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“Pure Alaska” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge

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Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge
4.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Mile 133 Parks Highway, Denali State Park, Trapper Creek, AK 99683   |  
Hotel amenities
Saint James, New York
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Pure Alaska”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

We stayed at the Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge for one night during our cruise / land tour package last July. (1st week) I didn't spend much time in the room, but my wife did. She liked it and had no complaints. It is not luxury, but it is spacious, clean and very nice.

Upon arrival and check in I had to board a bus to go fishing in Talkeetna. It was about an hour away and is a beautiful little town. I had a great time fishing. I even got to 'meet' a grizzly bear when he came out of the bushes across the river. (about 35-40 yards away) I gave his his space and went back upstream. I caught a couple of trout and three large king salmon. All safely released.

By the time I got back to the Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge it was after 10PM and the sun was still up! The restaurant in the bar was open so I ordered up a burger and enjoyed it.

My wife walked the trails while I was fishing and I decided to do the same after I ate. Weird feeling being so close to midnight and it was dusk still. It was foggy and cloudy but very beautiful. People that complain about "nothing to do" are not the kind that would appreciate the beauty this lodge has to offer. Walking the trails and taking in what was around was enough for me.

On my way back to the room (about 2:00AM) I stopped by the front desk. There is a weather posting there. My wife did not see Mount McKinley as it was overcast / cloudy most of the day. I caught a glimpse of the mountain for a few minutes while fishing.

I asked the person at the desk what the odds were of seeing the mountain the next morning. Slim to none I was told as the weather was murky. I left my room number for a wake up call just in case.

At 7:00AM the phone rang, "the mountain is out!". I jumped out of bed like a kid on Christmas morning. Brushed my teeth, got dressed and went to the deck by the main lodge. The view was spectacularly impressive! Bright blue skies and not a cloud around. Asides from the wispy cloud the mountain was forming at the summit. The mountain does create it's own weather.

I stayed out watching the mountain for a couple of hours until our bus came to take us to our next destination.

Friendly staff, magnificent scenery, and good fishing made this one of my favorite parts of our two week journey.

Room Tip: Make sure that you put your name on the list for a call when the mountain 'comes out'
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (113)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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  • German first
  • Italian first
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English first
Pembroke, Ontario, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

Out of the three Princess lodges that we stayed at, this was the only one that we had inclement weather. This is not a complaint and not the fault of the lodge but I was really hoping to get a view of Mt. McKinley, thus the title 70% club, but maybe the next time I go. This was the most relaxing lodge of the three and the views and scenery was still outstanding. We ate our main meals at the 20,320 Restaurant and the food was fabulous not to mention the great service. There are a number of sitting areas, great shops for souvenirs and an unbelievable great room with fireplaces galore. I will definitely include this resort on my return trip to Alaska next year.

Room Tip: Once again if you are sensitive to sound try to ensure that you get a second floor room in one of th...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hawarden, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

We arrived here and where part of Princess Tour , and we stayed here for one night only, the journey was ok by coach from Kenai Lodge our previous place ,we were expecting better , but it was not to be , we made a point of contacting the lodge before our holiday asking for a room close to the main Lodge , although I got an email saying this request would be passed to reservations , but we were allocated a room in Block 25 , it couldn't have been further away , no wonder they had a sign that said "The Last Frontier " over a bridge , in ever a truer word was ever spoken , they should have given us all a pair of hiking boots on the coach with the keys to our room , reception where rude and unhelpful when we complained . It did remind me of Army Barracks from the outside , the bed linen was not ironed and had a funny smell to it maybe they don't have the time to change the bedding , judging by the number of young staff that seem to man the place , student summer jobs I would think and it appears that the majority of staff , where tired and looking forward to going home . The surrounding scenery was amazing , the mountain was in full view and is truly spectacular , but that's all place had going for it - apart from of course Andy Murray on the TV in the lounge making history by winning the US Open . The food was rather bland , and you had to wait ages to get served ,and if you wanted to get a a coffee from the lounge after 5pm tough it was closed , they didn't serve take away coffee in the restaurant or bars . It strikes me as a place that it is used mainly for travellers staying one night and just using this lodge as stop off point as a brake for an onward journey . There was a Shuttle bus to take you to your room but in all the time we were there it never seemed to be around when we needed it most .finally there was a lot of things that where not up to the standard you would come to expect when on a princess cruise ship , you have to pay for all your food in the Lodges , it is not inclusive like their ships , it seemed that it escaped them completely to tell us , till after we had booked !

Room Tip: Be prepared for a long walk to your room , don't rely on getting a shuttle!
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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London
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
106 helpful votes 106 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

We had a wonderful 1 night's stay at this lodge which was wonderful in comparison to the Denali Wilderness experience. Much calmer and restful, a real delight.

The room was clean and functional.

Note: The restaurants shut early so check last dining orders.

Trips: Book your trips in advance otherwise you'll end up queuing and spending time booking rather than enjoying the beauty of Mt.McKinley.

We never tired of looking at the panoramic view, a real treasure and we would highly recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stamford, Connecticut
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

We only spent one night. We had camped for two nights in Denali National Park and then stopped here on the way back to Anchorage to shower, and sleep in a bed. For that it was fine. It is a nice place if one is into lovely but self contained accomodations with distant views of the mountains and the critters. Its was well maintained and the staff was gracious. The food is fine as well. If one likes the cruise ship, big bus on land tour then this is a good place to stay.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2012

I also wish I had stayed longer. A beautiful place, set in the heart of the wilderness. It is very self contained, with a fantastic communal area that includes stores, restaurants, bars, free internet/computers (lots of them), a theatre, a huge fire place and a beautiful outdoor area for viewing Mt McKinley. I only saw half of Mt McKinley due to weather, but that half was highly impressive! I would love to return so I can see the other half, and also so I can enjoy the lodge some more. There are many tours to participate in, with some catering to active adventurers and others suitable for those who go at a slower pace (note that tours cost extra). Transport to and from the lodge is also good, with a free shuttle bus leaving every hour. The lodge is about 45 mins bus ride from the little town of Talkeetna, which is very quaint. Talkeetna is a start and end base for many of the tours. The rooms were also really comfortable, and there was a real "lodge" feel about the place. My tip would be to allow extra time after staying here, so that you can move further North to Denali National Park proper.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Youngstown, Ohio
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

Even though this isn't in Denali National Park but, rather, about 4 hours from the real park entrance, it's still absolutely gorgeous.

We had reserved a room with two beds, but were given a King. A phone call to the desk said there were no doubles available, but they'd set up second bed. After the Bears presentation and dinner (the salmon chowder from the lounge is excellent!), we checked back with front desk. They dutifully found us a proper room, a bit closer to the main lodge, which was great.

I can't say enough great things about the main lodge. I was able to get medicine, souvenirs, stamps and then mail the postcards--anything we needed. The coffee shop closes up at 7pm, so if you're a late-night coffee drinker like me, bring a few packs of Starbucks Via. The common areas are absolutely gorgeous -- I can't say enough good things about how well-kept they are, and that's where you'll be hanging out, rather than your rooms.

I had some leisure writing to do my night there, and even though things were closing up, there was plenty of time to hang out and write until I got tired. SUCH a pleasant place with wonderful views. I wish I could go back just to hang out there.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge

Address: Mile 133 Parks Highway, Denali State Park, Trapper Creek, AK 99683
Location: United States > Alaska > Trapper Creek
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Specialty lodging in Trapper Creek
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge 4*
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Mt. Mckinley Princess Wilderness Hotel Trapper Creek
Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge Alaska/Trapper Creek

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