There is no regular bus service between the Lower 48 and Alaska, but you can get there from here. Greyhound Canada (604/482-8747 or 800/661-8747, www.greyhound.ca) covers much of Canada, reaching north to Whitehorse in Yukon. From there, you’ll need to hop aboard an Alaska Direct Bus Line (907/277-6652 or 800/770-6652, www.alaskadirectbusline.com) van to Tok, Anchorage, and Fairbanks. Service is three times a week in the summer, twice weekly the rest of the year. Reservations are recommended.
Alaska/Yukon Trails (907/479-2277 or 888/770-7275, www.alaskashuttle.com) runs a daily summer-only service connecting Anchorage with Talkeetna, Denali, and Fairbanks, plus three-times-a-week runs from Fairbanks to Delta Junction, Tok, Chicken, Dawson City, and Whitehorse.
Several other companies have van service in Southcentral and Interior Alaska:
- Denali Overland Transportation
907/733-2384 or 800/651-5221
- Alaska Park Connection
907/245-0200 or 800/266-8625
- Seward Bus Lines
907/563-0800 or 888/420-7788
- Homer Stage Line
- Girdwood Shuttle
This is more than just a bus ride—it’s a vacation and a cultural experience in itself. The buses have bunks that convert to seats and tables in the day, and passengers enjoy communal meals. One of the best things about these trips is the people—alternative travel attracts good company. This is a friendly, unprivate way to travel, although it is not inexpensive.
Green Tortoise (415/956-7500 or 800/867-8647, www.greentortoise.com) has several trips each summer to Alaska, and each bus holds 36 passengers and 2 drivers. Book no later than March to ensure a space. Some trips leave from San Francisco and wind up in Anchorage; others start and end in Anchorage.
Despite the casual approach, Green Tortoise buses are reliable and have a good safety record. The company also runs bus trips all over the country and even to Central America.
© Don Pitcher from Moon Alaska, 10th Edition