Glacier Viewing Whale Watching Seward Alaska
The #1 attraction in Seward is a boat tour into the Kenai Fjords National Park! If there is only one “tour” you do during your visit to the Seward area or Kenai Peninsula, it should be one of these boat trips. Below we give an overview of your options. You can see Glaciers in the Seward area by land, boat or airplane.
Our #1 recommendation is Alaska Saltwater Tours ~ they offer an intimate whale watching, wildlife, natural history and glacier tour for no more than 15 passengers, even though the boat can hold 30. The tour departs at 8:00 a.m. and returns at approximately 5:00 p.m., but maybe later depending on what gets encountered during the day (a day of active wildlife may mean a longer tour). Tour cost includes lunch. Offered by a small family run company, this tour is the most flexible; able to accommodate and adapt to varying water, weather and guests needs! Guests rave about this tour! This tour should be pre-reserved since there is limited seating; cancellations due to weather receive full refunds. Please allow us to assist with this reservation!It’s much easier for us to reach these folks in the off-season to make reservations.
Summer (May-Sept) “All-Day” Tours
There are several vendors to choose from ranging from large corporations to the small family-run company we mention above. Depending on the provider they may call their tour a Kenai Fjords National Park Tour, Glacier & Wildlife Tour, Small Group Tour or All-Day Tour. Tours sizes can vary from 15 to 300 people. All tours in this category follow the same basic route, regardless of vendor. They range in time from 5.5 to 9 hours. We always recommend taking one of these tours and highly recommend the smallest boat possible, for the most personalized and intimate tour experience.
Summer (May-Sept) “Half-Day” Tours
(We highly recommend the all-day tours over the so-called “half day” or “bay” or “value” tours. All these tours are shorter in time and distance and do not enter the National Park, and you do not see the same amount of wildlife, and no calving glacier. All “Bay” and “Value” tours follow the same basic route regardless of vendor. Times range from 2.5 to 4 hours.
Off-Season (March – mid-May) Tours
During the Off-Season (March – mid-May) there are a limited number of Bay Tours or Whale Watching Tours (March – April/early May). Schedules may be limited to once or twice a week (usually Wednesdays and Saturdays). Tours range from 2.5 to 4 hours, generally departing late morning/noon. Weather permitting, this is an excellent activity for the off-season, highly recommend.
Major Marine Tours ~ variety of vessels – large boats (160 people), catamaran (290 people), Buffet lunch (extra cost), Assigned seating, National Park Ranger, Departs 10:00 am or 11:30 am returns 5:30 pm. Mid-May to Mid-September
Kenai Fjords Tours ~ large corporation, a variety of departure times 8:00 am to 3:00 pm, large boats (160+), lunch included. Mid-May to Late September
For those who experience seasickness: seas are rougher the later in the day, so earlier departure times are best. The smaller boat operators can also be more accommodating than larger vessels. Fresh ginger and ginger ale also can help, as can medication.
Off-Season Bay & Whale Watching Boat Tour Recommendations ~ We can get you a discount if we book these for you!
Kenai Fjords Grey Whale Watch~ Tours start in late March. Fri & Sat only in March to mid-April, Daily mid-April to mid-May, Noon – 4:00 p.m. Lunch included
Major Marine Grey Whale Watch ~ Tours start in late March, Noon – 4 pm, Beverages provided, snacks for sale
More about Kenai Fjords National Park
Seward Alaska is the gateway to the Kenai Fjords National Park accessible by land and sea. This National Park offers some of the most amazing scenery and wildlife anywhere. Seasonally available only (generally May 1 – Sept 30). We highly recommend visiting this National Park via both methods!
Hike to the face of Exit Glacier, or take the Harding Ice-field Trail.
Be sure to give yourself time to experience some heavenly relaxation in our unique cabins, with spectacular wildlife and scenery surrounding them just south of Seward, Alaska, on the shores of Resurrection Bay, on the Kenai Peninsula.
Sea Kayaking Seward Alaska
Kayaking is a very popular activity in the Seward area, even for novices. In addition to tour options, we have a number of guests who bring their personal kayaks and pull them right up on the beach in front of our waterfront cabins. During the summer season, some vendors offer tours ranging from short to all day trips.
Below we’ve listed our top recommendations, which includes departure from Lowell Point. For novices interested in kayaking, but preferring calmer waters, check out the lake kayaking we mention below. Be sure to give yourself time to experience some heavenly relaxation in these unique and beautiful cabins just south of Seward, Alaska, on the shores of Resurrection Bay, on the Kenai Peninsula, with spectacular wildlife and scenery surrounding them.
Essential pre-planning information for kayaking in Alaska waters: The very best first layer to have on is real polypropylene, including socks and gloves. Alaska waters are frigid and properly dressing is key to enjoyment and survival!
Kayak Adventures is a small Seward Alaska family run company that does an excellent job. They offer a large variety of tours, from short, 4-hour trips to all day trips. Custom trips for two guests are also available and unique. Departure is from Lowell Point for their shorter trips, very convenient from our cabins and rooms (although you’ll need to have checked in at their office in town beforehand).
Chugach Outdoor Center offers sea kayaking in the calm waters of Kenai Lake, an excellent way to experience kayaking without the worry of rough waters.
Sunny Cove Kayaking is an Alaskan company that offers a variety of sea kayaking experiences, including some trips that depart right from Lowell Point.
Check out this valuable guide to our local coastal waters. David Miller’s Exploring Alaska’s Kenai Fjords, A Marine Guide to the Kenai Peninsula Outer Coast, filled with maps and lots of really great details about the area waters.
Rafting options in the Seward Alaska area include both river & lake – below we’ve outlined the available rafting options for you, during the summer season, including a nearby whitewater trip. One option is available from Seward while the others are short day trips to Cooper Landing or Hope. Be sure to give yourself time to experience some of the best relaxation in our unique and beautiful cabins and view rooms, with spectacular wildlife and scenery surrounding them, just south of Seward Alaska, on the shores of Resurrection Bay, on the Kenai Peninsula.
Alaska Wildland Adventures offers a short two-hour Kenai River float trip and an all-day Kenai River Canyon raft trip through the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, Located in Cooper Landing, a nice day trip from the cabins, about 45 miles away. Our customers have greatly enjoyed their trips with these folks
Chugach Outdoor Center offers white water rafting at 6 Mile Creek, near Hope, about 70 miles north of Seward (an excellent day trip from our cabins). Class IV—V. Also offers a Resurrection River rafting trip (no whitewater), conveniently located near Seward.
Fishing in Seward Alaska
There are a variety of fishing options for saltwater fishing in Seward Alaska; for the most part by boat, but at some times of the year, you can fish from shore. For about three weeks in July, you can catch all five species of Salmon from the beach right in front of our waterfront cabins! We have loaner fishing poles for our guests to use (license required). Halibut fishing is generally from mid-April to mid-Sept by boat. Full day salmon and combo (salmon & halibut) charters are usually from June to mid-Sept. Below are some recommendations.
Seward’s Annual Silver Salmon Derby is one of the oldest and largest fishing derbies in the State. It starts the 2nd Saturday of August and runs for 8 1/5 days, finishing the 3rd Sunday of August at Noon. For all fishing, you will need to purchase a fishing license and appropriate tags (if applicable). Be sure to give yourself time to experience some heavenly relaxation in our unique and beautiful cabins with spectacular wildlife and scenery surrounding them, just south of Seward, Alaska, on the shores of Resurrection Bay, on the Kenai Peninsula.
Selecting the best fishing charter for your desires can often be a challenge, as we have learned over the years. There are some factors to take into consideration, and you should before making any reservation. What size boat and how many people do you want to fish with on the vessel? 6, 12, 24? How many people can the boat seat inside, and how many people total will be on the vessel? On inclement weather days, this can become the most important issue. Does the boat have a private indoor head (bathroom); if not what are the facilities? What is the policy if you are unable to fish for the species you selected? What is the policy if the charter is canceled or cut short due to weather? How experienced and familiar are the Captain & crew in these waters? Over the years our local insight, the answers to the above questions, and customer feedback leads us to the vendor recommendations below.
We’re happy to help you decide, and make your reservation for you if we can. Given time differences and the small nature of these companies, it is often easier for us to help, since we’re right here and familiar with everyone’s schedules. If the folks we recommend below are full, we can assist finding someone else good. All fishing charters include gear, bait & filleting of fish. You’ll want to bring food & beverage. You’ll need to purchase a fishing license. All trips are subject to 7% tax, $3.50 port fee and possible fuel surcharges (currently around $15 per person).
Jim & Kathleen Barkley run a small family company with high standards. They offer fishing charters, sightseeing trips, and combo fishing/sightseeing tours. Full day charters from approx. Mid-May to Early September generally depart 7:30 a.m. and return approx. 4:30 p.m. They have single species charters for salmon, halibut, and lingcod, combo salmon/halibut or combo halibut/lingcod trips, and combo fishing & wildlife viewing. This combo trip is perfect if you only have one day to spend on the water and want to both fish and glacier/wildlife sightsee. Rates run about $200 salmon, $225 halibut, $269-$279 for combos plus above taxes and fees and possible fuel surcharge.
We have other excellent suggestions if they are full; just send us an email, and we will do our best to help.
Fresh Water/River Fishing:
Want to fish the Kenai River for salmon? We’re excited to recommend Kenai River Float-N-Fish! John and Heather receive very high marks from their customers! Located in Cooper Landing, nearby and convenient.