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Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Manalapan, NJ
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Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

My husband is going to Anchorage for business and I am coming with him because I always wanted to see Alaska. This will be our first trip there and we are very excited. We will be there for a week and will have a rental car. I did some research and trying to figure out where to go and what to see, and the more I read the more confused I get. We are interested in glaciers, wildlife, sled dogs and some culture. Not too much hiking. First, we are trying to pick b/w cruises: Prince William Sound, Kenai Fjords and Portage. We were thinking of maybe driving to Seward and spend a night there, but still can't decide if it is worth a trip from Anchorage, not sure what else is there except Kenai Fords?. We also were thinking of going to Girdwood/Alyeska area. I also read about Hatcher pass, Matanuska Glacier, Exit Glacier and Sea Center (I think all located close by). Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

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Kenai Fjords National Park, AK
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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1. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Seward is definitely worth the time and effort, offering much of what you indicate of interest . . . wildlife viewing, boat/glacier tour, sled dog kennel (Seavey's), Exit Glacier and the SeaLife Center. With all of that, you can probably plan on two full days. Just do not do what we did as a rookie mistake on my first trip to Anchorage which was a work trip . . . we did Seward as a day trip! It was a very long day, even if there was 23 hours of daylight.

You could also do a trip north to take in a couple/three days at Denali Nat'l Park if you are so inclined.

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Seward
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Exit Glacier
Exit Glacier
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Kenai Fjords National Park, AK
Healy, Alaska
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2. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

When are you coming? :)

Manalapan, NJ
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3. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Thank you very much for your reply. We are arriving on August 17 at 1:30 PM and were thinking of getting a car and drive straight to Seward, maybe do something that evening, spend the night there, go on Kenai Fjords cruise in the morning. Are Exit Glacier, Seavey's sled dog kennel and Sealife Center close by? He has to go to work on Monday, so we can't take any other overnight far away trips during the rest of the week, but I can take nearby day trips. Any suggestions, except local museums and bike trails?

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Manalapan, NJ
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4. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

We are coming on August 17 until August 23, 2012

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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5. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

>>>Are Exit Glacier, Seavey's sled dog kennel and Sealife Center close by?<<< Yes in fact Seavey's is on the Exit Glacier Road. Seward is a small village and the Sealife Center is close (walking distance) from the pier for the boat tours. You'll need to drive to Exit Glacier and Seavey's from town, however.

As for other things for you to do while hubby's working . . . I would encourage you to make a trip up to Wasilla and the Iditarod Headquarters. There are also some interesting reindeer farms in neighboring Palmer.

Are you adventurous enough to take a flightseeing trip out of Anchorage? You could do a tour up to Denali Nat'l Park or Knik Glacier. I have used and would recommend Rust's for that. More info, including pricing: www.flyrusts.com/alaska-flightseeing.html .

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Exit Glacier
Exit Glacier
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Iditarod Headquarters
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Wasilla, AK
Manalapan, NJ
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6. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Which one of the cruises better Prince William Sound with 26 glaciers or Kenai Fjords with one glacier and lots wildlife??? Is it worth to take Portage Glacier cruise in the bay/river?

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Prince William Sound
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Portage Glacier
Portage Glacier
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Girdwood, AK
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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7. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

As I responded on another thread, my preference would be a Kenai Fjords tour. The Portage Glacier cruise offered by Gray Line is not something I would consider unless it was being offered for free, but that's me.

Back to your question on scheduling your time in Seward, Yes you can arrive on Fri 8/17 and drive to Seward. Some advise against it as it is a long day especially with jet lag from the east coast. Only you can say how you think you'll be after a full day of travel. I would suggest you spend Friday AND Saturday night if you do drive down Friday.

There are a lot of beautiful places that will capture you, requiring that you stop along the way from Anchorage to Seward, so be prepared for that. Also, at the turn off to Whittier/Portage, you may want to stop and visit the AK Wildlife Conservation Center. It is well worth the time and money especially if you will have limited opportunities to view Alaska's wildlife out in the wild.

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Portage Glacier
Portage Glacier
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Girdwood, AK
Seward
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Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center
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Girdwood, AK
Manalapan, NJ
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8. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Thank you for the explanation about Seward and the surrounding area. It sounds like this one is a must. Do you know any good small hotels there, maybe bed and breakfast?

I am not very adventurous, so the flight seeing is not for me, but thanks anyway :)

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Seward
Seward
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Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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9. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

I'm not much help on "small hotels or B&Bs" in Seward, sorry. We did stay two nights at the Seward Windsong Lodge which is also on the Exit Glacier Road and thoroughly enjoyed it. Not sure it would be considered "small" however . . . not that it is huge either. They also have a free shuttle to town if you want to leave the car behind.

I also tried to "edit" my other post about the Kenai Fjords tours. If you do that, be sure to book something that gets out of Resurrection Bay in order to have the best opportunity for wildlife viewing and to see calving glaciers.

Edited: 07 August 2012, 04:20
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Exit Glacier
Exit Glacier
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Kenai Fjords National Park, AK
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10. Re: Planning a trip to Anchorage. Please help

Here is a link to my travel journal (with photos) from my last trip to Seward in Sept. 2010: igougo.com/journal-j74698-Seward-Follies_in_… .

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