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Excursions or on-our-own at lodges


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My husband and I have booked a land tour through Princess Cruises. We'll be staying at these lodges where we don't have excursions included: Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge, Copper River Princess Lodge, and McKinley Princess Lodge. My question is: Do I need to book excursions in each of these places, or will it be possible for us to explore on our own (without a car) ?

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At the McKinley Lodge you can take the shuttle to Talkeetna, where you can easily spend a few hours (and a few dollars). Make sure you walk down to the park visitor center. It is the one the mountaineers use before and after climbing Denali. There are short trails around the lodge property. I don't recall seeing a pool at either McKenley or Copper River. I don't remember trails at CR either. The Wranglel-St Elias Park visitor center isn't walking distance. An excursion might be useful there. We enjoyed the trip into McCarthy and Kennicott but it's a long day.

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All 3 lodges are lovely properties in beautiful settings but they're extremely isolated. There is nothing within walking distance and no rental cars nearby.

Unless Princess has a shuttle that takes you to a nearby town, or you take a Princess excursion, you're stuck at the property. As I said, they're lovely properties so maybe you'll be content to wander around and enjoy the scenery. I've been to all 3 locations but haven't stayed there ... my trips have been DIY.


If you look at the STICKY above for 2014 trip reports, you'll find a photo journal from MVPinBoynton. They stayed at McKinley and Kenai Princess Lodges. You'll find the report helpful. And look at the princess lodge web site to see what shuttle service is available at each proerty. I know at McKinley they run a shuttle into Talkeetna where you could wander around or pick up a private vendor ( check out the Talkeetna town web site for info). I think the town is close to an hr away.


Edited by mapleleaves
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