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The nation's second largest island - only the Big Island of Hawaii is larger - Kodiak is famous for its giant brown bears, rich fisheries, and verdant countryside. Most activity centers around the small city of Kodiak, located on the northeast side of Kodiak Island, and accessible by air from Anchorage or by state ferry from Homer. Visitors quickly notice the scent of fish in the air from the always-busy canneries and freezer plants, along with the constant parade of commercial fishing vessels and floatplanes. In town, don't miss the Baranov Museum, housed within America's oldest extant Russian structure (built in 1808). A few miles north of ...

The nation's second largest island - only the Big Island of Hawaii is larger - Kodiak is famous for its giant brown bears, rich fisheries, and verdant countryside. Most activity centers around the small city of Kodiak, located on the northeast side of Kodiak Island, and accessible by air from Anchorage or by state ferry from Homer. Visitors quickly notice the scent of fish in the air from the always-busy canneries and freezer plants, along with the constant parade of commercial fishing vessels and floatplanes. In town, don't miss the Baranov Museum, housed within America's oldest extant Russian structure (built in 1808). A few miles north of town, woodsy Fort Abercrombie State Park is a fun place to hike, watch whales, and scan cliffs for nesting puffins. Rent a car to drive the 100 or so miles of gravel road that lead to secluded beaches, rain forests draped with moss, hot salmon fishing spots, and several surprises: a fossil-filled beach, grazing bison, surfing spots, and even a rocket launching facility used by the military. Take a floatplane flight to view brown bears up close or to fish for monster king salmon from a remote island lodge.

Don Pitcher
About the Expert

Don Pitcher has written or photographed 10 travel guidebooks to Alaska, Wyoming, Yellowstone-Grand Teton, and the San Juan Islands for Avalon Travel Publishing, Random House, and Sasquatch Books.

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Don Pitcher for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    June through August for lush greenery and the best salmon fishing