Bordered by the Columbia River and Youngs Bay, with Victorian-era homes dotting the streets, Astoria is a perfect mix of old and new. Just north of Seaside, it makes for an easy and beautiful escape year-round but especially in the cooler season, as the fog rolls in off the water. As the oldest city west of the Rockies, Astoria is well steeped in history, and you may feel as though you’ve entered the pages of a storybook or walked onto the set of a dockside film — and in some cases, you wouldn’t be wrong. Here’s a look at some of the city’s vibrant new hotels, restaurants and shops that you’ll want to discover for yourself.
Lodging With a Front-Row Seat to Ships and Storm Watching
One of the newest hotels in Astoria is designed to help you forget about your meetings and to-dos, and encourages you to instead revel in the moment. Sitting right on the edge of the Columbia River, the Bowline Hotel is well suited for a stress-free getaway. Many of the hotel’s rooms open up to a riverfront seating area, so you can drink your coffee or have a nightcap while being entranced by the ebb and flow of the Columbia as it meets the Pacific. With amenities like in-room fireplaces, soaking tubs and inventive cocktails at The Knot Bar, it won’t be hard to unwind. The Bowline is an excellent place to watch the river barges come and go as well as partake in a favorite Oregon Coast activity: storm watching. Cozy up by the fire and watch the weather drama play out against your window from the safety of your lodging.
Fresh Crab, Tater Tots and Waterfront Patios
Astoria has long held a special place in the heart of seafood lovers, but the newest restaurants and eateries offer even more of a reason to eat your way through the city. The lobster rolls and codfish po’ boys from The SEA Crab House are fresh, and the giant Cajun crab boils come complete with bibs for buttery splashes. On Tots is a new food cart posted up at Reach Break Brewing, with yummy fare to enjoy on the brewery’s expansive patio. The new Gaetano’s Market & Deli has a deli case full of Italian meats and cheeses; you can grab a sandwich as well as fresh pastas, sauces and family dishes like lasagna to heat up later. Be sure to check out what the chefs at Nekst Event are cooking up — the restaurant features a rotating menu of globally inspired street food. One of Astoria’s favorite breweries, Buoy Beer Co., has expanded its beer-making capacity and is in the process of bringing a tasting room and cocktail bar for subsidiary Pilot House Distilling to the Astoria Riverwalk.
Holiday Shopping Extravaganza
It’s never too early to start your holiday shopping. Astoria’s collection of boutique shops is full of unique finds for everyone on your list — though don’t forget to treat yourself, too. For the young and young at heart, Bonsai Hollow Cards, Games and More has an impressive offering of toys, games and collectibles. Find quirky novelties and gags at The Magic Shop & More. Specializing in beautiful wood furniture and impressive charcuterie boards, Ashriver Woodworks is worth popping into. Three Daisies Vintage is chock-full of antiques, gifts and the perfect little something to adorn your home.