Visiting Oregon

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Visiting Bend

Re: Half-way vacation spot for SF and Seattle families (October 2006)
Bend Oregon is a nice spot between Seattle and SF - although it is east and over the Cascades from the mid-way point (which may be somewhere around Medford). Bend has a wide variety of hotels, cool parks with volcanic geology near by, the outdoor/indoor High Desert Museum (see their website), the Deschutes River, the Deschutes brew pub. Some folks like to stay south of town at the Sun River resort. If you want to stay west of the cascades along hwy 5, I'm sure Medford or Eugene or other central Oregon towns have a lot of great parks and playgrounds
Travelin' Mom

June 2004

We're taking our sons aged 8 and 12 to stay at Sun River Resort in Bend, Oregon, the first week of July. Aside from enjoying biking and the pool, we'd like recommendations about other places to see, activities to do, things we should take up with us (we're going by airplane), and places to eat. nancy

Oh man, Bend is awesome!! If you all have bikes, I would suggest riding them! If you don't have bikes, you should rent them. I don't know the names of the trails, but any bike shope in town (and there are a few) will be able to get you pointed in the right direction for trails that fit your skill level. Also, there's a restaurant on the main drag in town called (I think) Alpen Glow. Great place for breakfast! Have fun! Jen

I have visited relatives in Bend a couple of times. We went to Petersen Rock Garden and Museum in Redmond, a 4 acre park of gardens, towers, and bridges that Petersen made over a number of years from rocks that he found. Lava Land Visitor Center has short hikes in a very different landscape. The High Desert Museum is a great learning opportunity re the pioneers, and also has some great landscape dioramas with live animals. We have also gone to Operation Santa Claus, where there is a reindeer ranch. These are also all listed in the book, Fun With the Family in Oregon, by Cheryl McLean, along with other ideas. jewel


March 2005

anyone have recs. for inexpensive hotels or motels in Corvallis- my husband's family is having a mini-reunion- well his parents and several siblings and us, all of whom have families are going up for youngest brother's college graduation in June. My mother in-law currently has reservations at the (only?) motel in Philomath where the college is, but is worried it's ''boring'' there and thinks Corvallis would be a nicer place to stay. Also any recs. for fun things to do for kids and/ or adults of a range of ages welcome. and, does anyone have a favorite restaurant or health food store around the area? Thanks! anon

I grew up in Philomath, OR and yes, I believe there is still only one motel there. If you can, take bikes, there is a wonderful bike path from Philomath to Corvallis. Once in Corvallis, the area along the river has great kid friendly restaurants, bakeries and coffee shops. Avery Park is also a nice destination (also on the bike path) which has a train engine for kids to play on. If you do stay in Philomath- tour the ''old historical college'' there. dnahoy

Corvallis is a great town (just 5 minutes from Philomath)! We visited last summer, and actually plan to move there in two years. Check out the website for detailed info about lodging, restaurants, attractions, etc. We stayed in the Best Western Grand Manor Inn, in a very large suite with one separate bedroom (two sleeping areas), for about $99/night with a AAA discount. You can find regular hotel/motel rooms for quite a bit cheaper than that, if you don't need the two sleeping areas in one suite. There's a really nice-looking, new hotel on the OSU campus. You will probably need to book soon, since the area fills up around graduation time. Philomath isn't much--it's a town of about 8000 people, and there really is only one motel (The galaxie). We drove past it and said ''glad we're not staying there!''. It looked fairly run down from the outside. We are outdoor types, and enjoyed visiting the numerous parks in the area. I also recommend driving out to the coast through Newport. It's a beautiful drive, about 45 minutes, and it's not the windy carsick road to the beach like it is here. The beaches are really nice and not crowded at all. We had a great dinner at the Big River restaurant inCorvallis, and enjoyed walking along the new Riverfront Memorial park. There is even a large fountain there that all the kids can play in when it's hot. The downtown area is cute, with hanging flower baskets overywhere and lots of small shops. Eugene is a larger town (over 100,000) that's about 35-40 minutes to the south, and it has many attractions, cute shops, and good restaurants. Have fun! Feel free to e-mail me if you need more info. We really love the area. Gayle


Re: Half-way vacation spot for SF and Seattle families (October 2006)
We find plenty to do in Eugene. Lots of parks and skateparks, restaurants. We like the bikepath along the river. But the highlight for my kids is the wavepool in nearby Springfield (a 15 minute drive). Its an indoor pool with a lap pool, a shallow baby/toddler pool, a large wavepool, a slide and a 3 foot pool area.
have fun


Jan 2006

I'd like to visit my niece who lives in Shady Cove near Medford for a weekend. I don't have a close relationship with her mom so I need a place to stay with her, my son and husband. We also need something to do while we are there. Something related to winter sports and snow (if there is any) would be great. Can anyone give me some suggestions? anon

The closest ski resort is Mt. Ashland Ski Resort south of Shady Cove. It's about an hour drive away. Cathy

The Oregon Coast

Re: Half-way vacation spot for SF and Seattle families (October 2006)
The Oregon Coast offers tons of great places to vacation! The State campgrounds are fabulous (grassy, rather than dusty like California's, and well maintained) and there are nice vacation rentals available in the small coastal towns. Both beach and mountain forest/lake type country are readily accessible all along the coast, and most towns offer antiquing, local specialty produce, historic sites and museums, etc. Plus, outlet malls and no sales tax. :-) We once met my Seattle-ite sister in Lincoln City, OR and had a fabulous time, for a really reasonable price Holly

June 2004

We are headed for the Oregon Coast in mid-July for a camping vacation. We have booked two nights at what seems to be a big-and-busy campground in southern Oregon (Sunset Bay State Park) but would like to hear if others have recommendations for smaller, more intimate/secluded campgrounds along the middle or northern part of the coast. Any recommendations about what to do and where to go on the Oregon coast with a 2-year old would be great. Thanks! Anna

Oswald State Park is lovely, right by the beach in northern Oregon. jennifer

April 2002

We'd like to take 2-3 weeks late this summer on the Oregon coast (preferably closer to Astoria than to Eureka). We have a daughter who will be ~ 1 year old at that time, and two dogs we want to take with us. In the past, we've rented a motor home and stayed in the (fantastic) Oregon State Parks system. But this time, we'd really like to rent a house and stay in one spot. Does anyone have a particular spot/rental agency, etc. that they can recommend on the Oregon coast? Bobbie

Check out the properties rented by OceanEdge Specialty Rentals in Manzanita Oregon--two of them are pet friendly. Here's their website: Juli, who manages these properties, is my husband's second cousin, but we've never stayed there. Just FYI. Sorry--I forgot to mention I saw a letter recommending OceanEdge in the Sunday Chronicle's ''Follow the Reader'' column a while back. Here's the link: . Since I don't have any firsthand experience with the place I thought you might be interested in this person's experience! Christina

Re: Vacation rentals in Oregon

Your best bet would be to go on the Internet and look for the Oregonian. That is Oregons biggest paper. They have vacation rentals in their Rental Section. If your kids want to do Dune Bugging and etc. The best bet would be to go to Coos Bay or Newport. That is where the biggest Dunes are and they rent the Dune Buggies also. There is the Sea Lions Cave right on the coast. I hope this helps. Raye (4/99)