Seaside

30 Things

 to Do in Seaside

1 – Walk the Prom

Seaside’s 1.5-mile oceanfront ­promenade and its famous automobile turnaround at the beach are among ­Oregon’s most famous landmarks. ­Dating from the 1920s, the Prom is the perfect place for a­­ ­morning jog, a casual walk, a bicycle ride or just enjoying Seaside’s best people-watching. Take in the ­spectacular panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, ­beachgrass-covered dunes and the rainforest-covered Tillamook Head as you stroll past oceanfront homes and resorts.
Trace the footsteps of famed explorers Lewis and Clark with a visit to their reconstructed salt-making camp or visit a family favorite, the Seaside Aquarium, a classic coastal attraction here for over 70 years. Both attractions are just steps away from the Prom.  The Turnaround and the Prom both offer convenient oceanfront access and views for wheelchairs and strollers.

2 – Feed the Seals

Seaside’s seals have been entertaining visitors for over 70 years at the Seaside Aquarium. Each of the seals has developed its own splashy or noisy routine to encourage you to toss a bit of chopped fish its direction. The aquarium also features live displays of ­Northwest marine life and a hands-on discovery center for kids. While the Aquarium has been located on Seaside’s promenade since 1937,  the building dates from 1914 and previously was another of the city’s major attractions, an indoor saltwater pool known as a natatorium. Outside of the aquarium, you can view the 35-foot skeleton of a Gray Whale.

3 – Enjoy fun and games

With the largest arcade on the Oregon coast and classic beach attractions including carnival rides and miniature golf, Seaside is just plain fun. Play Skeeball, Fascination, video games or air hockey. Take a crash course in bumper cars, ride the indoor Tilt-a-Whirl or take a spin on the old-fashioned carousel. The Funland arcade, Bumper Cars and Carousel Mall downtown, along with Family Fun Park just south of downtown on Highway 101, promise non-stop fun for everyone in the family.

4 – Watch a sunset or a storm

Enjoy vibrant colors as the sun sets on the Pacific or take in the drama of a winter storm with majestic Tillamook Head as a backdrop. Watch the spectacle from your room, the Prom, the beach or an oceanfront restaurant.

5 – Ride the carousel

Just two blocks from the beach, the Seaside Carousel (inside the Carousel Mall) has been the town’s most colorful attraction for 25 years. Seaside’s carousel features 24 full-sized carousel animals, reproductions of originals at the San Francisco Carousel Museum.  Ride a traditional pony or select something a bit more whimsical like the huge rabbit, the pink ostrich, the reindeer, a cat with a fish or a seahorse, of course!

6 – Go on a shopping spree

Three unique shopping districts in Seaside offer an exciting variety of experiences for shoppers. With no sales tax, your visit to Seaside is also the perfect opportunity to take a little of the coast home with you. A walk through downtown Seaside will tempt you with dozens of specialty shops, galleries and boutiques with a distinctly coastal flair. At the center of downtown is the Seaside Carousel Mall with shops offering apparel, imports, collectibles, gifts, jewelry and candy, all surrounding a colorful old-fashioned ­carousel. Discover the upscale home decorating boutiques, apparel stores, art galleries and large antique mall in the historic Gilbert District east of the Necanicum River on Broadway. Gilbert District shops are surrounded by the historic architecture of Seaside from days of old, including two of the city’s oldest buildings framing the intersection at Broadway and Holladay Drive. On Highway 101, just a half mile north of Broadway is the Seaside Factory Outlet Center featuring dozens of outlet stores with great bargains on name brand items.

7 – Fly a kite

With dependable coastal breezes and miles of open beach, Seaside is a perfect place to fly a kite no matter what your level of experience. Kids delight in launching their own kite to dance with the wind, and the world’s most talented kite flyers enjoy performing precise aerial maneuvers or flying colorful and unique creations high overhead.

8 – Wheel around

Whether you prefer skates or an electric car, Seaside offers plenty of  opportunities to have some wheel fun. Bring your own or rent from local merchants offering skates, roller blades, kid and adult bikes, mopeds and electric cars, surreys large and small, beach cycles and even strollers and wheelchairs.

9 – Catch your dinner

Dig for razor clams on Seaside beaches, drop your crab ring from the 12th Avenue bridge or bring your fishing gear and catch dinner. Fall and winter runs of salmon and ­steelhead draw anglers from around the world. Nearby, guides and charters also offer ocean, bay and river fishing for salmon and sturgeon. Check with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (503) 867-4741 for information on seasons, licenses and limits.

10 – Find a treasure

There’s nothing better than a walk at the ocean’s edge with the rhythm of the waves and the feel of sand between your toes. Except, of course, walking the beach and finding a treasure. With each receding tide, ­seashells are left scattered on Seaside’s beach to the delight of beachcombers. Look for sand dollars and dozens of other seashells, but never remove a live creature from its home.

11 – Watch for wildlife 

 Go birdwatching, photograph a herd of elk or watch migrating Gray Whales. The Pacific Coast offers great wildlife watching year round. Many varieties of migrating shorebirds and sea birds are regular visitors. Watch for eagles on the ­Necanicum estuary, where more than 20 acres of green space just north of downtown Seaside offer public access and great birdwatching.

12 – Paddle for pleasure

Seaside’s waterways provide scenic avenues for ­kayaks, canoes and paddle boats to explore Seaside from a unique ­perspective. Rent a boat, or launch your own at the Necanicum River dock near the convention center for a memorable river experience. The Neawanna dock at Broadway Park is also a great way to spend a couple of hours. Guided trips are also available. Inquire at the Seaside Visitors Center for details. Additional trails available at SeasideNaturally.com.

13 – Tour on two wheels

Bike the local trails or tour the scenic coast. The region offers bike trails for everyone from the leisurely sightseer to the serious biker. Ride along the 1.5-mile Seaside Prom or bike the many area trails including a 42-mile loop offering a strenuous and challenging ride. Bicycle lanes on Highway 101 make it easy to tour the coast by bike. Bring your own bike or rent one from a local merchant. Additional trails available at SeasideNaturally.com.

14 – Hit the trail

Hikers can explore the lush Northwest rainforest just minutes from Seaside. The Tillamook Head National Recreation Trail follows the western edge of the headland, through thick coastal forest to Ecola State Park. The region offers other world class hikes nearby, including the Fort to Sea Trail from Fort Clatsop, Saddle Mountain in the Coast Range and Oswald West State Park south of Seaside. Additional trails available at SeasideNaturally.com.

15 – Ride the wild surf

Seaside offers some of the Northwest’s best surfing conditions. Local surf shops provide lessons, gear rentals and sales for anyone interested in surfing, skim boarding or kite boarding, as well as advice on the best spots for your skill level.

16 – Cruise Broadway

When streets were still unpaved, Seaside’s visitors could walk along a shell path coined “Rubberneck Row” because of the summer shops lining the way to the beach. Today, visitors can still get the lay of the land with a cruise along Seaside’s downtown core: Broadway and the famous Turnaround. You’ll pass the eclectic collection of classically coastal shops and attractions.  Your cruise on Broadway will take you past arcades and bumper cars, cafes and restaurants, souvenir shops and specialty boutiques. And when you’re ready to park and get a closer look at what Broadway has to offer, there are two convenient public parking options centrally located downtown: a large parking lot west of the convention center and a public parking garage just west of the intersection at Avenue A and Columbia (inside the Worldmark building, look for the vertical “Public Parking” sign).

17 – Get cultured

Explore the visual arts at Seaside’s art ­galleries or take part in the First Saturday Art Walk each month (see events calendar). Live music is featured at several local venues, including outdoor concerts and performances in Quatat Park .

18 – Eat a sweet treat

You can’t miss the heavenly scents of some classic coastal confections when you walk around in downtown Seaside. You’ll find saltwater taffy and ice cream in flavors galore as well as fresh-made fudge, caramel corn, candy apples, Elephant Ears and much more. Experience the sweet side of Seaside during your visit!

19 – Explore history

 Seaside features several ­attractions and landmarks related to America’s most famous explorers, Lewis and Clark, who visited the area over 200 years ago. The Lewis and Clark statue at the center of Seaside’s automobile turnaround commemorates their ­historic journey and the Salt Works, located on Lewis and Clark Way between Beach Drive and the Prom, marks the believed location of the ­explorers’ salt-making camp from 1806. Hike the Tillamook Head trail to retrace the route the explorers took to find a beached whale. For more on the expedition, visit the Seaside Museum or make a day trip to the Fort Clatsop Interpretive Center, the site of the expedition’s 1806 winter camp.

20 – Tee it up

 If golfing is your game, you’ll find several golf courses in the Seaside area. The Seaside Golf Club is located along the Necanicum River in south Seaside. Just north of Seaside is Gearhart Golf Links, the oldest course in Oregon, and The Highlands at Gearhart, an executive-style course that’s sculpted out of a hillside overlooking the beach.

21 – Discover Tilly’s tales 

Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, also known in local lore as Terrible Tilly, sits atop a rock formation a mile west of Tillamook Head. Rumored to be haunted, Tilly was first lit in 1881, Tilly’s light shone for 77 years.

22 – Take a day trip

Seaside makes a great base for exploring the region. We’ve highlighted some of our favorite day trips, along with some travel information and insider tips. You can plan your coastal explorations here.

23 – Go treasure hunting

Put away your GPS and your Google Maps.  It’s time for a little old-fashioned treasure hunting Seaside style, where paying attention to the details can really pay off! Our Treasure Quest game invites you to locate the answers to our clues by old-fashioned sleuthing as you explore our coastal community. Click here to download the two-page adventure.

24 – Attend an event

Tour a classic car show, participate in a beach run or attend a downtown art or wine walk. Catch the action at the 30th annual Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament, the largest amateur event in the country with over 800 teams. See our calendar of events. Something is always happening here in Seaside!

25 – Fly like a bird

Fly over the Pacific, skirt the top of the ­forest and take in the spectacular view from above. Seaside offers scenic aerial tours of the region by both  helicopter and airplane.

26 – Celebrate!

Seaside is the perfect place to make memories and celebrate your special milestone events like birthdays and anniversaries. If you want to bring the whole party with you, (weddings, reunions, business conferences, conventions), many hotels offer meeting rooms and accommodations for large groups. The Seaside Convention Center is fully equipped to ­accommodate groups of all sizes.

27 – Taste the bounty

Foodies will delight as local chefs celebrate the  bounty of local and seasonal ingredients with artfully prepared dishes. Sample Pacific seafood, find the best clam chowder in the world, slice into a juicy grilled steak, savor locally smoked salmon and indulge in a sweet dessert with Oregon berries. You’ll also discover great craft brewed regional beers and some of the world’s best wines including Willamette Valley Pinot Noir plus big reds and crisp whites from around the Northwest.

28 – Admire the blooms

  Seaside displays beautiful pocket gardens and hanging baskets along the main ­shopping district of Broadway. Pocket ­gardens are ever changing with something of interest year-round. Plant lovers may notice that plantings are sometimes related to adjacent businesses.

29 – Kick it at the park

Skateboarders can carve, ollie, kickflip and grind in the state-of-the-art facility at the Seaside Skate and Ride in Broadway Park, next to Sunset Pool. The park is open from dawn to 10pm without fee or age limit. Allowable wheels are skateboards, inline skates, scooters, wheelchairs and BMX ­without pegs. Helmets are required.

30 – Share your experience

 Do you have a memorable experience, photo or video you would be willing to share with us? If so, send your stories and images to events@seasideor.com. Sending us your information will grant the Seaside Visitors Bureau the right to use your submitted material on our website or Facebook page. If we have specific questions, we will contact you for more information and any additional permissions that might be needed.

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