Discover Alaskan Native Culture

(c) Sherman Hogue/All Rights Reserved

(c) Ashley Heimbigner/All Rights Reserved

Discover Unique Alaskan Native Cultures!

It is believed that the first Native Americans came to Alaska from Russia by crossing the Bering Land Bridge during the last Ice Age some 30,000 years ago. Today, Native Alaskans can be divided into six major groups, three of which you will get to learn about during this 11-night immersive Alaskan cultural adventure. The Inupiat, Athabaskan, and Sugpiaq/Alutiiq Alaskan Native peoples all have unique customs due to their very different locations and climates in which they live. Experience these three Alaskan cultures as you participate in intimate one-to-one experiences with Native Alaskans, learn fascinating history and traditions from local guides, and explore interpretive museums. Explore Fairbanks, Anchorage and Kodiak. Meet Alaska’s brown bears and explore Denali National Park. Travel on the iconic Alaska Railroad and flightsee over mountains, glaciers and the Arctic Circle – all while connecting with Alaska heritage and native people on an exceptional educational and cultural tour highlighting Alaska’s first people.

From Yesterday to Today

Day 1

Arrive in Fairbanks

Welcome to Alaska! Upon arrival in Fairbanks, a private transfer will be provided to your Fairbanks hotel. The remainder of the day is yours to relax or explore. As a year-round destination, you will find plenty to do in the second-largest city in Alaska.

Overnight in Fairbanks, you home for the next two nights.

(c) Michael DeYoung. All rights reserved.

Day 2

Explore the City of Fairbanks - Flightsee to the Arctic Circle - Anaktuvuk Pass

A private, guided tour of Fairbanks has been arranged for you today. Your adventure today may include a visit to Golden Heart Park and a stop to view the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Another popular destination is the Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center, a place for gathering, discovery, education, and celebration. The Center features world-class exhibits and insight into Alaskan cultures and lifestyles in Interior and Arctic Alaska. You might also enjoy a visit to the Museum of the North, a wonderful place to experience Alaska Native cultures, natural wonders, and diverse wildlife. The museum is as unique as the Arctic cultures that are celebrated there.

This evening, travel north from Fairbanks by small plane and wonder at the story of the vast and remote land below. Fly over the expansive Yukon River Valley, home of traditional peoples that sustain their lifestyle and culture as they have for thousands of years.  After landing above the Arctic Circle you will be greeted by your host upon arrival in Anaktuvuk Pass. Visit the village and learn of the local Nunamiut Eskimo culture. Get a firsthand glimpse at life as it exists today in a Native Alaskan village in rural Alaska. Return to Fairbanks late this evening.

(c) Sherman Hogue / Visit Fairbanks /All Rights Reserved

Day 3

Travel from Fairbanks to Kantishna Roadhouse in Denali National Park

This morning, you’ll travel south with your private driver/guide to the Denali National Park Entrance. Once at the Park Entrance, you’ll say goodbye to your private driver/guide and take a 6-hour scenic and narrated bus tour into the park into the remote Kantishna region. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the abundant wildlife – bears, caribou, Dall sheep, and moose all call this park home.

After arriving at Kantishna Roadhouse, receive a lodge orientation before dinner. The Kantishna Roadhouse is owned by Doyon, one of 13-reginal Alaska Native corporations established by Congress in 1971 under the terms of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

Overnight at Kantishna Roadhouse in Denali National Park, your home for the next two nights.

Day 4

Active Adventures in Denali National Park

All meals are included with your Denali National Park lodge stay.  Fill your day exploring Denali National Park with guided activities such as gold panning, hiking, or fly fishing, or enjoy an unguided mountain biking excursion. After a day of adventure, you may wish to sit by the fire and make s’mores as you soak in the area’s beauty and tranquility.

Day 5

Fly from Kantishna to Denali Park Entrance - Alaska Railroad to Talkeetna

On your departure day from Kantishna, enjoy your final time at the lodge relaxing, and depart mid-morning by private plane. Flightsee through the awe-inspiring Alaska Range, to the North Face of Denali, and over several of the north side glaciers.

That afternoon, depart on the iconic Alaska Railroad by train to Talkeetna. Stunning views from the train include the Alaska Range, Summit Lake, Hurricane Gulch, and – if the weather is clear – Denali’s 20,310 foot peak. Learn from the knowledgeable local guides onboard about geology, wildlife and more. Enjoy a complimentary lunch and beverage service onboard the double-decker dome car.

Upon arrival in Talkeetna, a private transfer will be provided to your overnight accommodations. Enjoy exploring this charming town on your own or you may wish to participate in one of the many optional excursions available here. Your driver/guide can make recommendations.

Overnight in Talkeetna.

Day 6

Journey from Talkeetna to Anchorage

Travel south by private vehicle to Anchorage from Talkeetna along the Parks Highway. Pass through the scenic Matanuska-Susitna Valley, considered one of the most important agricultural regions in Alaska. The valley is rimmed by three major mountain ranges: The Alaska Range, and the Talkeetna and Chugach Mountains. The drive features expansive views of alpine peaks and valleys, rivers and streams, and vast spruce and birch forests. Along the way make a stop at the Eklutna Historical Park to learn about the history, culture, and customs of the Dena’ina Athabascans in combination with the Russian Orthodox traditions. After your visit, continue to Alaska’s largest city, Anchorage.

Overnight in Anchorage.

Day 7

City Tour of Anchorage - Alaska Native Heritage Center - Flightsee to Kodiak

Start your day with a privately guided city tour of Anchorage. The tour will include the historic downtown area, the Ship Creek fish ladder, Lake Hood, and a visit to the Anchorage Museum. The Anchorage Museum has exhibits and programs exploring the history, art, and cultures of Alaska. The revolving exhibits help to connect people, expand perspectives, and encourage global dialogue about Alaska and its distinct environment. Next visit the Alaska Native Heritage Center. The Center is a gathering place that celebrates and shares Alaska Native culture, language, heritage, and tradition.

After your city tour, transfer to the Anchorage airport for a scheduled flight by private plane to Kodiak. Land in Kodiak where a personal airport greeting will be provided to your hotel this evening.

Overnight in Kodiak.

©Shelly Wozniak/All Rights Reserved

Day 8

Kodiak Island - Kodiak Brown Bear Center

Enjoy breakfast this morning at your Kodiak hotel before embarking on a guided sightseeing tour of the town of Kodiak. The main attraction today will be a visit to the Alutiiq Museum. Dedicated to preserving and sharing Alutiiq Heritage, this Alaskan cultural center features a gallery, storage for local artifacts, a research laboratory, and museum store.

This afternoon, a transfer will be provided to the Kodiak floatplane base to meet your departure by floatplane to Camp Island, home of the Kodiak Brown Bear Center. The Kodiak Brown Bear Center is owned by Koniag, one of 13 regional Alaska Native corporations established by Congress in 1971 under the terms of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. As an Alaska Native-owned property, it is the staff’s endeavor to share their Native Alutiiq heritage with you throughout your visit, imparting culture and history during your stay.

Overnight at the Kodiak Brown Bear Center, your home for the next three nights.

Day 9

Meet the Brown Bears of Kodiak - Karluk Lake

There are a variety of bear viewing locations around Karluk Lake, just a short boat ride away. Your professional guides will choose the best place to look for bears based on the time of year and the bears habits. You may search for wildlife by covered boat or get out and hike through the remote wilderness for a truly immersive experience. Or climb aboard kayaks and navigate the lake’s edge. Bears are commonly fishing along the banks for spawning salmon and the silence of your kayak will allow you to watch these giants in their natural habitat.

Day 10

Guided Bear Viewing at Kodiak Brown Bear Center - Lodge Relaxation

Journey back out today for additional guided bearviewing opportunities or enjoy some leisurely time at the lodge at Kodiak Brown Bear Center and let the wildlife come to you. Bears, fox, and deer are commonly seen on Camp Island. The welcoming main lodge offers the opportunity to relax with a good book while still searching for wildlife through the large picture windows. Or warm up after a day of bearviewing in the sauna or around the campfire. All meals are included throughout your stay, freshly prepared by the lodge staff, guaranteed to keep you full and energized for the day’s activities.

Day 11

Flightsee from Kodiak Brown Bear Center to Kodiak and on to Anchorage

Enjoy a leisurely morning at KBBC before returning to Kodiak via floatplane. In Kodiak meet your scheduled flight to Anchorage where you will be greeted by your private driver/guide for a transfer back to your hotel for the evening.

Overnight in Anchorage.

Day 12

Depart Anchorage

After breakfast, transfer to the Anchorage International Airport in time for your departure flight.

(c) Roy Neese. All rights reserved.

Amenities, nearby adventures and more...

Price range:  $1500 - $2000 per person, per day

  • All transportation services, including arrival and departure transfers, in a private vehicle with an experienced driver/guide
  • All hotel accommodations, including roundtrip baggage handling and daily breakfast
  • A stay at Kodiak Brown Bear Center including guided activities, premium adventures, and gourmet meals
  • All tours and activities, carefully selected for you
  • Gratuities
  • Lunch and dinner when not at the lodge
  • Premium alcoholic beverages

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