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“Great Bang for your Buck”

Alaska Northern Lights Tour
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Alaska Northern Lights Tour has an evening of viewing Aurora and Native Culture Show at a remote Lodge with an excellent view of Northern Skies. Also has, a Fairbanks City Tour, Dog Sled Rides, Chena Hot Springs Tours, and Ice Fishing Tours. Activities are Guided by Owner, Ben Boyd who is an Alaska Mountain Man who lived from hunting and trapping, using only a sled dog team for transportation. In later life attended University of Alaska Fairbanks and received a BA Degree in Cultural Tourism and a MA Degree in Cultural Documentation. He is Producer of many Cultural Videos that can be seen on Boyd Communications Youtube Channel. He gives Native Culture Presentations and preforms a Native Hoop Dance for which at over age 70 is the Oldest Native Hoop Dancer in the World.
Reviewed February 20, 2014

On our recent trip to Fairbanks we booked 3 different tours with Ben. He is an outstanding guide and goes out of his way for his clients even for folks not on his tours. We took the city tour and we were at North Pole Alaska when we ran into 2 folks who were waiting for the bus to return and take them back to Fairbanks. We had plenty of room in the van so Ben offered them a ride back to Fairbanks with us. We didn't see the Northern Lights on our scheduled night so Ben offered us a discounted price for the next night. We accepted and thankfully saw the Aurora on the 2nd night. If he hadn't offered a discount I probably wouldn't have gone back. Even though we didn't see the Aurora on the 1st night, Ben went out of his way to keep us entertained with stories, videos, and the hoop dance. There was another tour company there also that night and it had nothing planned for its clients. Ben cares about his customers and gives his all to make sure that you get more than your monies worth. The dog sled people that Ben works with are outstanding also and that was a big thrill for us. Maybe my wife and I aren't as sophisticated as some of the other people who wrote reviews but we found Ben very charming, witty and very knowledgeable about all of his tours. I will book again with Ben when we return to Fairbanks next year.

6  Thank Dave058
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BenBoydAlaska, Owner at Alaska Northern Lights Tour, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2014

Thank you so much for you review and If you are ever in Fairbanks again please contact me I have more places I can take you and your wife shopping.

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"ben boyd"
in 28 reviews
"hoop dance"
in 20 reviews
"chandalar ranch"
in 29 reviews
"city tour"
in 16 reviews
"aurora viewing"
in 16 reviews
"pleasant valley"
in 4 reviews
"northern lights"
in 40 reviews
"chena hot springs"
in 13 reviews
"hot chocolate"
in 10 reviews
"his life"
in 7 reviews
"great viewing area"
in 2 reviews
"totally worth the money"
in 2 reviews
"extreme cold"
in 2 reviews
"wonderful tour"
in 4 reviews
"both nights"
in 2 reviews
"tour company"
in 5 reviews
"mother nature"
in 3 reviews
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89 - 93 of 119 reviews

Reviewed February 6, 2014

Ben provides a great tour. His Indian knowledge greatly enhances the visit to the Thompson Cultural Center and the Museum of the North. He gives you plenty of time to see all the sites and shop at the shops he goes to . We never felt rushed. He also picked us up at our hotel at no additional cost and he was less expensive then some of the others providing this tour. I would highly recommend this tour.

2  Thank Garry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BenBoydAlaska, Owner at Alaska Northern Lights Tour, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2014

Glad you enjoyed the Winter City Tour. I have a Summer City Tour that also includes Pioneer Park, that is Fairbanks Historical Theme Park, that is only open in summer. It has many shops, places to eat, and Museums. You spoke of me giving clients time to shop, well the Park is the last stop on the tour and I give clients time on their own pace to enjoy these attraction. The tour is 6+ hours with the + being time on your own. When they are finished I return them to their accommodations.

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Reviewed January 7, 2014

I understand that nobody can magically make the northern lights appear, but the tour was a huge waste of money. I saw the hoola hoop show on Youtube and I thoroughly enjoyed watching the performance online, but it was extremely tacky in real life. There was packaged cookies and powdered hot chocolate, but for the price I paid, it was not worth the value. We left earlier than the promised time. A lot of people paid a lot of money to wait out on a chance to spot a view of a lifetime, so I thought it was pretty rude that the driver pushed us to leave earlier.

Word of advice: don't ever book a tour. It's best that you splurge on a lodge with a good location to the view the aurora.

10  Thank Grace Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BenBoydAlaska, Owner at Alaska Northern Lights Tour, responded to this reviewResponded January 15, 2014

I would say, that saying that a Traditional Native American Dance that is done all over North America is tacky is a bit culturally disrespectful. You might have noticed a couple of reviews written by two friends who also displayed similar behavior. It is interesting that these people, other than where they live, are from the same demographic category. The vast majority of our visitors seem to enjoy the chance to learn something about another culture and do not find it a waist of their time or money. We are the only aurora tour that offers another activity, absolutely free, as part of the tour. It is our hope that whether or not you see aurora you have a chance to experience something about Alaska.

Concerning leaving early, at that time the sky was totally cloudy with no chance to see aurora so the majority of clients wanted to leave. All other aurora tours always leave at 2am. I give my clients another hour if there is any chance to see aurora. We left at 2:30am

As far as the comment about the location of the lodge for being able to see aurora not being good, Chandalar Ranch is recognized in the tourist industry as one of the best viewing locations in the Fairbanks area. There is a link on the our website from the Fairbanks Convention and Visitors Bureau that verifies this.

The accuracy of this comment from the review may also show the accuracy of the rest of the comments.

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Reviewed January 2, 2014

Ben was an excellent tour guide and driver, and he was an expert on Alaskan culture and history. He was very familiar with the attractions he took us to, and walked us through what was offered at each one, giving us the time we needed to enjoy each one. He even was friends with Santa Claus when we visited Santa Claus House at North Pole. He made sure we got there in time to get to see Santa on Christmas Eve! Ben was able to walk us through the story behind each of the exhibits at the university museum and at the native cultural center, where we also got official aurora viewers club certificates! Ben also accommodated us by picking us up from Chena Hot Springs Resort and bringing us back after the tour. I would recommend this tour if you are interested in being chauffeured around Fairbanks to learn about native culture and to visit North Pole, Santa Claus
House (shopping is its largest appeal, and pics with Santa and the reindeer). Also - the best fudge ever!

2  Thank Nisbet2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 1, 2014

We read the bad reviews and went any way and had a great time. Getting picked up at 10:30 p.m. tells you this is not a party or social event. Lights are kept dim at the lodge, so you can see Aurora whenever it comes. Many other tours were at the lodge, making it pretty crowded and not conducive to socializing. But hey, we are there just to see the lights. No lights the 1st night,, but we did go back a 2nd night and saw the lights. The lights were not as good as they had been, but it was not Alaska Northern lights tour's fault. We enjoyed Ben's Hoop Dance and videos. It was not compulsory to attend and the 2nd night we left the show to get more pictures of the lights.There were light refreshments for all the tours. We stayed at the lodge an hour longer than the other tours for Ben's show. I would have liked to have had a small introduction to the Aurora at the beginning, but I could have gotten that on the net if I wanted. We did not go with any other tour companies so cannot compare, but felt this was of good quality and the folks are very nice

2  Thank hulatita
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BenBoydAlaska, Owner at Alaska Northern Lights Tour, responded to this reviewResponded January 4, 2014

Thank you for your review and yes the Aurora is elusive. As I have said many time before you can not depend on predictions for the aurora or weather. The nights with the worst predictions can sometime yield the best aurora and vice versa. Aurora viewing is for people who are willing to take a chance and not people who take disappointments badly. Yes, the lodge was very crowded when you were there as the Holidays is our busiest time of the year with the majority of clients from the large Japanese companies. This is true at all aurora facilities. The time to come, when there are few clients is between mid-Sept. to mid-Dec. The large Japanese companies are not bringing in clients at that time and then there is only a small number of clients at the lodge. The aurora can be seen just as well at that time. We had some very good aurora this winter is Sept. It is a better environment for socializing at that time and clients from all over the world enjoy visiting with people from other countries. We also, give you an introduction to the aurora and videos from the University of Alaska about the Aurora at that time when there are more english speakers in the audience. I do let my clients stay an hour longer than other companies because the aurora can be best later in the night and I put on my show after the big groups leave.

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