Top 15 Activities To Experience In Seaside Oregon

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon

Planning a trip to Seaside, Oregon can feel a bit daunting. Trust me, we’ve all been there – staring at a sea of options, not quite sure where to dive in first. But don’t worry, we’ve got your back.

Our team has combed every inch of this charming coastal town, from the historic Promenade to those hidden spots only locals know about. We’ve put together a guide to the top 15 activities in Seaside that’ll help you squeeze every drop of fun out of your visit.

So grab your sunscreen and get ready for an Oregon coast adventure you won’t soon forget!

Key Takeaways

  • Seaside offers diverse activities including beach fun, hiking trails, water sports, and cultural attractions like the Seaside Aquarium and Historical Society Museum.
  • Popular annual events include the Beach Volleyball Tournament in August, Pouring at the Coast Brewer’s Festival on March 16th, and the Cannon Beach Cottage Tour in September.
  • The Seaside Turnaround marks the end of Lewis and Clark’s trail and provides access to the beach, ocean views, and nearby shops.
  • Tillamook Head features scenic hiking trails like the 3.6-mile loop trail and viewpoints of Tillamook Rock Lighthouse and the Pacific Ocean.
  • Indoor attractions include Funland Arcade, open daily from 9 AM to 10 PM (11 PM on weekends), offering classic games and unique attractions like Fascination and Black Out.

Discover Seaside, Oregon: Top Activities and Attractions

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon - A colorful kite flies high above the sandy beach, with a historic lighthouse and crashing waves in the background.

Seaside, Oregon offers a treasure trove of experiences for visitors. From sandy shores to historical sites, this coastal gem packs a punch with its diverse attractions.

Beach Adventures in Seaside

Seaside’s beaches offer a perfect blend of relaxation and excitement for visitors of all ages. We’ve compiled a list of top beach activities that’ll make your trip to Seaside, Oregon unforgettable.

  1. Kite flying: The steady coastal breezes make Seaside an ideal spot for kite enthusiasts. Colorful kites dancing against the blue sky create a mesmerizing spectacle.
  2. Sand castle building: Grab a bucket and shovel to craft intricate sand sculptures. The fine, damp sand along the shore is perfect for creating detailed designs.
  3. Boogie boarding: Catch some waves on a boogie board. The Pacific Ocean’s gentle swells are great for beginners and experienced riders alike.
  4. Beach combing: Walk along the shore and collect seashells, interesting rocks, or bits of sea glass. It’s a peaceful way to connect with nature.
  5. Sunset watching: Settle in for a breathtaking Oregon Coast sunset. The sky’s changing colors reflected on the water create a stunning natural display.
  6. Picnicking: Pack a lunch and enjoy a meal with ocean views. Many spots along the beach offer tables or flat areas perfect for spreading out a blanket.
  7. Beach volleyball: Join a pickup game or start your own. The soft sand provides a fun challenge for players of all skill levels.
  8. Tide pool exploring: During low tide, discover small ecosystems teeming with sea life in rocky areas along the shore.
  9. Surfing: For more experienced wave riders, Seaside offers decent surf spots. Bring your board or rent one from local shops.
  10. Beach cleanups: Participate in the “Coins for Cleanups” program. You’ll help keep the beach beautiful while earning rewards for your efforts.

Cultural and Historical Attractions

We love exploring Seaside’s rich past. The Lewis and Clark statue stands tall, marking the end of their famous expedition. It’s a must-see spot for history buffs. The Salt Works, another key site, shows how the explorers made salt to preserve food.

These landmarks bring 200-year-old stories to life.

For a deeper dive into local lore, we head to the Seaside Historical Museum. It houses over 2,000 years of area history. The exhibits take us on a journey through time, from Native American settlements to modern-day Seaside.

We always learn something new with each visit.

Scenic Hikes Around Seaside

Seaside, Oregon offers breathtaking trails for nature enthusiasts and casual hikers alike. Let’s explore some scenic hikes that showcase the area’s natural beauty:

  1. Tillamook Head National Recreation Trail: This stunning path winds through lush coastal forest. It offers sweeping ocean views and a chance to spot diverse wildlife.
  2. Indian Beach Trail via Ecola State Park: A 3.8-mile trek rewards hikers with panoramic vistas of the Pacific. The trail features diverse terrain, from sandy beaches to dense woodlands.
  3. Saddle Mountain Trail: This 4.7-mile hike challenges visitors with steep climbs. At the summit, hikers enjoy unparalleled views of the coast and Cascade Mountains.
  4. Seaside Promenade: For a leisurely stroll, the 1.5-mile paved walkway hugs the shoreline. It’s perfect for all ages and abilities, offering ocean views and access to local shops.
  5. Necanicum Estuary Trail: This easy walk meanders along the Necanicum River. Birdwatchers will love spotting local and migratory species in this rich ecosystem.
  6. Tillamook Rock Lighthouse Trail: A short but steep hike leads to viewpoints of the infamous “Terrible Tilly” lighthouse. The trail offers dramatic coastal scenery and whale-watching opportunities.
  7. Fort Stevens State Park Trails: Multiple paths wind through this historic park. Hikers can explore WWII bunkers, forests, and beaches while learning about the area’s military past.

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon – Shopping and Dining Hotspots

We love exploring the charming shopping and dining scene in Seaside, Oregon. Broadway Street, the town’s main thoroughfare, offers a delightful mix of boutiques, galleries, and eateries.

The Seaside Carousel Mall, a unique attraction, houses 24 full-sized carousel animals – replicas from San Francisco’s Carousel Museum. It’s a shopper’s paradise with no sales tax and dozens of specialty shops.

Dining in downtown Seaside is a treat for food lovers. From cozy cafes to seafood restaurants, the options cater to every palate. We enjoy strolling along the promenade, taking in the ocean views while deciding where to eat.

The local eateries often feature fresh, locally-sourced ingredients, giving us a true taste of the Oregon coast.

Seasonal Festivals and Events

Seaside, Oregon comes alive with exciting events throughout the year. Our coastal town offers a variety of festivals and gatherings that showcase our community spirit and natural beauty.

  1. Beach Volleyball Tournament: Every August, Seaside hosts one of the largest amateur beach volleyball tournaments in the world. Thousands of players and spectators flock to our sandy shores for this three-day event.
  2. Pouring at the Coast Brewer’s Festival: Mark your calendars for March 16th. This annual celebration of craft beer features local and regional breweries, live music, and food pairings.
  3. SOLVE Beach Cleanup: Join us on March 23rd for this community-driven event. We’ll work together to keep our beaches pristine and protect our coastal ecosystem.
  4. Classic Car Show: Each summer, vintage auto enthusiasts display their prized vehicles along the Seaside Promenade. It’s a nostalgic trip down memory lane for car lovers of all ages.
  5. Art and Wine Walk: Stroll through downtown Seaside, sampling local wines and admiring works by regional artists. This event occurs several times throughout the year.
  6. Beach Run: Challenge yourself with a scenic race along the Pacific shoreline. Runners of all skill levels participate in this invigorating event.
  7. Coastal Craft Uprising: Artisans and crafters from across the Pacific Northwest gather to showcase their unique creations. It’s a perfect opportunity to find one-of-a-kind souvenirs.
  8. Cannon Beach Cottage Tour: Explore charming historical homes in nearby Cannon Beach. This annual event offers a glimpse into the area’s architectural heritage.

Outdoor Fun in Seaside

Seaside, Oregon offers a treasure trove of outdoor activities for nature lovers and adventure seekers. From sandy shores to lush forests, this coastal gem invites visitors to explore its diverse landscapes and breathtaking views.

Explore the Seaside Aquarium

We love visiting the Seaside Aquarium, a coastal gem that’s entertained folks for over 80 years. This place isn’t just about looking at fish – it’s hands-on fun for everyone. We get to feed seals, explore the discovery center, and even control the Aquarium Cam.

It’s a perfect spot for families or anyone wanting to learn about Northwest marine life up close.

The live displays here are something special. We see colorful fish, weird creatures, and local marine plants that make us feel like we’re underwater. The kids (and let’s be honest, us adults too) go crazy for the touch tanks.

There’s nothing quite like feeling a starfish or sea anemone to bring the ocean to life. It’s educational, sure, but mostly it’s just plain fun.

Water Activities: Paddle Boating and More

Seaside’s waterways offer a unique perspective on this charming coastal town. Let’s explore the exciting water activities available for visitors seeking a tranquil adventure.

  1. Paddle boating: Glide across Seaside’s calm waters in a paddle boat. These user-friendly vessels provide a leisurely way to take in the scenery and enjoy quality time with family or friends.
  2. Kayaking: Navigate the Necanicum River or the calm waters of the estuary. Kayaks allow us to access hidden spots and observe local wildlife up close.
  3. Canoeing: Perfect for small groups, canoeing lets us explore Seaside’s waterways at our own pace. It’s an excellent activity for those looking to combine exercise with sightseeing.
  4. Stand-up paddleboarding: Test our balance and core strength while enjoying panoramic views of the coastline. This popular activity is suitable for beginners and experienced paddlers alike.
  5. Guided water tours: Join a knowledgeable local guide for an informative trip along Seaside’s waterways. These tours often include historical facts and wildlife spotting opportunities.
  6. Fishing charters: Cast a line and try our luck at catching local fish species. Many charter companies provide all necessary equipment and licenses.
  7. Sunset cruises: End our day with a relaxing boat ride as the sun dips below the horizon. These cruises often include light refreshments and commentary on local landmarks.
  8. Equipment rentals: Various local outfitters offer rental options for kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards. This allows us to explore at our own pace without the need to bring our own gear.

Trails and Views at Tillamood Head

Tillamook Head offers breathtaking trails and views that capture the essence of Oregon’s coastal beauty. We’ve explored this stunning area and compiled a list of must-see spots for nature lovers and hiking enthusiasts:

  1. Tillamook Head Trail: This 3.6-mile loop trail provides panoramic vistas of the Pacific Ocean and surrounding coastline. The path winds through lush forests and open meadows, offering diverse scenery.
  2. Ecola State Park Viewpoint: From here, we can see the famous Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, perched on a rocky island just offshore. The park also offers picnic areas and interpretive displays about local wildlife.
  3. Indian Beach: This secluded cove at the base of Tillamook Head is perfect for beachcombing and tide pooling. We often spot seals and sea lions lounging on nearby rocks.
  4. Clatsop Loop Trail: This 2.5-mile trail takes us through old-growth Sitka spruce forests and offers glimpses of hidden coves below the cliffs.
  5. Seaside Cove: Located at the southern end of Tillamook Head, this spot is ideal for watching surfers tackle the waves or enjoying a peaceful sunset.
  6. Tillamook Head Lighthouse Viewpoint: On clear days, we can see the decommissioned lighthouse, nicknamed “Terrible Tilly,” from this vantage point.
  7. Hiker’s Camp: For those seeking an overnight adventure, this rustic campsite along the Oregon Coast Trail offers a unique backcountry experience.
  8. Tillamook Head Summit: The highest point of the headland rewards hikers with 360-degree views of the coastline and surrounding mountains.

Indoor Discoveries in Seaside

Seaside offers more than just outdoor fun. We’ve found some great indoor spots that’ll keep you entertained, rain or shine.

Fun at Funland Arcade

We love Funland Seaside Arcade, a must-visit spot for families and the young at heart. This lively entertainment center buzzes with excitement, offering classic games like Bumper Cars and Whale Racing.

The real draw? Fascination and Black Out – unique games you won’t find in many other places. We appreciate that Funland caters to early birds and night owls alike, opening at 9:00 AM daily and staying open until 10:00 PM on weeknights, with extended hours until 11:00 PM on Fridays and Saturdays.

Funland isn’t just about the games – it’s a trip down memory lane for us older folks and a chance to make new memories with our kids or grandkids. The mix of old-school charm and modern attractions creates a perfect blend for all ages.

We find the arcade’s atmosphere infectious, filled with the sounds of laughter, game music, and the satisfying ding of winning tickets. It’s a great way to spend a few hours, especially on those rare rainy Oregon coast days.

Visit the Seaside Historical Society Museum

We invite you to step back in time at the Seaside Historical Society Museum. Open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 am to 4 pm, this gem offers a fascinating glimpse into Seaside’s past.

The museum houses a wealth of artifacts and exhibits that tell the story of our coastal town’s rich history.

A highlight of your visit will be the Butterfield Cottage, built in 1893. This well-preserved home is open for tours during museum hours, allowing us to experience life as it was in late 19th century Seaside.

From period furniture to daily household items, the cottage paints a vivid picture of Oregon coast living over a century ago.

Tour the Famous Seaside Turnaround

At the heart of Seaside’s charm sits the famous Turnaround, a must-visit spot for any traveler. This iconic landmark marks the end of Lewis and Clark’s historic trail, offering a picturesque setting where the pavement meets the Pacific.

We love strolling around this circular plaza, taking in the panoramic ocean views and watching families play on the beach. The bronze statue here pays tribute to the explorers who once stood on this very ground, making it a perfect photo op for history buffs and sightseers alike.

The Seaside Turnaround isn’t just a pretty face – it’s the most photographed place in town for good reason. From here, we can easily access the beach, feel the ocean breeze, and soak in the coastal atmosphere.

It’s a great starting point for our beach walks or a relaxing spot to sit and people-watch. Whether we’re admiring the sunset or grabbing an ice cream from a nearby shop, the Turnaround captures the essence of Seaside’s laid-back vibe.

Seaside’s Must-Attend Events

Seaside’s calendar brims with exciting events throughout the year. From beach volleyball to art shows, there’s always something fun happening in this coastal gem. Read on to discover the top festivities you won’t want to miss during your visit.

Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament: A Summer Highlight

We love the Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament, a summer highlight that draws over 40,000 people worldwide. This event transforms our quiet coastal town into a bustling sports hub.

Beach enthusiasts and volleyball fans flock to witness intense matches on the sandy courts.

The competition showcases top-notch talent, as seen in the 2023 women’s championship. Taylor Hagenah and Mariana Molina clinched first place, displaying impressive skills. Their victory exemplifies the high-caliber play that makes this tournament a must-see for sports lovers and casual observers alike.

Discover Art at Coastal Craft Uprising

The Coastal Craft Uprising brings a burst of creativity to Seaside. In August, the Seaside Civic & Convention Center transforms into an art lover’s paradise.

Over 100 makers and artists gather to showcase their handmade treasures. We’ll find unique pieces that capture the spirit of the Oregon coast – from paintings and sculptures to jewelry and textiles.

This event offers a chance to connect with local artisans and learn about their craft. As we browse the stalls, we might discover the perfect souvenir or gift to remember our Seaside trip.

The Coastal Craft Uprising highlights the town’s vibrant arts scene, making it a must-visit for those seeking authentic, locally-made goods.

Historical Exploration: Cannon Beach Cottage Tour

We love the Cannon Beach Cottage Tour, a gem in Seaside’s cultural calendar. This three-day event, held in mid-September, offers a unique glimpse into the area’s rich history.

We explore charming beach houses, each with its own story to tell. The tour isn’t just about pretty homes – it’s a crucial fundraiser for the Cannon Beach History Center & Museum, bringing in 20% of their yearly income.

Our journey through these cottages feels like stepping back in time. We see how locals lived in bygone eras, from quaint seaside retreats to more lavish beach homes. The tour guides share fascinating tales about each property, painting a vivid picture of Cannon Beach’s past.

It’s a perfect activity for history buffs and architecture enthusiasts alike, offering a deeper understanding of this picturesque coastal town.

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon – Spring and Summer Celebrations

Spring and Summer in Seaside, Oregon burst with vibrant celebrations. Our coastal town comes alive with events that showcase our rich culture and natural beauty.

  • Pouring at the Coast Brewer’s Festival: On March 16th, beer lovers gather for the 10th annual festival. Local breweries offer tastings of their finest craft beers, paired with live music and food.
  • Whale Watch Week: From March 23rd to 31st, we spot gray whales migrating north. Volunteers at designated spots help visitors spot these majestic creatures as they pass by our shores.
  • Sand Castle Contest: Every June, artists and families flock to our beach. They create amazing sand sculptures, turning our coastline into an open-air gallery.
  • Fourth of July Celebration: Our town lights up with fireworks over the ocean. The day starts with a parade and ends with a spectacular pyrotechnic display reflected on the water.
  • Hood to Coast Relay: In August, runners from around the world finish their 199-mile relay on our beach. The event brings a carnival atmosphere to our normally quiet town.
  • Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament: Late summer sees our beach transform into a sports arena. Amateur and pro players compete in one of the largest beach volleyball events in the world.

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon Conclusion

Seaside, Oregon, offers a treasure trove of experiences for every visitor. From its iconic Promenade to the bustling Turnaround, this coastal gem beckons with its charm. We’ve explored beach adventures, cultural attractions, and outdoor activities that make Seaside unique.

The town’s seasonal festivals and events add extra sparkle to any trip. Whether you’re strolling along the shore or paddling through serene waterways, Seaside promises memories that’ll last a lifetime.

Plan your visit today and discover why this Oregon Coast jewel captivates so many hearts.

Things To Do In Seaside Oregon FAQs

1. What are some free things to do in Seaside, Oregon?

Seaside offers many free activities. You can stroll along the beach, watch the tides, or explore bike trails. The Lewis and Clark National Historical Park is nearby. It includes Fort Clatsop, where you can learn about history without spending money.

2. How can I check tide tables for Seaside?

Tide tables for Seaside are easy to find. Local shops often post them. You can also check online or ask at your hotel. Knowing the tides helps plan beach activities safely.

3. What’s special about Highway 101 near Seaside?

Highway 101, also called US Route 101, runs along the Oregon coast. It offers scenic views of the Pacific. Near Seaside, it passes close to beaches and state parks. Cape Disappointment State Park is a short drive away.

4. Are there indoor activities in Seaside for rainy days?

Yes, Seaside has indoor fun too. The town has arcades with many games. You’ll find resorts with indoor pools. Some places offer craft workshops. These are great for days when the weather isn’t beach-friendly.

5. Can I go birding in Seaside?

Seaside is excellent for birding. The Oregon coast attracts many bird species. Nearby areas like Astoria have good spots too. Bring binoculars and a bird guide. Check local events for guided birding tours.

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