kari @ pnw kids
Northern Oregon Coast with Kids
Looking for the top spots on Oregon's coast to take your kids? Whether you are looking for relaxing beaches, magical hikes, or secluded coves, we'll cover it all. We know how important it is to have the right information when traveling with your kids in the car, so check out these spots below and find your next adventure! In this post we will round up the top spots to take your kids on Oregon's Northern Coast and give you all the important details. If you have questions about one of these locations, drop us an email or send us a DM on instgram here. We'd love to share more details!
1. Fort Stevens State Park
If your kids are into shipwrecks or military history, head to Fort Stevens State Park on the Northern tip of Oregon. Here they can play in and around a 1900's shipwreck. This park is pretty big, there are excellent bike paths, and loads of camping areas. Plus, from this park you can see where the Colombia River flows into the Pacific Ocean. It's a really cool spot to spend the day or even camp for several.
2. Ecola State Park
f you're at Cannon Beach, do yourself the favor and head over to Ecola State Park, just north of Cannon Beach. Here you will find some of the most epic views of Cannon Beach. Drive down the road to Indian Beach for an otherworldly beach experience. Kids will enjoy playing in the tide-pools and watching the surfers.. There are also several miles of trails that meander through old growth forests.
3. Cannon Beach
Cannon Beach is the crown jewel of the Oregon coast for good reason. It's a huge beach with iconic sea stacks. It's the first place tourists go and in the summer it can be really crowded. If you're traveling to the Oregon Coast for the first time, Cannon Beach should be your first stop only because of it's icon status. The only con is there are no bathrooms close by. The closest bathroom is in town, several blocks away from the beach.
4. Hug Point State Park
Hug Point State Park is a really cool park with a seasonal waterfall! The beach has some awesome caves and nice big sandy areas for the kids to play around in. Plus, a creek flows into the ocean here making for another good spot for kids to play at! There are bathrooms but parking is somewhat limited so get there early!
5. Oswald West State Park
A full roundup of our experience at Oswald West State Park can be found here: Below is a small summary of the pros and cons of this adventure:
Really clean bathroom
Beautiful well maintained trails
Amazing forest and coastal views
Can be really crowded in summer or on nicer days
Can be really crowded in summer or on nicer days
Beach is "smaller" ( not necessarily a con)
Lots of dogs off leash ( however, we didn't notice any dog poop, even on the trails).
6. Cape Meares State Park
A full adventure review of Cape Meares can be found here. Some of our favorite things to do at this wonderful state park are below:
Cape Meares State Scenic Viewpoint-Things to Do
1. Visit the famous Octopus Tree.
If you're into trees with a story to tell, you'll love visiting the Octopus Tree, a spruce with history. This tree, and all its magnificent beauty, is worth the trip out to this spot alone
2. Check out the Cape Meares Lighthouse
There is a wonderful inactive 19th century lighthouse which was fun for the kids to explore and learn more about coastal life way back in the day. Kids 6 and older can actually check out a lighthouse tour!
3. Hike some of the gorgeous trails
Cape Meares is home to several miles of gorgeous trails with some of the most beautiful trees. We went on a cloudy day and the forest was delightfully moody.
4. Whale Watch from the cliffs above
During winter, if you're lucky, you can check out the great whale migration from one of the many vantage points around the park.
7. Cape Lookout State Park
A full adventure review of Cape Lookout State Park can be found here. Some of our favorite things to do at this wonderful state park are below:
Things we loved about Cape Lookout State Park
1. Beautiful trails, including some very easy kid-friendly ones.
2. Lots of amazing camping spots.
3. Beautiful beach, perfect for beach combing
4. A lovely and lush old-growth forest to explore if you need a break from the beach.
5. Great amenities ( i.e. picnic spots, potties etc.)
6. Fun little dunes the kids loved rolling down.
8. Cape Kiwanda State Natural Area
If you are looking for one of the most beautiful spots on the Northern Coast, head over to Cape Kiwanda Natural Area! A massive dune rises over the beach providing some of the most epic views of a gorgeous beach! Kids will enjoy bombing down this epic dune at full speed! There are also nice trails and a beautiful large beach. Just be careful of the high speed Dory boats which come on shore at high speeds ( they honk their horns but small children should still be watched closely while playing near the shore. )
Have you explored the Northern Oregon Coast with kids ? Add your thoughts on these adventures to help our community of adventurous PNW families! ⠀
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