1. Homer, Alaska + Halibut Fishing Capital of the World
It’s pretty rare that we meet a guest to A Cabin by the Pond that doesn’t have a Homer, Alaska visit on their itinerary. Just 90 minutes from Alaska’s Kenai River City of Soldotna south on the Sterling Highway will lead you to this small-town GEM known as the “cosmic hamlet by the sea.” As you pull into Homer, get into the far right lane and pull off to the first pullout to enjoy an unsurpassed view of Alaska’s finest scene. Make your way down to town, stop at the indulgent Two Sisters Bakery or AJ’s Old Town Steakhouse for a scrumptious bite to eat. We also love Cosmic Kitchen in Homer! Down on the Homer Spit, visitors can park and walk the harbor, eat at loads of yummy spots like the Little Mermaid Cafe or the iconic Salty Dawg Saloon, go shopping, or beach-comb for hours. It’s even a blast watching locals fish the lagoon or right off of the end of the Homer Spit. It’s not uncommon to see massive bald eagles soaring right in front of your eyes or sea otters turning tricks in the cool shores of Kachemak Bay. If you’re a fishing fanatic, Homer has been dubbed as the “Halibut fishing capital of the world” so we think you’ll love it here!
2. Fish the World-Famous Kenai River
Well you don’t have to go far from A Cabin by the Pond to fish the world-famous Kenai River, but more than just the charming town of Soldotna will offer you epic fishing opportunities. We love heading to Sterling to fish from Bing’s Landing on the middle Kenai River for all species of wild Alaska salmon and trout. Our sister-city of Kenai also has some great spots on the lower Kenai River to reel in a healthy King Salmon or to spend hours flipping for reds. North of Sterling towards Cooper Landing, we love taking Skilak Lake and down to the Kenai River for a fun change of scenery for fishing, wildlife viewing, and photography. Whether you hope to fill the freezer or catch and release, the Kenai River is a mecca for outdoor adventure. Please respect the environment and our fisheries.
3. Seward, Alaska & Kenai Fjords National Park
Allow yourself 2.5-3 hours from A Cabin by the Pond to the incredible coastal community of Seward, Alaska. When you arrive in town, take a trip down to the harbor and enjoy the panoramic mountain beauty surrounding Resurrection Bay. A hike to the only road-accessible glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park, Exit Glacier, is a must-do experience if you have the time and want to stretch your legs. Choose between 1/4 mile up to 8+ miles leading to sweeping views of the glacier and Harding Icefield. Go dog-sledding Seavey’s Ididaride, home to three-time Iditarod champion Mitch Seavey. One of the most popular guest activities in the area is a Kenai Fjords Tours experience. Take a day-cruise through the waters of Kenai Fjords National Park for world-class views of nature and wildlife. The sounds of glaciers calving is positively mind-blowing!
4. Cooper Landing + Russian River + Hike the Falls
45 minutes from A Cabin by the Pond will lead you to the incredible mountain-town of Cooper Landing, population 289. Feast your eyes on the brilliant glacier hues of Kenai Lake and spend your day fly-fishing, kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding. Kenai Lake bleeds into the upper Kenai River, which is a great starting place in Cooper Landing to enjoy a scenic day-float with the family. Fishing enthusiasts head to the Russian River for prolific runs of wild Alaska salmon and breathtaking trout species in the mostly wadable river. If you don’t want to fish, hike the 2.3-mile (one way) out-and-back path to the Russian River Falls through dense the dense forest. At the top, you just might stop bears below feasting on salmon in the falls. Always be bear aware!
5. Fly-Out Bear Viewing or Fishing + Lake Clark National Park
A 3 hour round-trip flight-seeing experience from the Soldotna Airport (1 mile from A Cabin by the Pond) with Natron Air over to Cook Inlet is the very definition of wow-worthy! Land on the beach and watch breathtaking brown bears feast on clams, or hike through the back-country to observe these bears up-close-and-personal in their natural environment. Flying past Mt. Redoubt and Mt. Iliamna, two active volcanoes inside Lake Clark National Park, is a larger-than-life moment. At the end, when you sweep down over Double Glacier it’ll feel like you’re so close you can reach out and touch it! A shot of adrenaline in soaring through the sky over unsurpassed beauty is sure to leave a lasting impression! Want to enjoy an epic fly-out fishing trip to Wolverine Creek across the inlet? We highly recommend Talon Air & High Adventure Air.
6. Halibut Cove & The Saltry Restaurant
This “off the beaten path” adventure is not to be ignored. Head back down to the Homer Spit, 90 minutes south of your cozy cabin. Hop on the Danny J ferry and enjoy the scenic and vibrant waters of Kackemak Bay. Wildlife viewing is abundant and a trip to the bird sanctuary of Gull Island along the way is a really special experience. Enjoy a few hours to explore Halibut Cove, a delicious meal at The Saltry restaurant, and the beautiful art gallery. A truly special once-in-a-lifetime experience on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula.