Top Things to Do in Newport, Oregon When You Book a Newport Vacation Rental with Meredith Lodging
It is easy to see why so many visitors to the Oregon Coast rave about Newport, Oregon – there is so much to see, eat, and discover! A stay at a Newport vacation rental will have you close to all the activities you will want to experience.
Newport is one of the most popular beach towns on the Oregon Coast and a well-established stop for tourists and locals alike. Newport is known for its historic lighthouses, its adventure-focused state parks, a happening arts scene, great restaurants, AND a stunning shoreline. Everyone can find something they love about this charming seaside getaway. Ready to plan your holiday to a Newport vacation rental? We have put together a list of our favorite things to do in Newport, Oregon to make your planning easy!
Explore Historic Lighthouses
Newport is home to two historic lighthouses and they each offer an amazing history behind how they came to be.Yaquina Bay Lighthouse is located on top of a picturesque bluff and was built in 1871. It was decommissioned just a few years later, in 1874, after being deemed obsolete once construction of the new Yaquina Head Lighthouse was complete. Thankfully, the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse was officially restored as a privately maintained aid to navigation in 1996. The Yaquina Bay Lighthouse is believed to be the oldest structure in Newport, Oregon, and the only existing Oregon lighthouse with living quarters attached. Today, the lighthouse is surrounded by beautiful Yaquina Bay State Park where visitors can enjoy walking trails, a scenic overlook that offers great views of Yaquina Bay and the Yaquina Bay Bridge, a fisherman’s memorial and access to explore Cobble Beach below. Up the road a few miles sits the larger… …Yaquina Head Lighthouse. At 93 feet, this lighthouse is Oregon’s tallest and is known for its impressive visibility, due to its location and height. It was completed in 1873 and was originally called the Cape Foulweather Light at Yaquina Point. This lighthouse is famous for its Fresnel Lens (the lens celebrates its 150th birthday this year!) The Fresnel Lens was designed and manufactured in Paris before it made its way to Oregon, via Panama. These lenses are thinner and lighter than conventional lenses and can be seen from more than 20 miles out to sea. Visitors can learn more about this lighthouse and its storied past by visiting the adjacent interpretive center, which opened in 1997.
Learn and Play in Amazing State Parks
There are more than a dozen state parks and state recreations areas in and around Newport. Two of our favorites are Mike Miller State Park and South Beach State Park.
Mike Miller State Park is a beautiful and educational adventure for visitors of all ages. The Park covers more than 45 acres, most of it forested, and features a one-mile nature trail that is dotted with bridges, observation decks, and benches as well as lots of informational signs encouraging visitors to sit and listen for bird calls, observe the coastal flora and fauna, and watch for small woodland animals, too. An additional highlight of this park is that you can see Sitka Spruce, Western Hemlock, Douglas Fir and Coastal Pine trees all in one place.
South Beach State Park begins in South Newport and stretches along several miles of pristine Oregon Coast land. There are lots of places to walk, bike, and jog especially along the paved Jetty Trail. This area is popular for horseback riding, too, with many people choosing to take a beautiful sunset ride. The Park also offers a 9-hole disc golf course, a playground area, and places to kayak and canoe.
Discover Beautiful Newport, Oregon Beaches
There are many places to get your toes in the sand around Newport. We love Cobble Beach, Beverly Beach, and Nye Beach!
Cobble Beach gets its name from the smooth basalt cobbles that make up its shoreline. This beach is also known for being a wonderful place to explore tidepools and birdwatch – and a beautiful place to take photos, with its backdrop of Yaquina Head always in view.
Beverly Beach is another local favorite. This beach offers lots of room to roam (from Yaquina Head to the headlands of Otter Rock) and scenic coastline vistas everywhere you look. Beverly Beach is also a favorite among those looking to fly a kite.
Nye Beach is another local treasure. It is both a neighborhood with more than 40 shops and cafes (many owners live above their establishments), as well as a lovely beach that stretches from Yaquina Bay to Yaquina Head.
Arts & Entertainment in Newport
Nye Beach is an epicenter of The Arts in Newport, a city that is home to a thriving arts community overall.
The Newport Performing Arts Center (PAC) is the premier venue on the Oregon Coast. Its Silverman Theater seats 400, while its intimate Studio Theater seats 80. The PAC is home to several resident companies who produce music, theater, and dance performances…and is home base for the beloved outdoor symphony performances each summer.
The Newport Visual Arts Center (VAC) enjoys beautiful ocean views and is the jewel of visual arts in Newport. Divided into three galleries, several mixed-use areas, and a showcase area, the VAC features rotating visual arts displays from local, regional, and national artists and hosts First Fridays to feature new exhibits the first Friday of every month.
Enjoy Delicious Local Food and Drink
It’s no surprise to hear that Newport has an award-winning food scene as well. Each February, the town hosts the wildly popular Newport Seafood and Wine Festival, and year-round it offers visitors many delicious options for food, from casual cafes and breweries to fine dining. We have listed some of our must-eat locations below:
Bonus: The Oregon Coast Aquarium & Hatfield Marine Science Center
We would be remiss if we did not also mention the two world-class facilities in Newport where you can learn more about life under the sea. The Oregon Coast Aquarium is a must-stop for every visitor, as is the nearby Hatfiled Marine Science Center. Both facilities have won multiple awards and make for a memorable excursion for travelers of all ages.
Ready to book your vacation to a Newport vacation rental? Visit Meredith Lodging to view our Newport, Depoe Bay, and Lincoln City collections. We hope to see you soon!