Kodiak Alaska Travel Guide

Kodiak is one of outback Alaska’s most pleasant towns; big enough to find uninterrupted WiFi and a decent latte, but small enough to be laid-back and friendly. The locals are a friendly bunch who love their town and aren’t afraid to tell you.  Kodiak is wild, remote and stunningly beautiful, a rugged outpost on Alaska’s famed “Emerald Isle.” Accessible only by plane or ferry, Kodiak is nearly 200 miles offshore from Homer and truly off the beaten path. But a visit here will find you in a different Alaska, one of extreme wilderness and beauty, populated by hearty, friendly frontier folks. Climb lush mountains rising out of the sea, fish meandering rivers filled with salmon, beach comb surf-pounded sand beaches while spotting for whales and look for the famed Kodiak brown bear. You’ll also find a small, cosmopolitan city—with excellent museums, talented artists and fine food.  Our Kodiak Alaska Travel Guide has everything you need to start planning your Kodiak Alaska vacation.  Also visit more great Alaska beach locations by <<Clicking Here.>>   Need to know what to pack for your Alaskan Vacation?  << Click Here >>

When to Visit Kodiak Alaska

Average temperatures on Kodiak Island vary greatly.  If you’re looking for the very warmest time to visit Kodiak Island, the hottest months are June, July, and August. The warmest time of year is generally mid July where highs are regularly around 64.7°F with temperatures rarely dropping below 49.3°F at night.  The busiest months for tourism in Kodiak Island is going to be June, July, and August. Prices for hotels and flights will be most expensive during these months, though you can save if you purchase well in advance.

Getting Around

The settlement of Kodiak is on the east side of the island, with three main roads splintering from the city center, so a set of wheels is essential to experiencing Kodiak beyond the downtown block.  There’s no public transport in Kodiak. You can rent a car at the airport, but it isn’t cheap. Bank on around $60 to $90 a day. Other options are to call a taxi, walk, or – if you’re heading outside town – rent a bicycle from 58 Degrees North.

Kodiak Area Attractions

Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center

This excellent visitor center focuses on the Kodiak brown bear, the most famous resident of the refuge, with an exhibit room that’s especially well suited to children, a short film on the bears and a bookstore. A variety of kids’ programs are offered, with the schedule posted on the front door. Interested in seeing a big bruin? Stop here first.

Alutiiq Museum & Archaeological Repository

The Alutiiqs (not to be confused with the Aleuts) are the subject of this brilliant Alaska Native museum. They were the original inhabitants of the Kodiak archipelago and many of them remain members of the Russian Orthodox Church. Like many native groups, their population was decimated during the 19th century, and the museum protects some precious native heritage.

Buskin River State Recreation Site
Whether you’re looking for a campsite or fishing hole, glassing for birds, watching for bears, or beachcombing, this recreation site is a great spot to experience the wonders of Kodiak Island without traveling too far. There are camping sites for everything from tents to large RVs, which are given on a first-come, first-served basis with prices from $10-$28. There are also two picnic shelters and a handicapped accessible fishing platform. The park is centered on the Buskin river, one of the most productive fisheries on the roads around Kodiak. You can try your hand at casting sockeye, coho, and pink salmon and as well as dolly varden trout. There’s an annual pink salmon derby for kids. If you have the chance to be in town while it’s happening you’ll likely see kids lining up shoulder to shoulder to hook a “humpy.”  If you aren’t into fishing, there’s excellent wildlife viewing and bird watching on the beach and in the areas below the bridge and for those interested in hiking and mountain biking, strike off into the spruce forest along old trails that connect a number of old WWII buildings.
St. Paul Boat Harbor

The pulse of this city can be found in its two boat harbors. St Paul Boat Harbor is downtown and the larger of the two. Begin with the Harbor Walkway, where a series of interesting interpretive displays line the boardwalk above the docks. Then descend to the rows of vessels, where you can talk to the crews.

 

 

Mill Bay Beach Park

One of the easiest beaches to access from town, this park has a nice overlook and excellent waterfront with picnic sites. In late July through September, you can fish from the beach for silver and pink salmon. Wander down the beach to a small creek that is filled with salmon in late summer. Surfers ride storm waves here, and some locals even scuba dive in the cove. On warm summer days, the local kids hit this beach, showing their Alaskan grit by swimming in the cool waters.  Birding is good year round, but it’s especially great during the winter when Harelequin Ducks, loons, eagles, Red-necked and Horned Grebes, Pigeon Guillemots, gulls, Common Murres, Steller’s Eider, Long-tailed Ducks and many other birds take advantage of the sheltered waters here.

Things to Do in Kodiak

Sea Hawk Air

A high quality seaplane service for Kodiak Island and the Alaska Peninsula. They offer the highest quality Bear Viewing Tours around, let Jo Murphy and Rolan Ruoss guide you through this once in a lifetime experience with their insurmountable knowledge.  For more information call 907-486-8282, or visit them on the web at Sea Hawk Air.

Kodiak Salmon Riders

Experience Kodiak’s most beautiful wilderness ATV excursion! With lifelong Kodiak River Guide Julian Hiner. Traveling 20 plus miles to view Kodiak’s wild brown bears and hook Wild Alaskan Salmon!  For more information call 907-539-2987, or visit them on the web at Kodiak Salmon Riders.

Kayak Kodiak

They offer half-day kayaking expeditions around Kodiak Island! Search the clear blue waters with us for puffins, sea stars, Stellar sea lions, playful sea otters, and more! They offer paddle instruction before every tour if you’re a novice to kayaking. Choose to stay near to town or head out the road for your kayak adventure! Looking forward to exploring our Alaskan Isle with you!  For more information call 907-512-5112, or visit them on the web at Kayak Kodiak.

Kingfisher Aviation

Bear Viewing Tours and Float plane Service on Kodiak Island since 1998. They operate small custom tours in our Bush Hawk float planes from the city of Kodiak to the Kodiak Refuge and Katmai National Park.  For more information call 907-86-5155, or visit them on the web at Kingfisher Aviation.

Fish N’ Chips Charters

Get aboard the charter vessel Fish Hawk to curb your fishing appetite by landing Pacific Halibut, King Salmon, Ling Cod or Rockfish or Bring the family for an a sightseeing adventure, see Whales, Sea Lions, Sea Otters, Bald Eagles, Puffins, Porpoise and More! Captain Dave, a Kodiak Native has more than 27 years of fishing experience. Enjoy Kodiak with them and make your own memories today!  For more information call 907-539-6135, or visit them on the web at Fish N’ Chips Charters.

Best Kodiak Restaurants

$-Inexpensive $$-Moderate $$$-Pricey $$$$-Ultra High End

$$ – $$$  Kodiak Hana

The best fish in Kodiak are served in this historic power plant which has been beautifully renovated into a Japanese seafood restaurant. The waterfront location places you on an outdoor deck, or in a solarium, watching fishing boats glide right past, while feasting on almost all-local sushi and seafood, or excellent udon, soba and yakisoba noodles.  For more information call 907-481-1088, or visit them on the web at Kodiak Hana.

$$ – $$$  Henry’s Great Alaskan Restaurant

Featuring local beers on tap to enjoy with your meal, a full bar and pull-tabs in a friendly establishment. The restaurant features historical wall art and local artifacts from Kodiak, Captain Cooks voyages, Russian and Alutiiq History. Henry “Legs” LeGrue was brought to the Island in the Navy and chose to make Kodiak his home and place of business. His fine food and entertainment has been a fixture in Kodiak since 1957. For more information call 907-486-8844, or visit them on the web at Henry’s Great Alaskan Restaurant.

$$ – $$$  Rendezvous Bar & Grill

A good place to have a meal a little ways out of town. Friday night is steak night and draws a good crowd and the bar frequently features bands for your listening and dancing pleasure. The decor is replete with local artwork, some created by the owner. There is a full bar and lovely waitstaff to serve. On sunny days take your drink out back to the deck and soak up some sun and mountain views.  For more information call 907-487-2233, or visit them on the web at Rendezvous Bar & Grill.

$$ – $$$  Olds River Inn & Brewery

It’s way off the beaten path and a solid 30-45 minutes outside of town, but well worth it.  Great service and excellent food.  They have several craft beers on tap, and some locally made there.  Try the port belly sliders!  For more information call 907-486-6040, or visit them on the web at Olds River Inn & Brewery.

$$ – $$$  The Chart Room

Fine dining in Kodiak is synonymous with the Chart Room Restaurant, serving a full breakfast and dinner menu including daily specials. Alaska King Crab is served year-round. Other favorites include generous portions of Prime Rib and Alaskan Fish and Chips.  Their full-service lounge carries a wide selection of fine wines, local Alaskan beers with 14 beers on tap, and your favorite cocktails. For more information call 907-486-5712, or visit them on the web at The Chart Room.

Best Kodiak Bars

Rendezvous Bar & Grill

A good place to have a meal a little ways out of town. Friday night is steak night and draws a good crowd and the bar frequently features bands for your listening and dancing pleasure. The decor is replete with local artwork, some created by the owner. There is a full bar and lovely waitstaff to serve. On sunny days take your drink out back to the deck and soak up some sun and mountain views.  For more information call 907-487-2233, or visit them on the web at Rendezvous Bar & Grill.

B&B Bar

This is the oldest bar in Kodiak.  You won’t get a draft beer here, only bottles and bring cash as that is all accepted.  Nice clean friendly place to stop in for a beer. Pool, big TV, no beer on tap, only bottles, no real food but they have snacks like chips, cold beer, watching Monday night football, nice place to relax.  For more information call 907-486-3575, or visit them on the web at B&B Bar.

Tony’s Bar

Amy and Mel are awesome bartenders and dart league on Wednesday nights is a ton of fun to watch. Gets a little smokey at times. The music is good and the beers are cheap. Good atmosphere to hang out and play some pool with your friends.  For more information call 907-486-9489, or visit them on the web at Tony’s Bar.

The Chart Room

Their full-service lounge carries a wide selection of fine wines, local Alaskan beers with 14 beers on tap, and your favorite cocktails. For more information call 907-486-5712, or visit them on the web at The Chart Room.

Village Bar

A lot of bars to choose from…this one will be slightly quieter then the rest with a wide variety of seating options to stake out an area. If music is playing it can be loud. There is a front and rear entrance and dance floor.  For more information call 907-486-3412, or visit them on the web at Village Bar.

Best Kodiak Hotels

Kodiak Russian River Lodge

Kodiak Russian River Lodge  is a 3 story house located on the edge of the Alaskan Wilderness boasting incredible mountain views and easy access to a variety of outdoor activities including fishing, hunting and sight-seeing.  They are a lodge, Home away from Home providing comfortable accommodations with all the needs you may want for the best Alaskan experience for a reasonable cost.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Kodiak Russian River Lodge.

Kodiak Compass Suites

Whether in the region for business or leisure, this Kodiak hotel specializes in extended stays with over-sized guest suites. Enjoy fantastic views of ocean channels and mountains of Kodiak from many of the suites at this brand-new property.  Although guest rooms feature kitchenettes to make home cooking easy while traveling, the hotel also offers additional guest freezers to preserve game and fishing prizes. For more information, pricing, or toreserve your room visit Kodiak Compass Suites.

The Catch (Vacation Home)

This property is 1 minute walk from the beach. Located in Kodiak in the Alaska region, The Catch features a balcony and sea views. Guests staying at this vacation home can use the fully equipped kitchen.  The vacation home has 6 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms with free toiletries. A flat-screen TV with cable channels is featured.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve this property, visit The Catch.

Triple Tree Suites

All units include a flat-screen TV. Some units feature a dining area and/or patio. There is also a kitchenette, equipped with a microwave. A fridge and coffee machine are also featured. Bed linen is offered.  Downtown Kodiak is within 5 minutes’ walk.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Triple Tree Suites.

38 Comments

  1. Stephen Crossley

    Wow, this looks like a fantastic place to visit. I always thought of Alaska covered with snow all the time. A place I would associate with Christmas, hence, a visit during winter. A summer visit never occurred to me. Maybe something to add to my bucket list, thanks for this little tour.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I would never consider vacationing to Alaska in the winter LOL. But then I lived there for 22 years, and I know how cold it gets! I hope you can make it there…during the summer. Thanks for visiting my Kodiak Alaska Travel guide.

      Reply
  2. terry Lemoine

    I really love your site, and enjoy reading all about the various get-away-destinations you cover. This one about Kodiak is really interesting, and would be right up my alley as far as things to do and enjoy….drinking beer and being out in nature! Hah!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      What could be better than drinking beer and being out in the nature? Right! You won’t have this problem any where in Alaska, that is for sure. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  3. Heku

    Hey Leahrae! Never heard of such a beautiful place with the name of Kodiak before, and your post definitely let me know what I am missing. I loved to read your post as it was beautifully written, yet very informative. Thank you for sharing it with us!
    My questions is: Does it mean to want to visit Kodiak you have to have a stack of cash with you or is it affordable for most people?

    -Heku

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Funny Heku 🙂 No, you will not need a stack of cash. If you visit during the summer months, the rates are higher. But nothing like other destinations such as the Caribbean. I think Alaska is overall pretty reasonable. Thanks for visiting beach travel destinations.

      Reply
  4. Furkan

    I really like St. Paul Boat Harbor. Now I am in Thailand and definitely want to visit here too. Do you have any good place to eat in Harbor Walkway? I would love to eat and watch the view there.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks for stopping by Furkan. I would definitely stop at Henry’s Great Alaskan Restaurant. That is the place to eat at along the Harbor Walkway. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

      Reply
  5. Andrew

    I have been to Alaska a few times but recently heard about Kodiak. I am happy to have stumbled
    Upon your site as this has been extremely helpful. I am hoping to plan a trip sometime next summer and I’m glad this gives me some ideas of what this destination has to offer. Thanks again!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are so welcome Andrew. Kodiak is a great place to vacation to. You will most likely fly into Anchorage, and then on to Kodiak. I would spend a few days in Anchorage as well if you have the time. Thanks for stopping by Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  6. Tohin

    Here I am thinking of exploring the world, and here is an amazing site to utilize for my bucket list.

    This article made me want to visit Alaska instantly and enjoy the kayaking ride while having fun viewing the sea stars and puffins.

    I wouldn’t even need to do any more research as my quest ends here. Everything I need to know about accommodation, transport, and tourist attractions is already well detailed.

    Immediately I’m able to find my means, Alaska here I come!!!…

    Thanks so much for putting together this travel guide. You have indeed done a great and explicit job.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Tohin! I am glad you enjoyed my Kodiak Alaska Travel Guide. You will have a fantastic time in Alaska. Please let me know if you need any additional information.

      Reply
  7. Sydney

    OK, this is one of the best Vacation posts I’ve ever read! I’ve always wanted to travel to Alaska and now Kodiak is on my bucket list. I had no idea there was so much to choose from between restaurants and adventure tourism. I’m bookmarking this site for future reference. I’ll get there one day I hope.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Sydney! I am glad I opened your eyes to the great state of Alaska! I think you will truly have a wonderful time. Alaska is an experience for sure and there is so much to offer. Please let me know if you need any additional information.

      Reply
  8. hong

    Another great post. I always learn new places everytime I read your post. Also almost every single post I’ve read on your blog are the places I’ve never heard of, but they are definitely beautiful and worth to visit someday. My bucket list is getting longer and longer every time I visit your site lol. I love the detailed information you offer. Very helpful. It’s good to know that the prices for hotels and flights are most expensive during June, July, and August. If I ever decide to visit Kodiak Alaska, I will definitely be purchasing the tickets months in advance. It looks like there are plenty of places to have fun, I would love to go someday. Thank you for the awesome info.keep up with the great work.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Hong. I am glad I am expanding your bucket list and your knowledge about wonderful destinations around the world. There are so many wonderful places, and Alaska is quite beautiful. A different experience for sure than your typical beach destination.

      Reply
  9. Maxine Georges

    Hi Leahrae,
    Kodiak seems like a lovely place to visit in Alaska. I would love to take a sail on the charter vessel, Fish Hawk, to see whales and porpoises. Also, love awesome dogs, and going to the Alutiq Museum. I am really ready to go. All in all,I love an adventure and vacationing there I would feel right at home. Thank you!

    Maxine

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Kodiak is a wonderful place Maxine, and sounds like you would enjoy a vacation here. Thanks for stopping by Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  10. Justin Richard

    Alaska is on my list of places to travel to. Thanks for providing me with all this great information, I will be coming back when I am ready to put the vacation together.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Glad I could help Justin. Thanks for visiting Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  11. JB

    Kodiak looks so beautiful, but I would never had known what to actually do there as I plan my Alaska trip. Honestly, it’s just so pristine. The Rendezvous and the B&B seem like the places I want to stop to eat and drink! Cheers!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      It is pristine JB, and Alaskans know how to eat and drink, that is for sure! Thanks for stopping by Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  12. Marian Florinel Condruz

    That’s great, I am looking to go to Mill Bay Beach Park for some
    scuba diving and for bird shooting… with my camera, of course!
    Can’t wait to go, great information to help with the planning!
    Cheers

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You will get to do some great scuba diving and bird….shooting (photographically) that is for sure! Thanks for visiting Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  13. Jessica

    Hi Leahrae,
    I am a lifelong Alaskan so I was excited to see your new Alaskan posts here! I have never been to Kodiak and my husband and I were just recently talking about going. Alaska is so large that many Alaskans never make it all around the state.

    Kodiak looks a lot like Seward and Valdez which are on glacial fjords with tall, densely forested mountains rising out of the sea. I lived in Valdez and we travel to Seward now for weekends and I think this is my favorite environment in Alaska. I love the beaches and wildlife!

    I am more anxious than ever to visit Kodiak now that I have seen your review! Thanks so much!
    Jessica

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are so welcome Jessica. I lived in Alaska for 22 years, and thankfully my parents always had a boat and a plane. So I was pretty lucky in getting to see a lot of Alaska, as well as traveling throughout Alaska for my work. It is a great state and Kodiak is beautiful! Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  14. Lane

    Hey Leahrae,

    I’m curious about visiting Alaska but the weather puts me at a pause. I’m used to 65 degree weather, but dropping down to about 45???? That’s gonna be hard for me. BTW, I’m curious. How long does the sun stay out. I hear Alaska gets 20 hours of sun in the summer. Is that true.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      That is true about the sun Lane, it never goes down actually and is light at night as well. If you go June, July, or August, you will see warmer temperatures. I am here right now and it is cold….about 44 degrees. But in the summer it is warmer and it is beautiful! Thanks for visiting Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  15. Garen

    I love museums and am excited to visit it. I think the Native American museums are always awesome. I’ve been to the one in Santa Fe, New Mexico and Washington D.C.

    Is this the only museum in Kodiak, Alaska?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      There are two museums in Kodiak that I know of. The Baranov museum and the Alutiiq museum. You would enjoy both of them. Glad you enjoyed the visit to Kodiak Alaska Travel. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  16. Daniella

    I really enjoyed reading the article, and the video is amazing! Kodiak is a place I will put on my bucket list for my next summer excursion. There are so many fun things to do, and the views are fantastic. I saw people sitting and watching the doves in the video. Is there something that separates us from the doves? I am a kind of a coward when it comes to getting close up to animals:)

    Thank you in advance!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Hi Daniella and thanks for reading about Kodiak Alaska Travel. The birds you are seeing in the video are pigeons and no, nothing to separate you 🙂 But they are harmless, that is for sure, so no worries. Thanks for visiting!

      Reply
  17. Mick Krug

    From the video, Kodiak, Alaska looks like a great fishing and hunting destination. It doesn’t get too crowded does it? One would have to travel there in summer. Rest of the time would probably be too cold. The video is great, really shows Kodiak in all its beauty!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      If you are a fisherman, heading to Alaska for the salmon or halibut fishing, it does get crowded with the fisherman. Other than that, not so much. And you are right, best time (and only time for me 🙂 to head there is in the summer. I am here now and for me, it’s cold…sitting at about 44 degrees right now. Thanks for visiting Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  18. Alex

    I need to take a tour of Alaska. It sounds like such a wonderful place to visit. Kodiak especially intrigues me. It would be amazing to see mountains rise up and out of the sea. That would be awesome.

    I do have a question though. For the hottest temperatures and peak tourist seasons, you said June, July, and August for both. I want to travel to Alaska when there are not so many people, but still a comfortable enough temperature. When would you recommend that I go?

    Thank you in advance and I hope you make it a great day!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Hi Alex, and great question. I am in Alaska right now and the weather is in the mid 40s to mid 50s. Not too bad and I am not particularly too cold. So I would say September to mid October or May would not be too bad. You will still find it very enjoyable. Thanks for visiting Kodiak Alaska Travel.

      Reply
  19. Dave

    Hi Matts Mom,
    I really like the way that you have put your website together it’s very impressive, clean and easy to navigate. Good luck in all that you do and i wish you all the success in the world and greatness for you and your family.

    Dave.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks so much Dave and I am glad you enjoy beach travel destinations 🙂 Please come back again!

      Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Visit Us On TwitterVisit Us On FacebookVisit Us On Google PlusVisit Us On PinterestCheck Our Feed