While sandy beaches, secluded islands, and luxury resorts all have their charm and allure, the appeal of a road trip is still hard to resist. The sense of exhilarating freedom as one coasts on smooth bitumen while some favorite music album is blaring—or just humming softly—out of the car’s stereo is why we all love road trips. For those who may want to enjoy this experience, there are several preparatory steps before the rubber can literally hit the road. One of these is to identify the route to explore.
While driving even on flat, rolling plains can be enjoyable, sweeping through varied landscapes—dotted with scenic vistas—can be pure bliss. And for this, the Oregon coast is a darling of many road trippers. In this article, we reveal why driving through the Oregon Coast is worth it. We’ll also indicate some of the best stops on the route.
Here’s Why The Oregon Coast Is Worth Taking A Road Trip On
For starters, the Oregon coast is famous for its breathtaking scenery. The wrinkled waters of the Pacific Ocean, from a distance, appearing like a swaying blue curtain, are so enchanting to look at. One will, for a moment, forget he’s in the United States. And, fringing the blue waters of the Pacific is a cascading stretch of spotless sand that make the whole coastline emerge with a distant look that’s charmingly cool, serene, and flat-out gorgeous. There are also high, craggy cliffs that look like somber indicators of nature’s ever-changing emotion. To add to that, a number of lighthouses rise majestically in the air—-as regal beacons of time and tide.
For those driving in the evening hours, spotting some blazing sunsets hued in an orange that’s so intense, pure—and deceivingly within one’s grasp puts a road trip on a brief, hypnotic pause. It will be time to pull one’s car aside and experience one of nature’s magical moments. Yet it’s not just the views of the setting sun, the blue ocean, or the azure sky. The Oregon coast has many small, charming towns—most of them quaint and rustic—that will make most road trippers want to experience their time-frozen allure. From Gearhart, a small attractive town that’s known for its golfing, to Astoria, a bustling nerve of business, history, and pleasure—the Oregon Coast is not short on both the bucolic old-world look—as well as modern architectural vibrancy.
How Long Is The Oregon Coast? The Oregon Coast is 382 miles long.
If one factor in the likelihood of spotting whales anywhere along the coastline(but moreso along the central coast), and the picturesque Oregon coast hiking trail, this heaven-like stretch becomes an amazing road trip game-changer. Still, there are a few spots where the stunning looks and views—are even more enhanced.
Here Are The Stops That Make The Oregon Coast One Of The Best In The Country
Astoria, about 97 miles northwest of Portland, has just to be the first stop. Steep hillsides, riverfront homes, and a time-frozen, Victorian look—all make this port city a dream hideaway that travelers will find attractively relaxing. While here, one must just find the time to have a stroll on the 12.8-mile riverwalk—for some stunning views of Young’s Bay or the Astoria-Megler Bridge, the longest continuous truss bridge in North America. The many restaurants along this stretch provide a mouthwatering variety of dining options. History buffs will relish time spent at the Maritime Memorial or the Columbia River Maritime Museum.
From Astoria, about 17 miles southwards on US-101 S, one should wend his way to Seaside, which, as the name implies, hugs the Pacific Ocean to the east. Once here, climb up on the Promenade while taking in the gorgeous oceanfront views that charmingly beckon. This done, Seaside Aquarium should be a detour—where a family of playful harbor seals awaits.
After this, it’ll be time to proceed on the southerly route, stopping after about 15 minutes—at the small charming town of Cannon Beach. A trendy, classy look will be the first impression of this underrated travel jewel. One of Oregon's most recognizable landmarks—the Haystack Rock—should be an obvious must-see. Of course, Ecola State Park, the “crown jewel” of Oregon coast parks—is also a great destination, especially for the fine hiking trails and stunning views.
- How Much Does It Cost To Get To Ecola State Park? Ecola State Park requires paying a $5 Day Use Fee.
Other Mind-blowing Stops On The Oregon Coast
There are other amazing stops on this breathtaking stretch. Tillamook, about 40 miles from Cannon Beach—which sits in a valley of lush green pastures—is a famous place for cheese or ice cream. For a bite of Oregon’s finest cheese, a stop at Tillamook Cheese Factory is absolutely mandatory. And while Lincoln City has a beach that can make one take a stop, a traveler may want to consider taking a look at the 120-feet long D River—billed as the shortest river in the world. Other stops include Depoe Bay, Waldport, and North Bend.
With all the stops—and more—driving the Oregon Coast is worth every dime and penny.