Hikers in blue jackets walk in tall green grass while photographing snow-covered Mt. Denali on the Ultimate Alaska Adventure.
two people dogsledding pulled by several dogs on ultimate alaska adventure trip
float plane landed at shore on ultimate alaska adventure land tour
Kayakers in yellow & orange boats paddle glassy water beside tall green mountains on the Ultimate Alaska Adventure.
a group sits in red life jackets in a yellow river raft on the penia river while on the ultimate Alaska adventure land tour
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North America Alaska Land Tour

Ultimate Alaska Adventure

The 8-day Ultimate Alaska Adventure is an action-packed backcountry exploration by kayak, helicopter, raft, dogsled and foot. Experience wild Alaska in comfort with true hospitality in four unique and authentic lodges on the Kenai Peninsula. With only 8 total guests per Ultimate Alaska Adventure, this experience is truly authentic with a small footprint and personalized attention.

Kick off with a helicopter ride to a snow-clad glacier where harnessed dogs and sleds await to take you on tour. Raft or fish the Kenai River, famous for incredible salmon spawning runs. At the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, hike secluded trails through fascinating ecological communities. Drift in a custom boat across Skilak Lake to a woodsy foray in the Kenai Mountains, where a trailside picnic lunch awaits. And gear up with crampons, a harness and helmet to hike the unforgettable Exit Glacier.

Whale watching and glacier viewing are highlights of a four-hour dramatic coastline cruise from Seward through Kenai Fjords National Park. Then beachcomb or launch a kayak with excellent bird-watching opportunities and take in the stunning views of Pedersen Glacier. Complete this active Alaskan adventure with a backcountry rail tour on the historic Alaska Railroad back to Anchorage.

Don’t worry, this action-packed adventure is designed strategically with relaxation breaks right when you need them: wood-fired saunas, riverside docks, fireside chats, comfortable common areas, private cabins and delicious meals accompany every lodge. The Kenai Backcountry Lodge is located on the shores of Skilak Lake, surrounded by miles of wilderness. The Kenai Riverside Lodge is a world-class fishing retreat on the banks of the Kenai River. The Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge is the only accommodation located within Kenai Fjords National Park. And the Seward Windsong Lodge is a peaceful retreat conveniently nestled among trees at the entrance to Kenai Fjords National Park.

AdventureSmith Explorations’ crew of award-winning Alaska adventure experts have personal experience visiting the lodges and wilderness of the Kenai Peninsula. Contact us to discover more about the Ultimate Alaska Adventure and other options that suit your travel interests and timeline.

Read on for details about this trip, or learn more about AdventureSmith’s Alaska land tours or all Alaska trips by land and sea.



Itinerary

Ultimate Alaska Adventure Itinerary

The 8-day Ultimate Alaska Adventure is an action-packed backcountry exploration that begins and ends in Anchorage, Alaska.

Ultimate Alaska Adventure route map.
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Day 1
Anchorage & Glacier Helicopter Dog Mushing Excursion

Meet your trip leader and fellow travelers at 8:00am in the in the hotel lobby (hotel to be determined at time of reservation). Travel from Anchorage along the scenic Turnagain Arm to the small mountain community of Girdwood. Today’s adventure is a helicopter excursion to one of the surrounding glaciers to try your hand at the famous Alaskan sport of dog mushing. High on the snow-pack, drive the sled yourself or ride in the sled and enjoy the dramatic scenery. Late this afternoon, continue south to Kenai Riverside Lodge, located along the banks of the Kenai River. Settle into your cabin and enjoy appetizers and dinner in the main lodge.

Accommodations

Kenai Riverside Lodge

Meals

lunch, dinner

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Day 2
Raft the Kenai River

Gear up for a scenic raft trip into the heart of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Along the way, watch for moose, bald eagles and other bird species and salmon. The Kenai River is famous for its salmon, and depending on the time of year, witness their incredible spawning runs. Enjoy a delicious picnic lunch along the river or on the shore of Skilak Lake. Arrive at Kenai Backcountry Lodge in the late afternoon and settle into your accommodations. A fishing excursion on the Upper Kenai River may be substituted for today’s rafting trip for an additional charge. If interested in fishing, please contact an Adventure Specialist.

Accommodations

Kenai Backcountry Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 3
Kenai National Wildlife Refuge

Spend a full day exploring the remote wilderness of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Hike a secluded trail and travel through several fascinating ecological communities. At the top of the trail, explore the tundra and enjoy splendid views of the lake and surrounding wilderness. Or explore the lakeshore by boat, stopping for scenic views and short walks. Return to the lodge in the afternoon and enjoy the wood-fired sauna or simply relax at the lodge. Depending on the weather, options for the evening may include an exploration of the lake by sturdy touring kayak or a fireside natural history presentation by one of the lodge’s guides.

Accommodations

Kenai Backcountry Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 4
Kenai Watershed Hike

After a hearty breakfast, cross Skilak Lake on the lodge’s custom boat and take a short van ride to a local trailhead for a scenic foray with gorgeous vistas of the Kenai Mountains and Kenai watershed. Lunch always tastes better in the backcountry, so enjoy eating during the trail hike before returning to civilization. In the afternoon, return to Kenai Riverside Lodge to relax perhaps on the riverside deck and bonfire pit, which is also perfect for post-dinner s’mores!

Accommodations

Kenai Riverside Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 5
Exit Glacier Hiking

After a hearty breakfast, travel to Exit Glacier just outside of Seward—the only portion of the Harding Ice Field accessible by road. Don’t just see the glacier but experience it firsthand on today’s ice hiking adventure! Supported with crampons, harnesses and helmets, safely navigate the glacier. Don’t forget the camera for this unforgettable experience.

Accommodations

Seward Windsong Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 6
Seward to Kenai Fjords National Park

Wake up in the picturesque seacoast town of Seward. Board a custom catamaran bound for Kenai Fjords National Park, home to an array of glaciers and marine wildlife such as whales, Stellar sea lions, sea otters and puffins. A four-hour cruise allows time to explore the dramatic coastlines. Enjoy lunch in front of a tidewater glacier before arriving at your exclusive lodge destination: Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge.

Nestled in a protected tidal lagoon area, the Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge offers miles of pristine beachfront and views of the stunning Pedersen Glacier. This afternoon, meet the lodge guides for a tour of the lodge and property and settle into your private cabins. Enjoy dinner and evening presentations.

Accommodations

Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 7
Kenai Fjords National Park

Enjoy a full day of exploration at the lodge and choose from an array of activities to match your interest and energy level. Guided options include interpretive nature walks, sea kayaking amid glacial ice, canoeing in the lagoon and coastal explorations. Or relax at the lodge by the wood stove, peruse the natural history library or take a leisurely stroll along the beachfront.

Accommodations

Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 8
Kenai Fjords National Park to Seward & Alaska Railroad to Anchorage, Alaska

This morning allows another opportunity to canoe, kayak or explore the area in the morning before bidding farewell to Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge. Midday, embark on a return coastal wildlife cruise back to Seward. From there, board the historic Alaska Railroad for a scenic backcountry rail tour back to Anchorage. Dinner and hotel/airport transfers are not included, but meals are available for purchase on the train. Arrive at the Anchorage train station by 10:30pm and transfer on your own to your hotel or the airport.

Accommodations

n/a

Meals

breakfast, lunch

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Details
Inclusions, Terms & Notes

Included

Transportation from Anchorage, meals served family style in lodges indicated in itinerary, guided activities, return fare on the Alaska Railroad in Gold Star service, and special guide/pilot gratuities for the heli- dog sledding.

Exclusions

Airfare, taxes ($133.97 per person for 2022 double occupancy; 2023 TBD. Taxes are determined by each borough and municipality in Alaska and may change before final payment), beer and wine, meals on board the Alaska Railroad on the final day, fishing upgrades, cabin upgrades at Kenai Backcountry Lodge, gratuities to Alaska Wildland Adventures staff and insurance of any kind.

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of $1,000 is required per person at time of booking. The balance of the trip price is due 121 days before the departure date. Special holiday payment and cancellation terms may apply. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Standard cancellations are subject to the following per-person penalties, based on number of days prior to departure:
Up to 121 days – $300 or 10% of total trip cost, whichever is less
120 to 91 days – $600 or 20% of total trip cost, whichever is less
90 to 46 days – 50% of total trip cost
45 to 0 days – 100% of total trip cost

Terms & Conditions

This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A Traveler Information Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. Your Adventure Specialist will send you a unique link to complete this form along with a packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information upon booking confirmation.

Arrival & Departure

The Ultimate Alaska Adventure begins and ends in Anchorage, Alaska (ANC). Plan to arrive in Alaska at least the day before your trip begins and overnight in Anchorage. On the first day of your trip, meet your trip leader at 8:00am in the hotel lobby (meeting location confirmed with reservation). The trip ends when your Alaska Railroad train arrives at the Anchorage station on Day 8 at approximately 10:15pm. If you choose to fly home on the night of Day 8, we suggest you book a flight that departs Anchorage after 1:00am the following day, in case of possible transportation delays.

Activities

Whether you are looking for light activity options or more challenging outdoor pursuits, the guides can tailor most excursions to suit your skill level. Ultimate Alaska Adventure activities may include helicopter excursions, dog sledding, outdoor picnics, rafting, fishing (extra charge), trail hiking, boating, kayaking, bird watching, wildlife observation and train rides. Due to the unique activities on this trip, some of which require travel by helicopter or small plane, safety protocols and seat rating limits require guests of the Ultimate Alaska Adventure to weigh no more than 300lbs. As a condition of enrolling in this adventure, guests will be asked to provide weight and shoe size information at the time of booking.

A Note on Fishing

The Kenai River offers world-class salmon and trout fishing and the Kenai Riverside Lodge is one of the premier fishing outfitters in Alaska. If you are interested in substituting fishing for rafting on day 3, we encourage you to do so at the time of booking as fishing programs fill up quickly. The best way to guarantee fishing availability is to book your fishing arrangements in advance. Please contact an Adventure Specialist for more information.

Room Configuration

Single travelers wishing to book a double-occupancy room may do so at a 25% supplement of the per-person listed rate in select rooms upon availability. Single travelers interested in sharing accommodations with another guest of the same gender, will be charged the 25% single supplement then refunded this amount once a share is found. If a share is not found then the 25% single supplement will apply. Triple and quad rates with applicable taxes subject to availability, please inquire about discounts. Upgrades may be available, contact us for details.

Families & Children

Kids 7 years and older are welcomed to participate on all adventures. Youth rates for kids ages 7-18 are available where applicable, in shared room with adult chaperone(s).

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. Coverage for a pre-existing medical condition is also available if you purchase the Travel Select plan within 15 days of the initial trip payment; refer to plan details. Learn more about travel insurance or get a free quote.

Itinerary Notes

Use the itinerary as a guide only. Itineraries may be altered due to weather, wildlife, national park regulation or at the captains’ and guides’ discretion. The ability to be flexible makes this type of adventure travel unique. Note that in rare circumstances due to high winds, weather fronts or ocean conditions, access to the Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge may not be permitted at scheduled times. Alternative activities and accommodations are planned for this uncommon occurrence, but please be prepared for a possible change in schedule.

Rates & Dates

Trip Rates & Dates

May 29 - Jun 05, 2023
8 days
From $6545USD
Per Person
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Jun 10 - Jun 17, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Jun 18 - Jun 25, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Jun 26 - Jul 03, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Jul 10 - Jul 17, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Jul 24 - Jul 31, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Aug 07 - Aug 14, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Aug 21 - Aug 28, 2023
8 days
From $6895USD
Per Person
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Aug 29 - Sep 05, 2023
8 days
From $6545USD
Per Person
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Accommodations

Learn About the Lodges on Your Itinerary

Lodge
Kenai Backcountry Lodge

Rustically elegant and heated by wood stove, the Kenai Backcountry Lodge is an exemplary backcountry lodge, offering an intimate Kenai Peninsula experience with up to 18 guests and off-the-grid sustainability efforts that help preserve and protect the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge.

Lodge
Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge

The wilderness eco lodge Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge is completely surrounded by Kenai Fjords National Park and is the only lodge located within the park.

Lodge
Kenai Riverside Lodge

Conveniently located on the scenic Upper Kenai River near Cooper Landing, Alaska, the Kenai Riverside Lodge is more than a world-class fishing lodge. You can hike, raft, fish, attend naturalist programs or stroll the nature trail overlooking the breathtaking Kenai River.

Lodge
Seward Windsong Lodge

Nestled in a spectacular glacier river valley, Seward Windsong Lodge is an exceptional wilderness retreat located at the entrance to the Kenai Fjords National Park. The 180 guest rooms located nearby to the main lodge, are set back in a wooded setting, surrounded by spruce trees and wildflowers.

Expert Review

Reviews From Our Experts so You Know What to Expect

Leslie Camacho • August 24th, 2017
Expert Review: Northern Passages & Glacier Bay Cruise, Plus Kenai Lodges

Adventure Specialist Leslie Camacho reviews her Alaska small ship cruise aboard the 76-guest Wilderness Explorer and post-cruise land trip on the Kenai Peninsula.

Testimonials

Hear It from Travelers Who Have Explored with Us

"Beyond Expectations!"

Ultimate Alaska Adventure was beyond expectations! All the lodges and activities were outstanding!

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"Destinations Were Great, but Our Guide Added the Most"

The destinations were great, but our guide added the most. No skill or talent missing. More than anything else, she made this vacation.

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"Excellent Blend Of Activities In Beautiful, Remote Scenery"

Excellent blend of activities in beautiful, remote scenery. Good pace. Great trip overall.

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Book with the confidence that comes from experience.

100+ combined years of experience, 7 continents explored, decades of expedition cruising around the world & here to help you find & book your dream trip.

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Ultimate Alaska Adventure

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