With nearly 400 miles of scenic coastline, jaw-dropping cliffs and lush forestland, the rugged Oregon Coast provides incomparable natural venues for surfing, hiking, fishing, golf and much more. Nestled along the southern Oregon coast, Bandon Dunes Golf Resort offers golf aficionados, celebrities and the general public the rare chance to experience links-style golf in America on some of the world’s most coveted courses. And that’s no exaggeration. Golf Digest named Bandon Dunes the best overall golf resort in all of North America.
It might also come as a surprise to learn that just up the coast, near Lincoln City, a massive swell has gained fame as one of the best surf waves on the planet. At times over 50 feet in height, the near-perfect Nelscott Reef wave is so immense and powerful that surfers initially had to be towed into it by jet ski. Local surfing icon John Forse started a big wave surf contest in 2005, now known as the Nelscott Reef Big Wave Classic.
Recreational opportunities dot the entire Oregon coastline, highlighted by 40 miles of wind-sculpted sand dunes between Coos Bay and Florence. Up to 500 feet above sea level, the spectacular dunes provide an ideal venue for recreational vehicles, horseback riding and even the Northwest’s latest emerging action sport, sandboarding. Further south in Gold Beach, a windsurfing spot known as Pistol River has quietly gained an international reputation as one of the world’s best, in large part because of a marquee annual event known as the Pistol River Wave Bash.
Even more fun awaits visitors at the northern Oregon coast, where every August the resort town of Seaside hosts the annual Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament, known as the largest amateur beach volleyball tournament in the nation. Just up the road in Astoria, in the town made famous by The Goonies, thousands of runners and walkers take part in the annual Great Columbia Crossing 10K, over the iconic bridge that spans the Oregon-Washington border.