The Ultimate Guide to Exploring Alaska’s National Parks: Part One – Kenai, Lake Clark, and Katmai

Welcome to AVIS Alaska’s ultimate guide to exploring Alaska’s breathtaking national parks! In this first part, we’ll focus on an incredible trip that combines three remarkable parks: Kenai, Lake Clark, and Katmai. While it may be tempting to visit all the parks, we understand the logistics and vastness of Alaska can make it challenging. So, let’s dive into the beauty and adventure awaiting you in these extraordinary destinations.

Kenai National Park

On the stunning Kenai Peninsula, Kenai National Park offers diverse landscapes, from towering mountains to pristine coastlines. Outdoor enthusiasts will be in paradise here. Hiking, fishing, and wildlife viewing are popular activities. Take the chance to visit Exit Glacier, where you can witness the power of glacial movement up close. Keep your camera ready for encounters with black bears, moose, and eagles.

Lake Clark National Park

Nestled between the Alaska Range and the Cook Inlet, Lake Clark National Park showcases the wild beauty of Alaska. This park is a photographer’s dream with its turquoise lakes, snow-capped mountains, and vast tundra. Explore the vibrant ecosystems and watch for brown bears, wolves, and caribou. Remember to visit the iconic Redoubt Volcano for a breathtaking backdrop.

Katmai National Park

Prepare for an unforgettable adventure in Katmai National Park, renowned for its spectacular bear viewing opportunities. Witness the awe-inspiring sight of grizzly bears feasting on salmon at Brooks Falls. You’ll feel a deep connection with the untamed wilderness as you capture this iconic moment. Additionally, Katmai offers incredible fishing, stunning landscapes, and the chance to explore the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, a volcanic wonderland.

Tips for Planning Your Trip


With the vastness of Alaska, it’s crucial to focus on a few parks at a time. Combining Kenai, Lake Clark, and Katmai in one trip allows you to experience diverse landscapes and wildlife encounters.


Plan and be prepared for the remote nature of these parks. Private planes or boats are often necessary for transportation. While costs can add up, consider booking as a larger group to share expenses. For Katmai, flying into King Salmon and taking a boat to Brooks can help minimize costs.

Embrace the Experience

While squeezing in as much as possible may be tempting, avoid cramming too many activities into your itinerary. Allow yourself time to immerse in the beauty of each park, savoring the incredible views and moments with wildlife.

In conclusion, the combination of Kenai, Lake Clark, and Katmai National Parks offers an awe-inspiring adventure showcasing Alaska’s true essence. From breathtaking landscapes to remarkable wildlife encounters, these parks will leave you with unforgettable memories. Remember to plan strategically, embrace the logistics, and fully embrace each park’s unique experiences. Stay tuned for our following guide, where we’ll explore Denali and Wrangell St Elias. AVIS Alaska is here to assist you in making the most of your Alaskan national park adventure.