Located approximately 800 miles west of Anchorage, Unalaska and the port of Dutch Harbor are located in the heart of the North Pacific and Bering Sea fisheries. As a natural, deep water port its importance dates back to the 18th century when the Russian fur traders first sailed here. The king crab fishery developed after WWII with the opening of the first crab processing plant in the 1960’s. The community evolved from a small village of 400 people to a busy port town today of over 4,500. Finally, in the mid-1980’s large processing plants were built for the Pollock/Pacific Cod fisheries which are now the nation’s largest and most valuable fishery. The nearby Bering Sea has a continental shelf that is one of the world’s largest and supports a rich ecosystem.
Unalaska’ most prominent landmark, the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Holy Ascension of Christ, completed in 1896, is the oldest cruciform-style cathedral in North America. The impact of WWII in the Aleutians remains one of the most visible features scattered throughout the landscape. Quonset huts, barracks, concrete bunkers and former gun emplacements provide visitors with a unique opportunity to explore a piece of United States history.
Besides the history, cultural opportunities and beautiful scenery, visitors come to play outdoors. The island provides many outdoor activities including hiking, sportfishing, kayaking and bird/wildlife watching. During season salmon can be seen in many of the streams along the roadsides.