2017 - Winter Wonderland Tour Itinerary
Be Adventurous and Visit Alaska in the Winter!! This unique journey includes Aurora viewing in Alaska’s interior, a ride on the Aurora train south to Talkeetna and getting up close to Alaska’s wildlife in the winter including puffins, moose, bison and more. Learn about the Iditarod Sled Dog race from an Iditarod musher during a special kennel visit prior to the start of the “Last Great Race” where you will be surrounded by fabulous four-legged athletes known as sled dogs before they hit the trail to Nome.
This tour operates during the winter in Alaska, so expect cold temperatures, uneven and slippery surfaces (ice). Late night Aurora Viewing opportunities start on arrival day between 10pm and 3am. Prime viewing time is late evening through the wee hours of the morning. So plan on channeling your inter teenager and stay up way past a normal bedtime! Some days are long and active, but the choice is yours as to how much you participate in each day’s events.
To quickly check availability, please link: 2017 Availability!
Air arrival into Anchorage. On own transfer to hotel (taxi service readily available or purchase meet/greet service from Premier).
Breakfast. Today climb aboard your motorcoach for a journey to the coastal community of Seward. Today travel south along the spectacular Turnagain Arm. Visit the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center to see Alaskan wildlife up close. Visit the Alaska Sealife Center for an in-depth look above and below the waters. A visit to the Seward Museum is included to learn more about this Alaskan coastal community. Travel to the resort town of Girdwood for overnight accommodations at The Hotel Alyeska.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch (deli-style)
Breakfast. A day at leisure at the resort. There are many optional tours to choose from or just relax and enjoy the hotel amenities ranging from relaxation in the spa facility, dog sledding, snow machining, flightseeing, downhill skiing or snow shoeing (costs are additional). Enjoy an included tram ride offering spectacular views of the valley. Overnight at The Hotel Alyeska, Alaska's only four-diamond property.
Breakfast. Morning departure from Alyeska north to Anchorage. Enjoy a tour through the historic downtown district, Lake Hood/Lake Spenard and visit the Alaska Zoo for a “behind the scenes” tour. Time to explore Anchorage on own, you may want to visit the Anchorage Museum. Tonight, enjoy Iditarod festivities and dinner at the Mushers’ Banquet!
Overnight in Anchorage
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Breakfast. Today travel north to meet four-time Iditarod Champion Martin Buser at his Happy Trails Kennel. Hear personal stories while viewing a glimpse of the grandeur Alaska has to offer along the Iditarod trail. Returning to Anchorage visit the Iditarod Headquarters.
Overnight in Anchorage
Breakfast. This morning head to 4th Avenue to get a great spot at the start of the Iditarod. Spend time cheering on mushers from all over the world. Watch each of them depart or take off early and enjoy other Iditarod festivities in Anchorage. This afternoon, enjoy the cultural opportunities available at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Tonight, reminisce over your Alaska winter adventure at a farewell dinner.
Overnight in Anchorage
Meal: Breakfast, Dinner
Breakfast. This morning depart from your hotel for the adventure north to Willow, Alaska the *Re-Start of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. Be sure to dress in layers to maximize warmth as the entire day will be spent outside cheering on your favorite dog teams. En-route, stop at a local grocery store in Wasilla to pick up on-own lunch items and additional snacks to meet your personal tastes.
Prepare for a bit of a walk to find the perfect spot along the fence line of the race. Mushers take off across Willow Lake on their 1,049 mile journey by dog sled to Nome. The Willow Community Center is open and offers a break from the cold with vendors selling food and drink as well as local crafts.
Don’t miss out on snacks throughout the day! Your Tour Director will have more information on this edible portion of the program!
The departure time from Willow will depend on weather conditions and guests’ comfort level. It is our goal to see as many of the Mushers depart as possible while still arriving back into Anchorage by 6:00/6:30pm.
Meals: Breakfast, Snacks
*This day includes walking on snow and ice (and a few hills) to get to the official start of the Iditarod, where mushers take off from a lake. A stop will be made at a local grocery store, so guests can get snacks/lunch on own and if they wish buy a portable chair for sitting. Guests are encouraged to take their time to get to the venue, as there is not a rush.
**In the event, the Iditarod Official Start is relocated (beyond Willow, AK) due to weather and trail conditions, a full day of activities will be substituted for the guests in Anchorage. See below for the detailed alterative Day 7 itinerary:
Alternative Anchorage Day 7 Itinerary would include a visit to the Alaska Aviation Museum to learn about the huge impact bush planes and pilots have on the survival of the small villages throughout Alaska, along with meeting a Bush Pilot. Guests will dine in the atmosphere of warm Alaskan hospitality at a local restaurant for an included lunch and the day will include a stop at the Bear and Raven Theater where guests will enjoy a 30 minute interactive movie about the Iditarod Sled Dog Race.
Breakfast. On own transfer to Anchorage airport for flight out (taxi service readily available or purchase transfer service from Premier).