Have you seen the Oregon Coast from the viewpoint at Cascade Head? This hidden gem of a hike – through groves of Sitka spruces and summer wildflowers — offers panoramic views of the Salmon River estuary, with Cape Foulweather and Devils Lake in the distance. It’s all in Lincoln City, home to a lot more than just chowder and kites (but we love those too).
From water sports to glass blowing, kite flying and clam digging, make sure to check out these must-do activities on these seven miles of blissful beaches:
- Fly a kite— Join in the magic and merriment at Lincoln City’s famous Summer Kite Festival, set for June 25-26 this year. Watch in awe as giant, colorful blue whales, tigers, jellyfish and more fly overhead, some choreographed to music. Plenty of shops nearby D-Beach sell kites, but you’re welcome to just enjoy the expert demonstrations, free kids’ kite-making and family fun on the beach. If you can’t make the festival, Lincoln City’s ideal coastal winds make kite flying a breeze year-round.
- Eat like a local— Whether you’re craving fresh seafood, good coffee, morning pancakes or ice cream while you’re in town, there are dining options galore. Try Wild Flower Grill for a hearty breakfast with a lovely view of the marsh or Hearth and Table for fresh, local fare and baked-to-order pizzas. There are also candy shops, microbreweries and vegetarian-focused restaurants. You won’t go hungry in Lincoln City.
- Play on the water— In addition to the beach, Devils Lake in Lincoln City is a secret hideaway for water sports enthusiasts. It’s easy to rent a kayak, paddleboard, jet ski, inner tube, windsurf board or kiteboard, or fish for rainbow trout. Then explore the famous coastal marine life at a tide pool clinic or clamming and crabbing clinic, led by local experts. Siletz Bay is another favorite spot to play on the water and build a bonfire.
- Pick a trail to hike— Cascade Head, Drift Creek Falls and The Knoll are just a few of the breathtakingly stunning hikes here, with views of the coastline, a 75-foot waterfall and moderate to difficult terrain. A handful of shorter hikes are easier to access, with lush woodland and streams to take in along the way.
- Shop for bargains — The Lincoln City Outlets is home to 40-plus stores, including local names like Columbia Sportswear, Nike, Pendleton, Harry & David and more. Download their Rewards on the Coast program app or visit their Facebook page for special discounts and ways to earn points toward prizes and promotions.
- Blow a glass float — Finders Keepers is Lincoln City’s biggest event each year, a celebration of glass floats starting in mid-October and running through May. Discover the magic behind glass blowing at Jennifer Sears Glass Art Studio, where you can watch a demonstration or make your own piece of art as a souvenir from the Coast. Bhttp://www.jennifersearsglassart.com/ook early to schedule a 30-minute session (age 8 and up).
- Take in the culture— Make egg rolls, cioppino or a Father’s Day feast for dad at a cooking class at the Lincoln City Culinary Center. Explore the artifacts and early photographs of Oregon Coast history at the North Lincoln County Historical Museum, where admission is free. Check out the classes, galleries, performances, events and Farmers’ and Crafters’ Market every Sunday during through October at the Lincoln City Cultural Center. Enjoy two weeks of live classical music, jazz and musical theater during the Siletz Bay Music Festival, June 22 to July 3.
So grab your maps, book your lodging – affordable hotels, luxurious vacation rentals, charming bed and breakfasts and plenty of camping and RV parks – and get ready for lots of smiles. Happy adventuring!