The beaches of the Oregon and Washington Coasts are not for those visitors looking for a tropical paradise. We have sand, but not a lot of sun. We have waves, but a very cold water temperature. We have tourist towns, but they typically are only busy for a few months. The beaches of Washington and Oregon have their own unique beauty. With sea stacks, giant waves, steep bluffs and fun little towns, both states offer an awesome experience along the Pacific Ocean. Everyone needs to visit and a trip to both coasts should be added to your bucket-list.
My friends from the Midwest and East Coast often tell me how lucky I am to live so close to the beautiful Oregon Coast. They tell me how amazing the forests near the Pacific Ocean in Oregon are, and how blown away they are at the gorgeous pictures of the sea stacks. Even locally, in the greater Seattle region, people talk about going to Cannon Beach for the beauty. These people are entitled to their opinion, but they are wrong.
Yes, Oregon has a nice coast. The beaches are cute and quirky, but they aren’t the best. The beaches of Oregon are like a younger sibling, begging for attention and acceptance. As a younger child, I understand this completely. Like Oregon, I think I am better than my sister. Sadly, when push comes to shove and the facts come in, I can’t compete. The beaches of Oregon are the younger sibling to Washington and while we support them and wish them the best, they need to know their place.
The beaches of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington are far superior to Oregon, and we made a quick list proving why.
(Author Note: I am very aware that both states have some ugly beach areas, but we glossed over those to focus on the beauty.)
Twilight vs The Goonies. Both are cult classics that increased tourism revenue for their regions. Twilight made Forks famous for Vampires and Werewolves, while The Goonies gave us the Truffle Shuffle and a reason to love Astoria.
Sea Stacks= Washington
Yes, Oregon has Cannon Beach and a few other great beaches with sea-stacks, but Washington has beaches so beautiful that they were protected as a National Park.
National Parks on the Coast= Washington
Washington has the Olympic National Park extending along the coast. Oregon has…ummm… nothing.
Nearby Major City= Tie
Seattle is awesome, but has serious traffic problems and it takes forever to get across town. Portland has light rail and great bike paths and I was born there, but not being allowed to pump your own gas is pretty lame.
Ruggedness of Beaches= Washington
With far more shipwrecks and lives lost, the Washington Coast proves it is much more rugged and unpredictable.
Storm Watching= Washington (barely)
If you want to watch a huge storm, the coasts of Washington and Oregon are both AMAZING However, Washington edges out Oregon because we do get stronger winds and more rain.
Hiking on/near the beach= Washington
This isn’t even debatable.
JUST FOR FUN
College Football National Championships= Washington- 2, Oregon-0
This has nothing to do with the beaches and coastal regions, but should be included on every list.
Do you agree or disagree with this list? What would you add?
Honestly, if you are fortunate enough to be able to see either the Washington or Oregon Coast in your lifetime, enjoy it! Both locations are absolutely amazing. I just think Washington’s Coastline is better.
Still not sure about the Washington Coast?
Book a tour with us and we will show you the best of the best!