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Driving from Portland, Oregon to the Oregon North Coast - Day Trip

Updated on December 21, 2012

Portland to the Oregon Coast

Oregon Coast a Portland Day Trip

The Oregon coast is less than two hours away from Portland Oregon, and is a great destination for day trip, whether you are going to Tillamook, Garibaldi, Nehalem, Canon Beach, Seaside, Astoria, or any of the other little communities along the Oregon Coast Highway you can quickly get out of the town and enjoy the beach. Depending on which city you are planning on making as your destination for your day trip out of Portland will determine the exact route you take. Regardless though the best way to travel to the Oregon Coast is to start off by taking HWY 26 also known as Sunset HWY. If you are coming from the East side of the city the easiest way to cross the river and be on the right path towards the coast is to cross over the Fremont Bridge and stay in the right lane on 405, the HWY 26 transition is nearby. This is best if coming from North or Northeast Portland. If travelling from South East then you will want to take 84 to 5 and across the Marquam Bridge to connect to 405 to 26.

Oregon Coast Day Trip from Portland

Heading to Tillamook

If you are heading to Tillamook for your Oregon day trip to visit the Cheese Factory or maybe out to Netarts then as you approach Banks you will want to look for the HWY 6 exit. This will get you on the right path and lead you directly into the city of Tillamook. Take a right and head North on 101 to the cheese factory or to Garibaldi. Look for the signs as you enter the city for the direction to Netarts or any of the areas south of Tillamook such as Hebo or Pacific City.

HWY 6 is a beautiful drive through the Cascade mountain range and it traverses along the Wilson river which is generally a wonderful sight to see as you wind through the forest. You will be travelling through the heart of the Tillamook State Forest and there is several places to pull out and go for a hike if that is of interest to you as well as a state forest center.

Going to Nehalem, Canon Beach, Seaside or Astoria

If you are planning on travelling to one of the cities further up north then instead of getting off onto HWY 6 at banks you will want to continue travelling along HWY 26. If your destination is Nehalem or Manzananita then you will want to take HWY 53 towards the coast also called the Necanicum HWY which runs along the North Fork of the Nehalem river for much of the way.

Staying on 26 will eventually lead you to the HWY 101 Oregon Coast Highway. If you want to go take a walk by Haystack rock on the beach in Canon Beach then head south, this is also the way towards Ecola State Park a beautiful Oregon Coast State Park. Head North and eventually run into Seaside. Seaside is a great place to go and walk along the boardwalk and enjoy the great shops and large beach and promenade. Further North and you will end up in Astoria a city rich with Oregon history due to its prominent location near the mouth of the Columbia river, Astoria is a well known location for fisherman and crabbers that want to access the wonderful fishery of the Columbia.

Cities to visit

Favorite City on the Oregon Coast

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    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

      I have not yet been to Oregon. I have been to Washington state once. I hope to make it to Oregon before long and see as much of it as I can. Thank you.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

      We absolutely LOVED vacationing in Oregon many years ago. Have written about many different sites there including driving up the Oregon coastline from the tip of California all the way to the cut-off point to make it back to Portland. Those who are lucky enough to live in that state have so much beauty almost every direction that they turn. The area around Tillamook is so bucolic. Very fitting for that wonderful cheese to come from that area!

    • Ms._Info profile image

      Ms._Info 6 years ago from New Jersey

      I've never been to Oregon, but it sounds wonderful. I would love to visit one day.