You’ve seen pictures of Alaska’s enormous brown bears lumbering over tide flats, feasting on salmon, nurturing frisky cubs. Many travelers come to Alaska expecting to see them. But the fact is,
very few will. These coastal grizzlies live in the remote reaches of Katmai National Park, far from any cruise ship or tour bus route. Few visitors to Alaska are fortunate to get to the heart of brown
bear country, and certainly not the way we do, on the ground in very small groups, as up close and personal as you'll ever safely get with wild bears! Click here
to read about the "ebbs and flows" of a grizzly bear season—what sorts of behaviors and activities you can expect when. If you're looking for the ultimate
Alaska bear experience, this is it:
- A Maximum of Just 8 Travelers
Because we travel aboard a privately chartered small ship, our group size is limited to no more than eight guests. A very small group is essential to approach the bears safely without disturbing them. You won't find a more intimate and personal bear-viewing context! Nor will you find a better guide-to-guest ratio on any Alaskan tour.
- An Exclusive Itinerary into the Heart of Coastal Grizzly Habitat
Our itinerary, which is offered solely by Natural Habitat Adventures, focuses exclusively on nature and bears—not busy ports and tourist towns. In fact, you can't get here by cruise ship or by road—we access this untouched wilderness by floatplane, then transfer to a private small ship to explore the coast. This is an experience you simply cannot get on a standard Alaska tour package.
- Our Own Privately Chartered Ship
We travel aboard our own chartered vessel, the Natural Habitat Ursus, where we are the sole guests. This converted research ship, comfortably retrofitted to accommodate tourists, is ideal for exploring the scenic wilderness waterways of Katmai National Park. Specially designed for shallow water navigation, the Ursus allows us to cruise close to shore, watching bears foraging in the meadows and clamming on the tideflats. And because we sleep aboard at night, our route can be flexible—we follow the bears!
- Watch Bears on Foot—Just Yards Away!
It seems impossible to fathom—standing at close range on the ground with Alaska's mighty brown bears. Yet that's exactly the amazing opportunity this unique adventure affords. When we step ashore among the bears, we are the only humans around—and they are completely nonchalant about our presence! It's the only experience of its kind available anywhere.
- Explore Kodiak Island or Kachemak Bay by Chartered Boat
Depending on which departure you select, your itinerary will include a private boat tour from Kodiak Island or Kachemak Bay off Homer. Kodiak is remote, well off the standard Alaska tour itinerary. Yet its rockbound coves, tidal pools and offshore seabird rookeries abound with wildlife. On a chartered dayboat cruise, we're likely to see sea lions, otters, puffins, bald eagles, and often whales. Our skippers are also gourmet cooks, and we enjoy the personal touch of a home-cooked lunch aboard the boat. The Kachemak Bay boat cruise is likewise an opportunity to witness abundant marine life including whales, porpoises, sea otters and sea lions, and we may glimpse moose, black bears or coyotes on shore, too.
- The World's Finest Naturalist Guides
The NHA Expedition Leaders who guide our grizzly adventures are professional naturalists and bear experts. We take pride in employing Alaska's most qualified, dedicated and passionate natural history guides, and our Alaska Expedition Leaders average more than 15 years’ experience each. They also receive additional training from leading WWF scientists. Our Expedition Leaders regale guests with their in-depth knowledge while remaining close at hand to ensure safety and comfort in every respect. See Expedition Leader bios and traveler comments regarding the quality of our leaders.
- A Commitment to Bears & Other Wildlife
In support of our commitment to the conservation of Alaska's brown bears and other wildlife, we've created a special website, Bears & Beyond, managed and edited by NHA Expedition Leader and bear expert Brad Josephs. The site is a showcase for photos and stories about bears and other wild animals, including wolves. Take a look, and share the link with your friends, too!
- Our Quality-Value Guarantee Ensures Your Superior Alaska Bear Encounter
Natural Habitat Adventures offers an exclusive guarantee, which clearly states that we will meet the lofty expectations established in our promotional materials. To our knowledge, this is the most ambitious guarantee made by any adventure travel company. Read our important promise.
- Feel Good About the Way You Travel
We care deeply about our planet, as we know you do. When you travel with us, the carbon emissions from your trip are 100-percent offset—Natural Habitat Adventures is the world’s first carbon-neutral travel company.
- Natural Habitat is WWF's Travel Partner
Because of our commitment to environmentally friendly travel, as well as the exceptional quality of our adventures. World Wildlife Fund—the planet's leading environmental conservation organization—has named Natural Habitat as its worldwide travel partner, a designation that makes us exceedingly proud!