Cannon Beach Visitor’s Guide (To Avoid Crowds…Maybe…)

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Cannon Beach, Oregon, is a picturesque coastal destination that attracts visitors from all over the world with its stunning landscapes, charming small-town atmosphere, and unique attractions. As you plan your visit, allow us to guide you through this beautiful coastal haven, ensuring you make the most out of your experience and return with cherished memories.

Nestled along the Pacific Coast in the northwestern corner of Oregon, Cannon Beach is famous for its iconic Haystack Rock, which stands tall at 235 feet and serves as the perfect backdrop for photos and adventures. Aside from the breathtaking shoreline, our town also offers a plethora of engaging activities for all ages, from scenic state parks to vibrant art galleries and delightful culinary experiences.

In this visitor’s guide, we’ll provide you with all the necessary information to make your Cannon Beach vacation truly unforgettable. Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventures, local culture, or simply to relax and reconnect with nature, Cannon Beach will quickly become your go-to destination for an authentic Oregon Coast experience.

Getting There

Visiting Cannon Beach is a delightful experience. To help you plan your trip, we would like to provide some information on how to reach this beautiful destination from nearby cities like Portland and Seattle.

Cannon Beach is located on the North Oregon Coast, just less than two hours’ drive (approximately 80 miles) from Portland, Oregon. To get there, take US Highway 26 West from Portland, and then merge onto US Highway 101 South at the junction near Seaside, Oregon. After a short 8-mile drive southbound, you’ll arrive in the heart of Cannon Beach.

If you are traveling from Seattle, Washington, the journey is just under four hours. Start by driving south on Interstate 5, and take exit 36 for US Highway 30 West toward Astoria, Oregon. Once you reach Astoria, turn south onto US Highway 101, and drive for approximately 25 miles to reach Cannon Beach.

For those who prefer not to drive, there are alternative transportation options available. From Portland, you can take public transit via the NorthWest POINT bus, which offers regular service between Portland and Cannon Beach. Additionally, several shuttle services operate between both Portland and Seattle airports and Cannon Beach. These convenient options allow you to travel comfortably while enjoying the breathtaking coastal scenery.

Once you arrive in Cannon Beach, you’ll find that it is a very walkable destination. The small downtown area, midtown, and some of the largest hotels and popular restaurants are easily connected via rewarding walking routes. Should you need transportation within the town, there are taxi and rideshare services available as well.

With this information, we hope your journey to Cannon Beach is seamless and enjoyable. Safe travels!


Winter Weather

In winter, Cannon Beach experiences cooler temperatures and increased rainfall. Visitors should come prepared with warm clothing and waterproof gear. Although the weather can be less favorable during this season, it’s a great opportunity for those who prefer a more tranquil, crowd-free experience.

Spring Weather

Springtime in Cannon Beach brings milder temperatures and the start of the tourist season. There is still a chance of rain during this period, with anywhere from 9-18 days of the month receiving significant precipitation. Despite the wetter conditions, spring is a popular time to visit our beautiful coastline. With blooming flowers and an array of outdoor activities, it’s the perfect time to explore all that Cannon Beach has to offer before the summer crowds arrive.

June Weather

As we approach summer, June brings a further increase in temperatures, creating a more enjoyable outdoor experience for our visitors. Daytime maximum temperatures average around a cool 15°C (58°F), while at night, 6°C (42°F) is normal. It’s important to note that June is still relatively damp, with an average of 94mm of rain which is typically spread over 15 days. This month marks the beginning of the warmer season, setting the stage for a fantastic beach vacation in the following months.

Staying in Cannon Beach


In Cannon Beach, there are several iconic hotels offering comfortable accommodations for visitors. Most hotels are located conveniently close to popular attractions, ensuring that you can easily explore Downtown Cannon Beach and its surroundings. Some notable hotels include The Ocean Lodge, Surfsand Resort, and Hallmark Resort & Spa. These properties cater to different budgets and preferences, providing guests with various amenities such as beachfront views, spas, and pet-friendly options.

Lodging Options

Aside from hotels, Cannon Beach has a variety of other lodging options available. These range from cozy bed and breakfasts to vacation rentals, which can accommodate both small families and larger groups. If you’re looking for a more private, homely experience, consider booking a vacation rental with amenities like full kitchens and private outdoor spaces. A few properties that offer such features include Inn at Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach Hotel, and Blue Gull Inn.


If you’re an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys camping, there are campgrounds and RV parks available in the area. Wright’s for Camping and Cannon Beach RV Resort are popular choices among campers looking for a more immersive experience in nature. These facilities provide basic amenities, such as showers, restrooms, and laundry, as well as recreational opportunities like playgrounds and picnic areas.

Downtown Cannon Beach

Staying in Downtown Cannon Beach offers easy accessibility to shops, galleries, and various dining options. The town center has a mix of hotels, vacation rentals, and lodges, catering to different accommodation preferences. Some lodging options within walking distance to Downtown Cannon Beach include The Courtyard, Sea Sprite Guest Lodgings, and McBee Cottages.

By providing a variety of accommodation options, Cannon Beach ensures that every visitor can find the perfect place to stay and enjoy their time in this charming coastal town.

Dining in Cannon Beach

When visiting Cannon Beach, we can assure you that the dining options are diverse and delicious. From casual eateries to fine dining experiences, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Our first suggestion would be to explore the variety of restaurants in Cannon Beach. You will find a mix of American, seafood, and pub-style establishments that serve tasty dishes like salad, fish, shrimp, and burgers. Some of the best restaurants in town can be found on the TripAdvisor list for Cannon Beach.

If you are a seafood lover, we recommend checking out the variety of seafood hot spots in the area. Many local restaurants specialize in freshly caught fish and shellfish, offering a true taste of the Oregon coast. One notable bistro to visit is Newmans at 988, an intimate French-Italian restaurant. Owned by Chef John Newman and his wife, Sandy, this eatery has been serving exquisite food since 2006.

For those in search of a more relaxed atmosphere, Cannon Beach offers a number of casual dining options that are suitable for families. Takeout options are available, and you may find ocean-view patio seating in some establishments. You can enjoy the local flavors while taking in the breathtaking views of the Pacific coastline.

In addition to restaurants, you can find a thriving brewpub scene in Cannon Beach. Local breweries serve up unique microbrews, and there are also wine lists showcasing regional wineries. The Wayfarer Restaurant & Lounge is a great place to visit for a drink and some tasty bites. This establishment features delicious cocktails, like a vodka-spiked blueberry lavender lemonade, perfect for warding off the warmth of a summer day.

To sum up, Cannon Beach is a haven for foodies and offers an impressive range of dining options. Whether you’re looking for fine dining, casual eats, or a refreshing drink, you won’t be disappointed by the culinary scene in this coastal town.


Haystack Rock

At Cannon Beach, one of the most iconic landmarks is Haystack Rock. This impressive monolith rises 235 feet from the shoreline, creating an amazing backdrop for your beach activities. Home to vibrant tidepools and an abundance of wildlife, Haystack Rock is a must-see for visitors.

Ecola State Park

Just minutes from downtown Cannon Beach, you’ll find the breathtaking Ecola State Park. This park offers stunning viewpoints, excellent hiking trails, and ample opportunities to appreciate the beauty of the Oregon Coast. With a $5 State Parks day-use fee, it’s an incredible value and an attraction not to be missed.

Art Galleries

Cannon Beach is known for its thriving arts scene. Stroll through downtown and explore numerous art galleries showcasing the works of local and regional artists. From awe-inspiring glass sculptures to captivating paintings, there’s no shortage of visual delights to discover.


The charming town square in Cannon Beach offers an array of shopping, dining, and entertainment options. You’ll find unique boutiques, cozy cafes, and an energetic atmosphere throughout the downtown area. Don’t forget to indulge in some delicious local cuisine before you head back to the beach.


One of the natural highlights at Cannon Beach is the opportunity to explore the fascinating tidepools at the base of Haystack Rock. When the tide recedes, observe various colorful sea creatures like starfish, sea anemones, and crabs in their natural habitat. Make sure to tread carefully and avoid disturbing the delicate marine life.

Haystack Rock Awareness Program

Visitors who are eager to learn more about the local wildlife can participate in the Haystack Rock Awareness Program. This volunteer-led program offers educational information and guided tidepool tours, helping you gain a deeper appreciation for the unique ecosystem that surrounds Haystack Rock.


From live concerts to open mic nights, Cannon Beach offers a vibrant music scene to complement your stay. Check out local venues and cafes, where you can enjoy the sounds of talented musicians while sipping on a warm beverage or enjoying a delicious meal.


Venture a bit further and visit Warrenton, a nearby coastal city with its own attractions. Home to historic forts, beautiful parks, and unique shops, Warrenton is worth taking the time to explore during your visit to Cannon Beach.

Outdoor Activities


Cannon Beach is known for its beautiful coastline, boasting nearly four miles of pristine sandy beaches. One of the most iconic landmarks in the area is Haystack Rock, rising 235 feet above the Pacific Ocean. We encourage you to explore the various beaches, including the stunning Short Sand Beach located within Oswald West State Park. Keep an eye out for an astonishing variety of wildlife and sealife during your beach adventures.

Hiking Trails

At Cannon Beach, we have several hiking trails that cater to different skill levels. One of the popular trails is within Oswald West State Park, which covers nearly 2,500 acres and offers miles of hiking paths. For a more challenging experience, consider the Neah-Kah-Nie Mountain Trail. This roughly 6-mile hike includes over 2,000 feet of elevation, providing breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean.

Trail NameDifficultyDistanceElevation Gain
Oswald West State Park TrailsEasyVariousMinimal
Neah-Kah-Nie Mountain TrailChallenging6 miles2,000+ feet

Necus’ Park

Experience the tranquility of Necus’ Park, nestled along Ecola Creek. This serene park provides a picturesque escape from the hustle and bustle of the town. It’s the perfect spot for a relaxing walk, a family picnic, or simply enjoying the sights and sounds of nature.

Whale Park

Another must-visit outdoor spot is Whale Park, which offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and opportunities for wildlife watching. The park is a popular location for spotting migrating gray whales, the main reason for its name. While visiting, don’t forget to take advantage of the beautiful walking paths, benches, and viewing platforms that make your experience even more enjoyable.

Visiting in Business Hours

Intersection of 2nd and Spruce

When visiting downtown Cannon Beach during business hours, make sure to stop by the intersection of 2nd and Spruce. This area is bustling with shops, restaurants, and galleries, offering a variety of options for both tourists and locals. We recommend exploring this area to get a true feel of the vibrant Cannon Beach community.


Cannon Beach is home to numerous businesses that cater to the needs of both visitors and residents. During business hours, you’ll find a wide range of services, including retail shops, galleries, coffee shops, and more. Don’t miss out on some of the unique offerings provided by local artisans, as well as established brand stores.

Visitor Center

One of the key places to visit while in Cannon Beach is the Visitor Center. It’s a great resource for information about the area, offering brochures, maps, and knowledgeable staff who can answer your questions and guide you in planning your stay. The Visitor Center is typically open during regular business hours, as follows:

Monday10:00am – 4:00pm
Tuesday10:00am – 4:00pm
Wednesday10:00am – 4:00pm
Thursday10:00am – 4:00pm
Friday10:00am – 4:00pm
Saturday10:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday10:00am – 4:00pm

Please note that hours may vary due to special events or seasonal adjustments.

City Hall

If you need access to City Hall during your visit to Cannon Beach, keep in mind the business hours:

  • Monday through Friday: 8:00am – 4:00pm
  • Closed on weekends and holidays

At City Hall, you can find various government services, such as building permits, business licenses, and utility billing. The friendly staff can assist with your inquiries and ensure a smooth experience while visiting our lovely coastal town.


Cannon Beach offers a variety of markets to meet your shopping needs, including grocery stores and the popular Farmers Market. The city has two full supermarkets within its limits, Mariner Market located Downtown, and Fresh Foods in Tolovana Park. Both of these supermarkets offer a full deli and fresh produce options, making it convenient for you to pick up groceries during your stay.

Additionally, the Cannon Beach Farmers Market is an excellent place to visit to get fresh, locally-sourced products. This all-edible market features an array of items such as local produce, meats, wild-caught seafood, fresh and aged cheeses, artisan baked goods, and other hand-crafted specialty foods. The Farmers Market provides a unique opportunity for visitors to experience the local flavors and crafts that Cannon Beach has to offer.

When exploring Cannon Beach, we recommend stopping by any of the 16 street markets mentioned on the Wanderlog website. These street markets are great places to find unique souvenirs and artisanal crafts that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. They also add a lively atmosphere to the Cannon Beach experience, making your visit even more memorable.

In summary, the variety of markets in Cannon Beach allows you to easily access fresh groceries, local produce, and unique artisanal products during your visit. Make sure to allocate some time to explore these markets and indulge in the rich flavors and crafts that the city has to offer.

Education and Conservation

At Cannon Beach, we take pride in preserving our natural environment and promoting education on the importance of conservation. One significant initiative to support this mission is the Haystack Rock Awareness Program (HRAP).

The Haystack Rock Awareness Program is a volunteer-driven effort focused on educating visitors about the ecological and geological marvels of Haystack Rock. The iconic rock formation is not only visually stunning but is also a thriving ecosystem. As an educational resource, HRAP provides both on-site interpretive services and community outreach to spread awareness about Cannon Beach’s natural treasures.

During the peak visitor season, our knowledgeable Haystack Rock Awareness Program volunteers can be found near Haystack Rock to offer guidance, answer questions, and provide insightful information on the area’s marine life, habitats, and conservation efforts. Additionally, HRAP offers special programs like guided tide pool tours, birdwatching, and guest lectures. These activities provide engaging, hands-on learning experiences for visitors of all ages.

In our educational endeavors, we emphasize responsible interaction with the diverse flora and fauna found in and around Cannon Beach. Our primary goal is to foster an appreciation and understanding of the delicate ecosystems that make Haystack Rock and the surrounding area so unique. Through education and conservation, we hope to inspire visitors to become active participants in preserving the natural wonders of Cannon Beach for future generations to enjoy.

So, when exploring Cannon Beach and Haystack Rock, let us be your resource. Our commitment to education and conservation ensures that you’ll have a memorable, enriching experience while contributing to the ongoing preservation of this spectacular landscape.