Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge

Quick Facts

Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge


(907) 235-6961

Map Directions

Things To Do



Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge was established to conserve marine mammals, seabirds and other migratory birds, and the marine resources upon which they rely. The Refuge's 3.4 million-acres include the spectacular volcanic islands of the Aleutian chain, the seabird cliffs of the remote Pribilofs, and icebound lands washed by the Chukchi Sea, providing essential habitat for some 40 million seabirds, representing more than 30 species. Containing some of the first conservation-unit areas to be established in America, today's Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge includes lands that were formerly parts of ten previously established refuges. Many of these units are still represented among the ten distinct congressionally-designated Wilderness areas included in Alaska Maritime, which range in size from the approximately 1.3 million-acre Aleutian Islands Wilderness to the 32-acre Hazy Islands Wilderness. Because it is spread out along most of the 47,300 miles of Alaska's coastline, the sheer span of this refuge is difficult to grasp. Its more than 2,500 islands, islets, spires, rocks, reefs, waters and headlands extend from Forrester Island, to the north of Canada's Queen Charlotte Islands deep in the southeast tongue of the state, to the westernmost tip of the Aleutians (and of America!), and north to Cape Lisburne on the Arctic Ocean. Traveling between its farthest-flung points would be the equivalent of taking a trip from Georgia to California.

No other maritime National Wildlife Refuge in America is as large or as productive. Alaska Maritime's seashore lands provide nesting habitat for approximately 40 million seabirds, or about 80% of Alaska's nesting seabird population (and more than half of the nesting seabirds in America).

Map of Alaska Maritime NWR

Latitude, Longitude: 52.123371, -174.067383



  • Bird Watching

    The refuge provides essential habitat for some 40 million seabirds, representing more than 30 species.

  • Fishing

    Contact the visitor center for information on fishing. Follow Alaska and federal guidelines.

  • Hunting

    Caribou and reindeer were introduced to several of the Alaska Maritime Refuge islands during World War II and the Cold War to provide emergency food for military serving at isolated outposts. Follow Alaska regulations.


Open year-round. Make sure to plan for extreme conditions and check weather forecasts before embarking.



The refuge headquarters and visitor center is located in Homer, which is at the end of the Sterling Highway, approximately 225 miles south of Anchorage.


Regularly scheduled flights are available from Anchorage. The Alaska State Ferry System also serves Homer. Since most of the refuge is very remote, access is difficult and expensive. Visitors should contact the refuge for specific information about particular sites.

Phone Numbers


(907) 235-6961