Stay Eat Events Weather Beaches

Insanely Cool Highlights of Three Capes Drive on N. Oregon Coast

Published 02/28/2020 at 1:28 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Insanely Cool Highlights of Three Capes Drive on N. Oregon Coast

Latest Coastal Lodging News Alerts
In Seaside:
Includes exclusive listings; major specials when beaches reopen
In Cannon Beach:
Includes rentals not listed anywhere else
In Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach:
major specials when beaches reopen
In Pacific City, Oceanside:
major specials when beaches reopen
In Lincoln City:
major specials when beaches reopen
In Depoe Bay, Gleneden Beach:
major specials when beaches reopen
In Newport:
Look for major specials when beaches reopen
In Waldport
New amenities offered; specials coming when beaches open
In Yachats, Florence
Big specials coming; lodgings not listed anywhere else

(Pacific City, Oregon) – Whatever it’s called these days – Three Capes Drive, Route or even Loop – it’s an insanely cool 20-some miles of Oregon coast that doesn’t quit with surprises. Three Capes, a lighthouse, four (or so) tiny villages, a rollicking set of dunes and more fun secrets and discoveries than you shake a chunk of seaweed at comprises this miracle set of miles.

It was once an actual loop connected to Highway 101 at both ends, but a chunk of road up at its northern tip (about Cape Meares) kept collapsing and Tillamook County officials just gave up for awhile. The right engineering plan and the money to build a permanent solution are a ways away. From the south, Highway 101 right after Neskowin connects to Pacific City and 101 veers inland, making this the beachside route. From Pacific City, Tierra Del Mar is next, and another few miles up the road you run into the Sand Lake Recreation Area, the north Oregon coast’s answer to the 40-miles of the National Dunes Recreation Area on the south coast.


Inching along this winding stretch you soon bump into the entrance to Cape Lookout, the second of the Three Capes. A tad north of that is Cape Lookout State Park, soon giving way to tiny Netarts and the plentiful Netarts Bay. Two more miles up the road is Oceanside, and the next couple of miles contains the secretive Short Beach and the finale, Cape Meares. There, you reach the end of the road: once you could get right onto the road next to the Bayocean Spit and the tiny town known as Cape Meares. Now you have to head back into Netarts and run the nine miles back to Tillamook on tiny Highway 131 to get onto Bayocean Road. The Three Capes Loop isn’t as economical on the gas mileage as it once was, but it’s still spectacular. Three Capes Maps


Some Highlights You Need to Know

Cape Meares is best known for its lighthouse and the intriguing Octopus Tree, but make sure you stop at the little overlook just a few yards away from the tree. You really get a fascinating view of Short Beach and the completely cordoned off Lost Boy Beach next to it. Not to mention the entire vantage point offers up remarkable, massive arches and holes in Three Arch Rocks you had no clue were there.

Oceanside is just plain insane with its massive variety of stuff to do all crammed into one tiny place. Still off-the-beaten path it remains a little less populated than other spots, but nothing compared to the empty beaches this charmer still boasted as late as 2010 or so. Maxwell Point and its eerie tunnel are a constant thrill, but let yourself just drive up the road that winds up the mountain and let the random discoveries hit you one after another.


Short Beach’s long stairway will wear you out but the pristine nature of this spot full of intrigue is worth it, and just hiking along the trails of Cape Lookout for a half a mile or less will yield astounding sights. In fact, one small gravel pullout near the cape’s entrance will floor you with its view of Sand Lake.


Down at Pacific City, the pleasures of Cape Kiwanda are well known, but the true unpopulated delights are McPhillips Beach (a mere one mile north) and the village of Tierra Del Mar. Lots of soft sand for miles is the order of the day, although McPhillips features a few distinctive rock structures you’ll want to linger around for awhile.

Sheltered Nook on Tillamook Bay. This a wildly unique set of vacation rentals: extremely eco-friendly but with tiny homes (each is 385 sq ft). It’s all set in a secluded woodsy area near Tillamook Bay, not far from the northern end of the Three Capes. You’ll find a disc golf course, fire pit and even dog bath. outdoor seating7860 Warren Street. Bay City, Oregon. (503) 805-5526. shelterednook.com

Sandlake Country Inn. This historic beauty is right in the middle of the action at Sand Lake and those dunes, where relaxation and romance are the keys at this cozy B&B secret. It’s built partially from the timbers of a shipwreck and it was the firest certified green B&B on the coast. 8505 Galloway Rd. Pacific City, Oregon. www.sandlakecountryinn.com. 877-726-3525. 503-965-6745.

Headlands Coastal Lodge. Gorgeous, soaring architecture gives way to upscale, beachfront rentals and hotel rooms. They’re enormous and so are the gripping views, where it’s the closest place to watch Cape Kiwanda get smacked by gargantuan waves. Its also comes with Meridian Restaurant and a spa. 33000 Cape Kiwanda Drive, Pacific City, Oregon. 503-483-3000. Website here

Kiwanda Coastal Properties. From extravagant to elemental, there’s a wide variety of vacation rentals here, with many of the 50 or so just steps from the beach. There’s even one in Tierra Del Mar, far enough north where you’re almost guaranteed to find yourself alone on the beach. Pacific City, Oregon. 503-965-7212. Website here.

Hotels in Three Capes - Where to eat - Three Capes Maps and Virtual Tours




 

More About Oregon Coast hotels, lodging.....

More About Oregon Coast Restaurants, Dining.....



Coastal Spotlight


LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

Deeper Inside Cape Kiwanda: Ancient Details, Fallen Arches on N. Oregon Coast
Cape Kiwanda is the centerpiece but there's more getting revealed
Virtual Workshops Bring Together Art and Science of Oregon Coast
Marine Reserves Workshops where participants will learn about special ocean habitats and creatures while creating art Sciences
Three Unique, Even Trippy Aspects of Seaside on N. Oregon Coast
A Ferris wheel, when the cove fell apart, what's under Seaside. History, science
Manzanita in Summer: Wider Beaches, Glowing Things, a Different Face of N. Or...
There's a whole new face to this north Oregon coast treasure, more than you likely know
The Mystery of Purple Waves on Oregon Coast Back in 2015
The whole strange science tale has another twist at its end, too. weather
New Lincoln City Drive-In Brings Classic Experience to Central Oregon Coast
Drive-In Series of classic movies on Saturday evenings through August 29th. Lincoln City events
Delights of Depoe Bay: So Much to Explore in Central Oregon Coast Burgh
About a dozen little nooks 'n crannies hidden throughout the city limits and just either side of it. Newport, Gleneden Beach, Lincoln City
Seaside On A Winter's Night, An Ethereal N. Oregon Coast Drama
Exploring sometimes means doing so in times of the day or moments that would be considered unusual. Sciences

Back to Oregon Coast

Contact Advertise on BeachConnection.net
All Content, unless otherwise attributed, copyright BeachConnection.net Unauthorized use or publication is not permitted

Oregon Coast Lodging
Rentals
Specials

Dining

Events Calendar

Oregon Coast Weather

Travel News

Search for Oregon Coast Subjects, Articles

Virtual Tours, Maps
Deep Details