Portland – Seaside

As we were driving along the Pacific Hwy W, I couldn’t help but notice how incredibly big the trees were. Being from Florida, where everything is flat, it was truly humbling to experience something so much bigger than myself. I felt like a tiny ant among these giants that have been living for thousands of years. If only these trees could speak, I can only imagine the stories they would tell.

Our first stop was Cape Kiwanda in Pacific City, OR, which is truly a magical place. There we enjoyed lunch at the Pelican Pub & Brewery which sits directly on the beach. Their beers have won numerous competitions and the food is great too. The view is even more remarkable as you overlook the beach, a large haystack rock, and sand dunes.

We witnessed a paddle boarder out near the rock and we felt terrified for him, because the waves looked so rough and he was right in the middle of an inlet. However, I imagine the view on his end outweighed the risks.

After lunch, we headed down the beach to the sand dunes and took turns running up the 70 degree hill until about halfway when we ran out of breath. The view from this point was breathtaking and well worth the climb.

We then walked over to the inlet and watched the rolling waves crash against the large rock formations. Watching the waves recede out to sea then come crashing back  was extremely humbling – actually if I could sum up the entire trip in one word it would be that: humbling.

Sadly, we had to get back on the road to make good timing, but we both agreed we would be back. (Side note: I definitely recommend staying here if you get to the coast late or decide to cover more of the southern coast of Oregon before making your way up to Cape Kiwanda). Shortly after we started driving, we saw a mother deer and her baby crossing the road.

We had a jam-packed day of stops along the coast. There are signs along the road for every site so you should have no problem finding them and discovering new ones. We probably stopped at 10 different places, but found ourselves completely wiped by the time we reached our hotel. In hindsight, I would probably only stop at 5-6 so you can make the most out of your time at each stop.

My good friend followed our itinerary a few months after and had the great idea to have a picnic on the beach. If you decide to do this, the perfect spot would be Oceanside.

If Kiwanda was magical, Oceanside is out of this world! There is a somewhat hidden tunnel at the north end of the beach in a cliff. Once you enter through the tunnel it opens up to a scene that you probably had on your screensaver at some point.

There were haystack rocks as far as the eye could see and sea lions sitting out on some of them. We felt like we were in Thailand or something (minus the sea lions). Just be careful about the tides as there are warning signs that the tide could make it hard to get back through the tunnel.

We wrapped up the day with a delicious dinner at Castaways and then crashed at our hotel in Seaside.


Favorite Places: Cape Kiwanda, Cape Meares, Arcadia Beach, Cannon Beach, Tillamook Rock Lighthouse

Favorite Restaurants: Pelican Brew Company, Castaways Restaurant

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