Day 1 – Oregon Coast Attractions – Sandlake Country Inn to Pacific City
One day is just not enough! The Oregon coast attractions near Sandlake Country Inn are too numerous to do in one day. If that’s the only time you have, then we suggest you explore the sites here on on our One Day list and on the next day, do as much of our Oregon Coast Attractions – Day Two trip as you can on your way to your next location.
If you’ve just arrived at Sandlake Country Inn and have been driving for awhile and it’s getting late, head just 8 minutes south of us to the town of Pacific City and it’s majestic Haystack Rock (not to be confused with the more famous one in Canon Beach) and Cape Kiwanda.
If you have the time, check out the Sandlake Estuary which is just at the end of our road. Go to the Sandlake Estuary’s Fisherman’s Day Use Area. Sandlake Estuary is 1 of only 2 pristine estuaries in Oregon. We think that this is one of many fantastic Oregon coast activities
You can also head down to to Pacific City which is where our closest restaurants are. On your way, you’ll pass by Whalen Island and Sitka Sedge State Natural Area. If you have time, drive in and take the road to the right, all the way around past the bathrooms. This is a no fee parking area. Take the path toward the beach and walk around Whalen Island then find the path that takes you up over the top of Whalen Island, back to the parking lot. Sitka Sedge State Natural Area is one of the newest state parks and will have trails and a separate parking area in the near future.
Driving onward toward Pacific City, you’ll go through the little community of Tierra Del Mar. Just past the homes you can park along the side of the road and walk on the Tierra Del Mar beach or if you have a 4 wheel drive vehicle, you can actually drive on the beach. From here you’ll see Haystack Rock and Cape Kiwanda to the south.
Continue south from Tierra Del Mar. Just a short distance past the stop sign you’ll see a paved unmarked road on your right which takes you to McPhillips Beach. Unless you have a high profile 4 wheel drive vehicle, park in the parking lot, then walk down to the beach. You can walk south on McPhillips beach all the way to the north side of Cape Kiwanda. Intriguing rock formations are great to explore and climb for fantastic views.
Continue south to Pacific City where you will see the majestic Haystack Rock and Cape Kiwanda. The beach at Cape Kiwanda is also used by Pacific City’s Dory Fleet. The dory boats are fishing boats that launch directly into the surf from the beach.
There are always a lot of people right at Haystack Rock, so you want to avoid the crowds, continue south to the end of the road and turn right, then a quick left to go down to Bob Straub State Park. Park in the paved parking lot and take the sand pathway up the small dune where you’ll have wonderful views of Haystack Rock & Cape Kiwanda.
If you’re interested in bird watching, check out the Nestecca Bay Wildlife Refuge. If you’re arriving to Sandlake Country Inn from the south, you might want to stop here for some birding action when traveling north on #101 from Lincoln City. Take the very small Christiansen Rd. Instead of parking at the first parking lot, continue driving to the top. There you’ll find an asphalt path up to a viewing area.