Explore sparkling fjords and incredible wildlife
This unique in-depth tour of America's largest state is sure to impress. Pristine national parks, sparkling fjords and incredible wildlife unfold on a daily basis. Home to the continent's tallest peaks, largest glaciers and biggest mammals, Alaska is a photographer's and naturalist's nirvana, full of awe-inspiring sights and challenging experiences. Explore the Kenai Peninsula and its abundance of wildlife, creaking glaciers, incredible hiking opportunities, wilderness kayaking and a full day float plane to Lake Clark in search of bears.
On this in-depth tour, a number of meals are included however, for those not included you will typically eat out in local restaurants. To help you budget for your meals on average hotel breakfasts cost from US$6-12, lunches from US$8-15 and dinners from US$13-30; this does not include alcoholic beverages. Wine costs approximately US$5 per glass and beer US$4 per bottle. Please also be aware that a tip of approximately 15%-20% is added to group meals in North American restaurants. Applicable taxes will also be added to all listed menu prices. Your tour leader may offer your group the option to operate a ‘lunch only’ food kitty, this has proven to be a popular alternative to three daily restaurant meals. Leaders will explain this option while on your tour, and the whole group will have to agree for this system to run. Please make sure we are aware of any special meal requirements before travelling. We will do all we can to accommodate for various dietary requirements but in certain parts of North America certain food types can be limited.
Welcome to Anchorage, the largest city in Alaska, with only 300,000 people. Now a bustling city fuelled by the oil boom and tourism, it wasn’t that long ago that Anchorage was the final outpost before heading into the ‘Last Frontier’. It’s not uncommon to find bears roaming the outskirts of the city - this is one truly wild place. A great way to spend your day is to wander around town getting a feel for the 49th state, speaking to the locals and checking out some of the great cafes and restaurants. A welcome meeting will be held at 18:00 hrs, followed by a welcome dinner to help you get to know your tour leader and fellow travelling companions. *Optional Activities:* • Alaska Native Heritage Center US$25 • Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center US$15 • Tony Knowles Coastal Trail US$free • Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum US$10 *Accommodation:* Sheraton Anchorage
The Kenai Peninsula is like something from a larger-thanlife children’s novel. It is staggeringly beautiful and offers wonderful wildlife and bird watching opportunities amidst dramatic ?ords and glaciers. Today, you hike the spectacular trail from Exit Glacier to the Harding Icefield for views of deep crevasses and huge seracs on the glacier. At an elevation 900m, you will eventually reach a lookout point over the icefield and the views will be out of this world. This has been rated as one of the finest hikes in Alaska. The walk is strenuous and entirely dependent on weather conditions; however, views along the way and especially from the top are simply magical. There’s an easier option available if you prefer, using an accessible trail to reach a different viewpoint of the glacier. For those who want to explore Seward afterwards, the impressive Alaska SeaLife Center, which houses a remarkable public aquarium and ocean wildlife rescue centre, is a fun place to visit. *Distance:* 9.7 miles (return) *Elevation gain:* 3953 feet *Difficulty:* Moderate to Strenuous *Time:* 6-8 hours (depending on your ability) *Departing:* Bottom of Exit Glacier *Accommodation:* Seward Windsong Lodge
Today you set off on a full day wildlife viewing cruise around Resurrection Bay and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. To maximise your experience on board, your guide will give a detailed commentary on the wildlife you see and the local area. On previous trips, travellers have spotted sea lions, otters, Dall’s Porpoise and an endless variety of seabirds including puffins and eagles. Orcas are often spotted and if you’re lucky, Humpback Whales can be seen! Enjoy a fresh salmon and prime rib lunch on board (included - vegetarian options available). You will also spend time in front of two active tidewater glaciers: Holgate and Aialik Glaciers, so close you can hear them creaking and see chunks of ice fall to the water. *Accommodation:* Seward Windsong Lodge
From Seward, you make your way towards the city of Homer where you spend the afternoon exploring your new two-night home, and Kachemak Bay, by kayak. Sea kayaking is a great way to discover the peacefulness of this wilderness area and it is commonplace to spot sea otters and porpoise as well as Bald Eagles circling overhead. With snowcapped mountains and forest as your backdrop, it’s easy to see why people are drawn to Alaska and never leave. It is like nowhere else on planet earth! *Accommodation:* Land’s End Resort
Today is all about bears and that quintessential Alaskan experience! The premier bear viewing fly-in experience is located in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve. This rugged area comprises sleeping volcanoes, ice fields and glaciers and an abundance of wildlife, with lakes and streams teeming with trout and salmon. The bears are drawn to the lake shore where thousands of salmon are spawning in the shallows, which makes it easy for them to capture a meal. And as spawned out salmon die and drift back into the river outlet more bears will travel the riverbank in search of an easy meal. After a 40 minute flight from the sea plane base in Soldotna, you fly past Mount Redoubt and land, where a waiting boat will shuttle you around the lake in search of these magnificent creatures. The viewing opportunities can be non-stop and on previous trips, our customers have spotted up to 20 bears throughout the course of one day. *Accommodation:* Land’s End Resort
You begin to make your way slowly back to Anchorage today but the fun is not over yet. After driving through the Alaskan wilderness, you’ll stop at Alyeska in the Chugach Mountain Range, ideal for a final wilderness walk before returning to the state’s capital, Anchorage. Beginning with a forest walk and pulley system which takes you over a stream, this eventually leads you to Alyeska Resort which is where you begin the trail. You can also opt to pay for the gondola to the top for beautiful views of snow-capped mountains, wild flowers and your final breaths of Alaskan wilderness before finishing up in Anchorage. Containing around half the population of the state, Anchorage in some ways looks just like any other sprawling American town and after nearly two weeks in the small towns and villages the bustling streets of the city will feel somewhat different. If you decide to stay on, why not explore the art galleries and craft shops where you can see the beautiful Eskimo handicrafts being made?
* All accommodation (see below) * 5 breakfasts, 1 lunch and 1 dinner * All transport and listed activities * Tour leader throughout
You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.
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Exodus is an award-winning company built on adventures. It started life on 4 February 1974 when two friends got together to provide an overland truck to travel to the Minaret of Jam, deep in the heart of the Hindu Kush, the most inaccessible of the world’s great monuments. They continue to discover countries, cultures, environments, cities, mountain ranges, deserts, coasts and jungles - exploring this amazing planet we all live on.
At Exodus, they know what makes you tick when it comes to holidays. It’s a desire shared by so many others. A yearning to visit new places and come home with a real sense of what they’re all about. This means delving into local traditions, cultures, cuisine, lifestyles – anything that contributes to its unique identity. At the same time, they always remember that they are only guests. So they ensure they travel courteously and respectfully, in smaller groups to minimise their impact, to ensure that every Exodus holiday is a beneficial experience for everyone involved. This is a philosophy they take around the world, helping you reach some incredible destinations on 500 itineraries across 90 countries – choose from walking, cycling, culture, wildlife and even polar adventures in guided groups or self-guided, tailor-made for you or a ready-made itinerary in Peru or India, Costa Rica or Italy – the choices are endless. They also strive to provide as much flexibility and choice as possible, making it simple for you to experience a very different holiday.
All staff at Exodus have a passion for travel and adventure with their combined experiences spanning 171 different countries and in their former lives, some team members have been professional archaeologists, wildlife guides, overland drivers, mountain leaders, diving and ski specialists and mountain bike gurus – all guaranteed to give you the very best adventure possible. Extensive planning, research, fact-finding and training are just some of the ways this expertise comes through in your adventure.
Exodus recognises their obligation to operate their tours in a responsible and sustainable fashion to address the environmental, economic and social impact tourism can have. They are committed to the well-being of the communities that host you and the natural environment that you are there to experience. Key points in their philosophy include small groups which have less impact on local communities and environments, putting money directly into the communities visited by using locally owned and run accommodation and eating locally produced food, ensuring local staff and operators receive a fair rate for their services, encouraging their own staff to take an active interest in responsible and sustainable tourism and train them accordingly, endeavour to ensure that their practices help in the environmental conservation of the areas visited and provide their clients with advice and guidelines on how to respect the social, cultural and religious beliefs of local communities.
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