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“Great train, delicious food, super staff”
Review of McKinley Explorer

McKinley Explorer
Ranked #16 of 101 things to do in Fairbanks
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: A scenic railroad spanning 356 miles, from Fairbanks to Anchorage.
Reviewed 29 September 2013

The train is comfortable and well appointed. The dining is superb but I only gave 4 stars because it is difficult for a person using a cane to go down the narrow spiral staircase to reach the restrooms and dining. We were lucky enough to have a clear day and I was able to take gorgeous photos of Mt. McKinley as well as many other scenic views. The guides on each car are well versed in history and knowledgable about the area. They told us of things coming up that we might want to photo and let us know in advance when good vantage points were coming up. We rode the train from Seward to Anchorage where we stayed overnight, then to Denali Park. After our stay in Denali, we rode from Denali to Fairbanks on the train. It's a great way to see interior Alaska.

1  Thank Kathy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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119 - 123 of 206 reviews

Reviewed 28 September 2013

The McKinley Explorer train cars are simply excellent. Extraordinary view, comfortable seating, nice restaurant in the lower level (with quite good food), quick service from the bar at the front of the car, and good commentary from the staff regarding surroundings. Logistics from Holland America were also done flawlessly regarding luggage transfer, transfers to and from the train, seat assignments, etc. The rides from Fairbanks to Denali, and from Denali to Anchorage were high points of our Alaska vacation.

1  Thank acosner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2013

The Alaska Railway is almost the top 10 railway ride of the world. I took the railway twice, first was from Anchorage to Denali, then from Denali to Fairbanks. The scenery both ways was mind-blowing and awesome. I upgrade to the Gold-class and am glad I did. The gold-class upgrade allows you to be on the top deck of the train with a see-through glass roof and providing you with a 180deg view of the railway and Journey. Also, hot coffee, tea, coco are provided just for the Gold-class passengers. We are also allowed to move around anywhere in the railway with our gold class pin-badge.

We had our lunch on-board, it is recommend to first go for the meals and not wait till you are hungry as the waiting time can be quite long as the dining area has limited seats. The food is average only for the price we are paying. Would strongly recommend for you to bring along your own snacks n crackers to munch.

4  Thank Gek T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 September 2013

The only thing that beats the scenery is the dining car. Excellent food and service. Overall, the train gives excellent service, but tend to oversell souvenirs

Thank kleektours
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2013

Seems all trains in Alaska are these lovely big, comfortable well serviced means of transport. If you have travelled on the Rocky Mountaineer, you have a good insight into this trip and other train journeys in the area. Nowhere near as expensive and R.M. and you can choose to pay & travel in 2 levels of seating. We travelled in the cheaper class, lovely! Large, layback seats, and a opportunity to go upstairs to glassed area for better viewing. Café area, you can eat in the café or take back to your seat. Trains arrive late, around 8 - 8.30 pm sometimes later, so we chose to eat on the train before arriving at our destination. Restaurant was very nice, the staff were well dressed, and extremely pleasant. We got to know some of them as we used the trains a lot & my husband enjoyed the banter. Food is good and we felt, reasonably priced. ALL the trains travel slowly with a tour guide on board & along with the driver they spot for wildlife and interesting items, also slow down or even stop for photos. We went Seward/Anchorage + Anchorage/Fairbanks/Anchorage and later Anchorage/Whittier - give us the train every time.

3  Thank davmar70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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