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20 Monster Reasons to See the Oregon Coast in Fall


Covering 180 miles of Oregon coast travel: Astoria, Seaside, Cannon Beach, Manzanita, Nehalem, Wheeler, Rockaway, Garibaldi, Tillamook, Oceanside, Pacific City, Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Waldport, Yachats & Florence.


Secrets of the Season

20 Monster Reasons to See the Oregon Coast in Fall

Cannon Beach, which hosts a dog show and a major art festival in the fall

(Oregon Coast) - Around here, autumn doesn’t mean falling leaves and colder temperatures - not yet, anyway. Really, summer is just getting started in many ways. The energy level on the Oregon coast may be winding down in terms of the number tourists, but the fun is really just beginning with the whole “second summer” aspect. Things don’t really slow until late October - later, if you count all the craziness of Halloween. And then there’s November, with its kick-off to the holidays.

Essentially, if you don’t keep visiting the coast from September through December as often as you did during summer, you will be missing out in a big way. The Second Summer and its all its warmer weather is just the beginning. There are events, weather surprises, storms and other aspects of the towns and nature that are simply riveting. Here are 20 reasons to keep coming out here.

Second Summer means a lot of cool things on the coast (pictured here: a hidden spot near Pacific City)

#1: Second Summer

Fall is the warmest time of the year on the coast, thanks to an interaction between warmer waters, cooler temperatures inland and air flows from the east.


THE TIDES BY THE SEA, Seaside. For over 80 years a favorite of Seaside visitors. 51 oceanfront condos, individually owned and decorated. Suites for couples, small apartments with fireplaces and kitchenettes, one or two bed family units with fireplaces, kitchens and dining rooms. Oceanview cottages sleep anywhere from two to eight, w/ two bedrooms, some with lofts, fireplaces and kitchens. Heated outdoor pool, enormous grounds w/ picnic tables - all at quiet southern end of Seaside. 2316 Beach Drive. 800-548-2846. www.thetidesbythesea.com.

By the time September comes around, the ocean is at its warmest because of summer. Meanwhile, things get cooler in the valley, which evens out the temperature differences between the two. This allows warmer air flows from the east and from California to help warm things up even more, as well as causes the winds to die down in general and decrease fog.

During the summer, those temperature differences drive the sea breezes and fog. But by early fall, those differences are not as significant.

"June and July can be pretty chilly on the coast," said George Taylor, State Climatologist at Oregon State University in Corvallis. "Throughout the summer, there is a steady increase in temperature until it peaks in September and then falls sometime in October."

Newport's Nye Beach - sans the crowds

#2: Fewer Crowds

On top of this beautiful Second Summer phenomenon, crowds are sizably less. In some areas, like Seaside, visitors still come out in droves and the town is still packed throughout September, although not quite as much. While many are catching on to this, the weekdays - and even weekends - are less crazy, largely because kids are back in school. So you’re apt to find the roads and beaches almost to yourself at times. But on really nice weather weekends, things can still be crowded and nutty. These busy days can stretch well into October.

Warm, inviting waters of the Oregon coast (seen from Cape Lookout, near Tillamook)

STARFISH POINT Newport - Offers only the finest in luxury condominium lodging. Every unit is focused on the beauty of the sea and the beach.
All units boast two bedrooms, two bathrooms, designer kitchens, wireless broadband Internet, fireplaces, Jacuzzi’s and private decks. Friendly staff dedicated to high quality and superb customer service. 140 NW 48th Street, Newport. (541) 265-3751. (800) 870-7795. www.starfishpoint.com

#3: Warmer Waters

It’s part of the reason the whole Second Summer thing exists, helping weather conditions along. Thanks to two or three months of summer sun, the water is at its warmer in fall.

This makes it perfect for wading and splashing around, enjoying these incredible sunny days even more. But always keep your eye on the tide. It can smack you with a sneaker wave at any second, or worse yet, bring a log in that could crush you.

D Sands Motel in Lincoln City, where prices begin to dip in the fall

#4: Lodging Prices Going Down

Traditionally, lodging prices drop after Labor Day Weekend, and then continue dropping until they bottom out in winter. This means great deals in increasing numbers as the fall months roll on.

There is no rule of thumb how much prices drop. In fact, in Seaside, prices don’t drop at all until October because the town is still buzzing.

But most other coastal towns see a drop, sometimes a significant one. Lincoln City, for example, does see some lower prices in September, even if it’s not always immediately after Labor Day. Midweek savings packages start to pop up, and some inns start knocking off prices 20 to 40 percent.

Portlander Mel Brown performs this year

Breathtaking high panoramic beach views from oceanfront rooms, spacious family suites & fully equipped cottages.  Known for gracious hospitality, the sparkling clean Sea Horse features a heated indoor pool, dramatic oceanfront spa, great whale watching, free deluxe continental breakfast, conference room, free casino shuttle & HBO.  Fireplaces, private decks and spas are available in select rooms.  Close to shops, golf, fishing & restaurants.  Pets are welcome in select rooms.  Senior discounts.  Kids 18 and under stay free in their parent's room.  Very attractive rates.

20 gorgeous homes sleep up to 18; doubled that with some side-by-side homes. Some pet friendly. Cottages to massive homes; new oceanfront to renovated historic beach houses. All over central coast w/ Lincoln City, Otter Rock, Boiler Bay and Nye Beach. Long list of features, including barbecues, large decks, antique furnishings, wood stoves, gas fireplaces, hardwood floors, Jacuzzis and hot tubs. Most have movies, music, books. Gift basket w/ goodies in each

One thing you can count on is that lower priced lodgings generally drop less in prices, while more upscale, higher priced places dip farther in cost.

#5: Jazz at Newport

It’s a tsunami of jazz talent showing up in Newport for this four-day festival that is now an annual monster of a festival, happening on September 6, 7, 8 and 9 in the Nye Beach area of town. Most of it takes place at the Newport Performing Arts Center, but there are numerous other businesses and restaurants around town that get turned into little jazz hotspots. Performers include Jeff Hamilton Trio, Ken Peplowski, John Clayton, Gordon Lee and the GLeeful Big Band, Chuck Redd, Benny Green, Mel Brown, Dan Balmer, Holly Hofmann, Music Director, Red Holloway, Mike Wofford, Marilyn Keller, Darrell Grant, Tall Jazz and Bobby Torres, among numerous others. Tickets can be purchased www.JazzAtNewport.org. (888) 701-7123.

Salmon Bake

Lincoln City’s only resort hotel built right on the beach with all oceanfront rooms - nestled against a rugged cliffside overlooking a soft, sandy beach. Dine in penthouse restaurant and bar, for casual meal or candlelight dinner. An array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other Northwest favorites, including decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range from bedrooms to studios to 1-bedroom suites with microwaves and refrigerators to full kitchens. Also, wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise room and year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game room and easy beach access. Full-service conference/meeting rooms for that inspirational retreat; extensive wedding possibilities.#6: Depoe Bay Salmon Bake

September 15 brings this ancient-style salmon bake in the manner of the local Native Americans. There’s live music, and other entertainment includes native American dancers. There’s a cover charge - food extra. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Depoe Bay City Park. This has been going on for over fifty years, making it perhaps the oldest continuous running event on the Oregon coast. Tickets are now on sale: Tickets are $14 for adults and $8 for children 10 and younger until the day of the event. Tickets bought at the gate will be $15 and $9. Depoe Bay. (877) 485-8348.

SOLV volunteers picking up trash on the Oregon coast

Arch Cape Property Services. Dozens of homes in that dreamy, rugged stretch between Cannon Beach and Manzanita known as Arch Cape. Oceanfront and ocean view , or just a short walk from the sea.
All homes are immaculate and smoke free; some pet friendly (with a fee). Some with broadband, indoor or outdoor hot tubs, fireplaces, decks, and fire pits or barbecues. Call about tempting winter specials that go until March (not valid holidays, however). www.archcaperentals.com 866-436-1607.

#7: Great Oregon Fall Beach Clean Up

Gather all ye masses and beach lovers on every beach along Oregon’s 364 miles of coastline to clean the beaches of litter and the odd debris that often shows up, either left by the tide or dumped by humans. It happens in every town on the coast. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. To volunteer or to learn more, 800-333-SOLV. www.solv.org.

#8: Chowder, Blues & Brews in Florence

It’s the 12th annual of this massive yearly event. Florence celebrates its Fall Festival in style on Sept. 21 - 23 with the Chowder, Blues, and Brews at the Florence Events Center and a carnival in Old Town over the weekend. Look for loads of live music in the blues vein, the famous chowder cook-off, various food booths and lots of microbrews - including a competition for best beer. There’s always a major roster of entertainment, which in the past has included Henry Cooper, JC Rico, Curtis Salgado, Ellen Whyte and Paul DeLay, among others. 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Florence, Oregon. 800-524-4864.

Tradewinds Motel, Rockaway Beach. All rooms are immaculate and have TV’s, VCR’s and in-room phones w/ data ports. Oceanfronts have queen bed, a double hide-a-bed, kitchen, cozy firelog fireplace and private deck. Both types sleep up to four people. Others are appointed for a two-person romantic getaway, yet still perfect for those on a budget. Elaborate oceanfront Jacuzzi suite has two bedrooms, kitchen, double hide-a-bed, fireplace and private deck, sleeping as many as six. For family reunions or large gatherings such as weddings, some rooms can connect to create two-room and three-room suites. Some rooms pet friendly. 523 N. Pacific St., Rockaway Beach. (503) 355-2112 - 1-800-824-0938. www.tradewinds-motel.com

#9: North Coast Seafood Festival


October 6 & 7. This one is a new one on the coast, having just started in recent years. But it has grown exponentially in size and popularity, now boasting live music, entertainment as well as one heck of a lot of food. There’s music and dance from around the world, an international food court featuring seafood, Oregon wineries and microbreweries, and a marketplace of Oregon coast artists. It happens in Tillamook, indoors at the Tillamook Fairgrounds. One highlight is the sizable presence of Pacific Seafood. Admission: Adults, $6 Sat. - $5. Sun. Seniors, $4. Kids 6-12, $4. 503-398-5223. www.northcoastseafoodfestival.com

#10: 8th Annual Yachats Village Mushroom Fest

October 19 - 21: The tiny town of Yachats gets all mushy for the mushroom, with a host of dinners and events honoring the delicious organism. Local restaurants pay homage, and there are cooking demonstrations, guided mushroom walks, exhibits, music, entertainment and that wacky Fungi Fashion Show. All over Yachats. 800-929-0477. www.yachats.org.

Kites run amok in Lincoln City

A1 Beach Rentals, Lincoln City. Perfect for large family vacations all the way down to a getaway lodging for two - with over 25 vacation rental homes to choose from. A breathtaking collection of craftsman or traditional beachfront homes, or oceanview houses – from one to seven bedrooms. In various areas of Lincoln City and overlooking the beach, with some in Depoe Bay. All kinds of amenities are available, like hot tubs, decks, BBQ, rock fireplaces, beamed ceilings and more. Some are new, some are historic charmers. Lincoln City, Oregon. 1-(503)-232-5984. www.a1beachrentals.com.

#11: Lincoln City’s Fall Kite Festival.

October 13 – 14. It’s where you can bring your kites to the D River State Wayside and enjoy a bevy of beachy activities with the emphasis on soaring fun. Weather permitting, activities include kite demonstrations, kite ballet, Rokkaku battles, kite buggy, kite boarding, ducky derby, stuffed animal drop, kids kite making and kite building workshops. It’s all free. 800-452-2151. www.oregoncoast.org.

#12: Ursula K. LeGuin

October 20. The famed sci-fi writer – who is a part time north coast resident – shows up in Newport as part of the Nye Beach Writers Series. LeGuin is also a world-famous poet, fantasy and children’s book author. She will read from her latest works. 7 p.m. Admission $10 at door. Hatfield Marine Science Center, Visitors Center Auditorium. www.writersontheedge.org.

Dog Show on the Beach in Cannon Beach, come rain or shine

#13: Dog Show on the Beach, Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach goes to the dogs on October 20 with the Surfsand Resort’s Dog Show On The Beach. Pedigree is not the point here, as The Surfsand Resort opens its nearby beaches to all dog lovers and types of pups. Competitions include barking, surfing, owner look-a-like and ugliest, among a myriad of others. There’s a parade of champions at the end of the day. Cannon Beach, Oregon. 800-547-6100.

The Ocean Lodge. There will not be another property built like this in Cannon Beach in our lifetimes. Rare, premiere ocean front location; handsome, dramatic architecture and tasteful, fun (nostalgic) beach interiors. Overlooks Haystack Rock. 100 percent smoke free. Imaginative special occasion packages. Massive wood burning lobby fireplace. Library w/ fireplace, stocked with impressive book collection. Pet and family friendly. Lavish continental buffet breakfast. In-room fireplaces, mini-kitchens. Jacuzzi tubs in select rooms. DVD players, complimentary movies. Morning paper. Warm cookies. 888-777-4047. 503-436-2241. 2864 Pacific Street. Cannon Beach, Oregon. www.theoceanlodge.com

#14: Halloween

Ghosts abound on the coast around Halloween

Events and explorations for the ghost hunter abound on the beach, including a plethora of purportedly haunted spots up and down the coast. Look for BeachConnection.net editor Andre’ Hagestedt to do talks on coastal ghost tales at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport for its Creatures of the Night celebration, as well as at Beach Books in Seaside (exact dates to be announced).

In the meantime, there’s lots o’ planning to do for the holiday now.

Every Halloween, Seaside hosts a big trick or treat event for kids.

For adults, there are major ragers at many bars, including the Sea Shack in Wheeler, San Dune Tavern in Manzanita, Sportsman’s Pub & Grub in Pacific City, the Shilo Inn lounges in Seaside and Newport, Yachats’ The Landmark, Watering Hole in Nehalem, and elsewhere. Coastal bars are the place to be for grown ups who really want to bump and grind in the night.

Stormy waves reach the bottom of the stairway at Starfish Point, Newport

#15: Beginning of Storm Watch Season

Storms start to kick in somewhere in November - at least usually. You can catch some incredible waves tearing up places like Depoe Bay, Yachats, Newport’s Yaquina Head - or watch frightening aquatic monsters attack places like Cape Meares, Cape Kiwanda, Short Sand Beach (near Manzanita) or the rocky spots around Cannon Beach’s Ecola State Park. These really kick in about late December, but you can often begin to catch them in late November.

Oceanfront restaurant in Cannon Beach

Weiss' Paradise Suites & Vacation Rentals - Seaside

Unique Luxury Accommodations in Seaside. 1BR Suites, 1BR & 2BR Duplex Units and 3BR Houses, units for 2-8 people. Rent entire property for 20-26. Close to beach, river and Broadway St.
Suites are designed for two adults; vacation rental units for families. All units have kitchen and many have fireplace, deck and jetted tub. Comfy robes, slippers, luxury bath amenities, quality linens and more. 741 S. Downing St., Seaside. 800-738-6691. www.SeasideSuites.com

#16: Stormy Weather Arts Festvial

Friday, November 2 – Sunday, November 4. Cannon Beach shows its true colors as an art mecca every year with this incredible citywide event, combing fine art, music and audience participation. This year it happens on November 4-6, with events happening at art galleries, shops and small concerts at restaurants and eateries. Witness artists scrambling to paint and frame a whole piece in an hour, mini-plays, poetry readings, large concerts and the famous Art Walk. That’s just the beginning. www.cannonbeach.org. 503-436-2623 x3.

#17: 7th Annual Oyster Cloyster

Saturday, November 3. This festival of food means the incredible social event of the year for Newport, where dozens of amazing chefs from the Northwest compete for charity. Fine cuisine, entertainment and a culinary competition comprised of local giants make this a happenin’ to remember. 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Proceeds go to charity. Held at the Oregon Coast Aquarium, Newport. (541) 574-7131.

Seaside during the holidays, also the home to the Wine Walk

Lincoln City Vacation Homes Something for everyone: smaller homes with a view to a large house that sleeps 15. All are either oceanfront or just a few steps away – all with a low bank access and fantastic views. Most are in the Nelscott area; one is close to the casino. You’ll find a variety of goodies: fireplaces, multiple bedrooms, dishwashers, Jacuzzis, washer/dryers, hot tubs, cable TV, VCR, barbecues; there’s a loft in one, and another sprawling home has two apartments. Pets allowed in some homes – ask first. Each comes with complete kitchens. Most have seventh night free. Prices range from winter $85 to summer $230 per night. www.getaway2thecoast.com. 541-994-8778.

#18: Kick-Off to the Holidays

The holidays actually begin a little early on the coast, especially with the Newport Shilo Inn hosting a Holiday Bazaar in mid-November. In late November, the Haystack Holidays give a boost to the season in Cannon Beach, with the town hosting various holiday events, including a tree lighting ceremony.

In Seaside, it means the town begins to get lit up with a host of decorations in late November - especially ones in sea star shapes. The Yuletide at Seaside competition starts, with various businesses around town getting really decked out. A bus will drive visitors around town on weekends to observe the twinkling.

Warm winter weather, along with big waves, near Depoe Bay

#19: Seaside Downtown Wine Walk

November 17. Twice a year, Seaside gets especially festive with its Downtown Wine Walk. Dozens of wineries show up at various businesses around town and the vino flows freely. There’s even live music and good eats in some spots. 4 p.m. 7 p.m. Over 21 only – charge for participation includes wine glass. 503-717-1914 www.seasidedowntown.com

#20: Winter Weather Surprises

Don’t be surprised to be surprised by the weather out here in November and December. It’s not unlikely you’ll find a decent amount of mild, even beautiful days. Keep an eye on the weather reports - and don’t assume it’s always cold and dreary on the coast. Many coastal locals note how it’s warmer at times in December than in June.

D Sands Condominium Motel, Lincoln City. Free, fresh baked cookie upon check-in is just the start. All rooms beachfront and up against Lincoln City's most famous stretch of beach: the D River. Each room comes as a suite or mini-suite, and has a kitchen and balcony or patio. Some w/ gas fireplaces, while all have a DVD Players; movies to rent come with free popcorn. Heated indoor pool, a spa, and this fabulous beach is lit at night. Rooms sleep from two, four to six - including a deluxe fireplace suite. Gift certificates orspecial occasion packages. www.dsandsmotel.com. 171 S.W. Highway 101. 800-527-3925.


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Where the Columbia meets the Pacific, Land of Lewis & Clark and loads of atmosphere & history

The Promenade, Tillamook Head, family fun & broad, sandy beaches

A mysterious lighthouse, upscale yet earthy, a huge monolith, fine eateries & an art mecca

Manzanita's beaches, Nehalem and Wheeler's quirky beauty; laid back Rockaway

Garibaldi, Barview, Bay City, Tillamook & an oceanfront ghost town

The hidden secret of the coast: Cape Meares, a lighthouse, Oceanside, Netarts and Pacific City

Miles & miles of unbroken beaches, Cascade Head, Neskowin and many manmade attractions
A spouting horn downtown, freaky hidden cliffs and whales, whales, whales
Time-tripping Nye Beach, a bustling bayfront, marine science-central and two lighthouses

Pristine, even secretive sands and wild geologic landmarks

Constantly dramatic wave action, a mix of the rugged & upscale

25 miles of deserted beaches & oodles of wonders

A lighthouse, ancient bayfront and miles and miles of fluffy dunes

For over 80 years a favorite of Seaside visitors. 51 oceanfront condos, individually owned and decorated. Suites for couples, small apartments with fireplaces and kitchenettes, one or two bed family units with fireplaces, kitchens and dining rooms. Oceanview cottages sleep anywhere from two to eight, w/ two bedrooms, some with lofts, fireplaces and kitchens. Heated outdoor pool, enormous grounds w/ picnic tables - all at quiet southern end of Seaside.



oregon coast lighthouses on dvd

Oregon Coast event or adventure you can't miss

Newly renovated, 30 upscale rooms, on north end of Lincoln City, close to everything. Spa-like feeling, w/ luxury linens & robes, pillow top mattresses, flat screen TV's, granite counters and more all add to pampering. Oceanfront and ocean view units w/ gas fireplace. Hot Tub units. Romance packages. Luxury Room for every budget: meeting and wedding spaces too.

17 lavish, beachfront suites feature Jacuzzi or outdoor hot tub, gas fireplace, luxury robes & linens, TV, two-headed showers. Three large suites have kitchens. Private deck w/ BBQ available. No smoking or pets. Perfect for romantic getaway, honeymoon.

Feed the seals! One of the oldest aquariums in the U.S. is here in Seaside, Oregon, right on the Promenade



Inn at Cannon Beach. Beautifully wooded natural setting at quiet south end of Cannon Beach. Great during winter storms with a new book by the fireplace – or when the sun is out for family fun and beach strolling. Handsome beach cottage-style architecture. Lush flowering gardens and naturalized courtyard pond. Warm, inviting guest rooms. Continental buffet breakfast. Warm Cookies. Family and Pet Friendly. Welcome gifts. Smoke-free. Complimentary Wireless Connectivity. Wine and book signing events. 800-321-6304 or 503-436-9085. Hemlock At Surfcrest, Cannon Beach, Oregon. www.atcannonbeach.com.