Wrangell-St. Elias National Park The country’s largest national park represents everything that is compelling about Alaska. The park is open for visitors throughout the year but remember this is Alaska. Visit the park on a boat tour or explore on a hike from the Exit Glacier Nature Center near Seward. We took the shuttle and it was great but you certainly can pay more and take the bus. There are companies offering visitor services including guided day trips and flights. So here’s the list of actual Alaska National Parks (all of them covered in this post) –. Camping wherever possible. I’m sure you’ll have an awesome time! I really hope you manage to set up a blog and write more about it. The two main activities when visiting Kenai Fjords are –. If you can add one more park, it should probably be either Glacier Bay National Park or Kenai Fjords National Park. Website: https://www.nps.gov/kefj/index.htm. The various parks offer chances to view eagles, bears, spawning salmon, and the breath-taking vistas of "wild" Alaska. Some people went off-trail to get to the glacier but we just watched it from the trail. My husband and our eldest did that and really enjoyed their hike. Proudly displaying North America‘s tallest mountain and over six million acres of land, Denali is one of Alaska’s most popular national parks. The shuttle or bus will take you as far as you want to go – and back. The one in Exit Glacier is a short drive (minutes long) from the road into Seward. Gates of the Arctic National Park. My older son is taking a university degree now so we think a long trip may not be a good option for a while. #1 of 9 Nature & Parks in Girdwood “ Chugach State Park provides visitors with the opportunity to hike on trails of diversified difficulty with wonderful views and also meeting bears and other wild animals. Coming from the north, take the Glenn Highway to Slana and then drive down to Nabasena. I discussed the pros and cons of the shuttle vs. bus options in my post about visiting Denali National Park. The park was established to protect and conserve the Arctic environment’s integrity. Plus, download my free checklist! Alaska Marine Highway ferries also provide regular service from Juneau. Click here for the list, including things to do and how to get there. At 13 million acres, Wrangell-St. Elias is the largest park in the U.S. system. Gustavus, AK. Tip: When you book your shuttle or bus to see Denali, they’re going to charge your card with a weekly park pass. Even when the weather’s not that cold, you can still possibly acquire hypothermia on a wet, windy day. This is pristine wilderness which may be beautiful but is also dangerous and lacks cell coverage or any form of services. The red road indicated the area where you can drive your car. If you’re brave you can visit later or earlier or even during winter time. Most people view the park from onboard a ship. We got to see the start of that in Denali in late August, and later elsewhere in Alaska. Gustavus, AK. You can get to the park via two-hour flights from Homer, Kenai, or Anchorage. If you have the budget for it, a flight over the amazing mountain ranges that form the heart of the park is said to be pretty amazing. Alaska’s state park system is managed by the Alaska Department of Natural Resources division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation. If you’re going to Alaska, you’re probably interested in visiting at least one or two national parks. Covering 3.3 million acres of rugged mountains, dynamic glaciers, temperate rainforest, wild coastlines and deep sheltered fjords, Glacier Bay National Park is a highlight of Alaska's Inside Passage and part of a 25-million acre World Heritage Site—one of the world’s largest international protected areas. Having said that, if you are willing to pay for an excursion, the two parks which should be on your list are –. If you did, please share your own experiences in a comment and let me know what you liked or didn’t like about them. Thank you so much!! I booked our room for a family of four 10 months prior to our visit and we paid $180 for that. Looks like you had a great Alaska trip! The bay sees an influx of humpback whales in the summer, making it one of the best places to whale watch in Alaska. Denali National Park & Preserve One of the most iconic national parks in Alaska, Denali National Park & Preserve is home to North America's tallest peak – 20,310-foot Mount Denali. You can either fly or hike into the park (we’re talking about a very long hike!). Get a good map and discuss this with the Rangers before hitting the trails. Another good reason for visiting Fairbanks, AK! The park is on Baranof Island but once there, you have the entire town of Sitka to explore. It could be a huge cruise ship or a smaller charter taken from Gustavus after flying in. Canada has its own incredibly large national park on the other side of the border: Kluane National Park. A spacious room with good WiFi and a great breakfast. Getting into the area is fairly easy. By ... Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve. Click here for the list, including things to do and how to get there. Skagway is one of the few places along the Inner Passage that you can actually reach by road. With that in mind, it’s best to visit the area with good rain gear – hat, waterproof boots, gloves, warm coat, and so on. Kenai Fjords National Park is the meeting point of ocean, ice, and mountains. The weather is influenced by many different systems and can change rapidly. Alaska is an expensive destination where it comes to accommodation rates and even more so in Denali. Learn More >, Tucked amongst its famous national parks are Alaska's quieter state parks. Possibly the most amazing thing you can get to see in Kobuk National Park are the incredibly huge herds of migrating caribou. If you’re interested in guest blogging here to share your travel stories, let me know. We’re now moving on to those parks which are not as accessible. Website: https://www.nps.gov/kova/index.htm. Book your room as early as you can as the more affordable places fill up fast! Located on the Alaska Peninsula southwest of Anchorage and north of Katmai National Park, no roads get to Lake Clark National Park. While you can’t drive to this park from anywhere in the Lower 48 or inland Alaska, it’s actually relatively accessible, so I’m mentioning it next on the list. Website: https://www.nps.gov/wrst/index.htm. There’s actually enough to do here to keep you busy for two days and possibly more. The Denali Park entrance is 240 miles by road from Anchorage and 125 miles from Fairbanks. Alaska's top five most popular parks by … Both allow you to see the glorious Alaska coastline, including the famous tidal glaciers. outdoor gears, specialty foods, medications, etc.). Then there’s the question of accessibility. Unless you’re camping in Wonder Lake (which requires special permits), the only way to get to Eielson is by taking the park shuttle of one of the bus tours. There are 24 units listed but when you limit the the list only actual national parks you end up with a shorter – and more manageable – list. I’m a bit confused on ALL of the National Park website of Alaska. Where Will You Travel Next? Learn More >, Nothing in the United States quite compares to the massive scale of this remote national park, the largest in the country and home to nine of its 16 highest mountains. Feb 10, 2020 - Did you know there are 16 national parks in Alaska? The system contains over 120 units spanning over three million acres (one million two hundred thousand hectares), making it far larger than any other state park system in the United States. Claim to fame: Sheer size. The park is open the rest of the year, but visitor services are extremely limited. There are local tours that will take you along the road. The Skagway visitor center is at 291 Broadway st. Gates of the Arctic is all about wilderness and a true representation of genuine wild nature. If you’re just looking for Alaska national parks that you can drive to, you can finish reading here. Not all fees are listed on this page, so please check for additional campground fees on our Facility Fees page prior to … Denali National Park is Alaska's most famous park. Learn More >, Book Now with no risk, your deposit is fully refundable until 31 days prior to travel with the purchase of our Worry-Free Cancellation Waiver. The average temperature of the area ranges from 50 to 60 F (10 to 15 C). If this is your first long hike in Alaska, do yourself a huge favor and read up before embarking on this adventure. As we began to compile a list of American National Parks by state for this piece to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service, I was shocked and dismayed to realize how few of the 59 officially designated parks we’ve visited.. Fortunately, we’re already planning a future family road trip with lots of national parks to visit. I am guessing the differences reflect the closures of the visitors center, while the park grounds are actually open year-round. By area, Alaska holds more than half of America’s national park lands. Skagway has a highly variable climate with frequent rain and high winds. There were several charters going out of Seward, and from Valdez too. Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska. There are several operators, all of them going out of Seward. Alaska Airlines provides daily jet service from Juneau to Gustavus in the summer months. Getting There: 2.5-hour drive/4-hour train ride south of Anchorage. According to the Wikipedia list of National Parks, if you sort out parks by size, Alaskan parks take up seven spots out of the top 10, including the four top places. I’d love to have fellow travelers guest blog here occasionally! Expect to pay anything between $150-$400 a night for a room for two. Access 2915 reviews, 507 photos & 590 tips of every rv park & campground in Alaska. That said, Alaska is home to some of the largest national parks in the United States. Assuming you’re just looking for a hotel in Denali where you can rest after a day of sightseeing in the park, there are plenty of options for that as well. Larger than Denali at 8.4 million acres, this is home to a natural arctic environment and diverse ecosystems. Situated right next to the town of Seward, getting here is an easy drive from Anchorage. Covering 3.3 million acres of rugged mountains, dynamic glaciers, temperate rainforest, wild coastlines and deep sheltered fjords, Glacier Bay National Park is a highlight of Alaska's Inside Passage and part of a 25-million acre World Heritage Site—one of the world’s largest international protected areas. I’m not sure about their COVID availability, but in the past, I always managed to get a hold of park rangers via email, so I would try that. This Alaska National Park does NOT contain any roads, trails, or visitor services within park boundaries. Even if you’re willing to pay for an expensive excursion, some of them are just vast areas of wilderness with very few facilities or ways to experience the park other than trekking. That’s why you had to fly into Gustavus. Hiking the Denali wilderness you could be facing –. California has more of them, as do many other states. As the salmon arrive, so do the bears, and visitors to Katmai NP get a unique opportunity to view them in their natural habitat, as they fish huge salmon right out of the waterfalls. Mar 8, 2020 - Did you know there are 16 national parks in Alaska? One of the country’s most remote national parks, the 4-million acre Lake Clark National Park is a pristine landscape and home to a variety of wildlife. National Parks in Alaska: A Complete List of All 16. Visitors to the park should be PROFICIENT in outdoor survival skills, and be prepared to care for their own life and their partner(s) if an emergency arises. Alaska national parks list 1. Research well before you go out on this adventure. Just how many national parks there are depend on your definition of national parks. Sitka National Historical Park commemorates the battle between the indigenous Kiks.ádi Tlingit and the Russian traders. You then have two roads that go into the park. Hi Cathy, Website: https://www.nps.gov/glba/index.htm. Today, the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park is a top tourist destination. One is near the Exit Glacier trail and the other in Seward harbor area. It's befitting that the largest state in the U.S. would also have the largest national park in the U.S. That's Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, a 13-million-acre wilderness on the east side of Alaska. You can take a different trail to hike up the mountain to reach the Harding Icefield itself. Denali. That’s it! Why does it say open year round but closed October – ETC. The park is open throughout the year but the main season for visitors is May 20 through the second or third week in September. This list of parks in Alaska includes 24 national parks, 9 national historic landmarks, 16 national natural landmarks, and a multitude of state parks. It took a LOT of research to produce this one and I do hope you’ll find it helpful. You have to use bear-proof storage too. Video library of National Parks and Monuments in Alaska. Here you can go camping, backpacking, bear viewing, and so much more! The park is accessible by car via the Edgerton Highway from Copper Center to the small communities of McCarthy and Kennicott. Access begins in Fairbanks, Alaska. The mountain ridges are in fact shared by two national parks. A small private airstrip is also available near the park entrance for individuals wishing to fly their own small craft to the park. In this post, I’ll cover all ten Alaskan national parks, just so you can get an idea of what’s available in all of them – including the remote ones. If you’re not an experienced hiker though, you may want to start practicing in a place that’s more welcoming. These are rustic campground without too many services and zero stores. Kobuk Valley National Park is very remote. You park by the visitor center and hike to see the glacier. You can get there from Anchorage via Seward Highway, which is a national scenic byway well worth the drive on its own. The coastal area in the park gets a lot of rain and has milder temperatures. It is vast—bigger than Switzerland. Within these protected acres you'll find glaciers unparalleled in size, vast wilderness entirely untouched by people, dense populations of bears and whales, and North America's tallest mountain. There is something in placid lakes that simply takes your breath away. Several of these parks are so remote you simply can’t take your car and drive there. The park’s coastal backcountry in also largely inaccessible late fall through the early spring due to rough seas. There are several hotels near the park entrance and they’re usually the more expensive ones. Location: Mile 237 Highway 3. Alaska has 24 parks, public lands, rivers, historic areas and preserves which attract nearly three million visitors each year, according to the National Park Service. Kenai Fjords National Park is located just outside the town of Seward in south-central Alaska, 126 miles south of Anchorage. Monday to Sunday: 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Sitka has a temperate maritime climate which means lots of rain, and cool – but not very cold – weather throughout the year. Website: https://www.nps.gov/dena/index.htm. List of National Parks in the United States 2020. That said, you do need to know what you’re doing. By far, the most popular activity is the drive along the park road. When you choose to hike, the access route begins at the Dalton Highway near Fairbanks. Where to next? This is a super professional climb so don’t add it to your itinerary (unless you happen to be one), Extreme weather conditions – even during summertime, Lack of communication (there’s zero cell reception in the park itself), Hiking the trails – at least to the Exit Glacier viewpoint, Taking a cruise to see a tidal water glacier. Beautiful Denali stands tall in the heart of the park, surrounded by six million acres of wilderness. Most visitors access the park by air taxi and a few brave souls hike in from the Dalton Highway or from the village of Anaktuvuk Pass. When hiking through national parks in Alaska, avoid pockets of spruce forest and alder to make navigation easier. This wild landscape is as vast as Yosemite National Park, Yellowstone National Park, and Switzerland combined! Most people see the park by driving the McCarthy road. This being Alaska they also hunt within park boundaries. Though they may not have the name recognition of Yosemite and Yellowstone, in most other ways, Alaska's national parks eclipse those of the Lower 48.

alaska national parks list

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