Ninilchik State Recreation Area

Ninilchik State Recreation Area

This spot is known for its rich salmon runs and razor clamming

Located on the Cook Inlet, the Ninilchik State Recreation Area is home to three campgrounds and some of the best razor clamming and salmon runs in the state. With a spectacular backdrop showcasing two active volcanoes, Mount Iliamna and Mount Redoubt, this area is popular for fishers, clammers and outdoor enthusiasts alike.


The recreation area is located near Ninilchik, meaning “peaceful settlement by a river,” and is located on the west side of the Kenai Peninsula, about 40 miles south of Soldotna. The town’s picturesque Russian Orthodox chapel is a highlight for many travelers driving along the Sterling Highway; regardless of the direction from which one approaches, the chapel appears on the skyline as the historical reminder of Ninilchik's Russian colonization.

Settled in the 1820s by employees of the Russian-American Company, this charming little village is among the oldest on the Kenai Peninsula. Many settlers stayed even after imperial Russia sold Alaska to the United States in 1867, and their descendants form the heart of the present community.


Surrounding the village is Ninilchik State Recreation Area. The recreation area is actually composed of four separate units that total 97 acres and offer a variety of activities, including camping, clam digging and sportfishing. No matter the activity, visitors will be surrounded by beautiful views of Mount Iliamna and Mount Redoubt - both active volcanoes on the west side of the Cook Inlet. The park consists of Ninilchik Beach State Recreation Site, Ninilchik Scenic Overlook, Ninilchik View Campground, and Ninilchik River Campground.

The three campgrounds in the recreation area are ideally located to enjoy spend a day sightseeing at Ninilchik Village and the Russian Orthodox chapel.

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