Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
This is truly untamed territory -- one of our country's last great frontiers. An epic way to embrace it is by nestling into a cozy, secluded lodge where everything the majestic state is known for lies right outside your front door.
Arriving at the remote accommodations of Alaska Wildland Adventures is part of the allure. A rafting trip down the Kenai River delivers you to the Backcountry Lodge (above) on the shores of Skilak Lake, loved by many a moose. It's a hiker's paradise, where a perfect day includes a climb to survey the wilderness, several blissful minutes in the wood-fired sauna, and a dinner of wild salmon. Next up? The Glacier Lodge, a coastal cluster of log cabins facing Pedersen Glacier. On guided kayak trips, you'll glide past icebergs, maybe spot breaching whales, and snap pics of puffins (two nights at Backcounty from $975 per person, all-inclusive; three nights at Glacier from $1,575 per person, all-inclusive; alaskawildland.com).
Where to Stay
At Backcountry Lodge, ask for the original hunting cabin, a retreat dripping with old-world charm. At the Glacier Lodge, request Cabin 1 or 16, both of which are a little more private than the rest.
When to Go
Due to an extreme winter climate, the season is short -- from June to mid-September -- so anytime the inns are open is a good time to visit.
How to Get There
Jet into Anchorage, and rent a car. It's a two-hour drive to Backcountry's raft-launch point and another hour from there to Glacier.