WINA01 Alaska's Winter Drive from Anchorage

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Travel Alaska during the winter months is a truly unforgettable experience. The last frontier is covered with a thick blanket of snow that invites you for snowmobiling, x-country skiing, dog sledding and northern lights (Aurora Borealis) observation. Travel along Turnagain Arm with the scenic snowcapped Kenai Mountains in the background, ski and rejuvenate at the world-class resort of Alyeska - Alaska's largest Ski Area - and enjoy a guided snowmobile or dog mushing tour from Talkeetna with towering 20.220 ft. Denali in the background. The tour concludes at Chena Hot Springs with outstanding Northern Lights Viewing.

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Itinerary

Anchorage ( Overnight: Anchorage )

Welcome to Alaska. Pick up your rental car in Anchorage and drive to your hotel in downtown. The remaining day is at leisure. Explore Alaska's largest city and visit the many points of interests. Take a walk on the Coastal Trail along Cook Inlet to Earthquake Park with a magnificent view of the snow capped Alaska Mountain Range in the distance, visit Alyeska – Alaska's largest Ski Resort or have a delicious dinner at one of Anchorage's top seafood restaurants. During February and March Anchorage hosts the annual Fur Rondy, Ice Carving Festivals, the Iditarod Sled Dog Race and other fun winter events.

Anchorage – Alyeska Ski Resort ( Driving Distance: 50 miles | Overnight: Alyeska Resort )

Drive south along the Turnagain Arm with panoramic views of the Chugach and Kenai Mountain Ranges. Stopover at the Beluga Viewpoint were you may have an excellent chance to spot roaming Dall Sheep, Mountain Goats or Moose. Take your time to visit the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, taking in injured and orphaned animals and providing them with a permanent home. Continue your journey to Girdwood with Alaska's only four Diamond Resort Hotel nestled at the base of the Alyeska Mountain. It is remarkably the lowest base elevation (250 feet) for any major ski resort.

Alyeska Ski Resort ( Overnight: Alyeska Ski Resort )

Spend your day at Alyeska Ski Resort. This burgeoning mountain resort features 1,000 acres of terrain, ranging from gentle slopes for beginners to double black diamond runs to challenge the experts - all surrounded by the majestic mountains and glaciers of the Chugach Mountains. Cross-country skiers may enjoy 50 km of untracked trails. Additional winter activities include Dog Sledding, Snowshoeing, Ice Skating and Sled Rides. The resort provides a luxurious spa area, large indoor pool, sauna, jacuzzis, ice skating ring, eight restaurants and bars.

Alyeska Ski Resort – Talkeetna ( Driving Distance: 150 miles | Overnight: Talkeetna )

Your road journey continues on the scenic Seward Highway. The grandness of the nature starts right here and driving every mile on the Parks Highway gets even better. It is a treat to watch the mountain peaks crowned with snow caps in the distance. On a clear day, a spectacular view of Denali rises into view above the Susitna River and anywhere along the highway, a watchful eye may be rewarded with the sight of a moose in the wild. Arrive at your beautiful mountain lodge in Talkeetna with breathtaking views of Mt. Denali. Watch the Aurora Borealis at night dancing on the northern sky.

Talkeetna – via Denali to Chena Resort ( Driving Distance: 330 miles | Overnight: Chena )

You continue your journey on the Parks Highway via Denali National Park to Fairbanks. After arriving at Chena Hot Springs you may enjoy a dip in the natural mineral hot springs. The area is internationally recognized as one of the best places to view the Aurora Borealis in the wintertime. Join the spectacular snow coach tour to see the aurora up close (included). From the resort you travel 30 minutes to the top of a ridge (2600 ft) where no city lights interfere the aurora. Enjoy spectacular 360-degree Aurora displays and step inside the heated Mongolian Yurt if you need to warm up. .

Chena Hot Springs Resort ( Overnight: Chena Hot Springs Resort )

Relax in the large heated mineral indoor pool and outdoor rock lake, providing a great opportunity to soak or swim. You have plenty of time to go dog sledding, visit a sled dog kennel tour, try snowmobiling or join a tour of the Ice Museum. Have dinner at the rustic log lodge restaurant and then take a short walk to a heated cabin for another night of outstanding Northern Lights viewing. The resort has been known for its healing waters - first discovered by gold prospectors at the turn of the century. In 1912, the geothermal area was the premier place to soak for Fairbanks residents.

Chena Hot Springs Resort – Fairbanks ( Driving Distance: 60 miles )

After breakfast spend some time to enjoy Chena Hot Springs Resort facilities. Drive to Fairbanks at leisure. You have time to explore Fairbanks - known as the Golden Heart City of Alaska, Fairbanks is tucked into miles of unexplored wilderness only 120 miles from the Arctic Circle. Fairbanks offers many winter activities; from the Open North Sled Dog Race Championship to the World Ice Art Championship - Ice Alaska. Return the rental car at the airport.