Denali Flightseeing: Booking Information, Costs & Tips

If you are planning a perfect trip to Alaska and wondering if you should include a Denali Flightseeing in your itinerary, my answer for you is: Please, do it! One of the best ways to experience the magical beauty of Denali National Park is on a flightseeing tour.

Denali National Park is one of the largest National Parks in the USA and it is named for the Denali, the tallest mountain in North America, at 20,310 feet (6,190 meters), with 6 million acres of a remote vast, and rugged wilderness area.

On a Denali flight tour, you have the chance to get close to the majestic mountain and see it right in front of your eyes. Plus, on some tours you will also have the chance to add a glacier landing, adding even more to your unforgettable experience. Taking a Denali flightseeing tour is one of the bucket list experiences in Alaska.

In this guide, you will find all the information you need to know to know, all the best Denali flightseeing tour options, and a detailed review of each tour, so it will be easy for you to choose what is the best tour for you. So, without any further ado, let’s dive into this guide!

If you are planning an Alaska Itinerary, these are must-read:

Denali flightseeing

Read More: What Alaska is known for? 20 Things Alaska is famous for

Best Denali Flightseeing Tours Overview

You can quickly scan this table if you don’t have the time to read this article right now. It shows the best Denali Flightseeing tours and a rundown of what each one offers! 

Our Top Pick

Denali Experience Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna

The Denali Experience Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna is the most popular Denali Flightseeing and the one I chose to go to. You have the option to go on a private or group tour on board for 1.5 hours. You also have the option to include glacier landing.

Best Overall Denali Flightseeing1.5 hours, small group, this was my personal choice!Denali Experience Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna
Top Denali Flightseeing tour + Glacier Landing1.5-2 hours tour, enjoy the flightseeing tour with glacier landingTalkeetna: Grand Denali Flight Tour with Optional Glacier Landing
Best Budget Denali Flightseeing tour1-1.5 hour tour with a small group, with a small groupTalkeetna: Denali Southside Explorer Scenic Air Tour
Top Denali Flightseeing tour for the best views1-hour to catch fantastic views of the tallest mountains in the Alaska RangeDenali Peak Sightseeing by Plane

Read More: A Complete Guide on How to Visit Denali National Park

How to Choose The Best Denali Flightseeing Tours

Going on a Denali flightseeing tour should be on your Alaska bucket list! There are several options available with the main operators being K2 Aviation, Fly Denali, Sheldon Air Services, and Talkeetna Air Taxi. Three of these companies are located in Talkeetna which is the closest town and around 2.5 hours away from Denali National Park.

In contrast, Fy Denali is located near the entrance of the park and offers amazing flightseeing tours with glacier landings. So, the benefit of booking a tour with them is that you can easily add a tour to your Alaska itinerary if you plan on spending a few days in the park. Plus, the majority of your flight will be over the park itself and not of the scenery that you’ll find on the way to the park.

All the tours include a scenic flight around the Alaska Range and these tours usually last between 1-1.5 hours. However, if you choose a tour with an optional glacier landing you’ll have around 30 minutes extra so you can depart the plane and explore. Prices range from $255-460 depending on which tour you choose!

GetYourGuide is one of the best options for booking Denali Flightseeing Tours as there are several tours available. Not only do they work with high-quality operators, but Get Your Guide also has a flexible cancellation policy. They’ve over 12 years of experience when it comes to tours and excursions so you’re guaranteed to be in good hands.

Viator is another popular choice and they also have a flexible cancellation policy. This company is actually part of TripAdvisor and they offer over 200,000 tours all across the world. If you use Viator you’ll also benefit from multilingual customer service and many of their tours are extremely affordable. Lastly, they have a ‘reserve now & pay later option.

Read More: Top 15 Things to do in Talkeetna

Denali Flightseeing

Tips to Plan Your Denali Flightseeing Tour

Denali Flightseeing tours are popular
As this activity is so popular you’ll need to book around 3 months in advance. After all, there aren’t many companies that offer flightseeing experiences in Alaska and for that reason, space is limited. So, once you know your trip dates this should be the first activity you book!
Is the Denali Flightseeing Worth It?
1000% yes! Getting to see the Alaska mountain range and Denali Mountain from up in the air is an experience like no other. Mount Denali is also much more accessible via a flightseeing tour as you’ll be within several miles of it, and the views are breathtaking! Just make sure you take your camera because you’ll need it.
Is Denali Glacier Landing Worth It?
Many people choose to just opt for the flightseeing tour but if you can, include a glacier landing! You’ll get around 30 minutes to explore the glacier and you’ll be truly remote so you won’t have to share this experience with the crowds.
Is the Denali Flightseeing Tour Safe?
Several tour operators offer Denali flightseeing tours and each one of them has an excellent safety record. The pilots are extremely experienced and have thousands of flight hours so you’ll be in great hands. If you’re not a keen flyer then you may feel nervous but thousands of people do this activity every year!
What About there is bad weather?
Denali flightseeing tours are dependent on suitable weather conditions so you need to keep that in mind. Many of the operators keep an eye on weather conditions via cameras, pilot reports, and radars as this area is known for its unpredictability. Your tour may have to be canceled due to the weather and if so you’ll be offered to reschedule your flight or have a refund.
How much does a Denali Flightseeing cost?
Prices range from $255-460 depending on which tour you choose and the operator that you decide to go with. As you can see it’s not a cheap activity but the experience makes the price completely worth it!
Why should I choose my Denali Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna?
Talkeetna is the closest take-off point to Denali so it won’t be long before you’re flying over the Alaska Range! Many of the tours only last for around 1.5 hours so you don’t want to waste time having to reach the park itself. This makes it the most popular spot for Denali flightseeing tours.
How to add the Denali Flightseeing tour to your itinerary?
If you are going to fly from Talkeetna, the best way to plan is when you travel from Denali National Park to Anchorage, as Talkeetna is located halfway between both. It is worse to spend a full day and night in Talkeetna as you will find other amazing Things to do in Talkeetna.
When is the best time to plan a Denali Flightseeing Tour?
The weather changes rapidly in Denali National Park so there’s no perfect time to book a flightseeing tour. Due to unpredictable weather patterns flights often get rescheduled, and that’s especially true during the winter months. I’d recommend booking your tour as early into your trip as possible so that if it gets canceled or moved, you’ve still got the chance to reschedule it.
If you book a flight with a glacier landing then you’ll need to pay to enter Denali National Park.
Typically, the fee to enter Denali National Park is $15.00 for anyone 16 and older and your ticket is valid for a week. You can also use the America the Beautiful Pass to cover the cost of admission.
Try to Sit in the Back of the Plane
Do this and you won’t have to worry about propellers from the plane detracting from the quality of your photos.
Wear Warm Clothes
Trust me, the plane gets really cold at 7,000 feet in the air, so dress warmly. This way you can really enjoy your Denali flightseeing tour.
Denali Flightseeing

Overall Best Denali Flightseeing Tours

1. Denali Experience Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna

Denali Flightseeing

Tour at a Glance:

🛩️ TOUR TYPE: Small groups of up to 6 people

📍 TOUR INCLUDES: Hotel pick-up and drop-off within Talkeetna State Airport, live commentary on board, & Headsets so you can hear the guide

⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 1.5 hours

⭐️ RATING: 4.8/5 (2442 Reviews) | Details: Read more reviews now!

Why Take This Denali Flightseeing Tour:

With this Denali Experience Flightseeing Tour from Talkeetna, you will head out over the Alaskan wilderness and see the true beauty of this state.

From Talkeetna State Airport you’ll fly over the national park and up to 6 miles (10 km) from the summit of Mount Denali. If it’s a clear day then expect breathtaking views of North America’s tallest mountain!

After admiring the summit you’ll then fly down into the Ruth Amphitheater and the Great Gorge. This will allow you to see the iconic Ruth Glacier and Tokositna Glacier so have your camera ready! During this tour, you’ll also get to spot Mount Huntington, Mount Hunter, and Moose’s Tooth.

This Denali flightseeing tour includes an optional glacier landing too but you’ll have to decide that when you book!

  • You’ll get to listen to live commentary during the tour
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off are included
  • You’ll have an exclusive flight experience as only 6 people are allowed on this tour
  • At the end of the tour, you can purchase a DVD if you wish!

2. Talkeetna: Grand Denali Flight Tour with Optional Glacier Landing

Denali Flightseeing

Tour at a Glance:

🛩️ TOUR TYPE: Small group experience with optional glacier landing

📍 TOUR INCLUDES: Hotel pick-up and drop-off, window seat, personal headset, narration during the trip, & 30-minute glacier landing (optional)

⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 1.5-2 hours (depending on whether you choose to do the glacier landing)

⭐️ RATING: 4.8/5 (2442 Reviews) | Details: Read more reviews now!

Why Take This Denali Flightseeing Tour:

This Grand Denali Flight Tour is one of the most popular options when it goes to flightseeing in Alaska. Operated by Talkeetna Air Taxi, this tour will take you over the striking Alaska Range where you’ll get to see the diversity of Denali National Park.

The pilot will take you through one of the passes located on either side of Mount Denali so be prepared for some epic views! You’ll be treated to stunning views of the tundra landscapes before heading towards Wickersham Wall – the North face of the mountain. Standing at an impressive 13,658 feet (4,163m) this is one of the best things you’ll see during your trip to Alaska!

If you’ve opted for the glacier landing then you’ll have 30 minutes down on the ground to explore and take photographs.

  • Gives you the chance to land on a glacier and then spend some time exploring the area!
  • You’ll get to admire the iconic Wickersham Wall
  • The weather and safety briefing will be held in a charming Alaskan cabin
  • This tour offers you the chance to appreciate Alaska’s tundra landscapes

3. Talkeetna: Denali Southside Explorer Scenic Air Tour

Denali Flightseeing tour

Tour at a Glance:

🛩️ TOUR TYPE: Small group experience with optional glacier landing

📍 TOUR INCLUDES: Hotel pick-up and drop-off within a 2-mile radius of downtown Talkeetna, window seat, personal headset, & pilot commentary

⏳ TOUR LENGTH: 1 – 1.5 Hour

⭐️ RATING: 4.8/5 (2442 Reviews) | Details: Read more reviews now!

Why Take This Denali Flightseeing Tour:

This Denali Southside Explorer Scenic Air Tour will take you on the adventure of a lifetime! It’s one of the best Denali flightseeing tours out there and offers you the chance to admire some of Alaska’s most dramatic landscapes.

From take-off, you’ll get to admire the views from your window seat as you head to the Alaska Range. As the name of the tour suggests, you’ll be flying over the south side of this mountain range where you’ll get to see striking peaks and incredible glaciers.

Some of the best areas you’ll get to see include the Great Gorge, the Don Sheldon Amphitheater, and Ruth Glacier. If you choose the optional glacier landing then you’ll also get 30 minutes down on the ground.

  • You’ll get to relax in an authentic Alaskan cabin after your briefing while you wait for the pilot
  • Every flight is customized to get you the best views of Denali National Park
  • You’ll get to see popular spots including the Great Gorge and Ruth Glacier
  • There’s an optional glacier landing available if you wish to do it

4. Denali Peak Sightseeing by Plane

Things to do in Talkeetna

Tour at a Glance:

🛩️ TOUR TYPE: Small group flightseeing tour

📍 TOUR INCLUDES: Hotel pick-up and drop-off, all taxes & fees, driver/guide, live pilot commentary, & headsets


⭐️ RATING: 4.8/5 (2442 Reviews) | Details: Read more reviews now!

Why Take This Denali Flightseeing Tour:

If you’re looking for a Denali Peak Sightseeing tour then this is one of your best options! Although it’s one of the most expensive options, you’ll truly get to see the best of Denali National Park.

Not only will you get to marvel at Mount Denali’s North Face – the Wickersham Wall but you’ll also get to admire the next three tallest mountains in the Alaska Range. These are Mount Foraker, Mount Hunter, and Mount Russel. You’ll also get to see Mount Denali’s iconic ridgelines during this tour.

If that alone isn’t enough to convince you then you’ll get to fly over several glaciers too including Eldridge, Kahiltna, Ruth, and Tokositna. This tour also takes you over the Great gorge and some of the national park’s other dramatic landscapes.

  • You’ll get to see the four biggest mountains in the Alaska Range (weather dependant)
  • This tour flys over some of Alaska’s most impressive glaciers
  • Get fantastic views of Wickersham Wall during your tour
  • During the climbing season, you’ll get to see the most popular climbing routes and camps from above

What to Wear during a Denali Flightseeing Tour?

As you’ll be flying at altitude it’s naturally going to feel colder so you’ll want to dress appropriately. Here are a couple of recommendations:

  • Wear long pants and a long-sleeved shirt as your underlayer
  • Have a sweater or a light jacket that you can wear over the top if necessary
  • If you feel cold generally, then may want to wear a warm coat and a hat
  • Bring sunglasses with you to help with the glare that you’ll encounter off the snow-capped mountain peaks
  • Make sure you’re wearing closed-toe shoes e.g. hiking boots or snow boots

Read More: What to pack for Alaska + FREE printable packing list

Denali Flightseeing Photos

Denali Flightseeing Tour FAQs

What is the Best Time for Denali Flightseeing?

The best time for a Denali flightseeing tour is between May and September since this is when the weather is at its best. However, it’s worth noting that Talkeetna Air, K2 Aviation, and Sheldon Air Service all offer Flightseeing tours of Denali year-round. In contrast, Fly Denali only offers tours from May through September.

In terms of the best time of day for Denali flightseeing, there really is no best time of day for a flight since Denali’s weather is very unpredictable.

So, when booking the best Denali flightseeing tour you need to be flexible and keep an eye on the weather. Then, once the clouds break, you can enjoy your Denali flightseeing tour.

Is Flightseeing Denali worth it?

Yes, Flightseeing Denali is absolutely worth it. After all, you can see North America’s tallest peak, Denali, and the wild Alaskan frontier from a totally unique perspective high above the ground. Therefore, it is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that everyone should enjoy.

Can you see Denali from a plane?

Yes, you can see Denali from a plane. In fact, seeing Denali from the sky is a spectacular sight with that mighty peak dominating the landscape in front of you.

What are the Chances of Seeing Denali on a Flightseeing Tour?

Spotting Denali can be extremely difficult since It reveals itself less than 30% of the time. So, catching a glimpse of that stunning peak is really difficult to do.

Denali Flightseeing Tour Conclusion

As you can see there are plenty of fantastic Denali flightseeing tours available! Whether you choose to include a glacier landing or not, this is one of the best experiences that you can do in Alaska.

Just make sure you weigh up each tour to see which one is most suitable for you! You’ll also want to take into account the price and the flexibility required for this type of activity due to cancellations.

This experience is a must for any Alaska itinerary so make sure you book in advance!

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