Northern Oregon Coast

Including Washington's Long Beach Peninsula

The Northern Oregon Coast is a beautifully diverse region that’s full of possibility for fun and adventure. It’s an outdoor playground offering more than 100 miles of pristine beaches, sea cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean and intriguing vertical rocks in the sea known as stacks.

On this site you’ll learn all about the North Oregon Coast, which stretches from the mouth of the Columbia River to Cascade Head. This region of the Oregon North Coast includes some of state’s most popular vacation destinations, including Seaside and Cannon Beach, as well as small towns with coastal charm, like Astoria and Manzanita. Our local writers fill you in on what the locals know: where to eat, where to shop, where to play and, of course, where to rest your head after all of that North Oregon Coast exploration. If you want to know the real scoop about this area, look no further than this site.

Recreation on the Northern Oregon Coast

To explore the North Oregon Coast, roadtrippers hop on U.S. Highway 101. Also known as the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway, this seaside highway links the towns of the North Oregon Coast, climbing over headlands with incredible views of the Pacific Ocean and zipping by stretches of undeveloped beach. Because of its proximity to Portland and Willamette Valley, the North Oregon Coast is a popular road trip destination — and once you experience its rugged beauty for yourself, you’ll understand why.

Your biggest dilemma will be deciding what to do first. Will you explore the tidal pools around Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach or hike to a high whale-spotting vantage point in Ecola State Park? Will you hit the seaside links in Gearhart or ride the carousel and walk the Pom in Seaside? Dine on some of the world’s finest clam chowder or explore quaint art galleries and shops? Taste the local delicacies at a foodie festival or hit the microbreweries? You’ll find all the information you need to make these tough decisions here.

Explore Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula

On this site you’ll also find out everything there is to know about Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula, which is a nearby and easily reachable destination from the Oregon North Coast. From Astoria, at the very tip of the North Oregon Coast, it’s just a hop across the Columbia River on the spectacularly scenic, 4.1-mile Astoria-Megler Bridge, followed by a 20-minute drive to Ilwaco.

This 28-mile-long spit of land, bounded by Columbia River, Pacific Ocean and Willapa Bay, is known for its Pacific Ocean beaches, dunes and woods, local seafood, seaside resorts, events, festivals and year-round outdoor adventures ranging from hiking, camping and biking to beachcombing and surfing. From the amusement parks and small motels in seaside towns on the Pacific side to the quiet Willapa Bay shores, Long Beach Peninsula is a place where time slows down and the worries of the mainland are forgotten.

If you love seafood, Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula is a must visit. Willapa Bay is one of the top oyster-producing regions in the United States. Local restaurants take advantage of this bounty as well as many other regional delicacies. Explore this site to find out about all of the restaurants, shops, things to do and places to stay from Cape Disappointment on the southern end of the peninsula to Leadbetter Point State Park on the northern end.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get to the Northern Oregon Coast?

From the north or south, the sole route is U.S. Highway 101, also known as the Pacific Coast Byway, which stretches from Southern California to northern Washington. Three routes from the east connect to U.S. Highway 101 – U.S. Highway 30, which runs parallel to the Columbia River, U.S. Highway 26, which is the route west from Portland, and OR Route 6, which leads to Tillamook.

How far is it from Portland to the Northern Oregon Coast?

It’s 97 miles from Portland to Astoria, a drive of about 2 hours. From Portland to the Seaside/Cannon Beach area, it’s 80 miles, a drive of about an hour and a half. The North Oregon Coast is a popular road trip destination for Portland residents, which means the local roads and Highway 101 are often congested in summer, so plan accordingly.

How far is it from Seattle to the Northern Oregon Coast?

The 200-mile car trip from Seattle to Cannon Beach takes about 4 hours. Astoria is a little closer, about 3 hours and 20 minutes.

How long does it take to drive from the Northern Oregon Coast to the Long Beach Peninsula?

About 30 minutes. From Astoria on Highway 101, you cross the Columbia River via the Astoria-Megler Bridge. The bridge deposits you in Washington. Then it’s about a 20-minute drive to Ilwaco on the Peninsula.

What is the weather like in the Northern Oregon Coast and Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula?

The weather in these coastal areas is moderate. In winter the average low is just under 40° F, while the high temperature is just above 50° F. The average high is around 70° F. The most rain occurs in November and December, averaging more than 11 inches each month. July and August are the driest months, averaging less than 2 inches of rain each month. Most days are cloudy or partly cloudy throughout the year, though the summer has the most sun. Always check the forecast before heading out, and bring layers as the weather can change quickly.

Can you swim in the Pacific Ocean on the Northern Oregon Coast or Long Beach Peninsula?

Ocean swimming is not recommended in these areas due to cold water, rough conditions and deadly currents. The water temperature ranges from the 40s to the mid-60s, with the average, even in summer, at around 55 degrees. The ocean currents are strong and dangerous no matter what the tide. Even wading is not recommended as there is also a real threat of sneaker waves, which come up high on the beach without warning and can sweep you off your feet. Officials advise to keep a close eye on children and never turn your back to the ocean. Surfing is allowed and is a popular watersport in the region for those with appropriate skills.

What do I need to know about the tides around the Northern Oregon Coast?

For any excursions along the sea coast, such as tidepooling, shelling or walking, be sure to know the times of the high and low tides. Incoming tides can isolate rocks from headlands and the shore. Avoid the temptation to stroll out to rocks without knowing when the tide is coming back in. You could easily become stranded as passageways that were once free become suddenly inundated with water. Tide table booklets can be found in gas stations, marinas and visitors centers.

Are earthquakes and tsunamis a threat to the Northern Oregon Coast and Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula?

Earthquakes and the tsumanis that can result from them are a real but rare threat in the Pacific Northwest. The Oregon Tsunami Clearinghouse has a wealth of information on how to prepare, react and evacuate in such an emergency.  

When can I see the whales from the Northern Oregon Coast?

Whales are visible from Oregon’s coast all year long, but some seasons are better than others. From mid-December to mid-January, nearly 20,000 gray whales pass off the coast as they travel south to Baja. From late March to June, the whales travel back north toward Alaska. Some whales are visible feeding along the coast from June to mid-November.


Top Picks
Top Picks: Nightlife

To cruise all Northern Oregon Coast nightlife options, click here.

Pickled Fish
Long Beach
Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Pickled Fish, The Horsenecks
McMenamins Gearhart Hotel
Gearhart
Friday, March 22, 2019 - 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm
McMenamins Gearhart Hotel, Music at McMenamins
Astoria Arts and Movement Center
Astoria
Monday, March 25, 2019 - 8:30 am to 9:30 am
Astoria Arts and Movement Center, Zumba Dance Fitness with Kim
Top Picks: Daytime Entertainment & Special Events

Want to see every Northern Oregon Coast daytime possibility? Click here.

Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District
Seaside
Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 11:45 am to 1:00 pm
Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District, Senior Lunch Program - Bob Chisholm Community Center
Bridgewater Bistro
Astoria
Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Bridgewater Bistro, Thursday Night Jazz with Basin St. NW
Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District
Seaside
Friday, March 22, 2019 - 11:45 am to 1:00 pm
Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District, Senior Lunch Program - Bob Chisholm Community Center
Bridgewater Bistro
Astoria
Friday, March 22, 2019 - 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Bridgewater Bistro, Buzz Rogowski plays live on the piano
Sweet Basil's Cafe
Cannon Beach
Friday, March 22, 2019 - 6:30 pm to 10:00 pm
Sweet Basil's Cafe, Maggie & The Katz
Homespun Quilts and Yarn
Astoria
Saturday, March 23, 2019 - 11:00 am to 1:00 pm
Homespun Quilts and Yarn, Sit & Stitch
Bridgewater Bistro
Astoria
Saturday, March 23, 2019 - 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Bridgewater Bistro, David Drury on guitar
Bridgewater Bistro
Astoria
Sunday, March 24, 2019 - 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Bridgewater Bistro, Skadi on piano
Sou'Wester Lodge
Seaview
Monday, March 25, 2019 - 9:30 am to 12:00 pm
Sou'Wester Lodge, Juice & Smoothie Bar
Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District
Seaside
Monday, March 25, 2019 - 11:45 am to 1:00 pm
Sunset Empire Parks and Recreation District, Senior Lunch Program - Bob Chisholm Community Center
Top Picks: Great Plates

For a look at every Northern Oregon Coast restaurant great plate, Click here.

Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Astoria
This power-packed burrito features roasted potatoes, cheddar cheese, red bell peppers, red onions, farm-fresh eggs, seasoned black beans,... More info - Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe, Breakfast Burrito
Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Astoria
Grilled tempeh, Scorcher sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, Scorcher Reuben sauce on our toasted Caraway Rye. (VEGAN OPTION AVAILABLE) More info - Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe, Tempeh Rueben
Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Astoria
2 farm eggs over local greens, grilled tempeh, oven-roasted potatoes topped w/ green goddess dressing; served w/ Scorcher toast & jam. More info - Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe
Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe, Breakfast of Splendor
Lost Roo
Long Beach
seared rare Ahi tuna, steamed rice, avocado, cucumber, tobiko, pickled ginger, wasabi & sriracha drizzle gluten-free More info - Lost Roo
Lost Roo, Spicy Ahi Tuna Tower
Maggie's On the Prom
Seaside
Venison, wild mushroom sour cream sauce, house made egg noodles. Wine Pairing: Maryhill Grenache $12/$38; Walla Walla Vintners Cuvee $14/$56 More info - Maggie's On the Prom
Maggie's On the Prom, Venison Stroganoff*
Maggie's On the Prom
Seaside
starvation alley cranberry jam, honey brittle More info - Maggie's On the Prom
Maggie's On the Prom, Skamakowa Chevre
The Uptown Café
Warrenton
½ rack of our baby back ribs served with a 6oz top sirloin steak. + 10oz sirloin steak for $5. 12oz ribeye $6 More info - The Uptown Café
The Uptown Café, Steak and Ribs
The Uptown Café
Warrenton
Baby back ribs, coated in our house BBQ sauce. More info - The Uptown Café
The Uptown Café, BBQ Ribs
The Uptown Café
Warrenton
Battered cod, cabbage slaw, cheese, and house baja sauce. Served with chips and salsa. More info - The Uptown Café
The Uptown Café, Fish Tacos
T. Paul's Urban Cafe & Public Noshery
Astoria
Local Josephson's cold smoked lox, red onion, cucumbers, capers, tomto, and cream cheese. More info - T. Paul's Urban Cafe & Public Noshery
T. Paul's Urban Cafe & Public Noshery, Salmon Lox & Bagel
Top Picks: Shopping Must Haves

To shop all Northern Oregon Coast must haves, click here.

Finn Ware
Astoria, Portland
Eira backpack is made of heavyweight cotton canvas in the off white and black Pieni Unikko pattern. The backpack closes with a zipper and... More info - Finn Ware
Finn Ware, Eira backpack
Finn Ware
Astoria, Portland
These marvelously absorbent dishcloths are a wonder in the kitchen. You'll never want to go back to sponges or regular cloths when you... More info - Finn Ware
Finn Ware, Swedish Dishcloths
Finn Ware
Astoria, Portland
Develop your Sisu--an "untranslatable" Finnish term referring to a mixture of courage, resilience, grit, tenacity, and... More info - Finn Ware
Finn Ware, Sisu: The Finnish Art of Courage
Finn Ware
Astoria, Portland
The woven linens of Ekelund are some of the finest woven kitchen and table linens we've found and reflected the taste and style of the... More info - Finn Ware
Finn Ware, Tea Towels - Ekelund Weavers Sweden
Finn Ware
Astoria, Portland
The classic Ilma shirt is made of cotton jersey with the white and green Tasaraita print. The shirt has a boat neckline, cropped sleeves... More info - Finn Ware
Finn Ware, Marimekko Ilma shirt
Bahama Mama's
Manzanita
Looking to show your love of Bahama Mama's? We've got you covered! Check out all our awesome brand merchandise. More info - Bahama Mama's
Bahama Mama's, Bahama Mama Merchandise
Bahama Mama's
Manzanita
Come out and check out our new sunglasses. We have Maui Jim, Smith, Ray-Ban and many more. Your eyes will thank you More info - Bahama Mama's
Bahama Mama's, Sunglasses - your eyes will thank you
Bahama Mama's
Manzanita
Men, women's and children's clothing, hats, towels, sunglasses, beach games, beach toys, flip flops and much more More info - Bahama Mama's
Bahama Mama's, Beach Fare And Clothing
Bahama Mama's
Manzanita
Surfboards, paddle boards and boogie boards for rent or to buy. We have boards for everyone in the family. More info - Bahama Mama's
Bahama Mama's, Boards For Everyone
Bahama Mama's
Manzanita
Fat tire bikes and sit down cruisers ready for you to rent and cruise the beautiful beach in style. More info - Bahama Mama's
Bahama Mama's, Beach Bike Rentals