Central Oregon Coast Spring Break Highlights: Whales, Lighthouses, Special Events in Newport
(Newport, Oregon) – Spring Break on the central Oregon coast is a tsunami of things to do and see in the natural world. The area hosts more Whale Watch Week vantage points than any other on the coast, the Hatfield Marine Science Center and Oregon Coast Aquarium put on quite a show, and the outdoors promises unending fun for all ages with crabbing, fishing, lighthouses and more.
Spring Whale Watch Week. From March 24 to 31, volunteers will be out in full force to help you spot whales meandering past. They will be at 26 high vantage points along the Oregon coast – but seven of those are in the Newport area. Just north of Newport, in the Depoe Bay area, there are Boiler Bay State Scenic Viewpoint, Whale Watching Center at the Depoe Bay Sea Wall and Rocky Creek State Scenic Viewpoint. Just outside of Newport are Cape Foulweather and the Devil's Punchbowl State Natural Area. Within Newport are Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area and Don Davis City Park in Nye Beach. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. whalespoken.org.
Whale photo courtesy Whale Watch Center, Depoe Bay
March 26. Fantastic Floaters. If you've ever wondered how tiny organisms get around in that massive ocean, the Hatfield Marine Science is helping you explore these mysterious wanderers. They will collect plankton using nets, examine them under a microscope and try to find out what they will become as adults. Learn how plankton adaptations help them sink or swim, then design and create your own plankton model to race against other families. Pre-registration is recommended, but walk-ins are welcome. 1 – 3 p.m. Cost: $7.50 per person. Hatfield Marine Science Center. 2030 SE Marine Science Drive, Newport, Oregon. (541) 867-0233.
March 30. Estuary Investigations. Spend time exploring the different zones of the Yaquina Bay estuary and the unique organisms found there. You'll discover awe-inspiring things about current research and use sampling equipment to collect animals and investigate their unique adaptations to life in the mud. Boots and raingear recommended. Pre-registration is recommended, but walk-ins are welcome. 1 – 3 p.m. Cost: $7.50 per person. Hatfield Marine Science Center. 2030 SE Marine Science Drive, Newport, Oregon. (541) 867-0233.
March 31. SOLV Annual Spring Beach Cleanup on Oregon Coast. Oregonians from all over the state will be hitting the coastline to help scour the beaches of tons of litter and ocean debris. There are various meeting spots in Newport, including Agate Beach, Nye Beach and Beverly Beach. Register online. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. www.solv.org. 800-333-SOLV.
Oregon Coast Aquarium hosts a large variety of events for children, especially some of the younger ones. See their full schedule at www.aquarium.org. 2820 SE Ferry Slip Rd. Newport, Oregon. 541-867-3474 x 5224.
Ongoing activities in Newport include two lighthouses which you can tour, the scenic wonders of Yaquina Head, and crabbing and fishing in both the Yaquina Bay and in the ocean via a variety of charter businesses.
For more information, see www.discovernewport.com. 800-262-7844
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