8 Amazing Things To Do In Newport Oregon Worth The Money

Newport is a small seaside city in Oregon that has been attracting visitors for over a century now – thanks to its charming array of unique sights and its spectacular coastal views.

The city features one of the largest commercial fishing fleets in the state in the form of the historic bayfront area.

8 Amazing Things To Do In Newport Oregon Worth The Money

Besides fishing, you’ll find countless souvenir shops, seafood restaurants, and a range of tourist attractions.

Plus, you’ll also find the awe-inspiring oddities of Ripley’s Believe It or Not and masses of barking sea lions.

Moreover, in the bohemian neighborhood of Nye Beach, you’ll find art galleries galore.

Since Newport is set on both Oregon’s Central Coast and Yaquina Bay (see also “Best Hotels In Newport Oregon“), many of the best activities in Newport are related to the sea.

In addition to visiting the lighthouses and lounging on the beach, you can enjoy some whale watching or visit the world-class Oregon Coast Aquarium.

With a range of different activities to choose from in the seaside town, it can quickly become overwhelming.

Therefore, to help you, we have outlined the most amazing things to do in Newport Oregon (see also “Amazing Things To Do In Astoria“).

Let’s get straight into it.

1. Visit The Hatfield Marine Science Center

When traveling along the entire Oregon coast, you have to stop and explore the Hatfield Marine Science Center.

The facility itself is a part of Oregon State University’s research lab and education center, located on the coastal campus. The visitor center features activities suitable for all ages.

Here, you’ll find aquariums, interactive exhibits, displays about marine research, and tide pools – there is something for everyone.

Plus, don’t forget to check out the eight-armed wonder who has made a new appearance at the marine center – the giant Pacific octopus.

Did you know that octopi are incredibly intelligent creatures and require a lot of playtimes? Well, learn all about this and how the center keeps the octopus happy and healthy on your visit.

Plus, there is even an online opticam where you can watch her when you’re not at the facility.

After a few months at the center – once she has reached maturity – the octopus will be released back into her home in the Yaquina Harbor.

On your visit, make sure to watch one of the educational videos shown in the auditorium. Likewise, you can even take a nice stroll along the Yaquina Estuary Trail.

2. Yaquina Head Lighthouse

As the star of Yaquina Bay, you can’t forget to visit the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse.

You’ll find it located in the Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area which makes up the Yaquina Bay State Recreation Site – at the northern point of Newport.

The lighthouse itself is home to tons of amazing history, therefore, it is a must-see destination. Standing at an impressive 93 feet above sea level – it is the tallest lighthouse in the whole of Oregon.

Plus, another interesting fact is that it is the only remaining wooden lighthouse in the state, too – with all its living quarters still attached.

On days that the interpretive center is open, you can explore inside the lighthouse and learn about the area and the exhibits showcasing marine life.

However, before you visit, make sure to check the website to ensure that tours are running. If not, you can still appreciate the lighthouse and all its beauty from the outside.

3. Beverly Beach State Park

Within a short ten minutes drive along the coast from Newport, you’ll find Beverly Beach State Park.

In addition to offering tons of amazing outdoor activities, you’ll also find tons of whale and wildlife-watching opportunities.

These spectacular creatures can be found migrating along the Oregon coast.

Spread across a massive region, the state park features twinkling creeks, verdant forests, beautiful shores lined by coves, coastal bluffs, and beaches.

Besides biking and hiking along the many trails, you can also swim, surf, sunbathe, or even simply enjoy the spectacular views across the Pacific Ocean.

4. Devils Punch Bowl

Located on the Oregon Coast, you’ll find the beautiful and natural Devils Punchbowl which draws visitors from all over the country.

The Devil’s Punchbowl was sculpted by the powerful Pacific Ocean over the centuries to create a natural sandstone cauldron – making it one of the best things to see in Newport.

Before bearing the ocean’s force, it was once a sea cave; however, the undercurrents caused the roof to fall in – creating a foaming and crashing pit that can be visited today.

Just visiting this natural bowl itself is an adventure. On your journey, you may be able to spot some sea lions or seals lounging on the beach.

Plus, if you are lucky enough, you may even spot a gray whale.

5. The Oregon Coast Aquarium

On your trip to Oregon, another must-see destination is the Oregon Coast Aquarium which is located on the south end of the Yaquina Bay Bridge.

Known as one of the best tourist attractions in Oregon, you can easily spend a couple of hours exploring everything the aquarium has to offer.

Inside the aquarium, you’ll find marine life that can be found in and around the rocky shores of Oregon.

Here, you can watch as California sea lions and harbor seals frolic in their habitats. Plus, there is even an outdoor seabird aviary – one of the biggest in the country.

Make sure to take a stroll through the underwater acrylic walk known as the Passage Of The Deep (otherwise known as the Shark Tunnel).

Here, you can spot one of the 5,000 sea creatures that call it home.

Thanks to a handy digital map, you can plan your visit even before you arrive!

In addition to this, all the buildings are ADA accessible, however, the outdoor gravel paths may be difficult for some. The aquarium itself is certified as sensory-inclusive.

In the admissions area, bags are available. Plus, you can rent electric mobility scooters, strollers, and wheelchairs, too.

Once you have finished your trip to the aquarium, you can finish it off by having a picnic at one of the covered picnic areas.

6. Ripley’s Believe It or Not

On the historic bayfront of Newport, you can find Ripley’s Believe It or Not which has been one of the city’s standout attractions for years.

Here, at this family-friendly establishment, you’ll find tons of amazing oddities, artifacts, and interactive games which are sure to keep you and your family entertained for hours.

Since its initial opening in 1986, the spectacular themed galleries have amazed countless children and adults, alike.

Here, you will find everything from odd animal artworks and spooky shrunken heads to vampire killing kits, a bigfoot, and interesting light installations and illusions.

Plus, it also features over 500 curiosities and wonders, with a delightful art garden to stroll around in silly and strange things to be seen around every corner.

7. Yaquina Head Lighthouse Hikes

Embarking on a hike from Yaquina Head will reward you with some spectacular views that are sure to take your breath away.

In fact, it could be considered the jewel on the Oregon coastline – providing you with tons of trails suitable for every level.

The most impressive part of the region is the headland itself where you’ll find a stone sticking out of the ocean with the Yaquina Head Lighthouse perched on top of it.

When starting at the parking area, one of the shortest trails is the one that takes you to the lighthouse itself.

Here, all you have to do is take the wide, paved path leading you there.

Along the trail, there is a viewpoint that provides you with an impressive view of the sea stacks in the south. Plus, there is another one around the side of the lighthouse.

However, if you’re looking for something slightly more challenging, then head towards Communications Hills or Salal Hill for some amazing views over the coast, lighthouse, and beaches.

8. Newport Historic Bayfront

If you only have one day left in Newport, then we recommend checking out the Newport Historic Bayfront district.

Essentially, it is a hub for all the best spots in town.

Here, you can enjoy fresh seafood from the local restaurants, as well as other main attractions along the pier, including glass art galleries, museums, and unique mom-and-pop shops.

After you have finished a day of shopping, eating, and exploring, walk along the bay to admire the sunset while watching the last of the boats head into the dock.

If you’re lucky, you may even spot some sea lions barking into the night.

Final Thoughts

Located on the coast of Oregon, Newport is known for its wide range of ocean-related activities.

In addition to this, it is packed with tons of rich history. From newer aquariums to the historic bayfront area – there is something for everyone.

Hopefully, this guide has provided you with some inspiration on some amazing things to do on your visit to Newport (see also “Amazing Things To Do In Eugene Oregon“).

Julia Wright
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