Homer Alaska is a small town on the south end of the Kenai Peninsula in southcentral Alaska. It is 220 miles (350 km) south of Anchorage. The scenic drive from Anchorage to Homer takes you along Turnagain Arm, where you might see the white Beluga Whales. The trip also takes you along the shores of Cook Inlet where you can see snow covered Mount Iliamna and Mt Reboubt across the inlet. These are inactive volcanoes (usually!) and rise more than 10000 feet (3000 meters) above the sea. The town of Homer is home to about 5000 residents, with about 5000 more living in the surrounding communities. Within walking distance from the hostel there are many cafes, art galleries, and restaurants to check out and the award winning Pratt Museum is right around the corner. There is also lots of nightlife and visits from local and faraway bands. And, the Salty Dawg Saloon at the end of the spit. Homer is located on the shore of Kachemak Bay and is a gateway to the Kachemak Bay State Park where there are numerous hiking and kayaking opportunities. One of the most popular hikes is a day or overnight trip to Grewingk Glacier lake, which is filled with icebergs from the massive Grewingk Glacier. There are also opportunities for bearviewing trips across Cook Inlet by floatplane, whale watching trips, fishing from shore or boat, flightseeing to the Harding Icefield, ultra light flights to see the grandeur from above, boat trips to the villages of Halibut Cove and Seldovia. And plenty of Homerites and visitors to meet (extra special!)
Bishops Beach - the beach is about 1/4 mile (400 meters) away. You get great views of the mountains. You can see otters and seals, sometimes whales and porpoises, tidepooling on low tides (near full moon and new moon - see our tide page), find cool rocks and driftwood and other beachcombing stuff, make a bonfire or join someone else's bonfire, meditate, sing. You can hike for miles and miles here. However, if you walk more than 1 mile down beach you need to keep an eye on the tides. On high tides (+17ft -see our tide page) there are parts of the beach that become flooded up to the steep rocks. You don't want to be there then. So, on those days leave after high tide and plan to be done before high tide so you don't get stuck.
Pratt Museum Trail - 1/10 mile (100 meters) away - This is a short trail behind the museum. In the summer they have outdoor art displayed. Sometimes you see moose here and very, very rarely a black bear. It is a nice one to walk in the early morning or early evening if you want a short stroll and this is when you're most likely to see wildlife. Don't miss coming back to visit the outstanding Pratt Museum during the day!
Diamond Creek - Trailhead 5 miles (9km) on road towards Anchorage. The trailhead begins 1 mile down the well maintained dirt road on the left immediately after and across from Diamond Ridge Rd marked clearly with a green sign on the right. I almost always see seals and otters down there. The wildflowers on the way down and on the bluffs are spectacular during the summer, some people have seen whales from the beach here. Also many seabirds and quite a few eagles too. Great vies of Augustine and Iliamna volcanoes. This is one of my favorite hikes! See Article 1 and Article 2 for more info
Good article 2 about hiking near Homer (Diamond Creek)
Good article 3 about hiking near Homer (Diamond Creek and Homestead Trail)
this is a partial list of trails. We can tell you about other trails when you get here and the water taxi operators have much info about trails across bay click here for a good website resource click here for some more ideas
Stores for Outdoor Equipment
Kachemak Gear Shed - the place to go for outdoor clothes, boots, fishing gear, boat nuts and bolts and line and paint. (3 miles east of town
Nomar - Localy made outdoor gear. Not cheap, but the finest quality. You see a lot of this gear on the toughest fishermen.
Ulmers Drug and Hardware - Some clothing and gear.
Salmon - some of the charters fish for salmon too or check local fishing stores for details.
Bird watching webpage
Two Sisters Bakery (1/2 mile - 800 meters) This is a very yummy place! I was addicted to their gooey, nutty, scrumptious cinnamon rolls for quite some time so watch out. i also recommend their bread with chocolate inside (have them heat it up a bit. They also have great savories and bread, and many other amazing things. Their coffee gets lots of complements at the hostel. Many of their breads are baked in their wood fired oven which is also a work of art. And to top it off, they have a deck where you can see the mountains and the beach is only a few minutes further walk. Reviews
All Hopped Up (25 steps - 10 meters) This coffee shop is right next store. They also have chili (meat and vegetarian too), biscuits and gravy, display awesome photos. The owner Michael is all hopped up friendly! To get there, walk out of the Homer Hotel and look left!
Duncan House Diner (1/4 mile - 400 meters) Great place for breakfast. Eggs, bacon, biscuits and gravy, pancakes, etc, etc. To get there, turn left from the Homer Hotel and walk about 5 minutes, it is on your right. Reviews
Two Sisters Bakery (1/2 mile - 800 meters) This is a very yummy place! I was addicted to ther gooey, nutty, scrumptious cinnamon rolls for quite some time so watch out. i also recommend their bread with chocolate inside (have them heat it up a bit. They also have great savories and bread, and many other amazing things. Their coffee gets lots of complements at the hostel. Many of their breads are baked in their wood fired oven which is also a work of art. And to top it off, they have a deck where you can see the mountains and the beach is only a few minutes further walk. Reviews
Cosmic Kitchen (3/4 mile - 1km) This place is awesome. Some people think it's expensive fast food; but i think it's cheap really, really delicious inexpensive food. They have great seafood, burritos, burgers, and more. From the Homer hostel, take a left and walk about ten minutes, it's on your left. Reviews
Cafe Cups (1/10th mile - 150meters) Seafood, steaks, tacos, sandwiches, burgers. Very good food - a bit pricy - open for lunch and dinner. To get there turn left out of the Homer Hotel, walk a few minutes and you will see on the left; you can't miss it, it has giant cups on the outside! Reviews
This links list is growing and is by no means all inclusive. There is so much to do in Homer! Come explore it!
Great Books about the area
304 West Pioneer Avenue
Homer, Alaska 99603