Denali National Park Road Tours
To experience the heart of Denali National Park, you'll have to travel by bus, van or plane -- private cars aren't allowed past the first 15 miles. The options all vary with respect to time, distance, price and flexibility. It's worth doing one of them: You'll get closer to Denali (formerly Mt. McKinley), see more wildlife, and get a better sense of what makes the park so renowned.
2023 Partial Road Closure Update: Over the past several years, an ongoing landslide has intermittently closed part of the Denali Park Road, requiring a massive effort by the National Park Service to keep the area safely maintained for visitors and staff. In the summer of 2023, construction will continue for a bridge bypassing the landslide. During construction, visitors will have access to the first 43 scenic miles of the park road.
But don’t fret! Miles 0 to 43 still include spectacular scenery, and a bus tour is a great way to see the park if you plan to visit the Denali area this summer.
Adventurous folks can go beyond the closure by bike, on foot, or by flying to a remote lodge in Kantishna.
Denali Park Road Bus Tours
Narrated large group tours on the Denali Park Road, 4 - 12 hours. In 2023, there will be a revised service. No busses will travel beyond Mile Post 43 while there is construction on a bridge to bypass a landslide at Mile Post 45.4 of the Denali Park Road.
The best way to get an overview of Denali National Park is aboard one of the park buses, which feature a trained naturalist who both drives and provides narration. Available tours include the Natural History Tour (4−5 hrs), Tundra Wilderness Tour (7−8 hrs), The Eielson Excursion (8−9 hrs) or The Kantishna Experience (11−12 hrs)
Park Service Hiker & Camper Shuttle Bus
Not always narrated, serves as transportation for campers and hikers in the park. Or, you can ride it as an alternative to a tour.
This flexible alternative to the standard bus tour is an excellent option for independent travelers. Get off anywhere, spend a few hours hiking, then catch another bus back to the park entrance (as long as a seat is available). You can take a short ride before starting your adventure, or travel out to Kantishna, at the end of the park road. See adjusted services for 2023.
Hiking & Biking Tours along Denali Park Road
Experience the Denali Park Road on two feet or by bike!
Traverse Alaska can craft fully-guided custom adventures, or set you up on a trip into the Alaska wilderness arming you with some know-how — and providing you with the independence to freely explore. Excursions include private day hikes, rafting and packrafting, and multi-day backpacking.
If you want to experience Denali National Park, Bike Denali has a fun, unique way to do it — on two wheels! Options include afternoon rentals to ride around the park entrance, full-day rentals to the explore the Denali Park Road to multi-day rentals for bike camping. Opt for a mountain bike, or eBike.
The Denali National Park Visitors Center is actually more of a campus. The center itself is the main National Park Service welcome and information center and it is surrounded by other facilities that include a restaurant, bookstore/giftshop, bag check, bus stop and the Alaska Railroad depot.
30 miles south of the Denali National Park Visitor Center, is the town of Cantwell and the start of the Denali Highway. This was the original road to Denali National Park. In 2023, one tour is available to experience this historic road as an alternative to the Denali Park Road.
This is your chance to experience the spectacular scenery along the Denali Highway, a road recently ranked #2 worldwide as a ‘Drive of a Lifetime’ by National Geographic Traveler Magazine. You’ll be given the opportunity to take the wheel, or if you prefer, just sit back and enjoy stunning views of the peaks and glaciers of the central Alaska Range. There is a guide in the Jeep up front, but you can stop wherever, whenever, and as often as you ...more
Take a bus tour one-way all the way to the end of the road, and fly back. Not offered in 2023 due to Denali Park Road closure.
Reopening in 2024. This is the only flightseeing company with an airstrip in Kantishna, inside Denali National Park. Because you depart so much closer to the mountain than other tours, in a one-hour flight, you’ll get 40 minutes circling the mountain. You may also combine a one-way park road bus tour with a Denali flightseeing tour for an incredible overview of the park.