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As the winter season gains momentum, the Alaska Railroad (AKRR) is introducing additional midweek departures starting in mid-February. Alongside this expansion, they’re unveiling a new air, hotel, and rail package for those journeying to Fairbanks, complemented by three exciting winter tours operated by Salmon Berry Travel and Tours. All together, these are aimed at making the most of the peak in solar activity this year and next.
Dale Wade, VP of Marketing & Customer Service at the AKRR, expressed enthusiasm about the winter season’s prospects: “With the chance to chase the northern lights, more add-on excursions to pair with a train ride and midweek departures, travelers can explore Alaska in so many different ways with our customizable travel options.”
For guests venturing to Fairbanks, the Bridgewater Special offers a comprehensive experience. Beginning with a flight to Fairbanks, travelers can immerse themselves in the city’s charm and seek out the elusive northern lights by nightfall, staying overnight at the Bridgewater Hotel. The following day, they embark on the Aurora Winter Train for a scenic southbound journey to Anchorage. Peak season pricing will be in effect until April 5th, with discounted rates available from April 6th to May 5th.
From Anchorage, passengers can now enhance their journey aboard the Aurora Winter Train with three add-on tours after your train ride, offered in partnership with Salmon Berry Tours (which you know I love, and toured with most recently during my August 2023 trip).
- The Matanuska Glacier Tour offers guided exploration of one of Alaska’s most iconic natural wonders.
- The Wildlife Guided Tour focuses on Alaska’s unique fauna, including a stop at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center.
- The Turnagain Turn Tour combines an aerial tram ride, lunch in Girdwood, and a visit to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, providing ample photo opportunities along the way.
No matter which starting city and add-ons you choose, the onboard experience aboard the Aurora Winter Train is delightful. Along the ride, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the winter landscape through large picture windows. I rode it back in February 2020 and it’s still one of the experiences I most recommend if you’re visiting Alaska in the winter – now it’s just even better!