We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Alaska pre-cruise tour

Sturgeon
Level Contributor
521 posts
14 reviews
Save Topic
Alaska pre-cruise tour

Thanks for all of you who offer your time and ideas. We are planning on a Princess cruise next June, with the in-laws. We are mid-50's active, they are 80ish, active for their age, but slowing down. We are interested in scenery, wildlife. I think we want to do an RV, is this plan do-able?

Day 1-Fly to Anchorage, spend night on GAH lot

Day 2-Check out RV, supply RV, head to Seward

Day 3-Seward

Day 4-Drive to Talkeetna, flight see late if possible

Day 5-Flight see morning?, drive to Denali, pick up tickets, do stuff at visitors center, night at Riley CG

Day 6-Wonder Lake bus

Day 7-Drive back to Anchorage, check RV in. Spend night at Ship Creek Comfort in

Day 8- Early Alaskan RR down to Seward, Major Marine Marine tour-start cruise

Is this doable? Am I crazy? Any suggestions??? Again, thanks for all the help I have gotten reading others reviews and comments!!!

Adirondack, New York
Level Contributor
3,934 posts
90 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

It is always so great to see a future visitor doing lots of homework. You did tremendous job planning your trip. However I wouldn't go to Seward twice. IMHO, you should leave Seward for the end of your trip and before you start your cruise.

Return RV and then get on the train to Seward. You really do not need a car in Seward but without RV you need to reserve your two night lodging in town. You could use inexpensive taxis, shuttles or rent a car for a day. The day cruise to enjoy Kenai Fjords NP is always exceptional and it's nothing similar to what you'll see during your cruise

Also I wouldn't plan on going all the way to Wonder Lake in June because mosquitoes could be ferocious.

On your last day in Denali NP and before you leave for Anchorage I would spend a part of the day in the park. You could drive 14 miles to Savage River and take a very easy loop hike from a parking lot. You have a chance to see wildlife along the road before mile 14.

Then drive to spectacular Hatcher Pass/Independence Mine and arrive later in the evening in Anchorage. You could even spend a night in the area and then next morning take a hike on Matanuska Glacier.

Edited: 15 July 2012, 13:14
Sturgeon
Level Contributor
521 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

Thanks for your comments Adirondack! That is the way I originally planned our trip, but really wanted to stay at the Seward RV campground. Thought it might be a nice way to start the trip with a shorter drive and what I anticipate is the beautiful area around Seward. I thought turning the trip around and starting and ending the trip in Seward might be a good way to go. Especially since the last day, we would basically just take the train down and get on the Major Marine tour, then onto our cruise ship. I certainly appreciate your help and suggestions. I do plan on using part of our last day at Denali to tour some more, just was not sure of the latest I could return the RV at GAH? I am a planner, the group is counting on me and I really just want to get things right. So, if you or anyone else has more suggestions, I certainly appreciate them!!!!!

Barrie, Canada
Level Contributor
14 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

We just returned from a similar trip, but rented a SUV and stayed in hotels. Hatchers Pass was incredible, but not recommended for RV's. I think that Wonder Lake would be too long a day for folks in their 80's. Taxis are $5 anywhere in Seward.

Las Vegas, Nevada
Level Contributor
3,796 posts
11 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

I think Places made the suggestion because 2 trips to Seward isn't the most efficient use of your limited time. But I can see your point too.

If you arrive to great weather in Seward on Day 2, take the Kenai cruise because when you return on Day 8 the weather may have turned. It's always nice to have a back up day for those cruises.

I'd recommend a little detour to Cooper Landing on your way in or out of Seward. The Kenai River is really something to see. We always stop at the lounge in the Kenai Princess to enjoy the view of the river, boats, rafts, etc.

Cooper Landing is only about 15 minutes from the Seward Hwy/ Sterling Hwy junction. And be sure to stop at the spirit houses at Eklutna just north of Anchorage.

When we rented from GAH the return times were assigned and staggered, based on your pick up time. I think the latest was 9am. But since you're getting possession of yours in the evening it would be handled differently. They close at 6pm. Give them a call; the office staff are very helpful.

Are your in-laws RV'rs ? I took my mother and she really enjoyed it. She was 80 at the time. It was our first RV experience. She was in charge of the "bubble", to ensure that our RV was level at each campsite. :>)

Sturgeon
Level Contributor
521 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

Thanks for the tips! The in-laws had a pop up camper for decades and went all over the states, so they love the idea of an RV. I'm planning on booking the bus in Denali to Wonder Lake, but only going there if the mountain is out that day. The in-laws can ride as far as they want, then head back. We are staying at Riley Creek CG, so they can go to the center if they go back to the camper. We will go as far a Eilson, then decide whether to go to Wonder Lake. Again, thanks so much for the great ideas, we are really looking forward to our first trip to Alaska. Too bad it is still nearly a year away. I look at some of the great rates now, for 2012 with envy!

1

New York
Level Contributor
3,194 posts
55 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

It seems like you are renting the RV for days you don't need? Depending on your arrival flight, I would not waste my time, parked in a lot. Either determine, if you have enough time for getting somewhere, or rent the next day. I too agree, it makes little sense to go to Seward twice. Instead, add a day at Denali or, or consider Whittier, Mat su Etc.

Adirondack, New York
Level Contributor
3,934 posts
90 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

If the main reason for going twice to Seward with such limited time frame is to stay at the Seward RV campground then IMHO that's not a good enough reason. There are some lodging in Seward with spectacular views and you can always enjoy views in many spots.

Wake Forest, North...
Level Contributor
247 posts
24 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

In Talkeenta, be sure to eat breakfast at the Roadhouse and talk with the climbers returning from summitting Denali. That was one of the highlights of our trips. You can also watch a short film on climbing the mountain and talk with rangers at the ranger station by the river. Also, be sure to walk down to the river, great views if the mountain is out.

I agree with the others about not doing Seward twice. There are places to stay near the waterfront. You can walk right there and see the wildlife. You didn't mention Exit Glacier, but you might enjoy that. I am not sure about your in laws, but it's not an overly strenous hike, but it is a path and some incline.

9. Re: Alaska pre-cruise tour

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 18 July 2013, 06:17