So Much Coast, So Little Summer

Our Guide to Which Coastal Town Is Right for You

Sponsored Content Presented by Pelican Brewing

Whether you’ve got a calendar full of vacation days or just a weekend to spend on sabbatical, the Oregon Coast is the destination of choice for summering Portlanders in the know. With a rich, diverse variety of accommodations, attractions, multiple ocean-front Pelican Brewing locations dotting the shoreline, it’s hard to deny the allure of Oregon’s ethereal windswept coastline as a top shelf vacation destination. For newly minted Oregonians yet to experience the breathtaking grandeur and overwhelming spectacle of the Oregon Coast, or for Portlanders in want of quick coastal refresher, consider referring to this quick guide as you plan your next oceanic getaway and your best beachfront pint.

For the Relaxed Traveler…Cannon Beach.

If you’re the type of traveler for whom the journey is the destination and the best plan is not to have any plan at all, we say: Cannon Beach. This coastal town is straight down Highway 26 from Portland, requiring very little navigation but delivering a big scenic payoff. For a low-stakes weekend with the fam, Cannon Beach offers relaxed dining and recreation experiences as well as a charming main boulevard overflowing with touristy shopportunities.

Here’s our list of what not to miss:

Eat & Drink: Pelican Brewing at the south end of Hemlock Street features not only the full slate of Pelican brews on tap, but also a robust pub menu and a genial, family-friendly atmosphere. Cannon Beach’s Sleepy Monk Coffee Shop roasts their organic beans in house, so just follow your nose toward some of the most compelling brews up or down the coast.

Stay: In between rental homes and camping areas are the romantically understated Hidden Village Cottages and Stephanie Inn, two under the radar stays that are worth the attention.

Shop: Basalt Studio’s handmade ceramics, the charming Jupiter’s Used Books, and the kitschy vintage inspired curios from Sesame + Lilies are just a few of the unique stores to explore during your getaway.

Explore: Once you’ve laid eyes on Cannon Beach’s iconic haystack rock formation, consider exploring Ecola State park and reminiscing over a cinematic, generational touchstone like the beach scenes from Twilight, Goonies, or Point Break - all filmed at Ecola. Cannon Beach also features funcycle rentals and, for the brave-hearted, surf lessons.

For the Curious Traveler…Lincoln City

Nearly every city along the coast has a beautiful beach and view. So for those looking for a city-specific experience - Lincoln City is it. Nearly 4x the size of Cannon Beach, Lincoln City is a vibrant town with culture that extends beyond the typical travel season. Looking to stumble on a bartender with a salty personality? Or a book shop with serious history? A monument to the local Sea Lion? This is the place. Plus, Pelican Brewing just opened their bay-front outpost in Lincoln City with spacious dining rooms, an enormous patio, private event spaces, and their famous brews all with a momentous view of Siletz Bay.

Our go-to’s:

Eat & Drink: The Wildflower Grill with its pastoral charm is a local fave, and Pelican Brewing’s new outpost on the bay is a vacation destination in itself, featuring not only an impressive tap list, but also a fresh caught, coastal-inspired menu. Imagine the singular, panoramic ocean views and ale pairings next time someone you know is shopping for a coastal wedding venue. Get tipsy with the locals at Nauti Mermaid or for a softer liberation, check out The Cheeky Cauldron, a Harry Potter Themed Tea Shop.

Stay: No coastal stay is complete without the soft lull of crashing waves to both lull you to sleep and gently wake you up - consider beachfront hotel Surftides for the full maritime fantasy.

Explore: Take a glass blowing class at the Lincoln City Glass Center, test your luck at Chinook Winds Casino, peruse the books at Roberts Bookstore, grab a smoothie at Lighthouse Coffee, and rent a fat tire bike for cruising the flat long beaches.

For the Adventurous Outdoors Traveler…Pacific City

One of the best parts of Northwest living is the natural wonder that surrounds us, never more than a quick ride from any given city center. And if your primary vacation directive is to revel in nature rather than explore a new city, Pacific Beach calls.

This iconic location, home to Pelican Brewing’s first brewpub, is an unincorporated pocket of Tillamook County with barely more than a thousand permanent residents. It’s a quiet community, perfect suited for the getaway that prioritizes scenic wonder over pretty much everything else, so pack your hiking gear and prepare to swoon over some of the most breathtaking vistas our state has to offer.

Here’s the list:

Eat & Drink: Though Pacific City is quite small, Portland craft brew denizens can still enjoy a pint after their daylight adventures or their evening constitutional at the Pelican brewco’s comfortable beachfront destination. This locale is not only the original birthplace of Pelican Brewing, it’s also the only beachfront brewery with views of Haystack Rock, the legendary Dory Boats, and even the occasional cold water surfer. Also worth a visit are the Grateful Bread Bakery and the fine dining Meridian Restaurant located in the Headlands Coastal Lodge and Spa.

Stay: Adventurous types will love the Hart’s Camp - a campground containing both RV spaces and renovated Airstream trailers you can rent for brief or extended stays.

Explore: This town is all about getting outside. Hiking at Cape Kiwanda, or Whalen Island County Park offer stunning views. Paddle the Nestucca River, or test your surfing skills - Monument Surf Company is a great place to start.

Soak it up!