Kenai Fjords National Park is located on the southern edge of the Kenai Peninsula in Southcentral, Alaska. Very few places on earth match the beauty of this particular Alaska national park. Twenty thousand years ago, during the last ice age, enormous glaciers carved U-shaped valleys that eventually filled with seawater. These geologic wonders were named fjords, encompassing most of the Kenai Fjords National Park coastline. Kenai Fjords is home to the enormous Harding Icefield, which feeds the numerous glaciers that flow to the sea. The Icefield draws adventurers for glacier expeditions each year. Kenai Fjords National Park also has one of the most accessible glaciers in Alaska, Exit Glacier. Numerous, non-strenuous, interpretive trails lead right to the face of the glacier. With all the park offers, Kenai Fjords is a must for any Southcentral Alaska vacation.
Kenai Fjords National Park tours during the summer season begin in early May and end in late September. The port town of Seward is the main access center for the National Park, where the Kenai Fjords NP Visitor Center is located. Seward can be reached from Anchorage on the Alaska Railroad or by touring by car on the scenic Seward Highway. Numerous cruise ships depart from Seward, so visiting Kenai Fjords National Park is possible before or after your Alaska Cruise. The main visitors center is open daily from 8:30 am to 7 pm during the summer months. There is also a nature center located at Exit Glacier, which offers ranger-guided hikes. Seward is a year-round port with numerous hotels, restaurants, and shops.
The best way to experience Kenai Fjords National Park is with a day cruise departing from Seward, with quite a few to choose from. Six to eight-hour cruises are recommended for guests wishing to experience the glaciers, wildlife, and history the park offers. A four-hour Resurrection Bay Cruise is perfect for visitors with limited time. Evening dinner cruises are also available. All of these cruises depart from the Seward small boat harbor, and the majority are timed to meet scheduled coach or train transfers coming from and departing to Anchorage.
There are two wilderness lodges located in the area. Kenai Fjords Wilderness Lodge is located on Fox Island in Resurrection Bay, just a one-hour boat cruise from Seward. Beach and mountain trail hiking are available on the island, and a 9.5-hour park cruise is included with overnight stays. One of our favorites, and the only Kenai Fjords lodge within the park boundaries, is Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge. The lodge is located on the shores of a protected lagoon, which offers dramatic views of the Pedersen Glacier. Activities at the lodge include sea kayaking, hiking, and coastal explorations via motorized skiff. En route to the lodge, guests enjoy a five-hour boat cruise into Kenai Fjords National Park.