Alaska, the largest state in the United States, is known for its vast wilderness, stunning landscapes, and abundant wildlife. It is a dream destination for many adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts. If you’re planning a trip to Alaska, here are eight bucket list moments that should not be missed.
See a Grizzly Bear or Brown Bear
One of the most thrilling experiences in Alaska is encountering a grizzly bear or a brown bear in its natural habitat. Alaska is home to a significant population of these magnificent creatures. The best places to spot bears are Denali National Park, Katmai National Park, and Lake Clark National Park. Joining a guided wildlife tour or embarking on a bear viewing excursion will increase your chances of witnessing these awe-inspiring animals up close.
Kayak Near a Glacier
Alaska is renowned for its breathtaking glaciers, and kayaking near one is an unforgettable experience. Paddling through serene waters, surrounded by towering ice formations, will make you feel humbled by the grandeur of nature. Glacier Bay National Park, Kenai Fjords National Park, and Prince William Sound are popular destinations for glacier kayaking. Keep your eyes open for seals, otters, and even whales, as they frequently inhabit these icy waters.
Spot Bald Eagles
Alaska boasts the largest population of bald eagles in the United States, making it an ideal place for bird watchers. These majestic birds, with their distinctive white heads and impressive wingspans, can be spotted throughout the state. The Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve near Haines is a prime location to witness the congregation of hundreds of eagles during the fall salmon run. Take a scenic cruise or join a bird-watching tour to witness the incredible sight of bald eagles soaring above the Alaskan wilderness.
Go on a Bushwhacking Hike
For those seeking a true adventure off the beaten path, a bushwhacking hike in the Alaskan wilderness is a must. Bushwhacking refers to exploring unmarked trails and venturing into remote areas with no established paths. It requires navigation skills, physical endurance, and a sense of adventure. Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, the largest national park in the United States, offers ample opportunities for bushwhacking hikes. Just make sure to be well-prepared, carry appropriate gear, and be aware of the potential risks and challenges.
See the Northern Lights
Witnessing the enchanting display of the Northern Lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis, is a truly magical experience. Alaska’s location near the Arctic Circle makes it one of the best places on Earth to observe this natural phenomenon. Fairbanks, Anchorage, and the remote town of Nome are excellent locations for Northern Lights viewing. Plan your trip during the winter months, when the nights are long and dark, for the best chance to see the dancing lights illuminate the sky.
Eat Alaskan Crab Legs
No visit to Alaska would be complete without indulging in the famous Alaskan crab legs. Alaska is known for its delicious seafood, and the crab legs are a true delicacy. Whether you prefer king crab or snow crab, the sweet and succulent meat is a culinary delight. Many restaurants throughout the state offer fresh Alaskan crab legs on their menus. Treat yourself to a feast of these delectable crustaceans and savor the flavors of Alaska’s bountiful waters.
Alaska offers a multitude of bucket list moments for adventurous travelers. From encountering bears and whales to kayaking near glaciers and witnessing the Northern Lights, the state’s natural wonders are awe-inspiring. Whether you’re seeking wildlife encounters, thrilling outdoor activities, or unique culinary experiences, Alaska has it all. Plan your trip, immerse yourself in the untamed beauty of the Last Frontier, and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Spot Killer Whales
The coastal waters of Alaska are home to a rich variety of marine life, including the iconic killer whales, also known as orcas. Seeing these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is a true bucket list moment. Juneau, Sitka, and the Inside Passage are renowned for their orca populations. Embark on a whale-watching cruise or go on a guided sea kayaking tour to increase your chances of encountering these intelligent and awe-inspiring creatures.
Snorkel Alaska Among Unique Cold-Water Sea Life
While snorkeling is often associated with warm tropical waters, Alaska offers a unique snorkeling experience in its cold-water ecosystems. The cold waters of Alaska are teeming with fascinating marine life, including colorful kelp forests, sea stars, anemones, and even sea otters. Resurrection Bay near Seward and the Inside Passage are popular snorkeling destinations. Don a wetsuit and snorkel gear and dive into the chilly waters to discover the mesmerizing underwater world of Alaska.
Ready to embark on your Alaskan adventure? Start planning your trip today, and make sure to check off these incredible bucket list moments in the Last Frontier. Book your flights, arrange accommodations, and prepare for the journey of a lifetime. Alaska awaits, with its untamed wilderness and unforgettable experiences just waiting to be discovered.