Named a World Heritage Site in 1992, Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve encompasses 3.3 million remote acres outside of Juneau in Alaska’s Inside Passage. It is an icy refuge for orca, humpback whales, endangered Stellar sea lions, birds, mammals; and home to majestic glaciers. A diverse coastal ecological community, Glacier Bay is a habitat for abundant plant and animal life. Glacier Bay Lodge is the only commercial overnight accommodation in the park and offers 48 rustic rooms nestled among Sitka spruce trees on the shores of Bartlett Cove and the Fairweather Dining Room for hearty Alaskan seafood. Outdoor activities include:
-Glacier Bay Day Tour traverses the waters, with views of snow-capped mountains, tidewater glaciers, whales, Stellar sea lions, rare birds, coastal bears, eagles and more. Guests will be treated to up-close views at the faces of Margerie and Grand Pacific Glaciers-- two towers of ice and snow.
-Bird Watching Tours (Glacier Bay has partnered with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for Bird Watching Tours to spot Puffins, Eagles and Black Legged Kittiwakes that only live in the northern oceans and are rarely spotted inland)
-Flightseeing-A bird’s eye view of the land showcasing Juneau Icefield, Mendenhall Glacier, Glacier Bay, alpine slopes and remote lakes via seaplane. Flightseeing is offered daily from Gustavus or Juneau.
-The recently completed Huna Tribal House at Glacier Bay is the first permanent Hoonah Indian clan house since the original Tlingit villages were destroyed by a glacier over 250 years ago. A true Alaska experience, visitors can learn first-hand about the hand-carved Totem Poles, history, culture, dance performances and native foods from tribal elders.
Denali National Park and Preserve lies deep within the Alaskan Bush between Anchorage and Fairbanks. Home to Mount McKinley, the tallest peak in North America, and abundant wildlife — grizzly bears, moose, Dall sheep and caribou, the park encompasses tundra, taiga and alpine ecosystems. The Lodge at Denali Park Village offers 338 guest rooms in a secluded valley along the Nenana River. The Cabins at Denali Park Village include 54 rustic and cozy Nenana River-front cabins nestled among spruce trees, with hiking and interpretive trails just steps outside. Miners Plaza features retail shops, outdoor firepits and live entertainment. Restaurants include Gold Rush Dining Room, Lucky Miss Saloon and the legendary Alaska Cabin Nite Dinner Theater - a one-of-a-kind musical production and dining experience that takes diners on a genuine journey back to the Gold Rush era in early 1900s Alaska with storytelling, singing and comedy.
Outdoor activities include:
-A variety of guided hikes, tours and rafting adventures allow guests to venture deep into Denali National Park while viewing wildlife and panoramic scenery while listening to educational narration about the land.
-Guided tours: Tundra Wilderness Tour, Denali History Tour, Kantishna Experience Tour and Eielson Excursion Tour.
Photos Courtesy of Aramark