Seward became our most beloved city in Alaska. Located 2.5 hours by car from Anchorage, it is full of wonders. Leave Anchorage early to enjoy the ride and make several stops along the way: Windy Point, Indian Valley Mine (an excellent place for panning for gold), Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center is also a must. Seward Alaska with Kids is about fjords, marine life, Exit Glacier, and more.
Seward Alaska with Kids. 8 Top Things to do
1. Kenai Fjords National Park and Major Marine cruise
Hop aboard of Major Marine – a kid-friendly local company, to see the beautiful Kenai Fjords National Park. Since most of the Park is only accessible by water, to reach it you’ll have to take a full-day cruise (6 hours or more). We did the 3.5 hours Kenai Fjords Wildlife Cruise tour focused on exploring Resurrection Bay and wild animals.
Erika just turned 2 years old and it was her first boating experience. While she did great, her older brother (7 y.o.) was suffering from seasickness. The crew and narration were excellent and the bay is really beautiful, its pristine water looked like the ones from famous Banff lakes in Canada.
Watching wildlife during the tour in Seward
We were fortunate to watch bald eagles, sea otters, harbor seals, sea lions, the great variety of birds, and a glimpse of whales during the Resurrection Bay tour. Not bad at all, but they weren’t as close as we would like to: any boat should remain at least 100 yards from marine mammals.
A flock of puffins was also a cool thing to spot in a wild. I fall in love with them after our trip to Iceland.
2. Kenai Fjords National Park: Exit Glacier
Exit Glacier is the most accessible part of Kenai Fjords National Park and the most accessible glacier you can reach from Anchorage. Located at the end of the National Park’s only road, Exit Glacier is easily reached from Seward – just a short 20-minute drive out of town.
We made a separate post about Exit Glacier, all the important details and pitfalls are here.
3. Seward Alaska With Kids: SeaLife Center
SeaLife Center is a premier Alaska aquarium and rehabilitation center. It’s a great place to watch local marine mammals. We went there to watch the puffin exhibition and loved it a lot: so many birds within arm’s reach! Spending time with otters, sea lions, seals, and a giant octopus was also fulfilling.
4. Seavey’s IdidaRide Sled Dog Tours
Within 10 minutes drive, right on the way to the Exit Glacier, you can meet the Seavey’s Iditarod racing team – some of the fastest dogs in Alaska. A 2-mile sled ride in the wilderness, kennels, and playtime with husky puppies are included in the summer tour. Family-friendly facility.
5. Seward Alaska With Kids: Waterfront Park and Playground
Playgrounds in Alaska are real hidden gems: they are cool, huge, creative and kind of hidden. For some of them, there are hardly any pictures online.
Waterfront Park playground in Seward is
Who would have guessed it could be hot in Alaska? It was 82 °F/28 °C during our stay in Seward!
Seward Waterfront Park also has multiple campgrounds, a skate park, and beach access. You can walk the entire park in half an hour: from small boat harbor to Alaska SeaLife Center via the waterfront trail. And even more: you can take kids fishing right there:
6. Seward Alaska With Kids: Cast a L
The city of Seward offers plentiful shoreline surf casting access off its beaches. The three main access sites are:
- Just south of the small boat launch;
- About 100 yards south of that at the culverts of the Seward Lagoon outflow;
- The mouth of Lowell Creek, which is the waterfall on the southern edge of town:
Anglers also fish from:
- the breakwater walls near the small boat harbor (but you must yield to boat traffic);
- from the beaches from
smallboat launch to the Alaska SeaLifeCenter.
Most surf casters start fishing 2-3 hours before the high tide and fish through the high tide. Source: Fishing access in Seward Area.
7. Explore the town of Seward
Stroll around the town and check the boat harbor, Iditarod Monument, the Russian art shop, and multiple colorful murals, made by locals, Seward is famous for it:
Ever tried Okroshka, a traditional Russian summer soup? You may have one in Seward:
8. Resurrection Bay Kayak Tour
Take Resurrection Bay kayak tour. Family-friendly, for kids 8 and up. Great way to explore the Bay and spot marine mammals. Unfortunately, we missed it – the tour was canceled due to the weather.
Where to Eat in Seward
We did all grocery shopping at the Seward Safeway. It has a huge variety, everything fresh, and slightly more expensive, as you are getting further from Anchorage.
Trying local seafood was on my bucket list and we trade a dinner at a restaurant for a stop at a local seafood locker. Those guys have all kinds of local seafood you can imagine, super fresh, cleaned, and processed right there. Try local king crab legs — the most delicious thing I have ever eat!
All the favorite places in Seward on My Map
A little bit of History about Seward
When you walk the streets of Seward, it’s hard to believe that in 1964 the Great 9.2 magnitude earthquake (and then tsunami) had dropped half of the place and its economy down into the sea and left in ruins the rest.
For such a small community (near 3000 residents), Seward is rich in history and has many students. UAF Seward Campus, Culinary Academy, and Institute of Technology are all located in the town.
Seward, Alaska with kids. Essentials
- Binoculars are really helpful, not only on the Seward cruise but in traveling to Alaska overall
- Sweater, sturdy, water-resistant boots, water-repellent jacket, hat, gloves, fleece leggings/warm pants, and sunglasses are essential.
- Ask Major Marine tour what time is the best for this particular trip, (morning or afternoon). We left at 9 am and the sun was beaming right into the camera most of the trip.
- Check the weather before the cruise and dress properly, it’s much colder once you are at the open water of Resurrection Bay.
- Spotting wildlife is a matter of luck.
- Exit Glacier is retreating as fast as 252 feet in a single summer. Pack your bags and hurry up before it’s disappeared!
- Waterfront Park is a great spot to watch sunsets over the Resurrection Bay and mountains.
Exploring the Exit Glacier with Kids
Seward Highway and Top Places to Visit South of Anchorage.
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