Princess Copper River Alaska Lodge, Copper Center
Copper Center , Alaska
Tel: 907 822 4000
Concierge.com's insider take:
How much wilderness are you looking for? The Princess Copper River Alaska Lodge is on the edge of Wrangell–St. Elias National Park, which, when combined with a couple of adjacent parks on both sides of the U.S.–Canada border, makes up the largest roadless area left on the continent. The tiny town of Copper Center (don't miss Chapel on the Hill, a log cabin church where the pews were originally made from packing crates) is the gateway to the park and the departure point for rafting trips on the Copper River, which flows through one of Alaska's most dramatic birding areas to Prince William Sound. The hotel's 85 rooms are neither large nor fancy, but the beds are great, rates are reasonable ($179 for a double), and you won't be spending much time inside, anyway. Even Two Rivers restaurant, with its picture windows, capitalizes on the reason why you're here: what's outside. This is the place to get some comfort—and perhaps a cappuccino at the Dragonfly Espresso bar—before (or after) jumping off into major wilderness.—Edward Readicker-Henderson
Closed mid-September through mid-May.