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Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

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posts: 17
reviews: 6
Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?


Four of us will be arriving in Anchorage on May 30th in the afternoon and 3 plan on heading up to Denali while one heads to Kodiak. How long should we allow for the drive up to Denali? We plan to be there a full day and then have to leave for the cruise out of Seward on the 1st of June. How long should we allow for the drive from Denali to Seward? And the person going to Kodiak is also coming on the cruise- is there an easy way for him to get from Anchorage to Seward for the cruise or should we pick him up at the airport?


North Port, Florida
posts: 61
reviews: 11
1. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

It will take at 4 hours to drive from ANC to Denali. Bus trip thru Denali full day travel. Drive time to Seward from ANC is about 4 hrs so with that in mind, Denali to Seward would take at least 8 hours. Since you will be leaving Seward via Cruise, you might want to look into the railroad as a source to get everyone from ANC to Seward.

Destination Expert
for Alaska
posts: 1,662
reviews: 5
2. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

You are quite ambitious with your timing. You don't say what time you arrive in the afternoon, but by the time you get baggage, a rental vehicle and hit the road you should plan on a late arrival at Denali. Generally I would plan on 5 hours to Denali instead of the 4 hours mentioned earlier. You need time to get out of Anchorage and cover the distance to the park - about 250 miles. If you do make the drive fast, you still have to allow time to talk to the state trooper when you get your speeding ticket.

If you make the next day worthwhile at Denali it will be very long day when added to the logistics of getting to and from hotels and having time for a meal or two. You must get into the park in order to see the animals, and pack all of your food and water.

You don't mention when your cruise leaves from Seward, but the third day will likely mean leaving Denali early for the 5 hour drive to Anchorage, pick up your friend - perhaps two hours across town and meeting, loading and head south for the two - three hour drive to Seward. You will be speeding past some magnificent scenery and animals on the drive down to Seward. The road is an official National Scenic Highway.

Do you have arrangements for dropping the rental car off at Seward?


posts: 17
reviews: 6
3. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

thank you all for your feedback. We arrive in Anchorage at 2 pm. And yes it will be an ambitious trip (I am always willing to take more time, but others in my party are not as willing). Our cruise out of Seward is at 9 pm but need to be to the ship no later than 7:30pm.

I have not yet gotten the info for renting a car in ANC and returning to Seward- I will look into the train as suggested. Fortunately we are early risers and will take advantage of the longer daylight. My husband and I in particular are very active travelers less concerned with getting the good meal as we are experiencing as much as we can and eating on the run. I figure the cruise will be more sedate so we can be bustling for two days to see Denali.

What train should I look into from ANC to Seward?

Thanks again

Destination Expert
for Seward
posts: 2,846
reviews: 44
4. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

The train leaves Anch at 6:45am arrives Seward 11am.

Hertz is the only rental you can drop in Seward.

I think your trying to pack too much in. It's alright to be active but to be in such a hurry doesn't allow time to smell the flowers. Road delays are common from road construction and accidents.

You'd also be missing out on Seward, a great place with lots of things to do before a cruise.

Manitoba, Canada
posts: 6,895
5. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

If you don't get into Anchorage until 2 pm, your best bet is to take a bus to Seward. Here are some choices for you:

Seward buslines departs Anchorage 2:30 pm, arrives Seward 5:30 pm: http://www.sewardbuslines.net/

www.alaskatravel.com/bus-lines/schedule.html - departs Anchorage 3 p.m., arrives Seward 6 pm

Several more options: http://www.sewardtransportation.com/

6. Re: Denali end of May then cruise- time from Denali to Seward?

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