18 Fun & Unique Things to Do in Seward | 2024 (with Photos)

Lara Mega

Lara Mega - Head of Content

Last Updated: March 26, 2024

Hey there! I'm Lara, and I can't wait to share with you all the exciting and one-of-a-kind activities to do in Seward. Discover the hidden gems of this incredible town and make your trip an unforgettable experience. Let's dive in!

Exit Glacier

Seward, Alaska, is a picturesque town located at the head of Resurrection Bay, Alaska. While it may be best known as the gateway to Kenai Fjords National Park, Seward offers much more than just stunning views of glaciers and marine wildlife.

In fact, there are plenty of unique things to do in Seward that will take your trip to the next level. From dog sled and kayak tours to abandoned gold mines, hidden waterfalls, glaciers, and national parks, Seward has it all.

The Travel-Lingual team will highlight some of the most offbeat and unforgettable activities to experience in Seward. So pack your bags and get ready for an adventure in this charming Alaskan town.

Most Recommended Thing to Do

Top Choice Hotel

TOP Choice Hotel

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Best Time to Visit

Summer is the best time to visit Seward.

Average Temperature

The average temperature in Seward is temperate.

Transportation Options

Bus, taxi, car rental, bike rental, walking, cruise ships

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

One of my favorite spots in Seward is the Kenai Fjords National Park, where you can witness the awe-inspiring beauty of glaciers and spot magnificent marine wildlife, such as whales and sea otters, as you sail through the pristine waters of Resurrection Bay.

When in Seward, make sure not to miss a trip to the Alaska SeaLife Center, a fascinating marine research facility where you can get up close and personal with a variety of marine animals, including puffins, sea lions, and harbor seals.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Valid passport (if you are not a US citizen)
  2. Comfortable walking shoes
  3. Weather-appropriate clothing

What Not to Miss

  1. Kenai Fjords National Park
  2. Alaska SeaLife Center
  3. Exit Glacier
  4. Seward Harbor
  5. Mount Marathon

What to Avoid

  1. Overpacking
  2. Overbooking
  3. Neglecting weather conditions

1. Admire the Marine Diversity of Seward at the Alaska Sealife Center

Alaska Sealife Center

The Alaska SeaLife Center, located in Seward, is a fantastic place to admire the marine diversity of Alaska. The center is dedicated to the conservation of marine life and offers visitors the opportunity to learn about the fascinating creatures that inhabit Alaska's waters.

The Alaska Sealife Center has various exhibits that showcase the diverse range of species that call Alaska home, including sea lions, harbor seals, sea otters, and various species of fish.

Visitors can also participate in guided tours and watch live feedings, adding to the overall experience. You will also learn why Silver Salmon is such an attraction here.

The Alaska SeaLife Center is a must-visit for anyone interested in marine biology or simply looking to admire the beauty of Alaska's marine life.

2. Check out the Seward Community Library

Seward Community Library

One of the many things to do in Seward is visit this library and museum. The Seward Community Library Museum offers a wide range of books, audiobooks, DVDs, and other resources for community members to borrow.

The Seward community library also provides public computers, and Wi-Fi access, and hosts various events and programs for all ages. For example, kids can read about dog sledding and fun hiking trails.

Research some books on Fjords National Park or Fox Island, and read about the Alaska Railroad and its history. Or if you are really interested in history read about Downtown Seward.

Downtown Seward was established in 1903 as a result of the Alaska Railroad's construction, which brought commerce and trade to the area. In 1964, the area was devastated by a massive earthquake and subsequent tsunami, leading to extensive rebuilding efforts.

3. Explore Exit Glacier

Exit Glacier

Exit Glacier is a popular tourist attraction located in Seward, Alaska. This is just one of the cool things to do in Seward. It is part of Kenai Fjords National Park and can be accessed via a short hike.

The Exit Glacier has been receding for decades due to climate change, but it still offers stunning views and opportunities for hiking, ice climbing, and wildlife viewing. The area surrounding Exit Glacier is also home to a variety of flora and fauna.

To go to Exit Glacier you will need Exit Glacier Guides. Exit Glacier Nature Center is a visitor center located near the Exit Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park. The center offers information about the glacier, its history, and its ecosystem. It features exhibits on the geology and ecology of the area, as well as a short film about the glacier.

The center also provides educational programs and ranger-led walks during the summer months. Visitors can obtain hiking information, maps, and permits at the center, as well as purchase souvenirs and snacks.

4. Paddle by the Magnificent Bear Glacier

Bear Glacier

Paddling by the magnificent Bear Glacier is an unforgettable experience for anyone visiting Alaska. Located near Seward, the Bear Glacier is the largest glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park, stretching over 13 miles long and 2 miles wide.

The glacier is surrounded by stunning blue waters and towering mountains, creating a breathtaking backdrop for paddlers. Visitors can rent a kayak or join a guided tour to explore the glacier up close and witness the beauty of the ice formations and the wildlife that inhabit the area.

Sea kayaking by the Bear Glacier and other nearby glaciers is a unique way to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Alaska and create memories that will last a lifetime. Kayak adventures in Alaska are unbeatable.

5. Explore Resurrection Bay on a Wildlife Cruise

Resurrection Bay

Exploring Resurrection Bay on a wildlife cruise is a must-do activity for anyone visiting Seward, Alaska. The Resurrection Bay is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including humpback whales, orcas, sea otters, sea lions, and porpoises, as well as various species of birds.

Visitors can join a guided tour to explore the bay and witness these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. The tours typically offer knowledgeable guides who provide insights into the wildlife and the local ecology, making the experience both educational and exciting.

Cruising through the pristine waters of Resurrection Bay offers a unique perspective of the beauty of Alaska and its incredible wildlife, making it an unforgettable experience. Scenic Resurrection Bay has something to offer to everyone no matter the age.

Note that you can also do a glacier cruise to explore Seward at sea.

Adventure activities on Resurrection Bay

Resurrection Bay offers a wide range of adventure activities for visitors. One popular activity is sea kayaking, which allows visitors to explore the bay's stunning coastline and wildlife up close.

Other activities in Resurrection Bay include fishing charters, and wildlife cruises, which offer opportunities to spot whales, otters, and other marine life. You can also get some tour boats.

For the more adventurous, there are also opportunities for glacier hiking, ice climbing, and heli-skiing in the nearby Chugach Mountains. Whatever your preference, Resurrection Bay has something for everyone seeking adventure.

6. Watch the Salmon Fight Gravity at the Bear Creek Weir

Bear Creek Weir

Watching the salmon fight gravity at the Bear Creek Weir is a unique and fascinating experience for anyone visiting Seward, AK. The weir is a structure built across Bear Creek to monitor the migration of salmon in the area.

During the summer and fall months, visitors can witness the incredible sight of salmon swimming upstream against the strong currents and leaping up the steps of the weir to reach their spawning grounds.

The spectacle of the salmon migrating is a sight to behold and offers an excellent opportunity for nature enthusiasts and photographers. Visitors can also learn about the salmon's life cycle and the efforts to conserve their populations through educational displays and ranger-led programs.

Watching the salmon fight gravity at the Bear Creek Weir is an unforgettable experience that showcases the beauty and resilience of Alaska's wildlife. For nature lovers, the Iditarod National Historic Trail is also a must-visit Seward attraction.

7. Soak in the Beauty of Fox Island

Fox Island

Soaking in the beauty of Fox Island is a peaceful and rejuvenating experience for anyone coming to Seward, AK. The island is located in Resurrection Bay and is accessible only by boat, adding to its remote and tranquil atmosphere.

Visitors can take a scenic boat ride from Seward to the island and explore its rugged coastline, pristine beaches, and lush forests. The island's natural beauty provides an excellent opportunity for hiking, birdwatching, and wildlife viewing, with the chance to spot eagles, sea otters, and steller sea lions in their natural habitat.

Visitors can also relax and soak in the island's serene surroundings or indulge in a delicious seafood meal at the Fox Island Day Lodge. Soaking in the beauty of Fox Island is a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of city life and offers a chance to connect with nature in one of Alaska's most beautiful locations.

8. Hike Up to Fort McGilvray and Soak in the View

Fort McGilvray

Hiking up to Fort McGilvray is a thrilling and rewarding experience for anyone exploring Seward, AK. The fort, located on the top of Caines Head, was built during World War II and played a significant role in defending Alaska's coast.

The hike up to the fort is a challenging 3.5-mile trail that passes through lush forests, rugged terrain, and stunning mountain views. Once at the top, visitors can explore the fort's ruins and soak in the breathtaking views of Resurrection Bay and the surrounding mountains.

The fort's location provides a perfect vantage point to watch marine wildlife such as steller sea lions and whales, adding to the experience's overall beauty. Visitors can also camp overnight at the nearby campground, making it an ideal place to immerse themselves in Alaska's wilderness.

Hiking up to Fort McGilvray is a perfect way to experience Alaska's history and natural beauty in one unique and unforgettable adventure. If you don't like hiking you can always rent a car and go on a jeep trail.

9. Have a Thrilling Time at the Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures

Stoney Creek

Having a thrilling time at the Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures is a must-do for anyone seeking an adrenaline rush in Seward, AK. The adventure park offers an exciting zipline tour that takes visitors through the lush Alaskan rainforest, providing a unique perspective of the surrounding wilderness.

The tour consists of nine zipline segments, including a 1000-foot-long zip and a suspension bridge that offers stunning views of the Resurrection River. The zipline tour is led by experienced guides who ensure the visitors' safety and provide information about the local ecology and wildlife.

Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures also offers a thrilling ropes course with a range of obstacles and challenges, providing a fun and challenging experience for visitors of all ages.

The adventure park's commitment to safety, fun, and environmental stewardship makes it a perfect place for families and thrill-seekers alike to have a thrilling time in Seward.

10. Test Your Might at Mount Marathon

Mount Marathon

Testing your might at Mount Marathon is a challenging and exhilarating experience for anyone coming to Seward. The mountain is a local landmark that towers over the town, offering a stunning backdrop to the surrounding wilderness.

Every year, on the 4th of July, the town hosts the Mount Marathon Race, a grueling and prestigious foot race that attracts thousands of visitors and athletes from all over the world. The race involves ascending and descending the mountain's steep and rugged terrain, covering a distance of three miles and gaining over 3000 feet in elevation.

The race's challenging terrain and unpredictable weather conditions make it a true test of physical and mental endurance, and only the toughest and most skilled athletes can complete it.

For those not up to the challenge of racing, hiking up Mount Marathon is still a rewarding experience, offering stunning views of the town and the surrounding wilderness. Testing your might at Mount Marathon is a perfect way to experience the beauty and toughness of Alaska's landscape and culture.

11. Explore the Kenai Fjords National Park sight Alaska's Wildlife

Kenai Fjords National Park

Exploring the Kenai Fjords National Park is a must-do for anyone coming to Seward AK, who wants to witness the state's abundant wildlife. The park covers over 600,000 acres and is home to an impressive variety of wildlife, including sea otters, seals, whales, and numerous species of birds.

Visitors can explore the park's rugged coastline and pristine waters by taking a tour boat, providing an excellent opportunity to view the park's diverse marine life up close. The tours offer a range of experiences, including sightseeing cruises, wildlife viewing tours, and fishing excursions.

Visitors can also hike on the park's numerous trails, offering an opportunity to witness the park's terrestrial wildlife, including bears, moose, and mountain goats. The park's stunning landscape includes glaciers, fjords, and rugged mountains, offering a breathtaking backdrop to the wildlife viewing experience.

The Kenai Fjords National Park is a perfect place to connect with nature and witness some of Alaska's most iconic wildlife in their natural habitat.

Kenai Fjords Tours

There are several great Kenai Fjords tours available. Here are some popular options:

  • Kenai Fjords National Park Cruise: This 6-hour tour takes you on a scenic cruise through the national park, with opportunities to see glaciers, wildlife, and breathtaking scenery. You'll travel on a comfortable boat with an onboard naturalist who will provide information about the park's geology and ecology.
  • Northwestern Fjord Tour: This 8.5-hour tour takes you on a smaller, more intimate boat through the park's remote Northwestern Fjord, which is home to some of the park's most dramatic scenery and wildlife. The tour includes a hike to a glacier, a picnic lunch, and plenty of time to take in the stunning surroundings.

12. Survey the Land with a Helicopter Glacier Landing Tour

Glacier Landing

One of the popular things to do in Seward is to get a bird's eye view of the land on a helicopter glacier landing tour. This is an unforgettable experience for anyone coming to Seward.

The tour takes visitors on a scenic flight over the Chugach Mountains and the Kenai Peninsula, offering stunning views of the surrounding wilderness. The helicopter tour includes a landing on a glacier, providing a unique opportunity to explore and experience the glacier up close.

Visitors can walk on the glacier's surface, observe its unique features, and take in the stunning views of the surrounding landscape. The tour includes an experienced pilot and a knowledgeable guide who provides information about the area's geology, wildlife, and history.

The tour also offers the opportunity to witness wildlife such as mountain goats and Dall sheep from a unique perspective. The helicopter glacier landing tour is a perfect way to experience the beauty and grandeur of Alaska's wilderness and witness some of the state's most iconic landscapes.

13. Visit Seward Waterfront Park in Seward, AK

Seward Waterfront Park

One of the best things to do in Seward is visit the Waterfront Park. Here, you will gain access to a skate park, picnic tables, and an entrance to the beach.

The best time to visit the park is up to you. The summer months (June to August) are popular for hiking, wildlife viewing, and boat tours. The winter months (December to February) offer opportunities for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and viewing the northern lights.

The shoulder seasons of spring (April to May) and fall (September to October) offer fewer crowds and the chance to see wildlife such as whales and sea otters.

If you are looking for more water-based activities, Bear Lake is a short drive north, while Lowell Point is a short drive south. Enjoy tide-pooling at Lowell Point during low tide.

14. Take Some Pictures of Harding Ice Field in Seward

Harding Ice field

The Harding Icefield is a vast expanse of ice and snow located in the Kenai Mountains near Seward, Alaska. Covering over 700 square miles, the ice field is a remnant of the last ice age and is estimated to be at least 23,000 years old.

The Harding Icefield feeds over 40 glaciers in the surrounding area, including the popular Exit Glacier. Visitors can hike to the edge of the ice field and take in panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers.

The hike is challenging and requires proper planning and equipment, but the views of the ice field and the surrounding wilderness are well worth the effort. As you can see Harding Icefield is worth the trip. You might even get a picture of some bald eagles flying by.

15. Go to Two Lakes Park in Seward AK

Two Lakes Park

Two Lakes Park is a great place to relax during the summer months. This is one of the best places for hiking in Seward. The two lakes trail is great for family hikes and provides a great day of fun on a budget.

Please note that hiking trails here can be dangerous during the winter months.

If you are an experienced hiker with good equipment, you can also tackle the Harding Icefield Trail or check out Glacial Valley while in Seward.

16. Glacier Dog Sledding in Seward, Alaska

Dog Sledding in Seward, Alaska

If you want to experience an iconic Alaska dog sled tour, Seward is the place to be. This is one of the most exciting and sought-after things to do in Seward, AK.

Some of the helicopter tours combine with dog sledding ventures as well, so you can enjoy both thrills in one trip. You will experience views of Holgate Glacier, Aialik Glacier, and Bear Glacier before settling on an ice sheet to meet the dogs.

Glacier dog sledding is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and not something you should miss out on when in Alaska.

17. Visit the Chugach National Forest in Seward, Alaska

Chugach National Forest

Chugach National Forest is located in south-central Alaska and is the second-largest national forest in the United States. It covers over 6,900 square miles and offers a wide range of recreational opportunities, including hiking, fishing, hunting, skiing, and wildlife viewing.

The forest is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including bears, moose, eagles, and salmon. Chugach National Forest is also home to several glaciers, including the popular Portage Glacier, which can be viewed from the Visitor Center.

The forest is a popular destination for visitors to Alaska and offers a unique wilderness experience.

18. Explore the Alaska Railroad

Alaska Railroad

The Alaska Railroad is a Class II railroad that operates in the state of Alaska, United States. It runs from the port of Seward in the south to the city of Fairbanks in the north, covering over 470 miles of track.

The Alaska Railroad was established in 1914 as a way to transport goods and people to and from Alaska's interior, and it remains an important mode of transportation for the state today.

The Alaska Railroad Depot is a historic building located in downtown Anchorage that serves as the main station for the railroad. The depot is a popular attraction for visitors to the city and features a gift shop, restaurant, and museum exhibit showcasing the history of the railroad.

Related Article: Best Things to Do in Anchorage

FAQs About Things to Do in Seward

Let's have a look at what the most frequently asked questions regarding things to do in Seward, Alaska.

How do you spend a day in Seward?

It is easy to spend a day in Seward, Alaska. Visit harbor seals at the Sealife Center, take a boat tour in the Kenai Fjords from Small Boat Harbor, and don't forget to check out Seward Waterfront Park. If you love boats, Seward Harbor is a bustling hub of activity that you simply must check out.

Is Seward Alaska worth visiting?

Yes, Seward, Alaska is worth visiting. Located on the Kenai Peninsula, it is a beautiful coastal town with stunning natural beauty and plenty of activities to offer. From its National Parks and spawning salmon to the scenic Seward Highway and striking Bear Glacier, Seward, Alaska has it all.

Can you walk around Seward Alaska?

Yes, you can walk around Seward, Alaska. The town is relatively small and compact, so most of the main attractions, shops, and restaurants are within walking distance of each other.

There are also several scenic walking trails in the area, including the Historic Iditarod Trail, which runs through town, and the Waterfront Walking Path, offering beautiful views of Resurrection Bay.

What is unmissable in Seward, Alaska?

While in Seward, you cannot miss a trip to the Resurrect Art Coffee House for breakfast, just a short drive from the Cruise Ship Terminal. You should also try to spot salmon swimming upstream while in town, as this is a breathtaking sight.

Should I visit Seward or Fairbanks?

While both Fairbanks and Seward offer unique experiences, Seward's stunning coastal scenery, diverse wildlife, and accessible outdoor activities make it an ideal choice for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers. You can also check our list of things to do in Fairbanks.

Summing Up: Unique Things to Do in Seward, Alaska

There are plenty of things to do in Seward, Alaska. This place is a hidden gem that offers a plethora of unique and offbeat activities for travelers seeking an adventure in Alaska.

From watching sea birds and going on kayak adventures hiking to witnessing the annual Mount Marathon Race, Seward, Alaska has something to offer everyone.

The natural beauty and rich history of Seward make it a destination worth visiting.

So, the next time you find yourself planning a trip to Alaska, make sure to add Seward to your itinerary and experience all the unique things it has to offer.