Kenai is located on the Kenai Peninsula, 159 miles from Anchorage, 89 miles from Homer and 11 miles north of Soldotna.
|Kenai is the largest city on the Kenai Peninsula. Originally occupied by the Dena’ina people, the Russian traders established Fort St. Nicholas, or St. Nicholas Redoubt, in 1791. In 1869 the U.S. Army established Fort Kenai (Kenay). The first fish canneries were established in the 1880s. Oil exploration began in the mid-1950s, with the first major discovery made in 1957. Two years later, natural gas was discovered.
Kenai is situated on a low rise overlooking the mouth of the Kenai River where it empties into Cook Inlet, with majestic views of 3 major volcanic peaks in the Alaska Range: Mount Spurr (elev. 11,100 feet); Mount Iliamna (elev. 10,016 feet; and Mount Redoubt (elev. 10,197 feet).
Accommodations, food, gas, RV parks and shopping are readily available in Kenai. There are medical and dental clinics, banks, laundromats, pharmacies, supermarkets, and numerous gift and specialty shops are located on and off the highway and in the shopping malls. Kenai has 2 elementary schools, a middle school, high school. The Kenai Golf Course is an 18-hole course open May through October located on the Kenai Spur Highway.