Looking for an unforgettable Alaskan or Canadian experience? That’s what Entrée Destinations provides with their handpicked, exclusive collection of top accommodation options, experiences and adventures across both destinations. President Marc Télio fills us in on what’s happening this year that will make your trip extra special.
Q: What’s new in Alaska for 2018?
We have a couple of new venues for 2018: The Sheldon Chalet and the Borealis Basecamp. Located just 10-miles from the summit of Denali, the Sheldon Chalet is more than a place to stay – it’s an opportunity to explore North America’s highest mountain at its best!
At Borealis Basecamp, you can sleep in an igloo-shaped dome with views of the borealis dancing above your head!
Q: What other options do you offer to see the Aurora Borealis?
The top option is a wilderness lodge outside Fairbanks where, not only do you have the lights at night, you can also do all kinds of things during the day, such as dogsledding, skiing, sledding, ice fishing and more.
The lodge is an all-inclusive with transportation, accommodations, food, and adventures. We also have the option of staying within Fairbanks and the Chena Hot Springs Resort and experiencing different night and day tours.
Q: Are there any trips in Canada that work well with a trip to Alaska?
If it’s an addition to Alaska, we would turn towards Western Canada. We offer a stunning collection of wilderness lodges and remote destinations that echo some of the experiences we do in Alaska. Anything from bear viewing to whale watching, salmon fishing, sea kayaking, beach combing, horseback riding, helicopter fishing, stand up paddle boarding…the opportunities are endless.
We also offer trips to the Canadian Arctic. It’s out of the way, but one of the last untouched places on earth. Our guests can see polar bears, beluga whales, musk ox, snorkel with Narwhals, go ATV riding, and hike to our heart’s content with 24-hour daylight.
Q: For those wanting to see more of Canada, what’s new for 2018?
We have a beautiful new collection of Indigenous experiences that we will continue developing. In Vancouver, we have a local Indigenous artist who can help guests explore the amazing Indigenous art community and its history.
Entrée Canada has also rolled out a new collection of Northern Lights viewing opportunities in the Yukon Territory, one which can have you mushing your own team of dogs from Lodge to Lodge. Lastly, we are making great progress in awareness on our new programs in the Arctic, as mentioned above. It is surreal, unlike other spots on earth – unspoiled, zero tourists, and as vast as your imagination will take you!
Q: Tell us about your private shore trips for people cruising to Alaska.
We have private shore trips available in most of the major ports in Alaska, such as Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, Skagway and Haines. Some of our favorites are bear viewing, whale watching, helicopter dogsledding, fishing, kayaking, and a collection of customized adventures.
Q: What are the best wildlife viewing opportunities in Alaska?
One of our top wilderness lodges in Southwest Alaska offers great opportunities to view bears catching salmon and walruses lounging on the shores of Bristol Bay. And then there’s Denali National Park for a day trip into the park, or a more in-depth experience with a stay within the park.
Q: For fishing adventures, what are the best locations in Alaska?
The best time and place varies all around the state depending on whether guests want fresh water or salt water fishing, or if they want to catch a particular species. We have fishing lodges located and opportunities in many places around the state, so whether its ocean or river, halibut or salmon, I’m sure we can find the right experience for clients.
Q: Overall, which experiences are most popular?
That’s hard to say as we have so many custom itineraries, but I would have to say our wilderness lodges are most popular. Once you get clients off the beaten path into the wilderness, they’re just in awe of the scenery, hospitality, and authentic experiences we offer. A combination of an inland lodge such at Winterlake Lodge and then an ocean lodge such as Tutka Bay Lodge complement each other perfectly.
Q: Describe some of the wilderness lodges you offer.
Winterlake Lodge: Amazing family-fun business that operates in summer and winter. Experiences include landing on glaciers, helicopter fishing, rafting, dogsledding and lots more.
Tutka Bay Lodge: Sister property to Winterlake Lodge, but located on the ocean in Kachemak Bay. Adventures include bear viewing, fishing for world class halibut and salmon, helicopter adventuring, sea kayaking, hiking, a culinary school, and more.
Ultima Thule Lodge: Our most wilderness lodge located deep within the Wrangell St. Elias National Park. Highlights include daily fly out trips where you can go beachcombing, hiking, wildlife viewing, fishing, rafting, landing on the top of a mountain, and glacier trekking.
The Lodge at Whale Pass: Located in Southeast Alaska amongst a rainforest. Daily trips include bear viewing, glacier sea kayaking, whale watching, fishing, hiking, mountain biking, caving, and canoeing.
Q: What about culinary adventures. What should visitors not miss?
Our wilderness lodges shine with culinary experiences. There is even a cooking school at one of our lodges and most offer either classes or presentations during your stay. We also offer culinary touring in some of the Alaskan ports, visiting with local merchants and tasting classic Alaskan dishes.
Q: Alaska is not just for summer vacations. What winter experiences should travelers be aware of?
We offer pre/post Iditarod Sled Dog Race adventures, plus wilderness lodges that include dogsledding, skiing, sledding, ice fishing, snowmobiling and out of lodge overnight stays.
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