Located on Oregon’s Central Coast, Newport is a small town with much to offer to tourists and locals, from the surrounding magnificent beaches and parks to the unique brew pubs, restaurants, and museums. When visiting Newport, guests will find uninhibited access to whale watching tours, Dungeness crabbing, and a plethora of options to satiate all of their seafood desires. But food isn’t all that is on the table, as Newport also contains Oregon’s highest rated aquarium, intricate local history that can be explored through many museums, and a number of lighthouses that are a must-see for any enthusiast.
We recommend that you call the attractions and restaurants ahead of your visit to confirm current opening times.
1.Hatfield Marine Science Center
2.South Beach State Park, Newport, OR
3.Yaquina Bay State Recreation Site
4.Newport Farmer's Market
5.Newport Historic Bayfront, Newport, Oregon
6.Oregon Coast Aquarium, Newport, Oregon
7.Pacific Maritime Heritage Center, Newport, OR
8.Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area
9.Beverly Beach State Park
12.Chowder Bowl at Nye Beach, Newport, Oregon
13.Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Devil's Punchbowl
14.Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Georgie's Beachside Grill
15.Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Marine Discovery Tour
16.Ossie's Surf Shop Kayak Tour, Newport, Oregon
17.Panini Bakery, Newport, Oregon
18.Rogue Nation Brewery & Spirits, Newport, Oregon
19.Ripley’s Believe it or Not! World of Adventure
20.Escape Rooms Newport
21.Local Ocean Seafoods
21 Best Things to Do in Newport, Oregon
- Hatfield Marine Science Center, Photo: Courtesy of tosamanoi - Fotolia.com
- South Beach State Park, Newport, OR, Photo: Courtesy of cascoly2 - Fotolia.com
- Yaquina Bay State Recreation Site, Photo: Courtesy of The Speedy Butterfly - Fotolia.com
- Newport Farmer's Market, Photo: Courtesy of Marija - Fotolia.com
- Newport Historic Bayfront, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Courtesy of Pix by Marti - Fotolia.com
- Oregon Coast Aquarium, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Courtesy of serkan52 - Fotolia.com
- Pacific Maritime Heritage Center, Newport, OR, Photo: Pacific Maritime Heritage Center
- Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, Photo: Courtesy of tusharkoley - Fotolia.com
- Beverly Beach State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Irochka - Fotolia.com
- Burrows House, Photo: Burrows House
- Cape Foulweather, Photo: Courtesy of cascoly2 - Fotolia.com
- Chowder Bowl at Nye Beach, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Chowder Bowl at Nye Beach
- Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Devil's Punchbowl, Photo: Courtesy of kellyvandellen - Fotolia.com
- Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Georgie's Beachside Grill, Photo: Georgie's Beachside Grill
- Things to Do in Newport, Oregon: Marine Discovery Tour, Photo: Marine Discovery Tour
- Ossie's Surf Shop Kayak Tour, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Courtesy of chachanit - Fotolia.com
- Panini Bakery, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Courtesy of Philipimage - Fotolia.com
- Rogue Nation Brewery & Spirits, Newport, Oregon, Photo: Courtesy of David Prahl - Fotolia.com
- Ripley’s Believe it or Not! World of Adventure, Photo: Ripley’s Believe it or Not
- Escape Rooms Newport, Photo: cj2a/stock.adobe.com
- Local Ocean Seafoods, Photo: Local Ocean Seafoods
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of RG - Fotolia.com
Attraction Spotlight: Pacific Maritime Heritage Center
The Pacific Maritime Heritage Center in Oregon’s historic Newport Bayfront celebrates the history of art, culture, commerce and science as it relates to the ocean and the Pacific northwest. The Maritime operates a large museum and interactive center, as well as art galleries and a commercial fishing fleet.
Exhibits at the Maritime tell the history of over 150 years of innovation in commercial fishing along the Oregon coast. ‘Our Beautiful and Wild Oregon Fisheries’ teaches visitors the little known story about Yaquina Bay’s role in developing the fishing industry in the American West. The exhibit includes the role of Yaquina’s Dungeness crab fisheries, the largest in the United States, as well as the industries of Chinook salmon, albacore tuna and pink shrimp, among others. Oregon’s response to ever changing politics, environmental concerns, consumer preferences and globalization are all explored throughout the display.
‘Rescued Recovered and Lost’ is an exhibit focused on Oregon shipwrecks. The exhibit examines the effect of shipwrecks on the local fishing industry and community, as well as the role of shipwrecks as an artist’s tool to discuss themes of drama, life and loss. The exhibit displays items recovered from shipwrecks and their significance in our ongoing fascination with getting lost at sea, as well as highlighting industry practices in safety, search and rescue.
‘Then and Now: Roger Hart and Bill Posner’ is a photography exhibit that compares and contrasts the work of Roger A. Hart, a famous local who photographed daily life in Newport through the 1940’s, and that of Bill Posner, who re-shot Hart’s original photographs in 2017.
The Maritime is also home to a gift shop and bookstore, which sell locally made arts and crafts. Among the books offered is The Bayfront Book, a history of the region based upon the stories of those who have lived there, written by The Bayfront Magazine’s Steven Wyatt.
History: The Pacific Maritime Heritage Center is operated by the Lincoln County Historical Society, founded in 1948 with a mission to ‘preserve, publish and educate.’ The society’s first museum project was the preservation and restoration of the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse and the publication of Lt. Theodore Talbot’s chronicles of his visit to the Bay in 1849.
The Pacific Maritime Heritage Center is housed in a historic building, built upon the foundations of a home from the 1880’s for Dr. James Bayley and his family. The current 1925 structure incorporates the original foundation and chimney, and was built for General Ulysses Grant McAlexander, the World War I hero. The home was purchased and renovated by the Lincoln County Historical Society in 2004 after a brief life as the popular bar and nightclub, Smuggler’s Cove in the 1970’s and 1980’s.
In 2014, the Maritime embarked upon a Phase II restoration and renovation project that will update the Maritime’s first floor exhibits, and incorporate a 140-seat theater with panoramic views of the Bayfront. A large-capacity conference room, catering facilities and modifications to increase ADA compliance will also be added. The Lincoln County Historical Society is currently fundraising to complete these efforts.
Ongoing Programs and Education: Annual events at the Maritime Heritage Center include February’s Crab Krack. 2018 celebrated the 10th anniversary of this Dungeness crab dinner and live jazz performance. Proceeds from the event go towards ongoing renovations of the Maritime. Each year on Christmas Eve, the Maritime offers free admission, as well as hot chocolate, popcorn and snacks for an evening of shopping for last minute gifts. Fireworks at the Maritime was first held in 2013 and has since become an annual event. Each July 4th, the museum is open for dinner, dancing and a live jazz band performance, while guests enjoy the view of fireworks over Yaquina Bay. The Maritime is available for private parties and events, and offers both indoor and outdoor venues overlooking Yaquina Bay.
What’s Nearby: Also under the direction of the Lincoln County Historical Society is the Burrows House, a Queen Anne Victorian historical home museum. The collection of the Lincoln County Historical Society, who manages the Maritime and the Burrows House Museum, consists of over 40,000 objects related to the history of the region. Items include Native American and maritime objects, as well as textiles and clothing, ceramics and every-day objects, jewelry, furniture, firearms and tools. While some items are on display at the Maritime, much of the collection is housed in the Log Cabin Research Library adjacent to the Burrows House.
333 SE Bay Blvd., Newport, OR 97365, Phone: 541-265-7509
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Attraction Spotlight: Newport Historic Bayfront
Newport is a small coastal town in Oregon with a historic bayfront, which is now home to several shops, restaurants and attractions. Visitors can stroll through the piers and boardwalks, and view the bay and historical landmarks. The Yaquina Bay Bridge is the most recognizable and iconic in the area.
The art deco structure was built in 1936 by Oregon’s Conde McCullogh, who designed several of Oregon’s coastal bridges along Highway 101, and the bridge is considered the masterpiece of his career. Two historic lighthouses, Yaquina Bay and Yaquina Head no longer serve as navigational guides, but are open to visitors as museums. Yaquina Bay lighthouse was built in 1871 and is believed to be Newport’s oldest structure. Yaquina Head lighthouse was completed in 1873, stands tallest at 93 feet, and is home to a historic Fresnel lens, which celebrates its 150th birthday in 2018.
Sea lion watching is a favorite activity. Visitors can hear the sea lions barking before they can see them, the animals may be viewed from several points along the pier in the Historic Bayfront district. Known as the Dungeness Crab Capital of the World, Newport is home to the state’s most prolific commercial crabbers, and visitors can do their own crabbing from the docks of Yaquina Bay or by boat during the harvesting season, which takes place between September and January each year. Visitors can purchase fresh caught fish directly from the fishermen at the docks on Piers 3, 5 and 7, or from the South Beach Marina.
Downtown Newport’s Deco District begins at the foot of the Yaquina Bay Bridge. Designated in 2007, the site is home to several restored 1930’s era art deco buildings. The Deco buildings are home to the famous Pig 'N Pancake Restaurant, the locally owned Diamonds by the Sea jewelry shop, Go Fly a Kite, a family-owned kite shop and The Olde Telephone Company, which sells antique phones, signage and tin toys.
Historic Nye Beach is at the heart of Newport’s art scene. While the beach proper offers recreational activities, the historic district is home to several art galleries, the Newport Performing Arts Center, Newport Visual Arts Center, and Yaquina Art Association. Shops include the Nye Beach Bookhouse, Tu Tu Tu Kitchenware, the metaphysical gift shop Mind Body Soul, and gift shops such as the Peerless Puffin, Jovi, and Charisma Gifts.
South Beach is home to the Edge Art Gallery, where guests can watch glassworks being made on site at the glass shop, or make something themselves by enrolling in a workshop. Pirates Plunder Antiques and Collectibles is a popular antique fair, which hosts several different vendors. South Beach is home to a marina where visitors may purchase fresh fish or begin a boat tour of the bay.
More than 80 restaurants in the historic Newport area range from small cafes to fine dining. The popular Oregon brewery, Rogue Brewing opened in Newport in 1989 and today offers the original Brewery, as well as the Rogue House of Spirits, located directly across from the distillery. Mo’s Restaurant is a favorite, serving meals on the Historic Bayfront for over 70 years. The family operated restaurant has been open since 1946, and is famous for their clam chowder, Oregon seafood, and homemade cobblers and pies. Mo’s Annex is a smaller restaurant across the street from the original, overlooking the bay.
History: Newport’s origins began in the mid-1800’s when Oyster beds were discovered in the Yaquina Bay and settlers discovered the great profit in shipping the Oysters throughout the west coast. Newport’s Bayfront was incorporated in 1882, at which point large numbers of Europeans were fishing and living along the shore. Fish processing plants sprung up in the early 1900’s, making fishing the number one industry in the area, until the 1930’s when the Yaquina Bay Bridge was complete and tourism began to take over. Today, the area is still popular as a crabbing and fishing destination, along with shopping, art galleries, restaurants and nightlife.
Ongoing Programs and Education: Events take place year round in Newport and along the Historic Bayfront. Annual events include April’s Oregon Coast Aquarium 5K and Kid’s Dash. Now in it’s 6th year, the family-friendly road race benefits animal care programs at the Oregon Coast Aquarium. April also celebrates National Kite Month. Local kite shop Go Fly a Kite outfits visitors with different types of kites to enjoy along the miles of windy shoreline.
460 SW Bay Blvd; Newport, Oregon 97365
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More Ideas: Sylvia Beach Hotel in Newport, Oregon
Set on a cliff-top overlooking Nye Beach, the literary-themed Sylvia Beach Hotel in Newport is a quaint, charming hotel that offers guests a peaceful retreat with beautiful views. Named after Sylvia Beach, expatriate American bookseller, and publisher, Sylvia Beach Hotel boasts beautifully appointed TV- and telephone-free guest rooms named after famous authors with private bathrooms, fireplaces and garden or ocean views.
A delicious complimentary continental breakfast is served every morning in the low-key restaurant, which also serves family-style dinners in a casual atmosphere, and a cozy lounge, library and games room offers various forms of entertainment from board games to books. A furnished deck with comfy seating provides the perfect place to relax with a cup of tea and a book to soak up the stunning ocean views.
Sylvia Beach Hotel is ideally located for exploring the area and is located just a mile from the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse, two miles from the Oregon Coast Aquarium and three miles from Big Creek Park.
Sylvia Beach Hotel boasts 21 beautifully appointed and literary-themed guest rooms with charming décor and comfortable furnishings, different size beds ranging from singles and twins to double, queens and kings in clean, homely linens. Private bathrooms vary from room to room, some with en-suite bathrooms with showers, others with shared bathrooms, while some rooms have spacious sitting areas with fireplaces, tables, and armchairs.
Four Novel Rooms, namely Tolkien, Oscar Wilde, Jules Verne, and Gertrude Stein are located on the first and second floors and feature queen-size beds in crisp linens, en-suite bathrooms with bathrooms with shower/bath combinations and plush towels, and lovely views over the garden. These rooms also have access to the garden via patios.
The three Classic Rooms, namely Agatha Christie, Mark Twain and Colette boast queen-size beds and a pullout sofa beds (single or double) for extra guests, en-suite bathrooms with shower/bath combinations and plush towels, spacious sitting areas with fireplaces and expansive private decks with glorious ocean views.
The hotel’s family-friendly Tables of Content Restaurant serves a delicious complimentary continental breakfast every morning, and hearty home-cooked dinners in the evenings with a menu of local dishes prepared with locally sourced ingredients, including ocean-fresh seafood.
In addition to comfortable, home-away-from-home guest rooms, Sylvia Beach Hotel offers a variety of guest amenities to ensure a tranquil and relaxing stay. A large oceanfront library on the third floor of the hotel provides plenty of reading material, including novels by many of the authors that the guest rooms are named after, as well as daily newspapers, board games, and puzzles. Laptops are allowed in the library but the hotel is a technology-free zone without televisions or telephones in the guest rooms, and there is no wireless Internet available. The hotel’s family-friendly Tables of Content Restaurant serves a delicious complimentary continental breakfast every morning and home-cooked dinners in the evenings and coffee are served in the hotel’s coffee room throughout the day.
Set on the charmingly rugged Oregon Coast, Newport offers a variety of fun and educational activities for the whole family. The beautiful coastline provides myriad activities from mountain biking, hiking, golf and flying kites, to bird watching and strolling the sandy shores, exploring rock pools, combing for fossils and spotting marine life in its natural habitat. The Oregon Coast Aquarium is worth a visit to walk through a glass tunnel surrounded by sharks and stroke an octopus, while the historic Nye Beach is a perfect place for a picnic with its pretty cottages and laid-back atmosphere. Newport’s most iconic landmark is the impressive Yaquina Bay Bridge, which is an ambassador for the city and a magnificent piece of art-deco architecture and there two picturesque lighthouses on Yaquina Head and Yaquina Bay, one of which is the tallest on the Oregon Coast.
Officially known as the ‘Dungeness Crab Capital of the World,’ Newport is the place to enjoy public crabbing. Grab a cold Rogue brew can be savored at Brewer’s on the Bay, a restaurant and bar at the foot of the Yaquina Bay Bridge that offers over 40 taps and spectacular panoramic views of Yaquina Bay.
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267 NW Cliff St, Newport, OR 97365, Phone: 541-265-5428
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