Things to Do in Cannon Beach, Oregon

Things to Do in Cannon Beach, Oregon

Things to Do in Cannon Beach, Oregon

10 Mar 2023
Cannon Beach Honeymoon

Did you know Cannon Beach was just named the sixth best beach in the United Stated by Tripadvisor … and with good reason! 

This charming village by the sea offers endless outdoor pursuits, breathtaking views, great shopping and restaurants, and fun annual events. 

Check out a few of our favorite things to do in Cannon Beach,

Cannon Beach History

Cannon Beach, Oregon is a coastal city that is renowned for its breathtaking scenery and is home to Haystack Rock, a popular tourist attraction. Prior to European contact, the Tillamook people inhabited the region. In 1805, William Clark, of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, explored the area and traded with the Tillamook for whale blubber. The area was initially called Elk Creek but was renamed Cannon Beach in 1922 after a cannon from the US Navy schooner Shark washed ashore. The tsunami generated by the Good Friday earthquake in 1964 washed away the highway bridge, leading to the city’s isolation from the highway. In response, the city began hosting a sand castle contest annually in June, which still continues today.

Explore the Stunning Beaches & Parks of Cannon Beach

The Beach & Haystack Rock

Nearly four miles of sandy beach stretch out from downtown Cannon Beach with iconic Haystack Rock rising 235 feet from the edge of the shoreline. Observe tidepools teeming with sea life, and keep your eye out for the colony of tufted puffins that call the rock home during spring and summer. 

Ecola State Park

This visually stunning park offers miles of walking paths, hiking trails, picnic areas, access to Indian Beach and Crescent Beach, views of the historic Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, and look out points for birdwatching and whale watching. You may even see a herd of elk grazing in the meadows! 

Hug Point State Recreation Site

Three miles south of Cannon Beach, a visit to Hug Point offers easy beach access and a glimpse into local history. Before the highway was built, the only way to travel along this stretch of the coast was by beach. Imagine traveling by stagecoach on the beach? At low tides, enjoy exploring sea caves, a small waterfall, and remnants of the old cliff-side roadway. Tide and sand conditions can change suddenly, so please explore safely.  

Catch of the Day: Oceanside Seafood Dining

Mo’s Seafood and Chowder

No trip to the Oregon Coast is complete without trying our award-winning clam chowder. Fuel up after a long day on the beach with a piping hot bowl from Mo’s Seafood and Chowder paired with an order of their freshly baked bread or garlic parmesan cheese bread.  

Ecola Seafood Restaurant and Market

Want to pick up some fresh seafood to grill back at your cozy vacation rental? Head to Ecola Seafood Restaurant and Market. Can’t wait till dinner? Everything on their menu is outstanding. Our go-to order is their crab melt sandwich – two slices of garlic bread served open faced, topped with Dungeness crab, melted cheddar cheese, and their secret sauce!   


Dine with a view at Wayfarer. This beachfront favorite has something for everyone – craft cocktails, delicious food (breakfast, lunch and dinner), and sublime views. We love their Dungeness crab mac & cheese, and fish and chops – fresh Alaskan halibut perfectly fried in a Public Coast Brewing Co. ‘67 Blonde Ale beer batter. Make sure and save room for dessert or enjoy a night cap in their Whiskey Lounge. 

Shop and Stroll Hemlock Street in Downtown Cannon Beach

Locals and visitors alike love to take an afternoon stroll down charming Hemlock Street. You can find everything from cozy cafes to kitschy souvenirs to thoughtfully curated pieces, as well as delicious goodies at Bruce’s Candy Kitchen. 

Sip Some Suds: Bars and Breweries in Cannon Beach

After an adventure filled day, relax with some tasty pub fare paired with a crisp, refreshing craft beer. Enjoy the local brewing scene at Pelican Brewing Company, Public Coast Brewing, and Bill’s Tavern & Brewhouse.  

Annual Events in Cannon Beach

There is always something happening in Cannon Beach. We recommend checking out the calendar for current events, dates, and locations, but here are a few of our favorites:  

  • March – Whale Watch Week 
  • May – Cannon Beach Fat Bike Festival 
  • June – Cannon Beach Sandcastle Contest 
  • October – Dog Show on the Beach  

Ready to Explore Cannon Beach? 

Book a stay with us! Meredith Lodging has an impressive collection of Cannon Beach vacation rentals to suit all sizes and budgets – from cozy beach bungalows to luxury ocean-front homes. Some of our homes have hot tubs and allow pets, too! We can’t wait to share this beloved coastal town with you!