing wrong with your itinerary. We're just used to seeing "busier" ones that have something planned each day, and not mostly "down" time. But if that's what you prefer, that's what you should do.

Were you planning on doing a Kenai Fjords cruise in Seward? Highly recommended, and your best chance to see a variety of marine wildlife. You could take the one at 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 pm (shorter ones don't get out of the bay).

If you think you'd be tired on an evening train, why not take the morning bus on the 23rd to Anchorage? You'd get there around noon-ish. You could either putter around Anchorage, or pick up your rental car and drive back 1 hour south (the most scenic drive in Alaska IMHO) to Wildlife Conservation Center, which is your best chance to see a variety of animals in a fairly natural setting. On the way back to Anchorage stop at Girdwood for dinner. If the weather is clear, go up Alyeska Tram for a lovely view.

As to whether to add more days...that depends on what other activities you might like to add.

Healy, Alaska
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for Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
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7. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

I would consider these rather than Sheep Mtn Lodge, unless they don't have availability: https://www.homesteadcabinsak.com/

What are you plans on the 26th?

Essen, Belgium
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8. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

to coalminer, thank you for your suggestion

26th we planned driving from Talkeetna to the lodge in Denali it is about 280 km ( 173 miles )

after checking in we hope to check a bit of the surroundings

in my itinerary I left some blanks to fill in at the moment itself as we are on the road we probably stop and walk or hike wherever we can ( that is for our whole itinerary )

I bought the milepost and intend to try to read it before we leave and take notes wherever we are what we can do on the scene

to Maple Marshmallows : we love to ride the train that would not be an issue

in Seward we arrive very early by cruise ship

the ship's tour is








so I did not check out what we can do while we make our ship's stops

I guess booking our road trip is more urgent but I def; need to check out

Kenai Fjords as we really would not want to miss anything

it is our 30th wedding anniversary we are celebrating so I want to make it perfect

for my husband

sorry if I am not clear ( flemish translation is not always that easy )

we had a local agent who was willing to build a trip for us but they left me down a week before so now I am trying to plan everything myself

thanks again for your help

wishing you all a great day


Essen, Belgium
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9. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

wow those homestead guest cabins are amazing

thank you so much

any alternative for the knik river lodge ?

it seems they are all sold out for june - september next year ( strange ? )

thanks again

Essen, Belgium
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490 posts
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10. Re: should I add 3 more days ....

sorry had to ask this in my previous question

any alternative for the earth song lodge ?

and also for the lodge at black rapids ( to avoid riding the road twice )

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