Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks
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Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks
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Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks

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Stop At: Aurora Ice Museum, 17600 Chena Hot Springs Rd, Fairbanks, AK 99712, USA

Dress in warm winter layers before being picked up from your Fairbanks or North Pole hotel and transported to Chena Hot Springs Resort, located roughly 60 miles (97 kilometers) northeast of Fairbanks. On your 1.5-hour drive, keep your eyes peeled on the passing landscape for wildlife that might include a moose, beaver or fox.

Once you arrive at Chena Hot Springs Resort, enjoy an array of activities as you wait for the prime time to view the northern lights. First, follow your guide to the Aurora Ice Museum, which is crafted from more than 1,000 tons of ice and snow. Kept at a cool 25 degrees F (-7 degrees C), the museum houses intricate ice sculptures created by world- champion ice carvers Steve and Heather Brice. Their two-story observation tower includes a circular staircase, life-size jousters on horseback, an ice outhouse and more. If you’d like, purchase a drink served in an ice-carved martini glass inside the museum’s bar, where you can relax on caribou fur–covered stools and warm your hands by the ice fireplace.

Duration: 1 hour

Stop At: Chena Hot Springs Resort, 56.5 Mile Chena Hot Springs Road, Chena Hot Springs, AK 99711

After wandering through the cool museum, don your bathing suit and enjoy entrance to the resort’s legendary namesake hot springs. The revitalizing mineral water lake soothes muscles with its warm temperatures, which averages 106 degrees F (41 degrees C) year-round. You can also soak under the stars in an outdoor hot tub, or head indoors for the heated pool. Between your evening activities, you can always slip away to the Aurora Café or the historic Chena Hot Springs Resort Restaurant, where you can purchase meals, snacks or beverages.

When the conditions are right, bundle up and join your expert guide for a small-group outing to view the aurora borealis. Your guide leads the small group around Chena Hot Springs, one of the best places on earth to witness the green and purple illuminations loop across the night sky. Wait and witness the celestial wonder with hot beverages in the late evening, when viewing opportunities are the highest. The lights are also visible inside the cafe's Aurora room, which serves as a comfortable and warm location for viewings.

After taking in the northern lights, your guide will return you to your hotel. Note: We can never guarantee the Northern lights sighting. It is a natural phenomena and cannot be controlled.

Duration: 9 hours

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  • Local Guide
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Access to Chena Hot Springs Resorts' hot springs, hot tubs and swimming area
  • Entry/Admission - Aurora Ice Museum
  • Entry/Admission - Chena Hot Springs Resort
Not included
  • Gratuities
  • Food & drinks
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Operates in cold weather conditions; please dress appropriately
  • Please don't forget to bring bathing suits, bath towels, at least 2 quarter for each locker and a picture id for the cocktail in the ice museum. (has to be purchased separately)
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • The outside rock pool is only allowed for Adults 18 years and up. However, children are allowed in the inside pool.
  • Pregnant travelers are not allowed in the outside rock pool.
  • We have enough room for a foldable wheelchair. The hot springs are wheelchair accessible.
  • We can only pick you up from inside the city limits of Fairbanks or North Pole. Everyone else can be picked up at the Walmart parking lot in Fairbanks or the North Pole hotel.
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
Janet O
5 | 2019-09-30

My boyfriend and I did this tour last night and had an awesome time! Our guide was Linley and she was very knowledgeable, kind and easy going. She have us plenty of photo opportunities and tips on things to do at the lodge. We were picked up in our hotel, then took the scenic drive out to Chena Hot Springs,it was about an hour and a half. When we arrived, we were given a tour of the place and then we went to the ice museum which was really cool and interesting. We opted to get the Apple martini in the ice glass and it was really delicious. Afterwards, we had dinner at the lodge which was tasty, then went into the Springs for a while. We met with our guide around 11:30 as instructed, by then the northern lights started to appear, so she took us to a isolated location and we got quite the spectacular light show. After the lights dimmed down a bit she took us to a few other spots and made every effort so that we could get great views. I highly recommend this tour to anyone looking to visit Fairbanks, it was a wonderful experience.

Elsa maria L
5 | 2019-09-30

We loved the tour, especially our guide Lynley, she is so awesome, she took us to the best places to see the auroras, we Saw them dancing and beutifil colors. Chena waters are just increíble!!!!! Must do this tour.

Theresa V
5 | 2019-01-22

We booked the ‘Northern Lights and Chena Hot Springs Tour from Fairbanks’ through Viator and had a great experience. My husband and I flew into Fairbanks for a quick weekend get-away in January and wanted to do as much as possible, with the Chena Hot Springs and viewing of the Northern Lights being on our list. We don’t have any experience driving in the snow so this tour was perfect since it includes hotel pick-up and drop-off. The tour is owned and operated by Alaska-Wildlife-Guide and Ricky was our tour guide. He is retired from the military, have lived in Fairbanks for some time, and had a plethora of knowledge and stories about Fairbanks. Upon booking the tour, I read that it may not run if there weren’t enough people in the group. When Ricky arrived at our hotel, he informed us that we were the only two on the tour so we had a nice private tour. We’re so grateful that the tour still went on since we only had 48 hours there. Ricky provided us with all of the details and tips about the Aurora Ice Museum and Chena Hot Springs. While we were enjoying our time at the resort, Ricky was tracking the Northern Light activity so he could alert us when they appeared. After we toured the Ice Museum, had dinner, and enjoyed the hot springs, Ricky took us to the best viewing spots to see the Northern Lights. The forecast predicted above average northern light activity and we were able to see some lights. The lights weren’t as bright as we hoped but if we were to stay up until 3AM with Ricky, we would’ve probably seen more vivid lights. We were very sleep deprived so we called it an early night (headed back around 1:30AM). We had an amazing time and highly recommend this tour for those on a time crunch. We cannot thank Ricky enough for the great experience! Tips for the hot springs: The store at the hot spring sells bathing suits for men and women, slippers, and towels (we forgot to bring our bathing suits). Also, don't forget to bring bath towels, shower slippers, 50 cents for each locker (in quarters). For the Ice Museum, don't forget to bring a picture ID if you’d like to purchase the cocktail inside.

Susan R
5 | 2019-01-04

Suzy was an awesome guide: tons of info and lots of laughter. Magical New Yers Eve: ice museum and appletinis in ice glasses, snowing outside, over to excellent dinner, hot springs were amazing e with the fireworks timed perfectly, finished with three amazing stops on the tour van ohoto auroas. Suzy helped all of us with our various cameras and did some heart stopping shots herself, which she shared. A fabulous trip. And, Viator reps on the phone were personable and knowledgeable. Very impressed over all.

Beverly S
4 | 2018-12-19

While the tour was exactly as described I felt the price was to high for what it covered. Our tour director and driver was Bob. He went to every effort he possibly could to make it a wonderful experience. He went all out to help us (my sister and I are Seniors), carried things for us, stayed with us the entire time. I realize it would have been different had there been more people on the tour, but he was wonderful. Our main reason for being here was the Northern Lights, but that goal was not to be. I am not sorry we took this tour, but would not take it again.

Arnold M
5 | 2018-08-28

Clark, our tour guide, very informative on the area, assisted and answered all of our inquiries. We lucked out with a great night of viewing the Northern Lights. The Hot springs was well worth it as well.

Caterina M
5 | 2018-04-03

A great evening at Chena Hot Springs! We visited the reindeer on the property, went into the Ice Museum had an appletini- yum, dinner at the restaurant, and a dip in the hot springs. The water was hotter than I expected, so could only stay in for about 15 minutes. Our tour guide, Ricky, was great. He provided lots of information on the area and wildlife. It was a cloudy night so we were not able to see the aurora but Ricky made many stops along the way back just in case the lights were visible. Thank you for a great evening!

Siew Leng T
4 | 2018-02-18

Spellbound Aurora Nothing much to shout about the hot springs in Chena as compared to the Blue Lagoon in Iceland or I couldn't have seen much as I only arrived after sunset at approximately 1815hrs, total darkness. Mediocre changing facilities but it was relatively affordable, only cost a quarter per use and a new quarter got to be inserted after each opening. However, the facilities provided for the watching of aurora was excellent with 2 indoor waiting areas, an activity room and an aurora watching room besides the outdoor, and was an excellent night when I visited on November 17th, managed to see it twice in one night, simply awesome. The tour price paid was inclusive of admission to the Ice Museum and the hot springs, excluding the Appletini served in ice glass at the Aurora Bar in the former. The Appletini would have cost USD 15. The restaurant served good food with efficient service. Unfortunately, didn't manage to visit the Dog Kennel as it was closed at 1600hrs.

Qiaoyi H
5 | 2018-01-05

I love the Chena hot spring very much, since I had little chances to experience such superb outdoor hot springs in the US. Ricky was a great tour guide, he had a lot of interesting stories to share on the car, and he led us to encounter some lovely wildlifies, such as Moises.

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