Mint Hut in Hatcher Pass Alaska

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO

alaska

In the summer of 2022 we road tripped to Alaska and it very quickly became one of our favorite destinations we’ve ever visited. During our two and half months in the state we visited 3 national parks, backpacked and hiked in some of the most epic scenery, went ice climbing, witnessed glaciers calving, saw tons of wildlife, and so much more.

Alaska is a dream destination. However, being such a large state, visiting Alaska can be daunting. But we’re here to help!

In this Alaska travel guide we’re sharing ALL of our resources from our trip, to hopefully help you plan yours! On this page you can find every piece of content we created for Alaska, plus itinerary options, planning logistics, and more!

how to get to alaska

You can choose to fly into Alaska (Anchorage and Fairbanks are the two major airports), take a cruise ship, or hop on a ferry from Washington. But for our trip, we drove!

To drive to Alaska you can either take the Alaska Highway or the Cassiar-Stewart Highway. We drove the Alaska Highway to Alaska and the Cassiar-Stewart Highway back down and both were incredibly scenic, with a variety of fun stops to make.

how to get around alaska

There are a variety of ways to get around Alaska. You can hop onto short flights between destinations, you can take the Alaska Railroad, or ferry on the Alaska Marine Highway System. But in our opinion, Alaska is best explored with your own vehicle. Whether you rent a car or drive your RV (you can rent RVs too!), you’ll have the ultimate flexibility this way.

RVING Alaska: Our top tips & Things to know!

There are tons of perks to RVing Alaska and in this guide we share our top tips, things to know, route options, where to camp, and more!

RVing Alaska

when to visit alaska

Alaska is a year round destination. You can find colorful foliage in the fall, plus snowy peaks, dog sledding, and the northern lights in the winter and spring. But if hiking, coastal adventures, glacial activities, and seeing wildlife is your goal, visit in the summer!

We recommend visiting Alaska between June and early September. This is when you’ll have the best weather and businesses will be open for the season.

Alaska Packing List

THE ULTIMATE SUMMER ALASKA PACKING LIST

We’re sharing everything to bring to Alaska for a summertime visit, plus a downloadable packing list!

where to visit in alaska

Alaska is a HUGE state and figuring out where to go can be challenging. Below is a list of everywhere that we visited during our time in Alaska. Click on the destination you’d like to visit to learn more about it and see all of the content we have.

Denali National Park
Talkeetna
Hatcher Pass
Anchorage
Whittier
Homer
Kenai Fjords National Park
Valdez
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

Need help organizing multiple destinations into one trip? We also have itineraries at the end of this page!

talkeetna

Talkeetna is a small artistic, outdoorsy, and creative town that has retained a lot of its Alaskan historic charm throughout the years. It is known as the “Gateway to Denali” and is a popular launching point for most climbing expeditions of Denali, as well as other fun excursions. Plus, its mayor is a cat!

VIDEO: Exploring Talkeetna, Alaska

Watch us explore Talkeetna and share some of the best things to do!

hatcher pass

Hatcher Pass was one of the most STUNNING places we visited in Alaska! This section of the Talkeetna Mountains has 300,000 acres of mountainous terrain, more than 30 summits, and numerous glaciers. It’s a mountain lover’s paradise! And the best part? It’s under a 1.5 hour drive from Anchorage!

anchorage

Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska. And while you may not be visiting Alaska to experience city life, don’t skip out on Anchorage. Here you’ll find delicious local food (Wild Scoops is a MUST!), coastal pathways, and epic mountain hikes just minutes from town!

South Fork Valley Trail | Best hikes in Alaska

the 24 best hikes in alaska

We’re sharing all of our favorite hikes from Alaska (including a few located in Anchorage), plus a few at the top of our list for next time!

whittier

Whittier is located about 1.5 hours southeast of Anchorage and despite its size, is loaded with outdoor adventures! Here you can find huge mountains, beautiful bays, waterfalls, fishing tours, boat excursions, and glaciers.

Access to the town requires going through the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel. The tunnel does have operating hours so you’ll need to check the schedule before you head out.

Portage Lake in Whittier, Alaska

HOW TO HIKE THE PORTAGE PASS TRAIL IN WHITTIER, ALASKA

The Portage Glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers in Alaska. Learn how to experience it yourself on the Portage Pass Trail.

homer

Nicknamed the Halibut Capital of the World, Homer is known for its amazing fishing, plus jaw dropping scenery. It’s a gateway to different excursions, such as seeing the bears at Katmai National Park or visiting Alaska’s first state park, Kachemak Bay.

Camping at Grewingk Glacier Lake at Kachemak Bay State Park

HOW TO VISIT GREWINGK GLACIER LAKE AT KACHEMAK BAY STATE PARK

While in Homer, hop across the water via water taxi to see Grewingk Glacier. Learn how visit as a day hike or backpacking trip!

kenai fjords national park

Kenai Fjords was our favorite national park out of the three we visited in Alaska. It is home to numerous fjords, mountains, forests, tons of wildlife, dozens of glaciers, and the largest ice field entirely in the United States. It combines everything that makes Alaska unique and majestic, all into one park!

anchorage to valdez

The drive from Anchorage to Valdez takes a little bit over 5 hours, but it’s well worth dedicating a whole day. With an impressive glacier that you can walk or climb on, endless views, and a fun hike, it may be one of the most scenic 5 hour drives in Southcentral Alaska!

valdez

We both agreed that Valdez was our favorite town in Alaska. It is loaded with towering peaks, coastal views, fjords, giant waterfalls, a scenic canyon, glaciers, wildlife, and so much more. Compared to some other areas in Alaska, it doesn’t feel overly touristy and still maintains an authentic vibe. Plus, it had one of our favorite coffees of the trip!

Valdez, Alaska

12+ FUN THINGS TO DO IN VALDEZ, ALASKA

We’re sharing the best things to do and delicious places to eat, plus itineraries and trip planning logistics for your time in Valdez!

wrangell-st. elias national park

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is the largest US National Park and boasts huge mountains, glaciers, and mining history! In the park you can backpack, hike, walk ON a glacier, go on flightseeing tours, visit the town of McCarthy, explore the Kennecott Mines, and so much more!

alaska itineraries

If you need help planning your route and itinerary for Alaska, check out our 7 and 10 day itineraries. Each itinerary includes multiple options, depending on your interests.


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