The central Oregon coastline, fringed by sandy beaches and rocky pinnacles, is a wild place interspersed with small towns. You'll find the usual recreational tourist opportunities, such as mini-golf, but discovering the area's natural beauty will create the most lasting memories. Driving south on the Pacific Coast Highway from Depoe Bay, our top five activities are:
Harbor seals are the most common marine mammal in Oregon, particularly at the Otter Rock Marine Reserve. It's a great place to not only view seals, but to observe the wealth of ocean life in the shore's rocky tide pools. Access to the reserve is through Devil’s Punchbowl State Natural Area.
If you are traveling with children, they will enjoy searching for beautiful, translucent stones at the Agate Beach State Recreation Area near Newport. It's a beautiful beach, perfect for a picnic...and, when in season, it's a popular place to dig for razor clams.
In case you didn't stop at Otter Rock, you can see the many ocean species that call Oregon home at this aquarium in Newport. Upon arrival, be sure to check the feeding schedule for an even closer look at the residents.
A privately owned wildlife preserve just north of Florence, Sea Lion Caves offers an opportunity to visit America's largest sea cave. Stellar sea lions call it home, along with many oceanic birds.
So be adventurous. What else will you discover along the Central Oregon Coast?