Photo Credit: Bob Kaufman

Alaska Photography Tours: Expert Workshops

Picture this: You’re standing in an open expanse of tundra and colorful wildflowers, with the stunning backdrop of rugged, snow-capped peaks reflected in the still waters of a small pond. It’s quintessential Alaska, and you’re ready with your camera. However, the light isn’t quite right, so you brace yourself to wait for the optimal moment. After all, truly great images require truly great light.

Suddenly, you hear your tour guide shout, “OK, everyone back on the bus.” Unfortunately, your itinerary doesn’t allow for waiting for good light, so you pack up your gear and leave without the shot you wanted.

While Alaska has many great tour operators, most of their trips aren’t built around the needs of serious photographers. Either they don’t let you wait for the best light, or you’re competing with 50–100 people for the same vantage point that’s been photographed by about 10 million other people.

If you’re a serious photographer looking for a truly unique experience, consider taking a dedicated Alaska photo tour. Jump to list of tours.

Unlike tours that cater to the casual traveler, a photo-centric Alaska tour or workshop is geared towards providing photographers with the opportunities to capture their dream shots (along with all the expected logistics, like transportation, accommodations, and meals). That means timing your visits to places when they have the best light, and traveling in small groups (typically around 10 people) so you don’t have to jockey shoulders to get the best shot.

It also means having one or more pro photographer guides along who can give you professional advice and instruction, as well as fun, creative, and technical support. And of course, you’ll be traveling with a group of like-minded photographers, which creates camaraderie and new friendships.

Also, a dedicated photo tour lets you get close enough to wildlife for great photo opportunities—and to do it safely. Photo tour guides have experience with potentially dangerous animals to handle any situation.

In short, a photo tour offers much higher value to people who want the focus of their trip to be about photography. Tourists take snapshots, but if you want to capture great photos that you can be proud of, this is how you do it.

Who Offers Photo Tours

A number of out-of-state companies do photo tours in Alaska, but we recommend one that’s based here. Nothing beats local knowledge and experience for helping you find the best spots at the best times.

Jeff Schultz Photography

Jeff Schultz is a 40+ year Alaska Professional Photographer and Official Photographer of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. He offers a number of multi-day photo tours and workshops each year, as well as custom, private photo tours. Jeff gets high marks on client reviews for being most personable and taking his client’s photo knowledge to the next level. Learn more about Jeff Schultz Photography.

Alaska Photo Treks

This is an Anchorage-based company that offers a variety of tours and workshops year-round, including a four-hour evening Sunset Photo Safari, and several multi-day workshops. They can even put together an itinerary customized to your particular interests. The two professional photographer guides who make up the company have more than 50 years of combined experience shooting in Alaska.

Michael DeYoung Custom Photography Tours

For over 30 years Michael has photographed for a wide variety of tourism, commercial and editorial clients with hundreds of publication credits. And now he’s sharing both his knowledge of the state’s most beautiful places and his secrets for capturing incredible images. Everyone from beginners to experts can join a scheduled tour or book a custom, multi-day photography trip. As a longtime Alaskan, Michael knows the best spots to go. And he can carefully craft custom trips to take you to the most magical areas. His specialty is landscape, wildlife and adventure-travel based trips around Southcentral Alaska—places like Chugach and Denali State parks, and the region’s accessible glaciers.

Where the Tours Go

Photo tours visit a wide variety of places. You may want to shoot landscapes, glacier, and aerial photography in Denali National Park, around Anchorage and the Chugach Mountains, and in the Wrangell St. Elias Range. You’ll find Northern Lights photography workshops in Fairbanks and the Interior. Wildlife photographers can take tours to see brown bears in Lake Clark, Katmai, and Wrangell; birds in Southcentral Alaska; and polar bears in Nome and on the Arctic coast. There are even Iditarod photo tours that follow the dog sleds along the course. And if you’re on a cruise ship, no problem: most have one-day shore excursions focused on photography.


Workshops vary from single day to weekend to weeklong excursions in remote locations. Some focus on a single area for a number of days, while others allow you the chance to visit and photograph a variety of locations over the course of a few days or a week.

Many trips run in and out of Anchorage, which makes it possible to “add on” a photo tour or workshop to the beginning or end of your trip and combine it with another tour. Most tour operator itineraries allow for at least one or two extra days between when you fly in and out of the state, so if you’re already signed up for another tour, you may consider a one- or two-day photo workshop to brush up on your skills before heading out on the longer tour.

Show Map

Photography Tours

Multi-Day Tours

Season: March 16 - 22
Single: $4,695; Double*: $3,795 each
7 Days / 7 Nights
Visits: Anchorage, Fairbanks, Delta Junction
Land Package Type: Photography Tours
Season: Sep 14 to Sep 17 $7,850 per person 3 nights / 4 days

Stay at a lux­u­ry lodge near the Kodi­ak Nation­al Wildlife Refuge and spend each day view­ing Kodi­ak Brown Bears with your pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­ph­er guides. And you’ll be there for the famous Fat Bear Week, when bears are fat­tened up from hav­ing gorged on salmon all summer.

Season: Sep. 15 - 22 
8 Day / 7 Nights
Visits: Anchorage, Talkeetna, Palmer
Land Package Type: Photography Tours

This fall pho­tog­ra­phy trip offers some of the best pho­to oppor­tu­ni­ties in Alas­ka as the sea­sons change. Head to Lake Clark Nation­al Park for griz­zly bears, turquoise-col­ored lakes, snow­capped moun­tains and the bright gold col­ors of fall. You’ll also spend a half day pho­tograph­ing moose, and a heli­copter flight to an ice­berg-filled glacial lake only acces­si­ble by air. Fall can also be a won­der­ful time to pho­to­graph the auro­ra bore­alis, weather  ...more

Season: June -  September $6,252+ 6 nights

Immerse your­self in a mul­ti-day Alaskan adven­ture that promis­es incred­i­ble views and jaw-drop­ping bear view­ing in Kat­mai Nation­al Park, along with a warm cama­raderie that only a small group expe­di­tion can cre­ate. Explore from your home base on the Island C, a research ves­sel that gets you close to the action while pro­vid­ing com­fort­able lodg­ing and deli­cious meals.

Season: June – October Custom, call or email to discuss your trip

Every­one from begin­ners to experts can book a cus­tom, mul­ti-day pho­tog­ra­phy trip in Alas­ka. As a long­time Alaskan, Michael knows the best spots to go. And he can care­ful­ly craft cus­tom trips to take you to the most mag­i­cal areas. His spe­cial­ty is land­scape, wildlife and adven­ture-trav­el based trips around South­cen­tral Alas­ka — places like Chugach and Denali State parks, and the region’s acces­si­ble glaciers.

Season: Sep 01 to Sep 05 $3,450 per person 3 nights / 4 days

Try some­thing new for fall foliage sea­son this year: Take a pho­to work­shop amid the stun­ning col­ors of Alas­ka! You’ll trav­el to a remote lodge in the Tal­keet­na Moun­tains, south­east of Denali Nation­al Park, via float­plane or heli­copter from Tal­keet­na. Stay in cozy, rus­tic cab­ins and enjoy excur­sions each day with your pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­ph­er guides search­ing for bears or cari­bou roam­ing the tun­dra. You may even get views of Mt. Denali!

Season: Year Round
Inqure for rates
Land Package Type: Photography Tours

Award-win­ning Alas­ka-based pho­tog­ra­ph­er Jeff Schultz can take you to stun­ning Alas­ka loca­tions to cre­ate your dream images of Alaskan land­scapes & wildlife. Whether you want to make pho­tos in clas­sic Alas­ka loca­tions or in places that the aver­age trav­el­er will nev­er see, based on decades of liv­ing, trav­el­ing and pho­tograph­ing all over Alas­ka, Jeff can cre­ate a cus­tom pho­to trip that will meet all your wants and desires.

Season: Sep 18 to Sep 23 $6000 per person 5 nights / 6 days

On this six-day, all-inclu­sive sum­mer­time expe­di­tion, you’ll head to gor­geous Kodi­ak Island with Dan M Lee and Jes­si­cal Hay­dahl, two pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­phers spe­cial­iz­ing in Alas­ka. Your small group tour includes two brown bear view­ing fly-outs and a marine wildlife tour. You’ll come away not only with bet­ter tech­ni­cal skills, but you’ll also learn how to think out­side the box in order to cap­ture the sto­ry behind the image, and how to document  ...more

Season: Jul 20 to Jul 24 $5,650 per person 4 nights / 5 days

The Ayaku­lik Riv­er area is remote Alas­ka at its best — a fly-in-only area of West­ern Alas­ka with abun­dant wildlife and some of the most beau­ti­ful scenery in the state. Dur­ing this work­shop with pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­phers, you’ll cap­ture stun­ning shots and expe­ri­ence off-the-grid river­front camping

Season: Year Round
Land Package Type: Photography Tours

Don’t just expe­ri­ence the beau­ty of Alas­ka — learn how best to cap­ture it on your cam­era. Trav­el with award-win­ning pho­tog­ra­ph­er Jeff Schultz and you’ll get per­son­al­ized, hands-on instruc­tion as you take in the state’s mag­nif­i­cent sights. Choose from cus­tom tours or small group tours with a max­i­mum of 6 par­tic­i­pants that depart through­out the year and include accom­mo­da­tions, trans­porta­tion, and meals.


Day Tours

Season: Year Round $189

Join Alas­ka Pho­to Treks as they go hunt­ing for the best light of the day, which dur­ing sum­mer at this lat­i­tude can last for sev­er­al glo­ri­ous hours before sun­set. You’ll be trans­port­ed to scenic loca­tions around South­cen­tral Alas­ka to shoot a vari­ety of enchant­i­ng sub­jects. The itin­er­ary is flex­i­ble and allows for spon­ta­neous stops to pho­to­graph wildlife en route. 

Season: May - September $99+ 2.5 - 6.5 hrs

With bald eagles, bears, and gor­geous scenery, as well as fas­ci­nat­ing cul­ture and his­to­ry, these tours out of Skag­way and Haines offer an up-close expe­ri­ence with insights from knowl­edge­able local guides. There are sev­er­al options, includ­ing wildlife and nature tours that focus­es on find­ing and learn­ing about wildlife, a pho­tog­ra­phy tour where you get the chance to enhance your pho­tog­ra­phy skills, raft­ing, and some fun sight­see­ing tours  ...more

$995 per person 8-10 hours

The 7- to 9‑hour tour out of Anchor­age’s Lake Hood is led by a pho­tog­ra­ph­er-pilot whom has pub­lished pho­tos in such mag­a­zines as Air and Space, Stearns and Nation­al Geo­graph­ic. Set up for the best shots, every pas­sen­ger gets a win­dow seat and a two-way head­set for pilot nar­ra­tion — you’ll have a stun­ning ride filled with pho­to ops of rugged moun­tains, glacial pools and ice blue glac­i­ers. Then, you’ll land on a remote water­way to take pho­tos on the  ...more

Season: Aug 17 - April 24 $269+ 6 hours

Pho­to­graph alpen­glow on snow capped moun­tains, frosty scenes glow­ing in rich win­ter light, wildlife wan­der­ing snowy paths, city lights reflect­ing on the water at twi­light, and pos­si­bly even the north­ern lights!