Encounter killer whales, bears and playful sea otters on this journey into Alaska’s icy, but beautiful, heart. From Anchorage to Homer, journey past boreal forests, around mountain ranges and into the spectacular Resurrection Bay. Stroll along the remote beaches of Homer and count puffins nesting in the rugged cliffs. Kayak past icebergs in Seward and experience the majestic calm of this vast wilderness.
Day 1: Anchorage
Welcome to Alaska! This is an arrival day, and there is nothing planned until a welcome meeting in the hotel lobby at 6pm tonight. If you’re going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We’ll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader. Located in south-central Alaska on the shores of Cook Inlet, Anchorage is a unique urban environment situated in the heart of the wilderness. As there’s no time spent in Anchorage on this trip we recommend you arrive a few days early to see the sights. If you need help booking extra accommodation, our reservations team will be able to assist (subject to availability).
Day 2: Homer
Depart Anchorage and take a scenic drive along the Turnagain Arm and the National Forest Scenic Byway on your way to Homer. This route is considered one of the most scenic drives in the world. Homer will be your gateway to the Kenai Peninsula. Keep an eye on the water because today you might snatch a glimpse of beluga whales.
Notes: The drive covers 380 kilometres and takes approximately 5.5 hours.
Day 3: Homer
Make the most of a free day in Homer. Perhaps explore the area by kayak and watch sea otters, or visit the beautiful rock arches, cliffs and remote beaches surrounding the city. Homer is a good place for animal watching, with bald eagles, puffins and moose plentiful in the area. Some of the activities around Homer are expensive, but they are once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. The Kachemak Bay Adventure included sea kayaking, a tour of the old Russian settlement of Seldovia, and a flight over the bay. The Bear Viewing Flight can sometimes sell out, but if you can afford it, the feedback from previous travellers to this area is that it is a highlight.
Day 4: Seward
Journey to the coastal town of Seward and the surrounding Kenai Fjords National Park (approximately 4 hours; 125 kilometres). Seward is one of Alaska’s oldest towns, as well as one of the most scenic. The town itself boasts galleries, boutique shops and a bustling harbour, but it’s perhaps best known as a gateway to exploring Kenai Fjords National Park. On arrival, jump into a water taxi across to Resurrection Bay, where you will spend the next two nights staying in a hostel. This accommodation is so remote it can only be accessed by kayak or water taxi.
Day 5: Seward
Enjoy a free day to explore the stunning Kenai Fjords National Park and Resurrection Bay. Head out among the fjords and glaciers, keeping an eye out for humpback and killer whales, sea otters, harbour seals, sea lions, and puffins. In the evening, enjoy your last night here before heading to Anchorage in the morning.
Day 6: Anchorage
Return to Anchorage via the Turnagain Arm (approximately 2.5 hours; 200 kilometres). There will be time to explore some of this Arctic wonderland, with its numerous lakes, glaciers and fascinating coastline. The area is also famous for its many anglers, who follow the salmon on their annual migration up the peninsula’s many wide rivers. This trip finishes on arrival in Anchorage at approximately 5pm. For those wishing to stay on in Anchorage, please speak to our reservations team who can assist in booking extra nights of accommodation.
Quench your wanderlust while sating an appetite for adventure on this active trip through one of the world’s greenest countries. Paddle down the Pacuare River by raft for a night in a rainforest eco lodge. Snorkel in the company of turtles, barracuda and reef sharks in Cahuita National Park. Cycle along the Caribbean coastline to the mellow beach refuge of Puerto Viejo and paddle through the waterways of Tortuguero National Park in search of monkeys, toucans and jaguars. Costa Rica is a country where adventure-seekers thrive.
Day 1: San Jose
Hola! Welcome to Costa Rica! Your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6pm on Day 1. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can’t arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you’re able to attend. We’ll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you’re going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We’ll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
With over half the country’s population living within its parameters, San Jose is a bustling city with lively markets, intriguing museums and a dynamic atmosphere. A good place to start exploring is the main plaza, a fantastic place to get comfy and do some people watching. Artisan booths are common here and you never know when there’ll be a spontaneous art fair. Have a look at the Gold Museum which has an amazing collection of indigenous gold art. If these cultural gems get you in the mood for a bit of shopping head to the out door market in Plaza de la Cultura or the Central Market where you can buy anything from handicrafts to seafood.
Day 2: Rafting Pacuare/Rio Tropicales Lodge
Transfer to Pacuare River. From here you’ll hit the rapids of the Pacuare River by raft all the way to your rainforest lodge. The next two days involve some incredible white water rafting down the Pacuare River. This river has been rated as one of the ten top best rivers around the world; not only for its rapids, but also its pristine rainforest surrounds and waterfalls. On arrival at tonight’s eco-lodge accommodation you’ll have time to either chill out or take a self-guided walk along garden trails.
Day 3: Puerto Viejo
Hit the river again as you leave the lodge by raft for more unforgettable white water, and maybe some wildelife-spotting along the way. You’ll ride the Class 3 and 4 rapids four around 2 hours, or 14 kilometres. Afterwards, travel by local bus (approximately 1.5 hours) to Puerto Viejo for a taste of Caribbean seaside: reggae bars and palm-fringed beaches.
Day 4: Puerto Viejo
Visit Cahuita National Park, a protected area that encompasses both rainforest and 600 acres of coral reef. One of the first national parks to have been established in Costa Rica, these days Cahuita is managed by members of its nearby local community. Monkeys, reptiles, toucans and macaws can often be spotted in the park’s jungle, while its waters are home to turtles, barracudas, sea urchins and more than 125 species of fish. See which critters you can spy during a this 2.5 hour tour that goes to two different parts of the park and factors in some time for snorkelling.
Day 5: Tortuguero National Park
Transfer back to Limon and travel by boat to Tortuguero National Park (approximately 3-4 hours depending on the water level).
Day 6: Tortuguero National Park
Accessible only by plane or boat, Tortuguero National Park is regarded as one of the best places in Costa Rica for spotting wildlife. With this in mind, hop into kayaks and set out on a two-hour journey through the park’s canals in search of monkeys, sloths, caiman, jaguars, lizards, bats and a gamut of birdlife. Along the way, learn from a local tour leader about how the jungle’s islets, lagoons, wetlands and palm forests functions as an ecosystem.
Day 7: San Jose
Travel by boat to La Pavona (1.5-2 hours depending on water level) and continue by road to San Jose (approximately 3.5 hours). Perhaps head out for a final group dinner and become acquainted with the city’s buzzing nigh scene.
Day 8: San Jose
Your tour comes to an end this morning after breakfast.
It may only be the USA’s thirteenth largest state, but Utah packs more into its 200,000 square kilometres than most countries, let alone states, could ever dream of. Beginning in Las Vegas, Nevada, leave Utah’s noisy neighbour behind to discover the hidden gardens of Zion, the spindly spires of Bryce Canyon, the inspired desert scenery of Moab and the Arches National Park and the iconic Monument Valley – a setting that has set the benchmark for any postcard of the American West. So if you’re keen to get into the heart of this giant continent and explore some of the places that make it so unique, this Utah Parks Circuit is a very good way to start!
Day 1: Las Vegas
Welcome to the USA! Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting in the hotel lobby at 6 pm today. If you can’t arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you’re able to attend. We’ll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you’re going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We’ll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
If you arrive early into the desert city of Las Vegas, there’s plenty to see and do, even if gambling isn’t your thing. Hit the shops, feel your stomach drop on a rooftop roller coaster or simply stroll along the Strip, soaking up the glitz and gaudiness. In the evening, perhaps feast on an ‘all you can eat’ buffet, check out one of the many shows on offer or party the night away in a Vegas nightclub.
Day 2: Zion National Park
Today leave Nevada and drive for around three hours to Zion National Park. The park is home to stunning desert landscapes, sculpted rock formations, waterfalls and hanging gardens. There will be plenty of time on arrival to stretch your legs and have a good look around the park. Go for a hike in Zion Canyon, or if you are feeling adventurous (and aren’t afraid of heights) tackle the famous Angel’s Landing Trail. In the evening, set up camp for the night.
Day 3: Bryce Canyon National Park
Drive for around two-and-a-half hours to Bryce Canyon. The canyon is famous for its ‘hoodoos’ – odd-shaped rock spires formed by centuries of erosion. You will have ample time to explore the park’s extensive network of hiking trails, from the easy Rim Trail, to the moderate Queen’s Garden Trail or the strenuous Peek-a-boo Loop. Wherever you walk, you’ll encounter unique landscapes and a kaleidoscope of desert colours.
Day 4: Moab
Continue on your journey this morning through the impressive Utah landscape. Depending on time and the group’s interest, perhaps make a stop at Capitol Reef National Park (additional cost) before heading to Moab. Close to the incredible Canyonlands and Arches National Parks, Moab is a small city in Utah that attracts hikers, mountain bikers and nature enthusiasts. Arches National Park is punctuated with spectacularly eroded sandstone formations, and contains the world’s largest concentration of natural stone arches. Take a hike out to see famous sights such as Delicate Arch and Landscape Arch. The total driving time today is approximately five-and-a-half hours.
Day 5: Moab
On your second day in Moab, discover the red plateaus, cliffs and canyons of nearby Deadhorse Point State Park. Enjoy incredible views from Deadhorse Point. 610 metres (2,000 feet) above the ground, cowboys used to the point to round up wild mustangs in the 19th century. You might like to take an optional float down the Colorado River, or even hire a mountain bike to explore the area.
Day 6: Monument Valley
Today drive through southern Utah to Monument Valley. Monument Valley is so-named for the giant sandstone formations scattered across the desert. The backdrop for countless westerns, the valley is part of the biggest Indian reservation in the US and home to more than 200,000 Navajo Indians. Head out on a guided jeep tour of the valley. Get your camera out and snap some photos of the spectacular landscape, which changes colour with the movement of the sun. Spend the night in a hogan, a traditional Navajo hut made of logs and earth. Total driving time today is approximately three hours.
Day 7: Lake Powell
Drive through the unspoiled landscapes of the northern Arizona desert plateau to Lake Powell in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. This enormous manmade lake was created from the building of the Glen Canyon Dam along the Colorado River. Explore hidden coves and canyons, take a dip in the fresh water or laze on the lake’s sunny shores. You could even paddle around in a kayak. Total driving time today is around three-and-a-half hours.
Day 8: Las Vegas
Today drive across the border into Nevada and back to Las Vegas. The drive should take around five hours in total. Las Vegas may be the gambling capital of the world, but there’s plenty to do if gambling isn’t your thing. Hit the shops, feel your stomach drop on a rooftop roller coaster or simply stroll along the Strip, soaking up the glitz and gaudiness.
The trip finishes on arrival into Las Vegas and no accommodation is provided tonight. The arrival time depends on each group, but if you decide to fly out on this day, please don’t book a flight before 8pm. This will give you enough time to catch a shuttle from the hotel to the airport and be there two hours before departure. If you are staying in town for the evening, perhaps feast on an ‘all you can eat’ buffet, check out one of the many shows on offer or party the night away in a Vegas nightclub. If you do wish to spend extra time in Las Vegas we’ll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).