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Humpback Whale, Inside Passage, Alaska

Alaska & The Yukon: National Parks Self-Drive

19-day tailor-made self-drive from £5,105 pp incl. flights


Short description

A memorable road trip through Alaska's National Parks and the Yukon's gold rush landscapes


  • Discover the magnificence of the Denali National Park and take a bush plane flight past Mount McKinley
  • Explore Fairbanks, gateway to Alaska's interior and home to almost 24 hours of daylight during the summer months
  • Travel the Top of the World Highway crossing the border into Canada's Yukon Territory

In Brief

  • 1 Night Anchorage
  • 1 Night Talkeetna
  • 2 Nights Denali National Park and Preserve
  • 2 Nights Fairbanks
  • 1 Night Tok
  • 2 Nights Dawson City
  • 1 Night Whitehorse
  • 1 Night Skagway
  • 1 Night Haines
  • 1 Night Haines Junction
  • 1 Night Tok
  • 1 Night Valdez
  • 1 Night Seward
  • 1 Night Anchorage


Recommended for:
Activity adventure | Mountains | Self-drive | Wildlife

The landscapes of Alaska and the Yukon are among North America's most dramatic – towering mountain ranges and vast glaciers frame rushing rivers and ancient forests home to bears, wolves and moose. Starting in Anchorage, this fly-drive takes in Denali National Park – home to the continent's highest peak – and the Golden Heart City of Alaska, Fairbanks. You'll then follow the Top of the World Highway to Dawson City in the Yukon and travel the South Klondike Highway to Skagway before going in search of more wildlife in the magnificent Kluane National Park.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1

Depart the UK on your daytime flight via Iceland to Anchorage. On arrival collect your rental vehicle and make your way to your city hotel. The remainder of the day is free to explore. 

Stay: Hotel Captain Cook (Superior)

Day 2

Depart from Anchorage on the Glenn Highway to Talkeetna, a quirky township which serves as a base camp for Mt. McKinley climbers. The town retains a real flavour of its past gold-mining heritage with wooden clapboard houses, log cabins and colourful locals.

Stay: Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge (Superior) 

Days 3-4
Denali National Park Entrance

Explore the south side of Denali or make an early start for the drive to the Denali National Park. The day is yours to explore at your own pace so you have as much time as you like to enjoy the majesty of the park. You'll spend two nights here and on your second day we've included a full day tour deep into the park. Departing by coach you'll travel the full length of the restricted Denali Park Road with an experienced driver/guide who will help in your search for moose, bears, caribou and the numerous other wildlife that resides here. There will be plenty of stops for wildlife viewing, photography and to stretch your legs. Lunch is included at the Denali Backcountry lodge and there is time to try your hand at panning for gold or enjoying a nature hike. For the return journey to the park entrance you'll board a small bush plane for a scenic flight, which weather permitting, will take you close to Mount McKinley. 

Stay: Grand Denali Lodge (Superior)

Days 5-6

It's a short drive via Nenana to Fairbanks. The city is known as the Golden Heart City of Alaska and is gateway to the Alaskan interior, during the summer months you'll experience almost 24 hours of daylight. You have two nights in Fairbanks and there's chance to join an optional tour which takes you across the Arctic Circle to explore the interior. Alternatively take a drive along the Chena Hot Springs road (keep an eye out for moose), enjoy a hike or perhaps a dip at the Chena Hot Springs Resort. 

Stay: Fairbanks Springhill Resort by Marriott (Superior)

Day 7

Heading south on the Richardson Highway you'll pass close to the Tanana River and experience the raw beauty of the Central Alaska Range. 

Stay: Cleft of the Rock B&B (Standard)

Days 8-9
Dawson City

Today sees you embark on a journey along the dramatically named Top of the World Highway, a road which takes you through spectacular backcountry and gold mining areas. As you reach the highest elevations you'll have incredible views of seemingly never-ending panoramas. Cross the Yukon River before arriving in Dawson City, which retains a true Klondike feel making you feel like you've travelled back in time. You'll spend two nights in Dawson City giving you an entire day free to explore the many historical sites - The SS Keno was the last steamer to run the Yukon River from Whitehorse, whilst the Jack London Interpretive Centre has the poets original cabin. Diamond Tooth Gerties is renowned as the infamous casino with 'Can-Can' floor shows.

Stay: Westmark Inn (Superior) 

Day 10

Continue south through the stark, raw landscape of the Yukon to Whitehorse. Take time to stop at Five Finger Rapids and enjoy a hike down to the shore of the Yukon River. You should arrive in the Yukon's capital city late afternoon.

Stay: Best Western Gold Rush Inn (Superior) 

Day 11

Follow the South Klondike Highway which connects the Yukon with Alaska's Inside Passage ferry system, it's also known as the Skagway-Carcross Road. Expect some incredible scenery today as you descend from the White Pass to Skagway passing through the Tormented Valley to Tutshi Lake, Tagish Lake and the much-photographed Emerald Lake.

Stay: Westmark Inn (Standard) 

Day 12

Spend the morning exploring Skagway before taking the afternoon ferry to Haines, a spectacularly scenic journey along the Lynn Canal, where the fjord walls rise steeply from sea level to 7,000 ft. Haines is located in the 'Valley of the Eagles' and almost 4,000 American bald eagles, attracted by the late run of salmon, congregate along a stretch of the Chilkat River each autumn.

Stay: Halsingland Hotel (Standard)  

Day 13
Haines Junction

Follow the Haines Highway over the Chilkat Pass, passing Klukshu - a native summer fishing camp offering fabulous photo opportunities and the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve before arriving in the Kluane National Park. Kluane covers the largest non-polar icefield in the world and you can visit the Sheep Mountain Visitor Centre to learn more about the area.

Stay: The Raven Hotel (Standard) 

Day 14

Take the time for a hike this morning before heading north along the shores of Kluane Lake, your journey takes you along the famed Alaska Highway through pristine wilderness areas back to Tok, also known as the 'Dog Mushing Capital of Alaska'. 

Stay: Cleft of the Rock B&B (Standard)

Day 15

Scenic views are in abundance today as you continue along the Glenn Highway with impressive panoramas of the Wrangell Mountains. A stop at the historic roadhouse at Copper Centre is worthwhile and you can see the native fish wheels at Copper River. A little later into your drive the Worthington Glacier pops into view, take time to follow the boardwalk which leads to the toe of the glacier. Valdez - often referred to as the 'Switzerland of Alaska' is the gateway for some epic salmon fishing trips as well as excellent narrated cruises to the Columbia Glacier. You can also visit the terminus for the Alaska Pipeline, an incredible feat of engineering. 

Stay: Best Western Valdez Harbour Inn (Standard)

Day 16
Seward via Whittier

Board the Alaska Marine Highway ferry to Whittier, a sailing which takes you through the waters of Prince William Sound where you should keep watch for otters, whales and seals. On arrival in Whittier you'll take the Whittier-Portage Tunnel and if time allows take a few moments to view the Portage Glacier from the Portage Visitor Centre. Continue on the Seward Highway, making a side trip to Exit Glacier before arrival in Seward.

Stay: Exit Glacier Lodge (Superior) 

Day 17
Anchorage & Kenai Fjord National Park Cruise

This morning enjoy a wildlife and glacier cruise into the beautiful Kenai Fjords National Park before heading back to Anchorage for one final night. 

Stay: Hotel Captain Cook (Superior)

Day 18
Depart for UK

Return your rental car to Anchorage Airport and board your overnight flight back to the UK.

Day 19
Arrive UK

On arrival in the UK continue with your onward journey. 



Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.

Accommodation rating: Standard Superior

19-day tailor-made self-drive from £5,105 incl. flights

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