Attractions Along the North Oregon Coast in Cannon & Seaside Beach
From long walks on sandy beaches or the promenade, to feeding seals at the Seaside Aquarium or shopping and sampling Northwest seafood, the North Oregon Coast means fun.
Whether just visiting for the day or staying for the weekend, Seaside and Cannon Beach offer visitors access to sandy beaches, forest trails, historic tours, a variety of shops, museums, galleries, and entertainment attractions. Although each city contains enough sites for a full day’s worth of activity, the 7-mile drive between the two cities boasts spectacular views and is well worth the short drive. Ecola State Park is located between Seaside and Cannon Beach.
Seaside, Oregon – Family Vacation Destination
Located 90 miles from Portland, Seaside is one of many Oregon coast stops that delivers all that one wants in a getaway.
This city marks the end of the Lewis and Clark Trail. A historic memorial statue with a replica of their camp is visited and photographed by millions.
At low tide the rocks appear, revealing tidal pools to be explored. Sealife gets trapped there, offering discovery and great photo opportunities until high tide. Three miles of beach is often filled with families, sunbathers, kite flyers, surfers, swimmers and volleyball players in the summer, and joggers, sandcastle builders, and beach walkers in the winter. Sometimes there are surf fishermen trying their best and a nearby river can supply them with steelhead, trout, and salmon. Crab can be easily taken at the 12th Street bridge.
The Prom (as the locals call it) is centered on nearly two miles of the manicured boardwalk where it overlooks the sandy stretch between the tide line and the city. A walker could go the length and never be far from food or a nice bench to rest on.
There are rented pedal carts to get around, giving a sure place to sit when between activities and it makes a short distance of seeing everything. At the river, there are paddle-boats to rent, as well. The river runs through the edge of town and across Main Street before it empties into the ocean, and there are benches for guests to sit on and watch the boaters, wildlife, and scenery.
The three-mile-long oceanfront promenade is perfect for walking, strolling, and biking. Bike rentals are available at several locations in Seaside, as well as fun wheels, go-carts and mopeds, and paddle boats. The promenade dates back to 1908 and its beginnings as a boardwalk.
Main Street leads to the Promenade with flower-decked sidewalks overflowing with color and local artisan candy-makers dotting the scene. All businesses have access to mobility issues.
There’s a huge arcade full of fun and some of the games are either sat in or stepped on to be enjoyed. People can be seen having a good time just watching the others play! There are bumper cars, cotton candy and taffy, trendy clothing stores, and mini-malls, too. One mall has an antique carousel in the middle and it’s in operation every day. Watch it filled with excited children or wait till it stops to take a horse and ride.
Restaurants come in a large selection; family fare, like at Pig ‘n Pancake and there are others that serve family menus or fine dining, ethnic cuisine, spirits, local Oregon wines, and local fine brews.
The turnaround, characterized by spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean and Tillamook Head, houses a statue of Lewis and Clark, to commemorate Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discover. The promenade and beach area is known as the finish line of the Hood to Coast run and home to the annual beach volleyball tournament.
Seaside Lodging Serves All Tastes and Budgets
Hotels are as easy to find as the ocean and they’re everywhere along the waterfront and in the downtown area of Seaside. With something for every vacationer, there’s everything from the less expensive cottage types to the big commercial stays with a view, along with several nice B&Bs, inns, timeshares, condos, campgrounds, and RV resorts. Most places allow pets, although some charge a fee for it.
Off Main Street, in downtown Seaside, is where to get to know the locals, where businesses operate year-round, and the people who make their livelihoods bustle about. There are antique stores, tailors, a library, groceries, and gas. It’s a busy little town where the fun happens all around the calendar with. tons of things to do.
Fresh local seafood is easy to find in Seaside and Cannon Beach. Entrees include salmon, crab, halibut, shrimp, oysters, clams, and more. A local favorite with a family setting and excellent food is Dooger’s Seafood and Grill, with locations in Seaside, Cannon Beach, and Warrenton. Dooger’s is open for lunch and dinner daily. Mo’s Restaurant is located at Tolovana Park in Cannon Beach, offering delicious clam chowder and fish-n-chips.
Miles of Sandy Beaches
When the sun is out and the weather is warm, there is no better place to be than at the Oregon Coast. Beach access in Seaside is as easy as walking along the promenade and heading to the beach. Cannon Beach also offers miles of sandy beaches, with magnificent views of Haystack Rock. Kite-flying is a popular activity along the Oregon Coast.
Since 1937, the Seaside Aquarium has wowed its audiences with the antics of the harbor seals and other native Northwest animals. Visitors view Pacific octopuses, sea stars, rays, and other native creatures. Visitors also learn about life undersea, touch sea anemones, starfish, and sea urchins in the “Touch Tank”. The Seaside Aquarium has located just two blocks from the turnaround. Adult admission is $7, children 6-13 are $3.50, and children under 5 are free with paid admission.
Shops, Galleries & Historic Tours in Seaside and Cannon Beach
Downtown Seaside offers its visitors a multitude of shopping options, from specialty gifts, collectibles, clothing, saltwater taffy, and much more. Art galleries also line Broadway Street, the main street of downtown Seaside. Entertainment activities include the Carousel, the Fun Center arcades, miniature golf, bumper cars, Tilt-a-Twirl, and the miniature train. Visit the Seaside Museum and discover the end of the Lewis and Clark Trail statue and Lewis and Clark Salt Works.
Cannon Beach also offers visitors a variety of shops, galleries, and museums. Art admirers can watch glassblowing, as artists create colorful vases, bowls, and other works of art. A walking tour of historic houses is available from the Cannon Beach Historical Society.
For more information on Oregon Coast attractions, read Oregon Coast Attractions.