SEVENSEAS Marine Conservation & Travel Issue 16, September 2016 - Page 98

Visit Homer, Alaska

or a small community (population: about 5,000), Homer has built lots of big reputations. This quaint and quirky

community on the shores of Kachemak Bay is known for its vibrant arts scene. As the halibut capital of the world, it’s known for its great fishing. It also has a big reputation for delicious food, including the tastiest oysters you’ll ever eat, and maybe, just maybe, more coffeehouses per capita than any other community its size.

Homer also is known for its entrepreneurial spirit. Some say it’s the area’s spectacular natural beauty that ignites and inspires that spirit. Others say it’s born out of necessity. If you want to live in Homer, you’ve got to get creative and make your own job here at the end of the road.

While Homer’s jaw-dropping scenery — snow-capped mountains, the glistening waters of Kachemak Bay, the icy blue hues of glaciers — might be the first thing visitors notice, it will be Homer’s charm that prompts them to return.

Homer Spit

With its miles of beaches, campgrounds, shops and the harbor, the Homer Spit is the focus of tourism and fishing in Homer. Hikers and kayakers get to Kachemak Bay State Park from water taxis or private boats leaving the Spit. It's not just where the land ends and the sea begins — it's where adventures start.

The heart of the Spit goes from the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon to Land's End Resort. Boardwalks and shops line the harbor and inlet sides of the road. Here you can find everything from luxury hotels and fine dining to rustic camping and seafood shacks. Need a fishing charter? Book ahead, or look for last-minute "boat open" signs at the dozens of charter offices. Visit souvenir shops, galleries or other stores for that special gift. Get take-out food, an ice cream cone or espresso and dine outdoors on the beach.

Homer Harbor

As Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly member Mako Haggerty says, "The Homer Harbor is the economic engine that moves the lower peninsula."

Whether fishing in Kachemak Bay, lower Cook Inlet or beyond, about 680 commercial fishermen call the harbor home, including crab boats like the F/V Time Bandit of "The Deadliest Catch" television show. Tour boats, charter captains and water taxis all work out of the harbor.

To learn more about trails, adventure, camping, culture, shopping and transportation visit: www.homeralaska.com

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