Immerse yourself in Alaska’s natural splendor, exploring three extraordinary national parks: Denali, Wrangell-St. Elias, and Kenai Fjords; and delving into Alaska’s rich heritage in Anchorage.

Starting at: $7,697 * Price includes special offer * Includes airfare, taxes & all fees Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The magnificent Mt. Denali and the park road  Bear with cubs  The elusive wolf  Caribou in Denali National Park  Forests and mountains of Denali National Park  Float plane ready for take-off, Lake Hood  The city of Anchorage  Husky puppies  Performance, Alaska Native Heritage Center. Credit: Alaska Native Heritage Center  Dancers at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Credit: Alaska Native Heritage Center  Landscape of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park  Looking out on a glacier, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park  Kennecott Mines, Wrangel-St. Elias National Park  The marina at Seward  Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park  Orca whale sighting, Kenai Fjords National Park  Breaching whale  Puffins   Steller Sea Lions, Kenai Fjords National Park  Bald eagle  Sea otters in Prince William Sound

Alaska's Natural Wonders: Denali to Kenai Fjords

11 days from $7,697 | includes airfare, taxes and all fees

Immerse yourself in Alaska’s natural splendor, exploring three extraordinary national parks: Denali, Wrangell-St. Elias, and Kenai Fjords; and delving into Alaska’s rich heritage in Anchorage.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

[This journey] well exceeded our expectations - having our own personal Ph.D. geologist with us to answer our questions in real-time was a huge bonus. Our tour director kept everything running smoothly, allowing us time to enjoy the fauna and flora to the max. Truly a memorable trip!

- Diane K.

This Smithsonian Journeys tour of Alaska was top quality in every respect: sights visited, including magnificent, less visited Wrangell-St Elias National Park, information provided for each location plus additional narration and commentary during travel between sites; optional free time suggestions for hikes, flight-seeing and other activities; accommodations; guides and Smithsonian experts. 

- Marcia, M.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Experts

Jul 8 - 18, 2022 Departure; Aug 30 - Sep 9, 2022 Departure
Carola Stearns

Carola Stearns

Carola Stearns is a field geologist and geophysicist with over 40 years of experience enthusiastically sharing her fascination with the Earth and how it works.  She earned a Ph.D at the University of Michigan, has worked in exploration for major oil companies, taught at universities, and maintains a research affiliation with the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology at the University of Michigan.  She has worked with archaeologists on both prehistoric and classical sites around the Mediterranean and in the southwest of the US.  Her diverse research interests include tectonics as well as climatic geomorphology, especially as it relates to human history.  She has lectured as a park ranger at the Grand Canyon, on trips for the UM Alumni Association, and in Ann Arbor training docents for the botanical gardens, arboretum and the public school’s environmental education program.  Currently she works part-time as an interpretive guide in Santa Fe. 

Aug 5 - 15, 2022 Departure
Wayne Ranney

Wayne Ranney

Wayne Ranney is a geologist and writer who is a veteran of expedition travel, having journeyed to and lectured on all of Earth’s seven continents. He is the recipient of the 2018 American Association of Petroleum Geologists “Geosciences in the Media Award” and has received other national and regional honors for his writing, lectures, blog postings, and expeditionary guiding. His foreign and domestic travels have taken him to South America (Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, and the Amazon), Australia and New Zealand, the Polar regions (Antarctica, Iceland, and Greenland), and desert landscapes in Africa, Asia, the Atacama, and the American Southwest.

With a lifelong interest in the earth sciences, Wayne specializes in making the fascinating story of our planet come alive for fellow travelers. He was elected to the Explorers Club and has visited more than 85 countries. Wayne is a retired professor of geology who lives in Flagstaff, Arizona near his beloved Grand Canyon. He is passionate about sharing his vast knowledge of earth history with others in an easy-going and informal style, yet he is a well-respected author of numerous award-winning books and articles. He enjoys languages, hiking, river running, photography, conversation, and anything that allows him to get outdoors with others in seeing the varied and interesting landscapes of our beautiful planet.

May 30 - Jun 9, 2023 Departure
John Grabowska

John Grabowska

John Grabowska is a natural history filmmaker whose award-winning films are broadcast nationally on PBS as prime time specials. He has made natural history films on Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, the Alaska Peninsula and the Desert Southwest. In a 30 year career with the National Park Service he Executive Produced more than 40 films on National Parks from Yellowstone and Yosemite to Crater Lake and Cape Cod. John has lectured on natural history filmmaking at the Smithsonian Institution and The National Geographic Society, led environmental media workshops in Argentina and Panama and cofounded the American Conservation Film Festival. The Washington Post calls him "one of the virtuoso environmental filmmakers in the country.”

To read an interview with the Smithsonian about his work in Alaska: https://americanhistory.si.edu/blog/2013/03/exploring-alaska-qa-with-environmental-filmmaker-john-grabowska.html. 

Jul 4 - 14, 2023 Departure
Jim Reynolds

Jim Reynolds

Jim Reynolds is Professor Emeritus of Geology at Brevard College. He received his A.B. in Earth Science and A.M. in Volcanology from Dartmouth College. After working in industry, government, and academia, he returned to Dartmouth for a Ph.D. His research focused on the uplift of the Andes in Argentina, Chile, and Bolivia and Central American volcanism. He is writing a book about the Geology of Iceland. Reynolds was awarded two Fulbright Scholarships to teach at Argentine universities. Jim is an ardent environmentalist and a strong advocate for environmental issues. He is completing his second term on the Board of Directors of the Galapagos Conservancy. As a fieldā€oriented scientist and educator, Jim is enthusiastic to provide outdoor and hands-on learning experiences.

Aug 4 - 14, 2023 Departure
Pat Dickerson

Pat Dickerson

Dr. Pat Dickerson is a geologist and visiting research fellow with the Jackson School of Geosciences - University of Texas at Austin and the American Geosciences Institute. Her field research focuses on rifts of the world:  Iceland, Oslo rift, the Rio Grande rift, as well as on mountain-building:  the North American Cordillera and Rocky Mts., Argentine Andes, Sierra Madre Oriental of Mexico, Norwegian and Scottish Caledonides, the southwestern Appalachian chain, and Southern Alps of New Zealand. Long intrigued by the interplay of geologic processes and human activities, she was schooled in geology and classical archaeology (B.A.), then geology/tectonics (Ph.D.) at UT at Austin. She draws from those experiences in leading geological and natural history field seminars for Smithsonian groups (since 2003), for students, and for professional scientists. Pat has served on task forces to develop scientific strategies for exploring the Moon and Mars, and she collaborates with NASA on field training to prepare astronauts for such missions.

Aug 29 - Sep 8, 2023 Departure
Allen  Glazner

Allen Glazner

Allen Glazner is a geologist, educator and author with particular expertise in the American Southwest. He believes strongly that understanding the geologic underpinnings of the planet greatly enhances one’s enjoyment of the landscape and everything that lives on it. A native Southern Californian, Allen earned geology degrees from Pomona College and UCLA before embarking on a 38-year career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he is Kenan Distinguished Professor Emeritus.

Allen’s research focuses on granites, volcanoes, and plate tectonics. An award-winning teacher, he has led dozens of field trips for groups ranging from the general public to academic specialists, and has trained astronauts and National Park personnel in the field and classroom. In addition to over 150 academic papers, he has coauthored several books for the public including Geology Underfoot in Death Valley and Eastern California, Geology Underfoot in Yosemite National Park, and Geology Underfoot in Southern California. 

Allen was an avid ultramarathoner and is now an avid cyclist and hiker. He enjoys all forms of photography but especially landscape, aerial, panorama, and 3D-reconstructive. Reading, especially fiction, is one of his sedentary pursuits. See landscape photos and more at allenglazner.com.