One of the things that I love most about living on the Oregon coast is the endless opportunities for adventure. Whether you’re a fan of hiking, camping, fishing, photography, or just spending time on the beach or in the woods, the Oregon coast has something to offer for everyone. The shores here are some of the most beautiful in the world, with 360 miles of rocky shores and sandy beaches.
The Oregon coast has a vast array of hiking trails that crisscross the area. The Oregon Coast Trail, for instance, stretches for nearly 400 miles along the entire length of the coast, offering incredible views of the ocean and the surrounding landscape. There are also numerous shorter trails that wind through the lush forests of the coast, offering the chance to see a wide variety of plant and animal life.
Tons of activities both indoor and outdoor!
In addition to hiking, the Oregon coast is a great destination for camping. There are dozens of campgrounds along the coast, ranging from primitive sites where you can pitch a tent and rough it to more developed sites with amenities like running water and electrical hookups. Whether you’re looking to spend a few days in the great outdoors or just want to spend a night under the stars, there’s a campground on the Oregon coast that’s perfect for you.
Fishing is another popular activity on the Oregon coast. The cold, clear waters of the Pacific are home to a wide variety of fish, including salmon, halibut, and rockfish. Whether you’re an experienced angler or just looking to try your hand at fishing for the first time, the Oregon coast has something to offer. You can either rent a boat and go out on your own, or join one of the many fishing charters that operate along the coast.
Of course, no visit to the Oregon coast would be complete without spending some time on the beach. The miles of sandy shoreline is a great place to relax, build sandcastles, or just take a leisurely stroll. The beaches here are also great spots for water sports like surfing, kiteboarding, and stand-up paddleboarding. Just remember, the Pacific Ocean is very cold so you will need a wetsuit for most of the year.
In addition to the natural beauty of the area, the small towns on the Oregon coast are full of charm and character. From Astoria in the north to Brookings in the south, each town has its own unique flavor and personality.
The locals here are incredibly friendly and welcoming, and it’s not uncommon to make friends for life during your time on the coast.
The towns of the Oregon coast are also home to a wide variety of restaurants, shops, and other attractions. You’ll find everything from cozy coffee shops and artisanal craft stores to world-class seafood restaurants and historic landmarks. There’s always something new to discover in the towns of the Oregon coast.
Some of the top places to visit include:
- Cannon Beach: This charming town is known for its stunning beaches and beautiful sunsets. It’s also home to Haystack Rock, a natural landmark that rises 235 feet out of the ocean.
- Lincoln City: Located on the central Oregon coast, Lincoln City offers miles of beautiful beaches and a variety of outdoor activities. It’s also home to the Oregon Coast Aquarium, which is a popular attraction for families.
- Newport: Situated on Yaquina Bay, Newport is a picturesque coastal town with a thriving fishing industry. It’s also home to the Oregon Coast Aquarium and the Hatfield Marine Science Center.
- Astoria: Astoria is the oldest city on the Oregon coast and has a rich history. It’s known for its historic buildings, including the Astoria Column and the Flavel House Museum.
- Pacific City: Located on the northern Oregon coast, Pacific City is a small, laid-back town known for its beautiful beaches and outdoor activities. It’s also home to Cape Kiwanda State Natural Area, which offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
- Waldport: Situated on one of the most pristine estuaries on the Oregon Coast, the Port of Alsea is the origin point of your ocean and river adventures. The Bay is plentiful with Dungeness crab and during the fall run of Chinook salmon, and access to Waldport’s quiet beaches is easy. Follow the river east to thick, forested campgrounds and sunny swimming holes. On the waterfront, a nudge upriver from the mouth of the Alsea Bay is a launch ramp, boat moorage, beach access, restaurants, crabbing pier, and picnic areas.
These are just a few of the many amazing cities and towns to visit on the Oregon coast. There are many other great places to explore, so it’s worth taking some time to research and plan your trip to make the most of your time on the coast.
10 Must-Visit Beaches on the Oregon Coast
The Oregon Coast is known for its stunning natural beauty and diverse landscapes, from rugged cliffs to sandy beaches. If you’re planning a trip to the coast and looking for some inspiration, here are ten beaches that you won’t want to miss.
- Cannon Beach: This iconic beach is home to Haystack Rock, a towering sea stack that rises from the surf. It’s a popular spot for photographers, surfers, and beachcombers alike.
- Cape Kiwanda: Located in Pacific City, Cape Kiwanda is a beautiful and unique beach with towering sand dunes, rock formations, and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
- Bandon Beach: This picturesque beach is known for its dramatic rock formations and vibrant tide pools, which are home to a variety of marine life.
- Oswald West State Park: This hidden gem is located just south of Cannon Beach and features a secluded beach surrounded by old-growth forests and scenic hiking trails.
- Indian Beach: Part of Ecola State Park, Indian Beach is a secluded cove with pristine white sand and stunning views of the coastline.
- Lincoln City Beach: This seven-mile stretch of sandy beach is perfect for families, with plenty of space for picnics, sandcastle building, and kite flying.
- Pacific Beach: This quiet and secluded beach is a hidden gem, with soft sand and crystal-clear waters that are perfect for swimming and beachcombing.
- Neskowin Beach: Located in a small village on the coast, Neskowin Beach is a serene and tranquil spot with stunning views of Proposal Rock and the surrounding landscape.
- Seal Rock State Recreation Site: This rocky beach is a popular spot for wildlife viewing, with frequent sightings of harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine mammals.
- Cape Blanco State Park: This remote and rugged beach is located at the westernmost point in Oregon and offers stunning views of the ocean and coastline.
What should I pack?
If you are planning a trip to the Oregon coast, you should pack for a variety of weather conditions. The Oregon coast can be quite cool and wet, even in the summer, so it’s important to bring clothes that can be layered and that will keep you warm and dry. A waterproof jacket and sturdy, comfortable shoes are essential. You’ll also want to bring sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun. It’s also a good idea to bring a wetsuit and a towel if you plan on going to the beach. Other important items to pack include any necessary medications, a first aid kit, and of course a camera with plenty of storage to capture the beautiful scenery!
The Oregon coast has an abundance of fresh seafood. The Pacific Ocean is teeming with all kinds of delicious fish, crustaceans, and mollusks, and the local restaurants are experts at turning these ingredients into mouth-watering dishes. Whether you’re in the mood for fresh crab, succulent salmon, or flavorful clams, you’ll find no shortage of tasty options on the Oregon coast.
In short, living on the Oregon coast is a truly special experience. The combination of beautiful natural scenery, charming towns, and abundant outdoor opportunities make it a place like no other. If you have the opportunity to spend some time here, I highly recommend it!