7-day itinerary (6/6 to 6/13) overview:
Day 1: Landed in Anchorage at 18:30. Explored the town since the sun wouldn’t set until 23:30.
Day 2: 7:00 to 9:45 – Took the Park connector bus from Anchorage to Seward. The bus drove along Seward highway which is one of the best scenic drives.
11:30 to 17:00 – Enjoyed the 6-hr Kenai Fjords National Park Cruise to see glaciers and wildlife.
Day 3: 9:30 to 16:00 – Took a shuttle bus to the park entrance to hike the Harding Ice Field.
18:00 to 22:15 – Took a Coastal Classic train from Seward back to Anchorage. Awesome views along the way.
Day 4: 10:00 to 16:00 – Rented a car to drive from Anchorage to Denali national park. Made detours to visit Hatcher Pass (scenic drive) & Talkeetna (very cute and colorful little town).
Day 5: 10:15 to 21:15 – Took the 11-hour shuttle bus (Wonder lake route) to visit Denali National park. 11 hr included stopping time for toilet breaks & lunch break.
Day 6: 8:30 to 17:00 – Drove from Denali to Chikaloon for a 3-hr Glacier trek. The drive on Glenn highway was amazing.
17:00 to 19:00 – Drove from Chikaloon to Anchorage
Day 7: 9:00 to 14:00 – Visited Girdwood (1 hr drive from Anchorage) and took the Alyeska gondola up to the top of the mountain for a panorama view of Turnagain Arm.
14:00 – Left for airport for a 6pm take-off.
Transportation: Summer in Alaska is road work season. Build in at least 1 hour additional driving time
Hotels: Avoid following hotels in Anchorage: Ramada Inn & City Lofts.
Highly recommend Denali Mountain Morning hostel & cabins, especially the Razorback cabin.
Alaska seafood: Bridge seafood in Anchorage. King salmon & king crab legs were fresh and done perfectly.