The Tsunami Bar and Grill – Wheeler, Oregon

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Located in the middle of the quiet town of Wheeler, Oregon the Tsunami Grill is one of the best options for lunch or dinner in the local area. Situated right on the Nehalem bay / river, they have seating options inside and out, with amazing views of the bay estuary. Wheeler is a small town in between Nehalem and Rockaway Beach, along the Oregon Coast highway. There are several antique shops in the town to browse with cool and unique stuff. The public boat launch for the town of wheeler is next door and stays busy during the spring and fall salmon runs making for always something to watch when sitting out on the deck enjoying a cold one. There is a good chance to watch an angler catch a chinook or coho salmon while eating out on the back deck overlooking the water as the Tsuanami Bar Grill is located right in front of a known fish holding spot.

tsunami bar and grill view

Serving traditional American favorites like a cheeseburgers and coast specialties like clam chowder make it a perfect fit for most groups. If you like Asian inspired food than certainly consider checking out the rice and BBQ pork dish, it is phenomenal and comes with a side of veggies. The spring rolls and spicy dipping sauce are a personal favorite, especially when you just need a little appetizer to snack on with a glass of beer or wine.

The pricing is reasonable for a place on the coast with a great view and good food. The service is excellent, always kept our drinks full and food came out at an acceptable pace.

Grab a drink in the bar or sit out on the patio deck looking at the river and just relax.

Hike to Short Sands Beach

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If you have driven along the Oregon coast highway between Manzanita and Cannon Beach then you have gone past the parking areas for Short Sand beach. The parking lot is often filled with cars and so if you do not get here early in the day you will likely be parking off on the side of the road and walking back towards the head of the trail. A popular surfing cove is located at Short Sands beach and during optimal surfing weather and surf conditions, it can be one of the busiest places on the North Coast. Lots of surfers will be out riding the waves, but even more people will just be hanging out on the beach watching the action in the water.

main beach access at short sands beach

Despite all the visitors there are many trails and unless you are going to get in the water the extra traffic should not stop you from being able to enjoy this peaceful and beautiful place.

There are several trails that branch off from the main path, so make sure to check out the trail maps near the parking lot and down near the beach before venturing off. The creek that runs through the forestland along the trails is large enough that it splits off part of the beach. The main trail leads to the large section of the beach at the north section of the cove and will have more people. The Sitka Spruce trail heads over to connect with the South Beach access point and requires crossing over a cable bridge over a large creek. The south beach access puts you in the sand south of the creek so you can explore that side of the beach and view the impressive cliff that jut out into the ocean making the southern boundary of Short Sand beach. The various trails running through the forest are easy to moderate in difficulty, must due to the consistent moisture of the soil, good hiking shoes are a must as the trail can get muddy and slippery at certain places.

This is one of the most popular places to surf on the entire Oregon Coast, the cove is protected from lots of the weather on the coast and has the right underwater features that generate waves big enough for people to ride. Due to the limited number of awesome spots to surf on the coast, Short Sand beach should not be your first choice if looking for a place to go surf perch fishing. While the fishing can be really good in the cove, you might not make many friends chucking large weights and hooks in between the surfers.

A street view map of the Short Sands Beach trail parking and access:

Nehalem Bay State Park

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The Nehalem state park is located just north of the Nehalem jetty where the river enters the Pacific Ocean. To access the state park you need to turn off highway 101 just outside of the town of Nehalem before reaching Manzanita. The state park is a day use fee park, so everyone that parks a car in the lot is required to pay the $5 fee unless you have a state park permit.

The best feature of the park is the massive number beach access points. Unlike other sections of the Oregon there is no homes built out onto the Nehalem spit and so the views from the sand dunes hiking into the beach are really impressive. The line between the Oregon coast forest and the Oregon sandy beaches is so defined here, it is really impressive.

The park is home to several facilities for people that like to horseback ride can use. Including large number of trails and stalls for stable a horse for a temporary time during the day.

This specific state park also has a 2 lane boat ramp and is a nice alternative to the public county ramp located further up the river or the often overcrowded private ramps located right next to the mouth of the bay. Nehalem Bay is well known for its spring and fall runs of salmon and exceptional crabbing at certain times of year. The bay is also loaded with several species of clams that can be harvested during the low tides. The mud flats that line the shores of the bay side of the state park are perfect places to go for a dig. Cockles, Gapers, and Purple Varnish are the most plentiful ones that most people find.

This park gets a lot of seasonal use so expect to not be alone during the peak season or during really nice weather days on the weekend year round.

Remember to get your day use permit, the park is regularly patrolled by the local law enforcement. Here is a list of all the park fees on the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Website: Nehalem Bay State Park fees

Looking for a great place on the Oregon Coast for a camping trip, this might be the right destination for your family. The huge beach is an amazing playground for summer fun and the bay side offers opportunities for clamming, crabbing, boating and fishing. There is something for everyone that likes the Oregon Coast outdoors at the Nehalem Bay State Park.  This park even has a primitive airport camp something not found in the other large camping sites nearby.

Campground Info

  • Approximately 265 electrical sites with water
  • 18 yurts (two pet friendly)
  • Hot showers and flush toilets
  • Horse camp with 17 primitive sites
  • Hiker/biker camp
  • Airport camp with primitive fly-in sites
  • RV dump station
  • Meeting hall

Bunkhouse Restaurant in Nehalem, Oregon

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Located right on the Oregon coast highway in between Nehalem Oregon and the turn off to downtown Manzanita, the Bunk House restaurant is a cozy place to get breakfast, lunch, or, dinner. The decor is laid back with an obvious family friendly, local focus. During the cooler months the wood stove in the corner of the dining area is kicking out copious amounts of warm. Water served in jelly jars with handles and local art work decorates the walls.

a warm fireplace at the bunkhouse restaurnat

We went for breakfast, which is advertised as an all day options. All the standard Americann breakfast options are available on the menu. The omelettes come with a couple of large pancakes,they make a great Denver omelette. The presentation of the food is lacking and so if you are looking for a fine dining experience this is not the place, but the servers were excellent and kept drinks full and deliver the food with a smile.

the menu at the bunk house restaurant

After paying for our breakfast we noticed a tray of very large cinnamon rolls had just come out of the oven. At $2.50 a piece these are certainly an extra to consider. We grabbed one for the road and parked and ate it overlooking the ocean view from Neahakanie mountain.

Overall the Bunk House delivers good food at a fair price and a great option for an early morning meal if the wait at Wanda’s Cafe down the road is too long or the drive to cannon beach too far.

Garibaldi Days – Last Weekend in July

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The last weekend in July in the coastal town of Garibaldi is for the annual Garibaldi Days weekend celebration. There is a parade on Saturday through the main stretch of town starting at 11AM. The park area will be filled with vendors selling local crafts, wares, and foods. There will be live music playing at the food court area at S. Sixth Street and Garibaldi Avenue.

garibaldi days big crab

There is always tons of family fun activities, this year is no exception. There will be a fishing tank, gokarts, a Gyro ride, and other shows for the kids near the Lumbermen’s park. There is also a Fireworks display on Saturday night over the harbor. The train rides go back and forth between Garibaldi and the Rockaway Beach wayside, this is a fun way to see the scenic bay as you pass by the Three Graces and the barview jetty. Stop in Rockaway to check out the fun shops or walk on the sand and ride the train back later in the day.

Come enjoy this local festival for a good Oregon coast time. Stop and buy a crab or tuna from some of the local fisherman for a seafood dinner.

Here is a link to more information and outline of the events: Garibaldi Days 2014

Dinner Deals on the Oregon Coast

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We are looking for more local deals to highlight on the Oregon coast. If you know a special offering from a local restaurant, hotel, or shop along the Oregon coast please send us a message we would love to share the information.

A couple of popular deals in the North coast between Tillamook and Rockaway Beach are the all you can eat oysters and all you can eat fish and chips at the Pacific Oyster in Bay City and Taco tuesday at the Lakeside Hideaway in Rockaway Beach.

Pacific Oyster – All You Can Eat Specials

On Wednesday’s it is all about the oysters at the Pacific Oysters in Bay City. You can have them served, fried, grilled, or sauteed. Served with a side of crispy french fries and fresh cole slaw.
On Friday, the Fish and Chips is the all you can eat special, a traditional white cod fish that is breaded and served with a side of fries and slaw.

all you can eat oysters
Driving north on HWY 101 from Tillamook, the Pacific Oyster is located at the end of the dock in Bay City where the Pacific Seafood is located. It will be a large blue building on your left alongside the bay.

Lakeside Hideaway Taco Tuesday

On Tuesday nights from 4-6PM during Summer and all dinner hours the rest of the year, grab $1 tacos in either soft shell or hard shell. Served like a traditional American style taco you can add salsa and sour cream if you want, otherwise its beef, cheese, tomatoes, and lettuce. Dose’em in hot sauce and they are good to go. Lakeside is located on the North end of Rockaway Beach, near Lake Lytle and has a full bar, karaoke area, and dining tables.

Send us an email with your favorite local deals on the coast: Email Us

55th Annual Pacific City Dory Days Festival 2014

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The Pacific City Dory Days Festival July 18, 19, 20 2014 is in its 55th year. This is a classic Oregon coast celebration of the local tradition of dory fisherman that would launch their boats into the ocean right from the beaches near Pacific City and some still do. Setting out from the sandy beaches in small wooden boats dory fisherman are known for catching bottom fish, crab, salmon, and even tuna during the summer season. However, the Pacific City Dory Festival is not all bait and fish guts, there is a tone of awesome things to do.

dory festival

A sample of the family fun activities include: An Artisan Fair in downtown pacific city, Pancake breakfast held at the Kiawanda Community Center, lots of kids activities and live music. On Sunday their is a Fish Fry at Cape Kiwanda, and if you really want to show off your skills their is a fish fillet contest, so sharpen your blades and don’t lose a finger. Click here for more information about Dory Days and a Full Schedule of Events: http://www.pcnvchamber.org/events/local-events.htm

If you love local parades don’t miss the Dory Day’s Parade July 19th at 11AM.