A wide range of trips throughout Southcentral Alaska.
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Anchorage Daily News
One of Seward's big events is a July 4 race up and down Mount Marathon overlooking the town's small-boat harbor.
SEWARD: A place where anything can happen, and usually does.
Seward has had its share of excitement, from the destructive tsunami following the 1964 earthquake to waves of runners sliding down Mount Marathon near town each summer.
Only a two-hour drive from Anchorage, this town of 3,000 boasts a robust variety of offerings for the visitor, from world-class fishing to a town center lined with quaint shops and eateries.
Shops and galleries cater to those interested in learning more about Seward's history as well as the modern-day experience of life in Alaska.
In addition, the Alaska SeaLife Center offers an extraordinary opportunity to get a close look at wildlife that would otherwise be a rare sight. The center is both an educational facility and an ocean wildlife rescue center where staff are focused on research and rehabilitation of marine mammals.
The town is ringed by steep mountains on one side and the sparkling waters of Resurrection Bay on the other.
From Seward's doorstep, you can walk up to a glacier, tour alpine lakes or scramble 3,000 feet up Mount Marathon.
Fishing for feisty silvers is excellent throughout the summer, and many experienced fishing guides and charter vessels are available to assist you.
If fishing isn't your thing, the Seward area also offers opportunities for those wishing to tour Kenai Fjords National Park. Full day trips take you to the park's tidewater glaciers, while shorter trips explore Resurrection Bay. Kayak tours are another way to experience this gem.
Alaska SeaLife Center
The center serves as a marine research center as well as an educational institution with 55,000 square feet of exhibit space where visitors can observe animals ranging from a 2,000-pound Steller sea lion to the missile-like diving puffins.
WHERE: 301 Railway Ave.
WHEN: 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Fridays through Sundays, May 15 to Sept. 19; winter hours 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily
COST: $20 adults, $15 children ages 12-17, $10 children ages 4-11; family and group discounts
PHONE: 907-224-6300, 800-224-2525
The Seward Museum is a great place to get a sense of one of Alaska's earliest communities, from its days as the starting point of the Iditarod Trail to its use as a ship-building port. The museum is preparing to move to a new building, so call 907-224-3902 for updates.
WHERE: 336 Third Ave.
WHEN: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, mid-May through mid-September; winter hours 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
COST: $2 for adults; 50 cents, ages 5-18
Kenai Fjords National Park
Arguably the greatest asset of the Seward area is its natural surroundings, with calving glaciers collapsing into fjords, coves and beaches prime for discovery and mountains soaring into the sky. One of the more accessible features of the park is Exit Glacier, at Mile 8.6 of the Herman Leirer/Exit Glacier Road. There, you can take an easy stroll to various views of the glacier, or launch a longer hike on the Harding Icefield Trail. The Exit Glacier Nature Center is open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. from Memorial Day through Labor Day with daily ranger programs. The park also has extensive coastline accessible by tour boats and a number of kayak expedition companies. Public-use cabins are available for a fee in the park, and Exit Glacier has a 12-site walk-in tent campground.
WHERE: Outside Seward: Turn onto Herman Leirer/Exit Glacier Road at Mile 3 of the Seward Highway.
WHEN: Open daily year-round. Exit Glacier Road is closed to cars in winter but open to skis, snowshoes, snowmachines and dog sleds.
COST: Free; tours have a range of prices
Kenai Fjords National Park Information Center
Located near the small boat harbor, this information center has interpretive displays of Kenai Fjords National Park as well as maps, brochures, videos and publications.
WHERE: 1212 Fourth Ave., next to the Harbormaster Building
WHEN: 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, Memorial Day to Labor Day; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily in May and through late September; closed the remainder of the year
Fourth of July and Mount Marathon Race
Experiencing a population explosion on the 4th of July from 2,500 to about 40,000 people, Seward's downtown area becomes virtually blocked off to anything but pedestrian traffic. The premier event: a footrace up and down the mile-and-a-half-high, 3,000-foot trail up and down Mount Marathon. Complete with cliffs, waterfalls and scree fields, the event draws competitors from around the world. Fireworks displays, an abundance of street vendors and the annual Main Street Parade are only a few of the events to expect during this bustling holiday atmosphere.
WHEN: July 4
COST: Varies by event
PHONE: 907-224-8051 (Seward Chamber of Commerce)
Seward Silver Salmon Derby
For anglers seeking the adventure of catching one of the more feisty sportfish, the silver salmon, or coho, Seward offers its annual Silver Salmon Derby. The first prize is $10,000 for the heaviest fish caught during the tournament. Plus, there are dozens of ways to win available daily prizes. Shore fishermen, personal boaters and those choosing to hire charter vessels can all experience the fun.
WHERE: Resurrection Bay
WHEN: Aug. 10-19
COST: Daily tickets are $10. Tickets for the full event are $50