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10 Days Alaska Itinerary for 2020

Last Updated on September 23, 2020

After traveling throughout the United States for more than 15 years, we have our favorites states that we love to get back to. One of those is for sure, Alaska. It is not only big enough to make it impossible to see in one visit. But it is wild enough to encounter what you can not do in other states. And we, as photographers, see unlimited possibilities to take great pictures in this place and share them with others. It leads to multiple questions on how to make such pictures, how to organize such a trip to Alaska? How much does it cost? How many days do I need? If we can give you ready to go Alaska itinerary for 10 days?

10 days alaska itinerary for 2020 title page

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Of course, not everybody has similar goals to ours and can split the trip to many small trips focusing on each area. Most of you are planning once in a lifetime journey to Alaska because you had seen plenty of excellent pictures or are dreaming about catching halibut or salmon for yourself. You are asking questions, and we would like to answer them, giving you all of our knowledge and experience. We reveal the secrets that we were discovering for years… But we believe there are so many lovely places in the world to see and you can sacrifice only ten days to see this gem! This is why we prepared ready to go 10 days Alaska itinerary for you!

Best time to go to Alaska

When is the best time to go to Alaska – you ask. Now we know that it is always a good time to visit Alaska. But for most of you, summer is perfect. So consider planning your visit between June and the first week of September. As of the beginning of September, the winter season is starting. A lot of businesses are closing for the season. So you can have a problem to stay for example in Homer campground etc. But until the end of September, the weather is still fine for a visit.

However, if you would like to come in winter, it’s not a problem. Of course, it is cold, and this itinerary might not fit, but still, you can visit some places and take great and even more unique photos. But please consider that we prepared that 10 days Alaska itinerary with the summer season in mind.

Estimation of 10 days Alaska trip cost

Simple answer to this complicated question is of course: it depends. But we will try to give you some fresh data for 2019 and 2020:

  • Gallon of unleaded fuel 2.50-3.50 USD (cheaper close to Anchorage)
  • Average RV camp site with hookups – 35-50 USD/night
  • Full day kayak tour – 140-180 USD/person
  • One day cruise to glaciers from Seward – 89-250 USD/person
  • Full day fishing cruise from Homer (fishing licence not included) – 200-300 USD/person
  • Average price of loding in hotel/cabin/etc.:
  • Average price of lunch 20-30 USD/person
  • Average price of dinner 40-60 USD/person (alcohol not included)

Alaska packing list

We suggest you study our detailed article on Alaska packing list. It reflects our experience and turned out to be correct on a couple of last trips. Alaska is the land of bears. Therefore you need to get ready to meet wildlife. Wild animals can behave unpredictably. So, we wrote more about bear safety in Alaska, and how to prepare for wildlife in our Alaska guide.

If you plan to go hike, especially in Denali NP or Kenai NP, check out our detailed Day Hiking Packing List of what to pack for a one-day hike. Moreover, you can download our PDF checklist, which helps you prepare for your Alaska adventure!

Alaska Paper Maps and Guides

We have been to Alaska a few times and love these State. During our travels, we used several maps and guidebooks. Their updates appeared this year, which is great. They enrich your knowledge of the nature, history, and culture of the area. What’s more, they will be helpful during your trip.

Our favorite is The MILEPOST 2020: Alaska Travel Planner. It includes mile-by-mile descriptions of more than 15,000 miles of road in Alaska, Yukon, Northwest Territories, British Columbia, and Alberta. Its 700-plus pages detail guide with camping, fishing, gas stops, restaurants, attractions, and services found along the highways and byways of Alaska and western Canada. So, it’s perfect if you plan longer road trip.

We also used DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer: Alaska. We like its topographic maps, which provide information on everything from cities and towns to historic sites, scenic drives, and trailheads.

Our favorite travel guide is Moon Alaska: Scenic Drives, National Parks, Best Hikes. There is a new version from April 2020, which is excellent. You have a paperback or Kindle version to choose from. We love it because it’s very detailed and informative. It gave you a plant of ideas on how to spend time in Alaska according to your needs and interests. It is set to become a must-have guide for travelers in Alaska. It is succinctly written by someone who lives and loves Alaska and who knows this place. Full of educational information about wildlife, plants, local customs, geography, history, ecology, and safety. We love this series.

The MILEPOST 2020: Alaska Travel PlannerMoon Alaska: Scenic Drives, National Parks, Best HikesMoon Anchorage, Denali & the Kenai PeninsulaDeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer: Alaska
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Ready to go 10 Days Alaska Itinerary

Below we show you our proposition on how you can fill ten days in Alaska. Later we describe each day in detail to help you plan as you like. We assume that you are renting a car or motorhome. In case of a vehicle you can sleep in a hotel/Airbnb or a tent – you will find all the options below.

DayActivityPhotographic opportunities
1Arrive in AnchorageLandscape: Anchorage by night
2Go to Denali National Park, visit Talkeetna and Healy on the wayLandscape, Street (Talkeetna), Magic Bus (Healy), Wildlife (on the road)
3Denali Shuttle tour to WonderlakeLandscape and wildlife on the road
4Denali Shuttle tour to Wonderlake or alternativeLandscape and wildlife on the road
5Drive to SewardLandscape and wildlife on the road
6Cruise to see glaciers, sealife or Kayaking TourLandscape (glaciers) and wildlife (sealife, birds)
7Drive to Anchor Point, then HomerLandscape (volcanos, town), Wildlife (birds, bald eagles, other)
8Visit Homer - go for cruise, kayaking or fishingWildlife (sealife on the cruise), Birds, landscape
9Drive to Hope, then Wittier or Alyeska to see GlaciersLandscape (glaciers), wildlife on the road, small town (Hope)
10Return to AnchorageWildlife on the road

Day 1 – Arrive in Anchorage

We assume that you will be flying to Anchorage from one of the cities across the United States or Canada (if you are coming from Europe, you must transfer at one of the other airports, because except Condor Airlines from Frankfurt and Icelandair from Reykjavik there are no direct flights to Anchorage). Most of the flights will last a couple of hours, and usually, they are arriving in the afternoon, so we do not suggest you to plan anything, but Anchorage sightseeing on that day.

gift shop in anchorage alaska

Car rental or motorhome?

Just after arrival, you should rent a car at Ted Stevens International Airport. You have to be prepared for an early start the next morning. We recommend considering two options:

  1. Regular car and sleeping in hotels, bed, and breakfast or a tent at campgrounds. 
  2. Motorhome rental and flexible travel – you can change our 10 days Alaska itinerary and start south and go north if it better fits weather forecast

If you prefer motorhome, definitely choose one of the most reliable companies like ABC Motorhome or Great Alaskan Holidays. They both have excellent service and good quality vehicles. We were using them before and were happy with this solution.

Good to have mobile phone

If you do not have a local US mobile phone, we recommend buying a local sim card in AT&T or Verizon dealers in the city. It will help you later to communicate, navigate, and maybe even quickly share your pictures on the internet.

Places where you can buy AT&T and Verizon prepaid plans in or close to the city center:

AT&T Store: Address: 320 W 5th Ave 1st Floor, Anchorage, AK 99501

Verizon is available in GoWireless Retailer: Address: 110 W Tudor Rd Suite A, Anchorage, AK 99503

Where to sleep? Hotel or campground?

The next thing you need to plan is lodging. If you plan to stay in a hotel, you should book well in advance, because prices are growing pretty fast and Alaska is not the cheapest state regarding accommodation. And this is why we recommend considering motorhome rental as an excellent option.

If you prefer something more comfortable, but not cheap, we suggest choosing among Voyager Inn, The Hotel Captain Cook or Copper Whale Inn.

If you need something more on budget, consider Westmark Anchorage Hotel or Ingra House Hotel.

Check hotel rates and availability on hotels.com or booking.com and book it in advance.

The cheapest option should be Airbnb – there is a couple of exciting possibilities even in the city center, but because it changes quite often, we do not want to suggest anything particular, just please check it here as you plan and book fast, because as we mentioned, good lodging in Anchorage is limited and sell quickly.

If you decided to rent a motorhome (or sleep in a tent), we could suggest two campgrounds that we used before. One of them (Ship Creek RV Park) is close to the city center (walking distance), and one (Golden Nugget RV Park) is a little bit remote, but both are of decent quality.

Dinner

On Day 1, except for sightseeing in the city center, you probably would like to eat something local. We spent enough time in Anchorage to check all the best restaurants for you.

Orso ($$$) – This is great place to taste local seafood. We recommend crusted halibut, crab-stuffed rockfish, and appetizers. They have excellent wine selection, as well. If you like Pinot Noir, it is a good companion for the food.

Humpy’s Great Alaskan Alehouse ($$) – This is a more affordable place with seafood on the menu. We were trying blackened halibut tacos, crab legs, salmon, and reindeer burgers, and everything was tasty and prepared very well. If you are an oyster fan, you will find here the best Alaskan oysters, much bigger than everything you know from other parts of the country. This restaurant is more dedicated to beer than wine, so we suggest you find your favorite draft beer here.

Glacier BrewHouse ($$) – This one is our favorite in Anchorage. You can try ribs, grilled salmon, crab legs, cooked Wagyu beef sliders, or seafood chowder. We liked King Crab Legs best! This restaurant has its brewery on-premise, so if you plan to drink alcohol, it would be better to try some beers. But if you are not a big fan of beers like us, they have a massive selection of stronger drinks.

Photography opportunities

Anchorage is not the most beautiful city in the world, but still, you can try to take some great pictures. We selected two viewpoints for you

  1. Downtown Anchorage Viewpoint – you will need a telephoto lens (70-200, 100-400, or something similar) to take skyline picture from this spot.
  2. Flattop trail – from this trail, you can see the whole city and much more. You will need a telephoto lens as well to take great pictures. To get to this place you need much more time, so please make sure that you will be able to make it.

Day 2 – Go to Denali National Park, and visit Talkeetna, and Healy

On the second day, your goal is to get to Denali National Park. The travel itself will take you about 4 hours, and the distance is about 240 miles. We strongly recommend doing two things on this day. First is to visit Talkeetna, because it’s only 30 miles more in the distance and 45 minutes longer from driving perspective.

Talkeetna

Why we want you to spend some time in Talkeetna? First of all, because the town is charming, it has excellent restaurants and a lot of nice giftshops. Moreover, it is the starting point of all expeditions to McKinley/Denali peak. You should visit the museum and learn a little bit about the history.

giftshop in talkeetna alaska

If you would have more than just a couple of hours, you can consider flying to the glacier. Some of the flights offer landing there for a quarter or two. Companies providing this service are close to the Talkeetna airport. Also, check tours on viator.com, which has a wide range of exciting activities in Alaska.

If you start early from Anchorage, you will arrive in Talkeetna just for lunch. And we recommend Talkeetna Roadhouse for having one.

talkeetna roadhouse lodging and restaurant alaska

Healy – Magic Bus from Into the Wild

The second thing we suggest you should do on your way to Denali is to visit the town of Healy. There is a famous magic bus (replica used in the movie) that you can see and take a picture with it. More on this you can find in our separate article. Please remember that it is more secure to see this bus than the original one. A lot of people lost their lives trying to reach it, so do not be like them.

More information you will find in our article Into the Wild – Magic Bus

49th State Brewing Co in Healy Alaska

Denali lodging

You must know that accommodation options in Denali are very limited and rather expensive. So again we strongly suggest booking them as soon as possible and far in advance.

You can consider staying in the already mentioned town of Healy (White Moose Lodge, Tri-Valley Cabins, or Denali Park Hotel) or Cantwell (Backwoods Lodge, Cantwell Lodge, or The Runway House). If you want to stay closer to the park, your options must focus around McKinley Park (Perch Resort, Creekside Cabins, or Grizzly Bear Resort).

In case you decided to go with the motorhome, you have to book the campground in advance as well because in high season it’s very crowded. The first choice is Riley Creek Campground (you can encounter moose here sometimes!). If it’s full, please try Cantwell RV Park or Denali RV Park.

More information you will find in our article Happy seeing astonishing and majestic Mount Denali

Plan next day – Visitor’s Center

On that day you should also think about your next day or two. It is essential because you want to have magnificent wildlife and landscape photos. We recommend considering two options for those days. If you can survive one night in the tent, then you should book a site in one of the campgrounds inside Denali National Park. It’s a better option from a photography perspective because you save time and have a great adventure and more opportunities for pictures.

In general you can not enter with your own car into the park. There is a shuttle bus system and you must use it. This is good, because animals got used to those buses and are less afraid of them, so you have better chance to see them from the close distance. The bad thing is that riding such bus takes a huge amount of time. This is why you ought to consider sleeping one night in a tent deep in the park. You will save time riding a bus.

Whatever you decide your best option is to take two consecutive days a shuttle to the Wonderlake stop – in one or two pieces, depends on your choice. Our experience shows that doing it this way increases your chance to spot more animals and have different weather from landscape photography perspective.

Other options

However, if you want to do something else, not just spending time on the bus, we can suggest a couple of other exciting options:

  1. ATV – if you like to get dirty, this is something for you! Actually, they are not riding inside the park itself, but just outside the border. But the experience is pleasant. You will have fun riding ATV, hear some stories and information about the park from the guide, and have a chance to see beautiful views. We recommend going 2.5h Denali Wilderness Adventure Tour. It is optimal.
  2. White-water rafting. This adventure is only for brave ones, and to be honest, we did not try it for ourselves. But we decided to mention just in case you love water. There are a couple of companies organizing such tours in Denali. To mention two of them: Denali Raft Adventures and Nenana Raft Denali.
  3. Flightseeing – except the already mentioned Talkeetna you can try to book your flight from Healy or Kantishna.

More you will find on viator.com.

denali glacier from above alaska

Day 3 – Denali Shuttle tour to Wonderlake or Kantishna

We already told that the more extended bus trip you take, the more chances you have to encounter wildlife and take professional photos. The other hint is to book the earliest bus possible in the morning and the latest in the evening. Animals are more active in those times of the day. However, light is maybe not perfect, but with modern gear, you still have a chance to take a unique photo with this approach.

caribou in denali national park alaska

You have a couple of tours to choose from:

  1. Natural History Tour (4.5h) – We do not recommend this short tour if you would like to photograph wildlife.
  2. Tundra Wilderness Tour to Toklat River (8h) – This is an enjoyable tour if you do not like to spend too much time on a school bus, but still want to take some pictures.
  3. Kantishna Experience Tour (12h) – This is the longest tour and the biggest chance to encounter and photograph some wildlife. You should also take it if you plan flightseeing with Katair.
  4. Another option is Camper Bus or Transit Bus – Those are supposed to get hikers to their campings. However, you can use them as some hop-on/hop-off buses. You can ride a little bit and hike a little bit (for example, you can have some beautiful trails near Wonderlake or Eielson Visitor Center.

Day 4 – Denali Shuttle tour to Wonderlake day 2

You could do it again from the Bus Depot or the campground if you decided to stay on one of them. Whatever option you chose, you should be in your lodge for the night because the next day in the morning, you have plenty of miles to drive.
But let’s focus on what kind of animals you can see on such a bus trip?

The most popular that you are almost sure to experience are grizzly and brown bears, moose, Dall sheep, and caribou, not counting small pikes and squirrels. There are fewer chances to spot wolves, foxes, or lynx. Remember that the more you travel, the more opportunities you have. The better the time of the day (morning or late afternoon), the more chances you have. We know it is boring, but photography requires some sacrifices to get great pictures.

Landscape photography depends more on weather. So again, do not give up if it is raining, be patient. The best light is immediately after the rain or thunderstorm, and you have a chance for unique photos. In the shining sun, you can see McKinley/Denali, but light might be so intense, that contrast in the picture will be low. In our opinion, it’s much better to catch the good light on a cloudy day (ok, clouds should be somewhat higher than lower).

denali national park alaska

Food

You must remember that there is no food available on the tours, so please prepare your sandwiches, snacks and take water with you to survive the whole day. In case you are camping in the park, you must secure food for two days. And remember that in the park, you are obliged to store food in special bear-proof containers installed on each of the campgrounds.

If you plan to cook, then please do not forget do take stove, gas, and matches with you. Fires might be prohibited depending on the fire danger level.

Day 5 – Drive to Seward

It is a taught day for the driver. The trip should take about 6.5 hours, and the distance is 350 miles. Because this Alaska itinerary is for only 10 days, we decided to compress it somehow for you to see more even at the cost of such a long drive.

The road from Anchorage to Seward is exciting itself. We planned you some stops on the way back, but feel free to reschedule it and if you want to move some of them here. We will try to emphasize some of the most interesting points on this road:

  1. Potter Marsh Bird Sanctuary – in this place, you have some chances to encounter birds. Usually, you can spot here only ducks and gooses, but if you are lucky, you can see moose as well (try in the morning). We recommend taking binoculars and telephoto lens with you (400 mm would be nice).
  2. Bird Point – there is a chance to spot Beluga Whales before high tide. If you do not have so much luck, still there’s a terrific opportunity for landscape photography.
  3. Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center – this place might be great for a family with kids. We, as photographers, are trying to avoid such sites. It’s not wildlife in their natural habitat. But you might have a different opinion and want to see bison. Why not. In such a case, this place is for you!
  4. Kenai Lake at Cooper Landing – if the weather is good, this place is an excellent landscape photo opportunity.
  5. Exit Glacier trail (requires some additional miles) – if you have some spare time, you can hike here for shorter or longer trails. In good weather, it is even better.
Alaska Sterling Highway view to the bay

Lodging

Seward has some lodging options, but as well it is the top-rated destination in high season. Thus you should consider booking ahead one of the places: Breeze Inn Motel, Best Western Plus Edgewater, or Harborview Inn. Other options are not in downtown, however still walking distance.

If you decided to rent a motorhome, you have a beautiful waterfront campground – Seward Waterfront RV Park. If you want to have an excellent site in the first line from the water, we recommend to arrive early and book it.

Food

Ray’s Waterfront ($$$$) – Very expensive restaurant, but for us, it was not the best seafood restaurant in Seward. You are paying for the location, that is stunning. If you are hungry, you should order some fresh fish (salmon or halibut) and maybe crab cakes – you can’t be wrong with those.

The Cookery ($$$) – This place is maybe not located as lovely as Ray’s, but for us won with the food quality and taste! We love oysters, and they were delicious. If you don’t like them, maybe try mushroom toast? Or stay with regular halibut and salmon.

Gold Rush Bistro ($$) – The little cheaper option, but again very tasty. Assuming you don’t like seafood, you can come here and have just a burger or sandwich. They do not serve alcohol.

Day 6 – Glacier and wildlife Cruises or kayaking

When you are in Seward, the best thing you can do is go for a cruise or kayaking. There is plenty of options, but you, as a photographer, probably would like to go for one that allows you to take some pictures, don’t you?

resurrection bay seward alaska

We selected some options you should consider:

  1. Seward: Kenai Fjords Half Day Wildlife Cruise – Watch for whales, puffins, sea otters, and more on a half-day wildlife cruise through Resurrection Bay. Travel to the best whale and wildlife viewing areas in the region on a fully narrated tour with local, experienced captains and crew.
  2. Kenai Fjords Wildlife 5-Hour Cruise – Explore the protected waters and rugged coastline of Resurrection Bay. Experience up-close encounters with wildlife as the captain guides the vessel along massive bird rookeries and sea lion colonies with frequent sightings of whales, otters and porpoise.
  3. Kenai Fjords National Park 6-Hour Cruise – Explore the world of whales, wildlife, and glaciers on an incredible cruise through the Kenai Fjords National Park. Enjoy the unparalleled beauty of the pristine Alaskan waters onboard a stable, high-speed catamaran with a restaurant and bar.

Also, check tours on viator.com, which has a wide range of exciting trips & activities in Alaska.

In case you would like to fill your whole day, or you don’t like cruises and prefer paddling, we recommend you beautiful shorter kayak trips organized by Miller’s Landing. They have plenty of options, and in case of short trips, they take you with water taxi to kayaking destination, so you don’t waste time on paddling less exciting areas.

One of the tours we recommend is Fun Wildlife Paddle – They will take you to coastline towards Tonsina Beach. On this tour, your guide is focusing on looking for wildlife, like sea otters, bald eagles, sea lions, and different sea birds. It happens to encounter even a black bear. The tour lasts about two hours. Fell free to check their other options.

More information you will find in our article Homer, Hope, Anchor Point – Three best places to visit at Kenai Peninsula, Alaska

Day 7 – Drive to Anchor Point, then Homer

On this day you should have some spare time to visit Exit Glacier near Seward if you had no chance to do it before. We strongly recommend at least the shortest hike. The glacier is melting, and for sure, it is one of the last time you can see it looking like that.

If not, then head to Anchor Point to be there as early as possible (drive will take you about 3 hours because it is 150 miles away). In this place, there is a big chance to spot bald eagles and seals. If the weather is good, you can see snowy volcanic mountains on the other side of Cook Inlet. We had the luck to photograph an eagle with the mountain in the background, as you can see below.

Anchor Point might be as well an excellent place to go for a bear watching tour to the other side of the Cook Inlet in Chinitna Bay in Lake Clark National Park. If you are here between May and early September, you might consider half-day tour. It should fit into this itinerary, but if you have more time go for full-day because only boat ride to the other side of the Inlet takes a couple of hours.

eagle with volcano anchor point alaska

After enjoying the magnificent seaside here, you can go to Homer. We recommend leaving your car in your booked lodging then walk through the city. It might be hard to find a parking spot in the high season. In case you are going with a motorhome, go directly to the campground and leave your vehicle there for the next two nights.

Homer Lodging

There are not too many hotels/lodges on the spit itself so that you might end with lodging in the city itself. If you book ahead of time, you can still have a chance to get Otter Beach Lodges or Land’s End Resort at the very end of the spit. Otherwise, we recommend one of the Aspen Suites Hotel or Ocean Shores Hotel. They are located not precisely within walking distance to the very end of the spit, but if you like going along the beach, it is still not that far.

In case you decided for a motorhome, there’s one nice campground at the very end of the spit – Homer Spit Campground. We recommend staying there.

fishing cruise from Homer Alaska

Food in Homer

Captain’s Patties ($$$) – Here you can try fish & chips. But if you want something more sophisticated, why don’t you order king crab or seafood platter? You can buy fresh fish here and if you are traveling with a motorhome, prepare it yourself later.

Homer Spit Oyster Bar ($$$) – Small charming place a little bit away from the center of the spit. Of course, they specialize in oysters, and they are great. If you go in a happy hour, there is a chance to get much more, so be careful. You can buy some oysters to go here as well.

You should go for a drink to the very famous Salty Dawg Saloon ($$). Even if you do not plan to drink, enter there and see those dollar bills everywhere.

Little Mermaid ($) – This restaurant has an outstanding price/quality ratio, so it’s our first choice in Homer. You can go classic here with halibut or salmon, but you can try as well as citrus salad or grilled rockfish tacos. Chowder is delicious, as well.

Day 8 – Homer – go for cruise or fishing or kayaking

When in Homer, you have plenty of opportunities to spend active time here. You must think about what you did in Seward like kayaking or wildlife cruise and decide what you want to do in Homer. If you have no luck and did not see any wildlife on the journey or took not perfect pictures, do not worry. It’s another opportunity here! If you had no time for kayaking in Seward or decided to do another thing, do not worry! Here you have another kayaking opportunity.

Go fishing

But our idea is instead to spend this day on fishing halibut. Of course, it is maybe not a specific photographic experience, but we are sure you will like it as we did. And on the way to a fishing spot, there’s still a big chance to spot some sea life!

So if you would like to go fishing, you need to plan it ahead as usual. There are two things to consider. One is a fishing license that you must buy separately. And you can do it in many places in Homer. But as well it is a good idea to buy it online and print at home. You can do it here. Check current prices and conditions.

cruise in Homer Alaska

Second, you should find your charter. We have experience with Homer Ocean Charters, and they did a great job. They teach you how to catch halibut, help you to get it on board, and gut it for you on the way back to the harbor. They have different kinds of tours, but we recommend the whole day – it’s a bigger chance to catch your halibut and spot some wildlife on the way.

Or go kayaking

If you want to kayak in Homer because the weather is favorable, we recommend True North Kayaks. They are comfortably located in the center of the spit so that you can arrange your tour easily. They have plenty of options, and like in Seward, you must first take a water taxi to kayaking destination, then paddling on the sea. Fantastic experience!

Day 9 – Drive to Hope, Whittier and Girdwood

We know it’s a pity to leave Homer, but you planned only 10 days for your Alaska itinerary, so it has to happen. On that day, your goal is to see some other gems of the Kenai Peninsula.

What we recommend to do on this day is to choose a road through Kalifornsky Beach and Kenai to Soldotna. This beach is fantastic, and you will have a chance for some more wildlife there.

From Kenai head to Hope. This is a tiny and charming town with a magnificent view of bay and glaciers. You will spend about an hour seeing old buildings and maybe having a coffee or lunch in the Sea View Cafe. You can try to spot some eagles on the seaside. If you see a photography potential there, you have time to use it.

glaciers near Girdwood Alaska

From Hope, you should go to Whittier. There is a couple of amazing glaciers on the way, and the town itself is very original. People are living here literally in one building. It is the 14-story Hodge Building completed in 1957 and contains 150 two-and-three-bedroom apartments plus bachelor efficiency units. You will spend no more than an hour here.

From Whittier, we recommend going to Girdwood and spending here the rest of the day. If the weather is good, it’s worth taking Alyeska tram to the Alyeska mountain. You will have a chance to spot some wildlife on the way and for sure beautiful mountains and glaciers.

Lodging in Girdwood

If you are traveling a regular car, you must sleep here in Hotel Alyeska, Raven Glacier Lodge, or try some apartments or Airbnb. There are not too many options here, and the ones available are relatively expensive.

In case you decided to go with a motorhome, we suggest staying in Bird Creek Campground because there are no campgrounds in Girdwood itself.

Food in Girdwood

We believe you would like to eat something else than seafood here 😉 You can try one of those restaurants:

Double Musky Inn ($$) – This is a cajun/creole kitchen, and you should try pepper steak, gumbo soup, or jambalaya. We recommend you do make a reservation because the place might be a little crowded sometimes.

Coast Pizza ($) – if you are fed up with seafood, maybe pizza is a good idea? And the one here is worth eating. It is cheap and tasty.

Day 10 – Return to Anchorage

This day is your last day of Alaska 10 days itinerary. Depending on your flight departure time, you can plan some more activities. If you haven’t had a chance to get to flattop hill before, maybe on that day, you will have a chance? Or you can enjoy more Anchorage during the day? Just browse the plan again and find things that you could miss because of a lack of time and do it now.

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the van escape

Hi, we are Agnes & Chris! Welcome to The Van Escape! We are travelers, photographers, and bloggers. Our goal is to share travel & photo experience and inspire you to outdoor adventures through America. We love wildlife, off the beaten path places, soaking in hot springs, and van life. We also like cities by night and tasting local food & wine. We give you ready itineraries, hints, and essential tools to prepare you for your unforgettable lifetime journey. We only describe the places we have been, which we know and recommend without hesitation. All photos are also ours. We are so glad you’re here!

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