All Aboard Your Next Trip
Known for its awe-inspiring natural beauty and fascinating native culture, Alaska is a must-visit destination on many people’s bucket lists. While exploring this awe-inspiring region, you also have the opportunity to take part in adventurous activities such as glacier trekking and rafting or simply sit back and soak in the sights.
But did you know that one of the best ways to see Alaska is via train tours? Many Alaskan trains offer panoramic views of the forests, mountains and glaciers, while local tour guides give you an in-depth insight into the history and culture of the local area.
Many train tour operators offer day trips, where you can get off in a certain area to see the sights, then return to your original destination by train. If you’re looking for a longer tour, search for providers offering train tours that run for seven days or longer, taking you through Alaska’s entire railway with stops along the way.
If Alaskan travel appeals to you and you’re looking to see some sights with train trips across this picturesque state, read on to find out more about the best train tours on offer.
Alaska Railroad Coastal Classic Train
One of the most famous stretches that are covered by train travel is the track between Anchorage and Seward. This well-known Coastal Classic route provides visitors with some of the most awe-inspiring natural views you can hope to see, with a diverse range of scenery on offer.
The best part? You don’t even need to leave the train to see most of it. The Alaska Railroad runs two Coastal Classic trains per day during the summer and the route is just over four hours long, stopping briefly at Girdwood and Portage before going on into the breathtaking wilderness.
Wilderness Express Anchorage to Fairbanks
Wilderness Express’s trains are among the largest in the world, and they’re certainly luxurious, too. They’re known for being engineered in a way that gives onboard guests panoramic views of the scenery from the windows.
All the seats can recline and the trains come with little extra touches such as power sockets and bar service that make the overall experience feel more luxurious. Anchorage and Fairbanks are two of Alaska’s biggest cities, so if you’re hoping to get an idea of what urban life is like in this unique state, this is one of the best routes to do it on.
Alaska Railroad Denali Star Train
Alaska’s two largest cities (Anchorage and Fairbanks) were linked by railway before they were linked by road, and it’s arguably still the best way to see some of Alaska’s most iconic sights. Today, that over 300-mile road is known as the Denali Star, and it’s Alaska Railroad’s most iconic route.
It’s a 12-hour journey from one city to the other, but don’t worry - if that’s too long for you to spend on a train, you can hop off at one of the stops on the route, such as Wasilla, Denali National Park and Talkeetna.
McKinley Explorer Anchorage to Denali Park
The McKinley Explorer trains are famed for their domed glass train cars, which allow guests uninterrupted views of the wilderness the trains travel through. The route starts in the popular Anchorage and ends in Denali National Park, a must-visit destination for those traveling to Alaska.
On board, you’ll enjoy delicious dining, seldom-seen views and an in-depth guide to the views given by a local expert while you travel through them.
Alaska by Rail Tour
Offered by Alaska Tours, this tour allows rail enthusiasts to travel the entire Alaska Railroad system in nine days. With travel between Anchorage, Seward, Talkeetna, Denali and Fairbanks, you’ll get to not only see these beautiful areas from the train window but also stay the night in some of Alaska’s most sought-after destinations.
The itinerary includes nine nights of hotel accommodation and tons of family-friendly activities included along the way, too.
Also included in the price is a 6-our Kenai Fjords National Park cruise with lunch, a 2-hour wilderness jetboat tour in Talkeetna, a half-day sightseeing tour in Fairbanks, a 3-hour Sternwheeler riverboat tour and a 4-6 hour bus tour into Denali National Park. If you’re looking to cram as much adventure as possible in your visit to Alaska, this is the train tour for you!
Overall, Alaska offers visitors an opportunity to see breathtaking one-of-a-kind natural beauty without leaving North America, and if you want to see as much as possible in one visit, signing up for a train tour is the best way to do it.