Homer is known as “the end of the road,” but it makes a great starting point for a ton of awesome adventures.
Located 223 miles south of Anchorage, Homer is known for great halibut fishing and the famous Homer Spit. The good news is that if you’re not interested in fishing, there are still lots of really cool things to do in Homer.
In this post, I’m going to share the best things to do in Homer, Alaska.
Top Things To Do In Homer, Alaska
1. Walk the Homer Spit
If there’s anything iconic about Homer, it’s the Homer Spit. The Homer Spit is a 4.5-mile long gravel bar that extends into the bay and you can actually see it as you drive into Homer. The Spit is full of boardwalk shops and restaurants. I love walking around to see if there are any new places to eat or shops to check out.
2. Camp On the Beach
Alaska has beaches? Yes, they just tend to look a little different. During the summer, you’ll find a lot of locals camping on the beach along the Homer Spit. I usually prefer wild camping but there’s something exciting about camping on The Spit during the Fourth of July weekend. Plus, the Salty Dawg is within walking distance, which brings me to the next thing to do.
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3. Get a Drink at the Salty Dawg Saloon
From the outside, it looks like a lighthouse, but on the inside of the Salty Dawg, the first thing you’ll notice is that it’s COVERED in dollar bills. This is the only bar located on the Homer Spit and it’s a fun place to grab a drink, dance, and chat with the locals. The vibes here are laidback and you just never know what kind of people you’ll meet. Don’t forget to sign your name on a dollar and staple it to the wall. The Salty Dawg is cash only but they have an ATM inside.
4. Ride a Bike
The Homer Spit road is 4.5 miles out and sometimes the traffic is horrible. Riding a bike is a fun way to get around and go into town. We enjoyed biking the Homer Spit Bike Trail to Homer Brewing Company for beers, amazing oysters, and a few rounds of cornhole. If you’re more into fat biking then check out the ride along Bishops Beach.
5. Swing Into the Sunset
Hidden underneath some of the shops on the Homer Spit is a swing! When the tide is out it’s the perfect place to unleash your inner child and swing into the sunset. You’ll want to wait until low tide because you’ll be swinging in the water otherwise.
6. Get Your Fish On
Homer is known as the “Halibut Fishing Capital of the World.” Halibut is such a tasty fish and you can spend the day on a fishing charter catching some big ol’ halibut for yourself. If you prefer to catch salmon and don’t want to pay for a fishing charter, head to the “fishing lagoon.” The fishing lagoon is located on the Homer Spit and is stoked with both king and coho salmon. Don’t forget to purchase a sport fishing license for Alaska.
7. Watch Wildlife
There are plenty of opportunities to see wildlife around Homer. While you’re walking around the Homer Spit, keep an eye out for bald eagles soaring above you and humpback whales swimming in the sea. If you wander around the Homer Boat Harbor, you may find sea otters or seals hanging out.
8. Kayak Around Kachemak Bay
Homer is one of my favorite places to kayak in Alaska. There are so many different coves across Kachemak Bay that you can explore and it’s also a great way to see wildlife up close. You can rent a kayak and then hire a water taxi to take you across Kachemak Bay and drop you off at Kayak Beach. You can spend the day kayaking around Tutka Bay.
9. Eat Local Seafood
The amount of seafood that you can eat in Homer is never-ending. You can eat fish tacos, fish and chips, fresh oysters, King crab, halibut, seafood chowder, and so much more. If there’s anything you must try while you’re in Homer it’s the oysters from Jakolof Bay Oyster Company. They are huge! And, just so delicious.
10. Take a Bear-viewing Trip
I took a bear-viewing trip with my Mom a few years ago and it’s still one of my favorite things that I’ve done in Homer. We took a scenic flight across Cook Inlet to Lake Clark National Park and landed on a remote beach. We walked around the area with our naturalist guide and witnessed bears digging for clams in their natural habitat and completely ignoring us. It was amazing.
11. Stand Up Paddleboard to a Glacier
Grewingk Glacier is a popular day hike near Homer. You will have to hop on a water taxi to Kachemak Bay State Park and hike through a boreal forest in order to get to Grewingk Glacier. I actually took a guided paddleboarding trip and it was so much fun to get on the water and paddle towards the glacier. There was a ton of small icebergs floating around Grewingk Glacier Lake. If you don’t want to take a guided trip, just rent some paddleboards in Homer and bring them with you.
12. Sleep in a Yurt
If you want to get off the grid, Alaskan Yurt Rentals rents yurts in Kachemak Bay State Park. There’s nothing better than waking up surrounded by mountains and the sea. The yurts are fitted with sleeping platforms, a fire stove, a propane burner, and more. You will find plenty of hiking opportunities in Kachemak Bay State Park and if you’re interested in a multi-night kayaking trip, you can rent a few different yurts for an amazing adventure.
13. Hike Grace Ridge Trail
If you want to do some hiking in Homer, you can take a water taxi across Kachemak Bay and hike along one of the coolest ridgelines. Grace Ridge is a 9-mile hike that climbs through the rainforest towards 360-degree summit views of the surrounding mountains, fjords, and islands in Kachemak Bay. Click here for the full Grace Ridge Trail Guide.
14. Take a Ferry to Seldovia
Seldovia is a small coastal town that’s only a 45-minute ferry from Homer. It’s a fun and unique place to walk around because a lot of the buildings sit on stilts. You can spend the weekend camping at the beach, hiking the Otterbahn Trail, walking the historic boardwalk, and kayaking with sea otters.
15. Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival
Calling all birders! Homer is one of the most accessible places for shorebird viewing in Alaska. The Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival is a four-day event that celebrates the return of migratory shorebirds. This family-friendly event is held in May and is attended by thousands of birders from Alaska and the rest of the world.
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Do you have any questions on things to do in Homer, Alaska? Let me know in the comments.