Moose, Wonder Lake, Denali National Park, Alaska, USA

Alaskan Wildlife & Wilderness Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Private Group Adventures
Destinations:
USA, Alaska, North America
Programmes:
Culture
Trip Code:
PAW
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Leisurely / Moderate

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

14 Days Land only
Ages: 16+

Trip Overview

This all-encompassing Alaska wilderness tour definitely delivers the 'wow factor'! This is the ultimate Alaskan wildlife adventure complete with float plane flights, bear viewing, wildlife cruises and wilderness walks. Alaska contains glaciers, forests, lakes and rushing rivers as well as some of the most beautiful hikes on the continent. The wildlife is legendary, thriving both in the sea and on land. With Alaska being one of the last bastions of true wilderness, it's the perfect place to see animals in their natural habitat. Visit the vast expanse of peaks and glaciers in Wrangell-St Elias and Denali National Park, where you'll hike in the shadow of the highest peak in North America, Mount Denali. Enjoy excellent opportunities to see marine life in Kenai Fjords National Park and take a float plane into the wilderness to search for Black and Grizzly Bears on this once in a lifetime wildlife holiday.

At a Glance

  • 11 nights participatory camping, 1 night rustic lodge, 1 night hotel
  • 2 daywalks, and up to 8 shorter walks
  • Group normally 6 to 13, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs

Trip Highlights

  • Wilderness float plane trip to search for bears and opportunity to witness the salmon run
  • Full day wildlife cruise in Kenai Fjords National Park with salmon or prime rib lunch
  • Two full days exploring Denali National Park with bus pass
  • Hike around the ranges of Wrangell-St Elias National Park
  • Visit the magnificent Worthington Glacier

Is This Trip for You?

This tour has been graded Leisurely/Moderate. 
It is an active and varied trip, suitable for people of all levels of fitness. You will be able to choose from a whole range of optional activities. Walks, hikes and activities cater to everyone from beginner to expert, ranging in difficulty from easy to strenuous.

Your tour leader will organise the optional activities on your behalf and you will pay locally in cash. You’ll find the main optional activities listed under each itinerary day description, along with guideline prices which although correct at the time of publication, can fluctuate throughout the season. It may not be possible to do all optional activities listed on each tour.

Although each tour follows an itinerary, there is a certain amount of flexibility and from time to time your tour leader may suggest changes. This may be due to road conditions, weather or a visit to a special attraction or event that happens to be in progress. Flexibility is key and often a side diversion will be a highlight of the tour. Hikes and optional activities cannot be guaranteed and may vary depending on ability, group interest, local weather conditions and time of year.

All travellers over the age of 70 will be requested to complete a self-declaration of fitness form prior to travel. Our tours are a unique holiday experience and much of your enjoyment will come from the team spirit of your group and the fun you’ll have together, as well as from the local setting. We cannot stress strongly enough the importance of bringing a positive attitude with you on tour; a sure guarantee to enjoying each and every moment, even in the adversity of the odd rainstorm!

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

Your tour leader will take care of all the planning and organisation throughout your tour, they will drive the van taking you from A to B and make sure everything runs smoothly. Your tour leader is there to make sure you get the most out of your tour; organising activities, providing information and answering any questions you may have as well as sorting out any queries or problems. If you have any particular interests or things you would like to do on your tour, then please let your tour leader know at the beginning of the tour and they will do their best to help you.

We would like to note that US Law regulates the total number of hours your group leader is available to work. Tours are designed to make the most of your time in the States, but please understand that there will be certain times each day that your leader will need to be off duty from work in order to rest and recuperate. Due to these restrictions, particularly after the longer driving days, your leader may not be able to join you for some of the daily activities or may need to tend to other work duties.

Adult min age:
16
Min group size:
6
Max group size:
13

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
Anchorage
End City:
Anchorage

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Anchorage.

    Welcome to Anchorage, the largest city in Alaska with only 300,000 people and a city which has undergone quite a change since the earthquake of 1964. Now a bustling city fuelled by the oil boom and tourism, it wasn’t that long ago that Anchorage was the last outpost before heading into the ‘Last Frontier’, this is a city mixed with metropolitan luxuries and unrivalled natural wonders. It’s not uncommon to find bear roaming the outskirts of the city, this is one truly wild place. A great way to spend your day is to wander around town getting a feel for the 49th state, speaking to the locals and checking out some of the great cafes and restaurants. A welcome meeting will be held at 18:00 hrs for you to meet your tour leader and fellow travelling companions.

    Optional Activities:
    • Alaska Native Heritage Center US$25
    • Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center US$15
    • Tony Knowles Coastal Trail US$free
    • Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum US$10

    Accommodation: Ramada Anchorage (or similar)

  • Day 2

    To Denali N.P. via Talkeetna

    Leaving Anchorage, you enter the wilderness pretty much instantly and make your way towards Talkeetna where you stop for the opportunity to try a local delicacy, reindeer sausage, before arriving in Denali National Park. Home to the highest mountain in North America, legendary Mount Denali (6,194m), the park covers six million acres and houses some of the most unspoiled wilderness and spectacular scenery in the whole of Alaska.

    Optional Activities:
    • Denali scenic flight US$524
    • Dogsled demonstration in Denali US$free
    • Mountain biking in Denali, US$20-$57
    • Whitewater rafting in Denali US$92-$187

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 3

    Optional activities in Denali N.P.

    Enjoy two full days exploring the park with an included bus pass - the only way to get out into the incredible (and vast) wilderness. Try to spot Alaska's 'Big Five'; Caribou, Dall Sheep, moose, Grizzly Bear and wolves. Denali is one of the only national parks where you are encouraged to find your own path off the trails, great for those of you looking for pure unadulterated adventure. There are plenty of optional walks and activities in Denali or you can take to the skies on a scenic (and highly recommended) glacier landing helicopter flight. As the trails are wild and unmarked, the hiking opportunities are endless. Your tour leader will suggest some local spots of scenic beauty and the best spots to view wildlife.

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 4

    Another day of optional activities in Denali N.P.

    Today we get to discover more of Denali National Park and its vast wilderness, exploring the many optional walks in this spectacular location.

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
  • Day 5

    To the Alaska Range

    Head into the heart of the Alaska Range to spend the night at Clearwater Lodge. With spectacular views of the surrounding valley this rustic lodge provides the ideal setting for an authentic Alaskan experience. Although rooms have shared bathrooms, its remote location is something to savour with the chance to look out for grazing caribou near the quiet lakes of the tundra. This is also a birder's paradise with many species often sighted.

    Accommodation: Clearwater Lodge (or similar) - shared bathrooms

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
  • Day 6

    To Wrangell-St Elias N.P.

    The scenery keeps on coming thick and fast and today is no different. Drive through the dramatic Copper River Valley and stop for a short walk on the Liberty Falls Trail, just off the Edgerton Highway en route to the small town of McCarthy (population 40 in the summer, 17 the remainder of the year). This quaint settlement at the centre of a mass of mountains, glaciers and wilderness will be your base to explore Wrangell-St Elias for the next two nights. Wrangell-St Elias National Park and Preserve contains nine of the sixteen highest peaks in the United States, including the second highest, Mount. St. Elias (5,488m), and is the most glaciated region in the North American continent.

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 7

    Wrangall-St Elias National Park

    Today we'll have the chance to enjoy more of the optional activities available in Wrangell-St Elias. This imposing area of glaciers, mountains, forest and wilderness has wonderful wildlife viewing opportunities - Dall Sheep, mountain goats, caribou, moose, Grizzly and Black Bear are just some of the parks inhabitants. 

    Optional Activities:
    • Ghost Town tour - Kennecott Copper Mill US$28
    • Scenic flight US$120-$270

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Days 8-9

    To Valdez; via the Worthington Glacier and Thomson Pass in the Chugach Range.

    Your journey continues towards Valdez, passing through the Chugach Range. On the rivers, fish wheels have been built to catch salmon migrating upstream to spawn. Stop at the famous Worthington Glacier, adjacent to the Thompson Pass for a short walk. Explore the busy seaside town of Valdez, a return to civilisation after the mountainous isolation of McCarthy. Valdez is a new town, as a major earthquake destroyed the old one in 1964. There are various hiking trails in and around Valdez such as the Mineral Creek Trail or the Keystone Canyon Pack Trail. You can also visit the historical museum to learn about the native culture, gold rush history and the famous pipeline. Why not opt for a sea kayaking excursion to get up close and personal to the glacier? On Day 9, the day is left free to discover this fascinating area. 

    Optional Activities:
    • Valdez Sea Kayaking US$259

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 10

    Ferry to Seward.

    Board the Alaska state ferry, leaving Valdez behind and crossing Prince William Sound to reach Whittier. The views of the mountains, bays, fjords and glaciers are unforgettable and the water is home to a unique array of marine life, Harbour Seals and sea lions. On arrival, explore the small fishing town of Seward. In its past life, Seward was a railroad port which means there is now plenty of great shopping and a picturesque old-time downtown area.

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 11

    Full day wildlife cruise around Resurrection and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge

    Set off on a full day wildlife viewing cruise around Resurrection Bay and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. To maximise your experience on board your guide will give a detailed commentary on the wildlife you see and the local area. On previous trips, travellers have spotted sea lions, otters, Dall's Porpoise and an endless variety of seabirds including puffins and eagles. Orcas are often spotted and if you're lucky, Humpback Whales can also be seen! Enjoy an included fresh salmon and prime rib lunch on board (vegetarian options available).

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
  • Day 12

    Walk the Harding Icefield Trail to Exit Glacier.

    The staggeringly beautiful Kenai Fjords National Park offers wonderful wildlife and bird watching opportunities amidst dramatic fjords and glaciers. Within the park is the huge Harding Icefield, claiming 300 square miles in its entirety. If weather conditions permit, take a spectacular walk from Exit Glacier to the Harding Icefield for views of deep crevasses and huge seracs. At an elevation of 900m you will eventually reach a lookout point over the icefield and the views will be out of this world. The walk is strenuous and entirely dependent on weather conditions; if there is too much snow and ice on the trail, it may be impassable. There's an easier option available if you prefer, using an accessible trail to reach a different viewpoint of the glacier. For those who want to explore Seward a little more, the impressive Alaska SeaLife Center, which houses a remarkable public aquarium and ocean wildlife rescue centre, is a fun place to visit.

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 13

    Float plane flight for bear observation at Big River Lakes.

    Head to Soldotna, your launch site for the bear float plane activity. Float planes are a way of life for many of the more remote Alaskan communities, particularly those who still have no road access and too little space amongst the mountains to build runways. Float planes generally seat a maximum of 10 people and you'll take to the air for a beautiful flight across the Cook Inlet. Land in the Big River Lakes area and transfer to the waiting boats to explore the river and lake system keeping your eyes open for bear. The lakes are just on the fringe of the Lake Clark Park and Wilderness Reserve but a long way from any roads and civilisation and the chance of bear sightings is excellent; you can usually see Brown (Grizzly) or Black Bear here. You may see thousands of salmon pushing upstream to spawn and if you're lucky, you'll see bear catching and feeding upon them. This is Alaska at its best, almost completely untouched wilderness with a backdrop of ice-clad mountains and active volcanoes.

    Optional Activities:
    • Fishing with licence US$50

    Participatory Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 14

    Walk at Alyeska; to Anchorage; end.

    After breakfast and packing up camp, you'll drive for a couple of hours to Alyeska in the Chugach Mountain Range which is ideal for a final wilderness walk before returning to the state's capital, Anchorage. Containing around half the population of the state, Anchorage in some ways looks just like any other sprawling American town and after nearly two weeks in the small towns and villages the bustling streets of the city will feel somewhat different. Explore the art galleries and craft shops where you can see the beautiful Eskimo handicrafts being made.

    This tour ends at our gateway hotel in Anchorage at approximately 17:00 hrs. We can book your post-tour accommodation if required. If you are planning to fly tonight, please do not book a flight that departs before 21:00 hrs. People booking Flight Inclusive with Exodus will have an extra night in the hotel and depart tomorrow.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch

Accommodation

Participatory Camping & Multi-Share Cabin

Our US camping tours use national and state park campsites and also a wide assortment of private campgrounds. Most will have flush toilets and hot showers. Please note your campsite in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is more basic in nature without showers and has a long drop toilet. The campsite in Seward charges an additional fee of $1-$3 for showers. The Denali campground offers close proximity to the park, but is close to the highway so can be quite noisy. If you are a light sleeper, it is recommended you take earplugs. You will sleep in high quality, heavy-duty tents which single travellers share with one other passenger of the same sex. Our camping equipment also includes field kitchens, inflatable sleeping pads, food storage and camp lanterns. Most campsites have a quiet time from 22:00 hrs to 07:00 hrs. Please respect your fellow campers who are there to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of camping.

CAMP DUTIES
An essential part of a camping tour is helping out with the day to day camp duties and every one will assist with the setting up and packing up of the campsite. Your Tour Leader will provide guidance on what to do, and typically it will only take 15 minutes to set up or break down the tents and camp kitchen. Before you know it you’ll be enjoying ‘home sweet home’ in the great outdoors. Your tour leader will also co-ordinate and assist the group with food shopping, preparing meals and cleaning up. Sharing the camp duties is a great way to bond with your fellow travellers and the group camaraderie is all part of the experience.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Accommodation - Pre trip

This tour begins and ends at a gateway hotel, which is conveniently located in the departure and arrival cities. We offer you the option to book additional hotel nights before or after your tour however, they should be booked prior to departure with our reservations team.

Please note some hotels may take a debit or credit card as a deposit at check in. They may also take an amount to cover incidentals. Funds can be held until check out at which time the amount actually incurred will be charged. Please clarify with the hotel when you check out that all deposits will be refunded as promptly as possible.

Single supplement from £325.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

13 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 10 dinners included

Your tour leader will coordinate local shopping and assist the group in preparing healthy, hearty breakfasts, picnic lunches and delicious dinners. Occasionally, you will eat out in local restaurants. To help you budget for these meals on average hotel breakfasts cost from US$6-$12, lunches from US$8-$15 and dinners from US$13-$30; this does not include alcoholic beverages. Wine costs approximately US$5 per glass and beer US$4 per bottle. Please be aware that a tip of approximately 17%-20% is added to group meals in North American restaurants. Applicable taxes will also be added to all listed menu prices. Please make sure we are aware of any special meal requirements before travelling. We will do all we can to accommodate for various dietary requirements but in certain parts of Alaska, specific food types can be limited.

Transportation

All transportation by private vehicle, floatplane, ferry and cruise.

You’ll travel in a private 15-Seater Ford vehicle which is driven by your tour leader. All luggage, equipment, and other necessities are stored in a specially designed trailer or storage area to maximise space and comfort in the vehicle. The size of our vehicles allows us to reach more remote destinations not accessible to larger vehicles. All our vehicles are equipped with CD stereo systems (often iPod compatible) with air conditioning.

Weather & Seasonality

When to go

Alaska has quite a pleasant climate in the summer, with generally sunny days and long, light evenings: in the far north the sun does not set at all in June! There are, however, great differences between the weather on the coast and in the interior. Average daytime temperatures will be around 16 to 18degC on the coast, a few degrees higher inland; however, temperatures in the high 20s are not unusual. Night time minimum temperatures are around 12degC, but a little colder inland and during June (occasionally as low as 0degC) and towards the end of August. June is typically drier than July and August, but on all departures you should be prepared for times of potentially heavy rain, particularly on the coast, where rainfall is higher than inland.

Weather Information

Alaska has quite a pleasant climate in the summer, with generally sunny days and long, light evenings: in the far north the sun does not set at all in June! There are, however, great differences between the weather on the coast and in the interior. Average daytime temperatures will be around 16ºC to 18ºC on the coast, a few degrees higher inland; however, temperatures in the high 20's are not unusual. Night time minimum temperatures are around 12ºC, but a little colder inland and during June (occasionally as low as 0ºC) and towards the end of August. June is typically drier than July and August, but on all departures you should be prepared for times of potentially heavy rain, particularly on the coast, where rainfall is higher than inland.

Weather Charts

Alaska - Anchorage weather map

Alaska - Anchorage weather map

Joining Instructions

You will need to make your own way to the joining hotel for your tour. 

You are free to arrive at any time on day one of your tour but please ensure you leave plenty of time to reach your joining hotel and attend your welcome meeting. Details on the time and specific location of your meeting will be available early on the arrival day. During this evening meeting you will meet your tour guide and fellow travellers and also spend a few minutes filling out necessary paperwork, so please bring your insurance documents, passport and tour documentation to the meeting.

ARRIVAL COMPLICATIONS

Sometimes the unexpected can happen; your plane may be delayed or you may even miss it! If you have missed your tour departure, first check with the hotel to see if your tour guide has left you a message. If not, call the relevant emergency number and speak to our staff who will be happy to help you catch up with the group. Please note that you are responsible for any extra travelling expenses incurred due to you missing your tour’s departure, so please be on time.

FINISHING POINT

ANCHORAGE - Ramada Anchorage
115 East 3rd Ave, Anchorage, AK

Your tour will end upon arrival at the above hotel, which will be around 17:00 hrs on the final day. Some tour activities scheduled for the last day may preclude an earlier arrival at the end point hotel, so you should not book a flight that leaves prior to 21:00 hrs. You will be responsible for any transportation costs if you have to arrive for an earlier flight and you must make us aware of this well in advance of your tour departing. If you require accommodation for the last night, it is essential that you book this before your tour departs.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier, please contact our office or your travel agent.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start:
Anchorage
Location end:
Anchorage

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Each passenger will be allowed one bag, backpack or suitcase (23kg maximum) plus a sleeping bag. A small daypack and camera may also be carried in our vehicle. Before you travel, please check the baggage allowance with the airline you’re flying with as this may be less than 23kg.

Please keep in mind that our dress tends to be informal. It is advised that you take a practical selection of clothes for both warm and cool climates to suit the season. Please see the temperature guide showing the highs and lows that can be expected in key locations that your tour visits. However please remember that this is just a guide and you may encounter a wide variety of temperatures en route due to altitude and unforeseen weather conditions - so it’s best to be prepared!
Besides your essential clothing, here’s a checklist of other items you should take:

• Waterproof jacket and trousers
• Warm sweater / fleece
• Sleeping bag (three to four season recommended)
• Sleeping bag liner
• Eye mask (for Summer month trips)
• Ear plugs
• Hiking shoes / boots / thick hiking socks
• Comfortable day shoes
• Sandals or flip-flops
• Warm hat / gloves
• Swim wear
• Sun hat / sunglasses
• Small day pack
• Dry bag
• Water bottle
• Camera / binoculars
• SD memory card / Spare camera batteries
• Small flashlight / head torch
• Sunscreen / insect repellent (50% DEET) - mosquitos can be bad
• Travel power adaptor
• Mosquito head net
• Toiletries / personal medicine
• Towel

Please note airlines have various rules on what can be carried in your luggage - if in doubt check with your airline before travelling.

FOOTWEAR
We recommend walking shoes/boots, as comfortable shoes with good ankle support will make all walking more enjoyable. If you do not own a pair, then sports trainers will suffice although this is a personal choice. If you intend to do some walking, it is recommended to bring thick walking socks for comfort.

CLOTHES WASHING
You will have the opportunity to wash your clothes whilst you are on tour, and this can often be done at the campsite or in town. Ask your tour leader for local information.

BATTERY CHARGING
Many of our travellers bring mobile phones, music devices and cameras that require frequent battery charging during a tour. When camping it is often difficult to find a safe and secure wall outlet to recharge these devices, therefore we recommend that you bring a car charger. Every vehicle has two outlets for your use, but please bear in mind that thirteen people travelling with multiple devices can mean very little charge time per person per day so it may be useful bringing extra batteries. When you are staying in hotels, your room will have an electrical outlet (just remember your international adaptor!). 

Moose, Wonder Lake, Denali National Park, Alaska, USA

Practical Information

Passport

USA

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

USA

British, New Zealand, Swiss and most EU passport holders do not need a visa (and enter the country under the Visa Waiver Program), provided they are in possession of an onward air ticket when entering the USA. Visas for the USA are required by some nationalities and it is always best to check with the relevant embassies. All passengers travelling to and from the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) are required to hold a machine-readable passport (MRP). A MRP has the holder's personal details, e.g. name, date of birth, nationality and their passport number contained in two lines of text at the base of the photo page. This text may be read by machine. The US now charges $14 for the visa waiver program and must be paid by credit card. The US authorities have introduced a mandatory requirement for all passengers travelling under the Visa Waiver Programme to register for an Electronic Travel Authority. As of 21 January 2016, any person who has travelled to Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia, or Yemen since March 2011, or have dual nationalities of these countries, may no longer qualify for the VWP. For additional specifics about the VWP please consult the VWP information on the U.S. Embassy London website. More information and all necessary Internet links can be found on our USA visas page.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

There are no specific health risks on this trip.

Vaccination

USA

There are no mandatory vaccinations required for this trip.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

We are advised that there is no risk of malaria on this trip.

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

USA's Timezone:
America/Los_Angeles PDT (GMT -07:00)

Electricity

USA's Electricity:

120 Volts. Plug types A & B; establishments take two flat parallel pin plugs.

110 V twin pin US style sockets are widely available.

Money

USA's Currency

The national currency of USA is the Dollar (USD), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (June 2017) of approximately 1.3 to the GBP, 0.75 to the CAD, 1.12 to the EUR, 0.6 to the AUD and 0.57 to the NZD.

ATM Availability

ATM’s and cash machines are readily available throughout North America and major credit cards are widely accepted throughout the country. All ATMs in the USA charge to withdraw money (from $1-$5). In some off the beaten track destinations ATM’s and cash machines may be limited. Please ensure that your credit or debit cards have international access and a PIN number to access your funds at the start of the tour.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

We recommend you take at least US$30 dollars per day for any meals not included in the tour, drinks, snacks and other incidentals. You should also budget for expected tipping, as well as for the optional activities that you would like to do. 

We suggest you bring USD$150 with you in cash to have with at the beginning of your trip.

Tipping

Although it may not be customary in your country, it is normal and expected in North America to tip local guides, waiters, bar staff, taxi drivers and anyone who provides a service for you. Service workers are paid a low wage and depend on tips for their livelihood. It can be embarrassing for travellers when confronted by locals who expect a tip, so we have provided a tipping guide line below.

A 15-17% tip is standard in restaurants and you should also expect to tip $1 per drink in bars, $1-2 per bag for porters as will 10% for taxi drivers. It’s also typical to tip around 10% for local guides who provide optional activities.

Your tour leader will work long and hard for you during your tour and we recommend a discretionary tip of US$5-10 per passenger per day if your leader’s performance meets or exceeds your expectations.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

Important Notes

In line with our ‘book and travel with confidence’ promise which allows you to cancel free of charge up to 42 days prior to departure, or transfer to another trip free of charge up to 21 days prior to your trip starting in country, please be aware that this excludes ‘irrecoverable costs’. Details can be found here: https://www.exodus.co.uk/about-exodus/exodus-booking-conditions

For this trip the irrecoverable costs related to in-country operations are outlined below, if booking flight inclusive your sales agent will confirm the terms related to your international flights at the time of booking.

Accommodation £173 / US$213 / AU$298 / €185
Activities £650 / US$803 / AU$1124 / €699

Costs are accurate at time of writing in September 2021

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.