Summer Guide: Oregon Coast spots you don't want to miss this summer
If you've ever seen a picture of the Oregon Coast, you're aware of its stunning beauty. But experiencing the sandy beaches, rocky cliffs, lush forests and quaint towns in person is something incredibly magical.
What's an Oregon summer without a good trip or two (or ten) to the Coast?
Whether you're new or native to the area, here's a little bit about our favorite coastal beauties you may want to visit this summer.
One of Oregon's most iconic beaches is a must-see AT LEAST once. The small coastal city of Cannon Beach in the northwest part of the state is known for its long sand shore and Haystack Rock towering in the shallow water. Trails in the nearby Ecola State Park treat hikers to sweeping views of the ocean and a lighthouse. This beach is arguably one of the best for watching sunsets and snapping some photos.
Kite shops, seafood, saltwater taffy, bumper cars, sandy shores and more. You can find all that in the popular coastal town of Seaside! The city's iconic promenade is the perfect place to take a stroll, window shop and grab a bite to eat before heading down to the expansive beach. A multitude of hiking trails, great surf spots and kayaking opportunities on the Necanicum River also make Seaside the perfect place for adventure-seekers.
While technically flanked by the mouth of the Columbia River, Astoria is still one of Oregon's most popular coastal destinations. Maybe you're interested in paddle boarding, kyaking, scuba diving and hiking, or maybe you're just looking to catch a glimpse of 'The Goonies' house. Either way - Astoria is a quaint, quiet, and beautiful spot to spend a summer weekend. Be sure to drive over the gorgeous Astoria-Megler Bridge to Washington!
One word: CHEESE. In addition to breathtaking scenery, Tillamook, Oregon is home to - surprise, surprise - the Tillamook cheese factory! Take a self-guided tour of the factory, eat a variety of delicious cheese and dairy-related items, and then pop over to the beach for sunset for a look at the spectacular Tillamook Rock Lighthouse. A new Tillamook Cheese Factory visitor's center is also set to open in 2018!
Bandon Dunes golf course is arguably one of the best golf courses in Oregon. Flanked by the rolling waves of the Pacific Ocean, five different courses "conceived in harmony with the natural environment combine all the essential elements to reveal a new golf experience every time you play," according to the Bandon Dunes website. Even for a non-golfer, this sounds pretty incredible.
The large, expansive beach in Lincoln City is truly a quintessential summer sight to see. Enjoy a hike through summer wildflowers to the Cascade Head viewpoint, where you'll be treated to panoramic views of the sea and the Salmon River estuary.
Can't make it out there? You can always enjoy our live view from our camera at the Inn at Spanish Head.
Pacific City is a less than two-hour drive from Portland and even closer to Salem. Enjoy the views of its stunning Haystack Rock (similar to Cannon Beach), and explore its various shops and galleries featuring the work of local artisans. Bob Straub State Park is also a nice place to walk on the beach and explore the Nestucca sand spit.
Manzanita is one of Oregon's smaller coastal towns. Its kitschy, quaint vibe is perfect for those looking to feel at home in a place they've never been. Enjoy walking along seven miles of sandy beach, and hop over to two neighboring villages - Nehalem or Wheeler - if you have the chance!
100 Stair Beach
On Cape Mears, 100 little dirt and wooden stairs will take you from a small parking lot to a glorious rocky cove. There's actually a little more than 100 stairs, but we have to agree the rounded number sounds much more romantic. The beach is covered in smooth, flat rocks from end to end, and decorated with several small streams flowing down from the cliffs. Be sure to bring a bucket if you're into rock collecting!