The north Oregon Coast has dramatic scenery, with cliffs and headlands holding stunning, scenic beaches for you to explore. Beaches in Oregon are all open to the public, so walk to your heart’s content! Sandy beaches, stony beaches, hikes through the forest to reach them – you’ll find all sorts of adventures and beautiful scenery waiting.
The easy going village of Manzanita is your jump start to two beautiful beaches; Neahkahnie Beach (also known as Manzanita Beach) and the 4-mile sand spit in Nehalem Bay State Park. Just north of town, Neahkahnie Beach is an active, fun place to wander or set up your camp for the day. Tide pools at the foot of Neahkahnie Mountain are filled with sea stars, nudibranchs, crabs and juvenile sea life. Kite surfing is popular if you’re ready for the water temps (brr), or rent a beach cruiser, Funcycle or mountain bike and pedal your way down the sands.
The long sand spit of Nehalem Bay State Park is just south of Manzanita’s paved streets; experience the wild side of the beach on the ocean front or the tamer side, back on Nehalem Bay. This quiet, secluded area gives opportunities to see Roosevelt elk, deer and a bevy of birds. Beaches around the bay are popular for fishing, crabbing, clamming, kayaking and paddle boarding.
Cannon Beach: Loved By All Who Visit
A few minutes drive north of Manzanita takes you to Cannon Beach, with 4 miles of broad, sandy beach in front of a village known for its arts community and access to nature. The 235’ Haystack Rock is home to tidepools, nesting Tufted Puffins and a plethora of sea life. In the season, trained volunteers will help you with where to look and for what. Bicycles and Funcycles are available to rent, or head out for a long walk south to the Hug Point waterfall. The north side of Cannon Beach gives easy access to the Ecola Creek delta, where you can see the fresh water mixing area; home to a wide variety of wildlife. Cannon Beach has easy access to cafes, shops and services close to the beach.
Step Into History at Rockaway Beach
Rockaway Beach hasn’t changed much with the times and offers an easy step back in time to summer camp at the coast, staying in the family cabin. Today you’ll find plenty of comfortable accommodations and a quiet place to enjoy the long 7 miles where sand and surf kiss. Rockhounding, beach combing and tide pooling are year ‘round activities that never get old; several varieties of agates keep collectors coming back season after season. And, there’s a tree in Rockaway that could be 900 years old! The Sitka spruce is in the Rockaway Cedar Preserve, an easy walk on the boardwalk, and if you listen carefully, maybe it has a history lesson to share. It’s estimated to be one of Oregon’s biggest trees in terms of sheer mass and its aged bark and twisty limbs make it very photogenic.
Beaches in Oswald West State Park
A beautiful preserved area near Manzanita, Oswald West State Park is the entrance to Smuggler’s Cove and Short Sand Beach, aka Shorty’s. Popular with surfers and those that like their beach on the wild side, this is a beach for active people. Be prepared to hike about a mile through the forest to reach this magical beach.
Arch Cape Beach is also located inside Oswald West’s protection; a long stone beach where beach combing and rock hounding is especially fun. Do check the tide tables here, as the beach is narrow and disappears at the high tide.
Book Your Manzanita Escape Now!
The best part of your Manzanita Beach visit is the wide variety of beaches nearby! Plan your trip now and book a Manzanita vacation rental as your base camp.