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    Rugged coastline, towering peaks, and vast tundra create a landscape of awe-inspiring beauty and wild adventure in Alaska. The Kenai Peninsula, known as "Alaska's Playground," is home to loads of incredible destinations—the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, Kenai Fjords National Park, the Chugach Mountains for a start.


    The peninsula stretches about 150 miles southwest from the Chugach Mountains, south of Anchorage. It can be reached by plane, car, ferry, or even cruise ship.

    What to Do

    hiking, mountaineering, kayaking, rafting, boating, mountain biking, horseback riding, fishing, skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding, snowmobiling, ice climbing, wildlife viewing, night sky watching

    When to Go

    With the right gear, you can explore Alaska at any time of year. As a coastal region, the Kenai Peninsula is more temperate than inland areas. Temperatures range from an average high of 65°F in July to an average low of 10°F in December.

    Don’t Miss

    Take an epic canoe journey on the Swan Lake Canoe Trail System through the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, which encompasses nearly two million acres. Perfect for an overnight canoe camping trip or shorter jaunts if that’s your thing, the trail covers 60 miles across 30 lakes that are connected by short portages. Along the way you can fish, view a profusion of wildlife, and enjoy the incredible natural scenery.

    Search for spouting whales and adorable harbor seals while you kayak among the snow-covered mountains and blue-ice glaciers in Kenai Fjords National Park. Stay for a day and stop for a beachside lunch or camp on the spectacular coastline.

    Hike the Harding Icefield Trail for a view of this massive conglomeration of nearly 40 interconnected glaciers that cover 700 square miles. You’ll wind through the boreal forest, a beautiful tundra meadow, and high, rocky terrain to views of the icefield as far as the eye can see.

    Shred the biggest, burliest, steepest, powder-filled mountains in the world. If you ski or snowboard, you probably already know that Alaska has the earth’s most legendary slopes. Head to Alyeska Resort just south of Anchorage, or if you’re ready to splurge, go snowcat or heli skiing in the Chugach.

    Alaska is famous for its fishing, and the Kenai Peninsula gives you easy access to both freshwater and saltwater fishing in amazing surroundings. On the Kenai River, you can fish for a variety of salmon, trout, and char, while the ocean inlets and bays team with huge halibut, snapper, king crabs, and more.

    Surf the bore tide waves in the Turnagain Arm waterway just south of Anchorage. The bore tide occurs every day, turning out rolling surf waves, with bigger waves during a full or new moon and an even stronger pull during the fall and spring equinoxes when waves can reach up to 10 feet high.


    Insider Tips

    Layers, layers, layers. Alaska is famous for its changing weather, which can switch from warm to cold, sunny to snowy, or calm to windy in no time. Dress in layers to stay comfortable and dry no matter your adventure or what Mother Nature dishes out.

    Ninilchick is a tiny, far-flung village on the west coast of the Kenai Peninsula with a rich blend of indeginous and Russian culture. An historic Russian church sits on the blufftop and commands an unbelievable view of Cook Inlet and the volcanoes to the west. Make this unique enclave your basecamp for exploring the rest of the peninsula.

    If you’ve got the time, driving the Alaska Highway is one of the biggest adventures you can tackle. From Dawson Creek, British Columbia to Whitehorse, Yukon to Delta Junction, Alaska, the highway winds about 1,300 miles through incredible natural scenery and quirky roadside stops.

    You can only see the midnight sun in the summer and the northern lights in the winter, so plan accordingly. Take a guided photo trek to get some spectacular shots.

    Play Alaskan wildlife bingo with your travel buddies. Keep an eye out for the big five: moose, bear, caribou, dall sheep, and wolves. Bald eagles are pretty cool, too. And whales. And mountain goats. Make your own list! Whoever sees the most gets a round at the Salty Dawg Saloon.


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