This picturesque town features mountain scrambles, ocean cruises and summer breezes
On the eastern tip of the Kenai Peninsula is a water-meets-mountains community where going up is just as exciting as going out. Whether you scramble up the famed Mount Marathon flanking town, or venture into the breezy Resurrection Bay, you are assured a memorable time. Exploring this small town is a treat because it’s close to Anchorage (only a 2.5-hour drive from the city) and generally pretty low key.
However, there are some days – like when the cruise ships come in or the mountain runners descend for the July Fourth Mount Marathon Race, that this town swells to thousands. The usual population of 2,500 can double on July Fourth, when the biggest mountain race of the year gets underway.
Spreading out on the other end of town is Kenai Fjords National Park and Resurrection Bay, an oceanfront playground that affords wonderful sea kayaking, fishing and exploring. Bear Creek and Lowell Point are adjacent to Seward, and offer wilderness access as well. Exit Glacier is also a great destination with longer hikes extending from the well-worn tourist paths.
Seward’s maritime climate brings lots of rain and temperatures that are a bit milder in the winter. In the summer it can be rainy, too, but if you wait long enough, the clouds often rise and your are rewarded with a clear day that makes you want to call this town home. No matter the weather, it’s they type of place that almost demands you spend your time outside.
More information is available at: Seward Chamber of Commerce, (www.seward.com)
TOP FOUR EVENTS IN SEWARD
Seward Mermaid Festival (Harbor Opening Weekend)
This event is to celebrate everything “mermaid” and raise awareness of the necessity of clean oceans and healthy sea habitats. This event includes live music, food and art vendors, beer garden, kid zone, face painting, mermaid costume contest, dunk tank and more. (www.seward.com)
Seward Halibut Tourney
This early halibut tournament season makes it easier to reserve a seat on the many charter vessels in Seward. Win daily complimentary tourney cap and tagged fish prizes. Cash prizes for the three first heaviest fish will be awarded at the end of the tournament. (www.seward.com/welcome-to-seward-alaska/halibut-tournament-june/)
Mount Marathon Race
This iconic event celebrates July Fourth with a scramble up the 3,022-foot mountain overlooking Seward. Watch some of the world’s best mountain racers battle for bragging rights, and enjoy a street festival, July Fourth parade and more. (mmr.seward.com)
Seward Silver Salmon Derby
This is one of the oldest and largest fishing derbies in the state. There are more than 40 different prizes and categories to win, including mystery fish, 49th heaviest fish, hotel stays, Alaska SeaLife Center Family Adventure passes, kayak trip and more. (www.seward.com/welcome-to-seward-alaska/seward-silver-salmon-derby-august/)