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Homer - Alaska

Homer: the Mountains and the Bay

Homer Hotels | What to See & Do | Camping

Lying beside a long sand spit at the end of Kenai Peninsula, Homer boasts a mild climate and gorgeous scenery, with the dramatic Kenai Mountains across beautiful Kachemak Bay. Huge halibut regularly run to over 200 pounds. Homer is home to many artists and crafts people, and the town features several small galleries and craft shops.

A small gold rush at nearby Sunrise and Hope brought settlers to the area in the 1890s. One of the most colorful of the prospectors, Homer Pennock, gave his name to the town. Gold ran out quickly but fishermen and homesteaders settled the area during the 1920s, encouraged partly by the rich veins of exposed coal, some of it lying right on the beach. The highway connected Homer with the rest of Alaska in the early 1950s. Some 4,000 people live here, engaged in fish processing, transportation, and tourism. The 4-mile spit has a small boat harbor, boardwalks, restaurants, a motel at the end of the spit, and the unique ambiance of the Salty Dawg Saloon in a former lighthouse, which looks like it's going to fall down at any time. The structure is sturdy, however, and even the loud bands that play here in the evening can't shake the boards loose.

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What to See & Do

The Chamber of Commerce provides information in its office on Pioneer Avenue, (907) 235-7740. Pick up the walking tour brochure and the visitors guide. Brochures on hotels, fishing charters, and tours are also available here. The Pratt Museum, 3779 Bartlett Street, (907) 235-8635, also offers information as well as an outstanding collection of Alaskan plant specimens. The Marine Gallery features a whale skeleton and displays of fish, shellfish, shorebirds, otters, and Native history dioramas.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge has an office and visitor information center in Homer. The center is open daily during the summer and on weekdays during winter months. There are displays, video presentations, and a shop that sells books and pamphlets on refuge wildlife.

Skyline Drive offers a drive along the top of the bluffs that rise over Homer. East Hill Road and West Hill Road lead to this area. You'll see masses of fireweed and other wild flowers, including lupines, roses, paintbrush, and wild geraniums.

Homer is one of the best fishing centers in the state, with huge halibut caught regularly, as well as salmon. The annual halibut derby is held from May 1 through Labor Day. More than $35,000 in cash prizes are awarded each year for the biggest fish and tagged halibut. Catches are often over 200 pounds. Derby tickets can be obtained at the little information kiosk and charter fishing offices on the Homer Spit. Many charter boats are available for fishing cruises. To obtain advance information on these charters, write to the Homer Charter Association, P.O. Box 148, Homer, AK 99603.

A "must" side-trip is a short boat cruise to Halibut Cove, a picturesque village of 50 people. This is a beautiful spot, with boardwalks, art galleries, and dining on a ship, the "Saltry." For a fishing-boat cruise (day cruise or evening dinner cruise), call Halibut Cove Experiences at (907) 235-8110.

Camping

For State Park camping information,contact Alaska State Parks at (907) 262-5581 -- or go here.

Homer Spit Campground
P.O. Box 1196, Homer AK 99603 -- (907) 235-8206
This private campground is located at the end of the Homer Spit, close to restaurants, the Salty Dawg, Land's End Resort, and the boardwalk shops. The operation has hot showers, restrooms, electrical hookups, and dump station. Halibut charters are available. The campground operates a 60-foot boat called the MV Endeavor, which takes visitors out on puffin-viewing tours.

Driftwood Inn & RV Park
Phone: 907-235-8019 -- Toll-free: 800-478-8019
135 W Bunnell Avenue, Homer, AK 99603

Oceanview RV Park
Phone: 907-235-3951 -- Fax: 907-235-1065
455 Sterling Hwy, Homer, AK 99603

Where to Stay

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The town of Homer has more than 30 motels, inns and lodges. There are state, local and private campgrounds including a campground on the Spit. The following are among the hotels and motels in town:

Alaska Ridgetop Inn
Phone: 907-235-1895 -- Toll-free: 888-357-4343
65055 Nearly Level Avenue, Homer, AK 99603

Alaska Windjammer Suites Motel
Phone: 907-235-9761 -- Toll-free: 888-730-2770
412 E Pioneer Avenue, Homer, AK 99603

Alaska's Pioneer Inn & Guest House
Phone: 907-235-5670 -- Toll-free: 800-782-9655
PO Box 1430, Homer, AK 99603

Bay View Inn
Toll-free: 877-235-8485
PO Box 804, Homer, AK 99603

Beluga Lake Lodge & Restaurant
Phone: 907-235-5995 204 Ocean Drive Loop, Homer, AK 99603

Best Western Bidarka Inn
Phone: 907-235-8148 -- Toll-free: 866-685-5000
575 Sterling Hwy, Homer, AK 99603

Driftwood Inn
Phone: 907-235-8019 -- Toll-free: 800-478-8019
135 W Bunnell Avenue, Homer, AK 99603

Homer Inn & Spa
Phone: 907-235-1000 -- Toll Free: 800-294-7823
PO Box 301, Homer, AK 99603

Kachemak Ridge House
Phone: 907-226-3303
4175 East Hill Road, Homer, AK 99603

Land's End Resort
Phone: 907-235-0400 -- Toll-free: 800-478-0400
4786 Homer Spit Road, Homer, AK 99603

Bed & Breakfasts

A Memorable Experience B&B and Cottage
Toll-free: 800-720-9275 Ext 7374 -- Phone: 907-235-7374
Rosewood Court, Homer, AK 99603

A Room With A View
Phone: 907-235-3706
840 Rosebud Court, Homer, AK 99603

Aloha B & B
Phone: 907-235-0607--Toll-free: 877-355-0607
PO Box 2044, Homer, AK 99603

 

 

 

 

 

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