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3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

Utah
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3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

Greetings.

Never been to the Pacific Northwest. Thinking of Seattle, but I've heard Astoria is worth the trip.

Plan: Fly into Portland, rent car, drive up 30 to Astoria. Day 2, see sites in Astoria and environs. Day 3, drive down the coast to seaside, etc, then loop back to Portland for return flight.

Questions:

1. What is the drive along 30 like?

2. Are there interesting places to stop/see along that route, or better off taking a faster freeway?

3. Worth it to drive south along coast on day 3 - or is it much the same as we'd see around Astoria?

4. Going first week of March - does the expected weather change any of your suggestions?

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Cheers

Portland, OR
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1. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

Sounds like you are going to try to do a lot in 3 days. It would help to know who the "we" is, what your interests are, etc.

Astoria is much different than coastal towns because it is actually at the mouth of the Columbia River.

Portland alone has plenty for you to do for 3 days. Does this mean you really only have 2 nights? If so, just spend them in Portland with a day trip to Astoria, spend a couple of hours there and then drive down the coast to Cannon Beach and then back to Portland.

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2. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

You will love Astoria, it is now rated #2 on Budget Travel for the Coolest Small Town in American award. There is lots to keep you busy there! Yesterday we enjoyed clam chowder at Ship Inn before driving back to Seaside. The Maritime Museum, Flavel House, Astor Column and waterfront area are all worth exploring. www.oldoregon.com When are you planning your visit? :)

Eugene, Oregon
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3. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

may I suggest that posters read the OP's comments before talking about their own daily journal? Marky said "first week of March."

Plan for weather to be wet, windy and chilly. Then, anything better is a bonus. No matter what, don't let the weather determine how much you enjoy your visit.

Portland, Oregon
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4. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

"What is the drive along 30 like"

It's not an unpleasant drive. Mostly through rural areas and some forest lands. There are small towns and hamlets along the way, although I'm not sure any are of enough interest to make a particular stop.

The alternative would be to take the Sunset Highway (US 26) out to Seaside and then is about a 20 minute drive North on US 101 up to Astoria. This route is more forest lands, and goes higher up than 30 does, but again - nothing terribly special in my opinion, to warrant going one way or the other.

Oh - one possible reason to go on the Sunset Highway instead of 30, would be to visit and have lunch at Camp 18. It's a restaurant built in a huge log-cabin style building and has a logging museum. More info on their website at: http://www.camp18restaurant.com/

I hope that helps a bit.

Oregon Coast
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5. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

#1. It's a pleasant drive. Less traffic than Hwy 26. Nice river views from a day use state park - Bradley viewpoint I think it's called.

#2. Other than the metro section of Hwy 26, there are no freeways. It's pretty much "ike and mike" timewise via either Hwy 26 or Hwy 30 from Portland to Astoria.

#3. Just driving to Seaside is not very interesting, in fact that stretch is quite dull. However, Cannon Beach is worth seeing: Ecola State park, Haystack Rock, Hug Point. It's only 30 minutes or so south of Astoria. Then keep driving 10 more miles south to see some dramatic scenery :-)

#4. Probably will be raining. Most likely. But maybe not all the time. Maybe windy. But not snowing. Probably not.

If you like history, there is an excellent Lews & Clark Interpretive center about 20 minutes from Astoria at Cape Disappointment, WA.

*

Syrahgirl, it's so nice you can visit us up here in Oregon. Quite a change from your home near Fresno, isn't it?

The Ship Inn gets terrible reviews lately ..... mine included.

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6. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

When you go to Cannon Beach, Ecola State Park is beautiful, we love picnic there. Tables are set up on the grassy area and you will have stunning views of the ocean. Be sure to take the drive back to Indian Beach, it is lush and green and the views are stunning once you get back there. We will be in Cannon Beach later today, can't wait! :)

Portland, OR
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7. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

The drive on Hwy 30 is easy, but watch your speed going through the small towns as the police are happy to give out tickets!

Nothing all that interesting along Hwy 30, but it is still a nice drive with good views, so I would advise taking that road as opposed to Hwy 26 for going to Astoria.

As a previous poster said, the towns along the coast are very different than Astoria - river vs. tourist beach. Assuming you see all that you want to in Astoria, it is an easy drive down the coast to Gearhart/Seaside and than Hwy 26 back to Portland. But if you love Astoria so much that you decide to stay there for day 3, you will just have to come back!

There really is quite a bit to see in and around Astoria (Fort Clatsop, Astor Column, Peter Iredale, Fort Stevens/Battery Russel, Maretime Museum), but you must be prepared for rain if you are going in March. Just pack a good raincoat and waterproof shoes and enjoy the sights.

Utah
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8. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

Returned from trip and forgot to post a report and a thanks to all the input.

We loved the drive east from portland along the Columbia River - hiked to a few waterfalls, each was incredible.

Loved Cannon Beach. Seaside seemed too touristy, and Astoria surprised me at the size (for some reason thought it would be small and quaint like cannon beach)

I'd go back and do more in a heartbeat, and would likely stay in cannon beach, and explore the coast and more of the gorge.

Thanks again

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9. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

I'm glad you had fun, thanks for reporting back! The Columbia River Gorge area is beautiful, I agree! :)

10. Re: 3 Days in/around Astoria - Advice please!

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