A rich history...
Cook Inlet owes its name to the British explorer James Cook, who aboard the brigantine HMS Resolution, chartered the inlet and its surrounding waters on his last voyage in 1777. Later in 1823, an official settlement was established by a Russian fishing fleet drawn to the nutrient-rich fishing grounds off the Alaskan coast - but to the native tribes of the region, both were relatively late comers.
In fact, the countless bays and inlets and their sheltered waters have been home to Native people for thousands of years. For the northern tribes of the Kodiak Koniaqs, the Chugach people from Prince William Sound, the Aleuts from the Aleutians and the Tanaina Kenaitze people of the Cook Inlet, these waters has been an important meeting and trading area where ideas and traditional beliefs and cultures have been shared for eons.
Today, locals call their town the “City of Secluded Charm,” and it’s hard to argue with them. Set among a maze of peninsulas, straits and lakes, the isolated community of 360 residents has managed to retain much of its pioneering character and it's an enjoyable escape, whether you stay a week or just a day.
With the growing influx of fur traders and more fishing fleets, Seldovia soon became an important shipping and supply center for the region, with salmon and herring runs supporting several canneries by the 1920s.
After the Sterling Highway was completed to Homer in the 1950s, Seldovia’s population and importance as a supply center began to dwindle, but it was the 1964 Good Friday earthquake that caused the most rapid change in the community. The earthquake caused the land beneath Seldovia to settle four feet, forcing residents to rebuild much of their community on higher ground. (Historical photos courtesy of Seldovia Village Tribe)
Things to do
Seldovia is amazingly compact – even the airport is only a half-mile walk from town. You can see most of it on foot in a relatively short period of time. Within a few blocks of the small boat harbor are shops, galleries, restaurants and a short stretch of the original boardwalk. Hike a block uphill and you arrive at St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church perched idyllically on a knoll. The church is a national historic site and was built in 1891.
A must see is the Seldovia Village Tribe Museum and Culturtal Centre where you'll learn about the rich cutural traditions of the Aleut, Yupik, Alutiiq and Athabascan people who inhabit the Seldovia area. It also promotes greater public awareness of the rich cultural legacy of the indigenous societies of Seldovia Bay.
For a longer walk there’s the Otterbahn, a foot trail that heads 1.2 miles from town to Outside Beach, a beautiful spot with beach combing and a spectacular view of Kachemak Bay. Along the way keep an eye out blueberries. The wild berries grow so thick you can often rake your fingers through the bushes and fill a two-quart bucket in minutes. Low-bush cranberries and salmon berries are also abundant.
The ferry arrives in front of Seldovia Fishing Adventures, this is how we get our cars, food, and supplies to Seldovia. even the view of the ferry docking at 10pm (as pictured left) is spectacular, we have daylight into the wee hours of the night, some locals fish after work and don't leave until 9-10pm, and still back before dark! Picture taken from the veranda at Seldovia Fishing Adventures.
Seldovia's nearly carless streets and outlying gravel roads make for ideal mountain biking, which can be brought over from Homer or rented in town. The most popular ride is a leisurely pedal along the Jakolof Bay Road, which winds 10 miles along the coast towards the head of Jakolof Bay. Along the way there are panoramic views of Kachemak Bay, Kasitsna Bay and Jakolof Bay, while McDonald Spit is a favorite spot for seabirds and marine life. Eagles are also a common sight and sea otters are abundant. Watch for whales in the bay during spring and fall migrations. At low tide you can explore the sea life among the rocks and take in Mount Redoubt and Mount Iliamna across the bay.
Beach combing in front of Seldovia Fishing Adventures you will be visited by several Sea Otters, Bald Eagles, Hawks and Whales, but it is the natural surroundings that most captivates the imagination, or relax on the veranda and watch the natural world float by, don't be surprised if a Eagle lands on the rail a few feet away to gaze at the same thing you are! Seldovia Fishing Adventures has by far the best view in Seldovia!