Oregon Coast

Oregon coast

The Oregon Coast is the region in Oregon located along the Pacific coast.

Regions

Cities

Northern Oregon coast

Other destinations

Understand

The Oregon Coast appears to be pristine but is actually one of the most intensively logged areas on Earth, and the impact of the timber industry on the coastal ecology is enormous. Hidden from view to the casual traveler, the landscape just beyond the coastal highway is radically different than the impression one gets from driving up and down the coast. The entire coast was once covered by enormous ancient rain forests, almost all of which have been logged several times over and replaced by industrial tree farms.

Get in

U.S. Highway 101 runs along the Oregon Coast from Astoria in the north (on the border with Washington) to Brookings in the south (on the California border). The highway offers views of Pacific Ocean, making it one of the most scenic drives in the country, and runs through the heart of many coastal cities. However, from Florence to Bandon, the highway is slightly inland because of the vast Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area.

The highway is connected to Interstate 5 by many highways that run along rivers, such as the Umpqua (Highway 38). Typically it takes one to two hours to reach I-5 from the coast.

The only commercial airport on the coast lies in North Bend. The airport is serviced with daily flights to and from Portland International Airport via Horizon Air. You can drive from the airport in Portland to the coast via Highway 26 and Highway 6 in about couple hours. Flying into Portland is usually more economical than flying into North Bend.

Get around

A car is the best way to get around the Oregon Coast. U.S. Highway 101 often serves as the main drag in most of the coastal cities. Many businesses have built along 101 in an effort to attract tourists passing by. During the summer season, make sure you are not in a big hurry. It was recently named No. 1 for tourist congestion, beating out the popular Cape Cod.

Greyhound no longer serves the coast, but many towns are serviced by local bus lines such as Porter Stage Coach.

See

Here are just a few attractions that you need to check out on your visit to the Oregon Coast:

Do

Sleep

As the economy of the Oregon Coast is largely driven by tourism, most small communities have at least one hotel, while popular destinations (Seaside, Lincoln City, Newport) have dozens from which one can choose. When summer heat waves strike the Willammette Valley, however, it is entirely possible for all - very literally all - hotels on the US Highway 101 corridor to be filled to capacity. Make sure you have a place to stay before setting out if temperatures exceed 90°F / 32°C in the Portland, Salem or Eugene areas.

Oregon State Parks operates numerous parks with camping options, as do the parks departments of many counties located on the Oregon Coast. Note that these campsites are likely to be filled to capacity in the summertime months; this is especially true for all sites located within easy access of the Willammette Valley. As with hotels, always rely on a reservation and never on luck.

Eat

Drink

Stay safe

Earthquakes and tsunamis are highly uncommon, but possible along the Oregon Coast. The Cascadia Subduction Zone is located only miles off the coast. There is an excellent tsunami warning network along the Oregon Coast, but due to the close proximity where earthquakes can occur, scientists may be unable to provide much warning for a tsunami. Should you feel strong, violent shaking, seek higher ground immediately.

Far from the warm, calm beaches of Southern California or Florida, the Pacific Coast in Oregon is cold and turbulent - even in the summer. Take necessary thermal precautions and be sure of your skills and abilities before entering the water.

Signs are posted all along the coast directing you to tsunami evacuation areas.

Go next

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Monday, March 14, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.