Who took this trip: Our family of 4: Mom, Dad, our 16 year old daughter, and our 13 year old daughter.
- Sunday 6/13: Flew direct to Anchorage (ANC) from Chicago O'Hare (ORD). Arrived 6pm local time. Picked up rental car from National, checked into Embassy Suites Hotel, and grabbed dinner at Humpy's. Neat photo op nearby at the Greetings from Alaska mural.
- Monday 6/14: Drove to Homer. Made stops at Potter Bird Marsh, Beluga Point, Virgin Creek Falls, and Portage Lake. Would highly recommend each of these stops. Rolled into Homer around 6pm, without dinner reservations. Every restaurant was either closing soon, or were not taking additional names for their waitlist. Ended up eating dinner at Subway. Not ideal. Spent the night at Land's End Resort - perfect location!
- Tuesday 6/15: Departed Homer and headed to Seward. Stopped by Kenai Fjords NP before checking in at Windsong Lodge. Ate dinner onsite at Resurrection Roadhouse.
- Wednesday 6/16: Took a Kenai Fjords boat tour w/ dinner at Fox Island All 4 of us loved this trip and all of the wildlife we saw. Due to the nature of this excursion, I would not recommend it for smaller children. In fact, my 13 year old was one of the youngest kids on this tour. Spent another night at Windsong Lodge.
- Thursday 6/17: Toured Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward before departing for Glacier View. My family loved it! Spent the night at the Sheep Mountain Lodge in Glacier View. Incredible location! We wish we would've been able to spend another night here. Or come back in winter to see the northern lights. Ate dinner at the cute little lodge onsite.
- Friday 6/18: Departed for Fairbanks. Made a super quick stop at Wrangell-St. Elias NP. Also stopped by North Pole before rolling into Fairbanks. The Santa House was lovely! It was the perfect place to pick up a Christmas ornament commemorating our Alaska road trip. Forced my kids to have a family picture with Santa & Mrs. Claus. Promised I wouldn't share it publicly. Ate a delicious dinner at the Pump House in Fairbanks. Since it is 'College Visit Season' for our 16 year old, we also drove through the University of Alaska - Fairbanks campus. Spent the night at Hampton Inn.
- Saturday 6/19: Before departing Fairbanks, we grabbed some amazing cinnamon rolls to go from The Cookie Jar. On a whim, we stopped by the Morris Thompson Cultural & Visitors Center. Last stop in the Fairbanks area was the Alaska Pipeline viewing area. It was fascinating to see it up close! Headed to Denali area. Ate dinner at 49th State Brewing. Amazing location, brews, & food. Fans of the movie, "Into the Wild" will recognize the bus sitting in the outdoor beer garden as the bus that was used in the movie. Spent the night at Denali Bluffs Hotel.
- Sunday 6/20: Spent most of the day on the Tundra Wilderness Bus Tour. We saw a variety of wildlife, and some gorgeous scenery. I highly recommend this trip. Like the boat tour in Seward, I would not recommend it for small children. We ate dinner at Prospector's Pizza. When we arrived, it was nearly a two hour wait. We used the time to do some shopping at the nearby souvenir stores. Dinner was well worth the wait. My husband & I splurged on the Deadliest Catch pizza, which tasted unlike anything I've ever eaten before.
- Monday 6/21: Left Denali area, heading back to Anchorage. On the way out of town, we stopped at Denali once again to pay a visit to the sled dogs. To be honest, my husband and I aren't dog people, but our kids loved it. Did you know there's also a Denali State Park? We made a quick stop here for some photos and a bathroom break. Stopped at the Iditarod HQ. Ate dinner in Wasilla - it was nothing to write home about. Once again, we spent the night at Embassy Suites in Anchorage.
- Tuesday 6/22: Started out the day eating breakfast at the Snow City Cafe. Best breakfast we had while in AK! We did have to wait for our table, so we used the time to visit some of the downtown souvenir stores. We also took a drive through the University of Alaska - Anchorage campus, and visited the Alaska Zoo.
- Wednesday 6/23: Departure Day. Sadness all around. We wanted to cram in one more activity before flying home, so we checked out the Independence Mine Historical Park. This was definitely worth the visit. If you're like me and enjoy taking pictures, this place offers a ton of unique backdrop ideas. My kids were glad to leave because it meant that my camera would finally be put away. In all seriousness, I had a new camera that was only about a month old, so this place was perfect for trying out all of the settings and features. Final dinner in Anchorage was at Matanuska Brewing Company. Our flight back to Chicago was a red-eye, so we had the majority of the day to ourselves.
- All throughout Alaska, there are numerous roadside rest stops/pull off areas where you can stop and stretch your feet. These also make for some great photo taking opportunities!
- In terms of dining, it was rare when we did not have to wait for a table. We planned accordingly, and it was fine.
- We have Diamond status with Hilton, and had some free nights to burn, so we utilized them on our Anchorage & Fairbanks stays.
- Miles Driven: 1600+
- Photos Taken: 1000+
- #alaska #roadtrip #anchorage #seward #denali #homer #ord #anc #unitedairlines