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Alaska Magic Bus

The Magic Bus is the name of the 142 bus located in Alaska made famous by Chris McCandless and the Book/Movie ‘Into the Wild’.

Just off the Stampede Trail, at the northern end of Denali National Park the bus was originally one of three providing transport and accommodation for workers of the Yutan Construction Company in the early sixties. It was later abandoned and became a shelter for hunters, trappers and visitors.

The bus gained fame and popular interest with the publication of ‘Into the Wild’, the story of Chris McCandless who spent the summer of 1992 in the bus before passing away. It was Chris that coined the name ‘Magic Bus’ which achieved global interest from a 1993 magazine article, and subsequent book and movie ‘Into the Wild.’

For many virtual wanderlusters, the Magic Bus has become a beacon of fascination to discover more about the story and its location in one of America’s Great National Parks.

Sadly, for some wanderlusters, the fascination was strong enough to make the bus a tourist destination to be visited. Sitting in a remote part of this vast national park, North of Anchorage and South of the Gates of the Arctic it is not your average tourist spot.

After two travellers died trying to reach the bus in 2010 and 2019, it was decided that the bus was now a public hazard and in 2020 the bus was helicoptered out of the park.

Where is the Magic Bus, now?

The Magic Bus will remain in Alaska as a feature at the Museum of the North, in Fairbanks Alaska. Visitors will be able to see the bus and learn more about the history in a much safer location! Visit the museum on your next American holiday!

Into the Wild definitely makes it on to our list of best reads for some virtual wanderlust!

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If you love travel, then Virtual Wanderlust is the website for you. From nature reserves in the Netherlands, to wine regions in Portugal, and winter sun in Antigua, we love virtually exploring our planet. Never miss a post by following us on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.


Jay is the owner of Wine, Travel and Song - a blog to share many eclectic adventures in taste, sight & sound

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