Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do in Astoria, OR

Oregon

By Caroline Lascom

Welcome to Astoria, Oregon! Located on the picturesque Oregon coast, Astoria offers a plethora of top-rated attractions and a wide range of activities to suit every taste. Whether you’re a lover of history, a nature enthusiast, or a fan of local culture, you’ll find something to captivate you in this charming coastal town.

One of the must-visit attractions in Astoria is the iconic Astoria Column. Standing at a height of 125 feet atop Coxcomb Hill, this towering monument offers panoramic views of the city, the Columbia River, and the surrounding lush forests. Take the winding staircase to the top and be rewarded with breathtaking vistas that will leave you in awe.

If you’re passionate about maritime history, a visit to the Columbia River Maritime Museum is a must. This world-class museum showcases the rich maritime heritage of the region, from the treacherous Columbia River Bar to the legendary stories of shipwrecks and rescues. Explore interactive exhibits, step aboard historic vessels, and gain a deeper understanding of the maritime history that has shaped Astoria.

Nature lovers will be delighted by the scenic beauty of Astoria’s parks and outdoor spaces. Fort Stevens State Park offers miles of beaches, hiking trails, and camping opportunities, making it a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Don’t miss the chance to explore the historic Fort Stevens, an old military installation that played a pivotal role in defending the Oregon coast during World War II.

Experience the vibrant local culture by strolling through downtown Astoria, where you’ll find an array of boutique shops, art galleries, and charming cafes. Take a walk along the Astoria Riverwalk, a scenic waterfront trail that stretches for miles and offers stunning views of the Columbia River and the iconic Astoria-Megler Bridge. For a taste of Astoria’s thriving food scene, indulge in fresh seafood at one of the many waterfront restaurants.

Whether you’re seeking adventure, history, or simply a relaxing getaway, Astoria, Oregon has it all. Immerse yourself in the beauty of this coastal gem and discover why it’s a top-rated destination for travelers from around the world.

Explore Astoria, OR: Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do

Astoria, Oregon is a charming coastal town with plenty of attractions and activities to keep visitors entertained. Whether you’re interested in history, outdoor adventures, or simply enjoying the beautiful scenery, Astoria has something for everyone.

One of the top attractions in Astoria is the Astoria Column. This towering monument offers breathtaking panoramic views of the town and the surrounding area. Visitors can climb to the top of the column for an unforgettable experience.

If you’re a history buff, don’t miss the chance to visit the Columbia River Maritime Museum. This museum showcases the fascinating maritime history of the area and features interactive exhibits, artifacts, and informative displays.

For those who enjoy the outdoors, a visit to Fort Stevens State Park is a must. The park offers miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as camping and fishing opportunities. Additionally, the park is home to the wreck of the Peter Iredale, a popular attraction for photographers.

Another popular outdoor attraction in Astoria is the Astoria Riverwalk. This scenic trail follows the Columbia River and offers stunning views of the river and the town. Visitors can stroll or bike along the trail and enjoy the fresh sea air.

If you’re interested in local culture and art, make sure to visit the Liberty Theater. This historic theater hosts a variety of performances, including live music, theater productions, and film screenings.

Finally, no visit to Astoria would be complete without stopping by the Rogue Ales Public House. This local brewery offers a wide selection of craft beers, as well as delicious food options. Visitors can enjoy a meal and a pint while taking in the lively atmosphere.

Whether you’re looking for history, outdoor adventures, or cultural experiences, Astoria, Oregon has it all. Plan your visit today and explore everything this charming coastal town has to offer.

Experience the Astoria Column

One of the must-see attractions in Astoria, Oregon is the Astoria Column. Towering 125 feet above Coxcomb Hill, this iconic monument offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the Columbia River, the Pacific Ocean, and the surrounding area.

Designed as a tribute to Astoria’s role as the first permanent American settlement on the West Coast, the Astoria Column tells the story of the city’s history through a series of colorful murals spiraling up its exterior. Visitors can climb the 164 steps to the top of the column, where they are rewarded with an unforgettable vista.

The Astoria Column also offers a unique opportunity for visitors to leave their mark on the city’s history. A roll of paper is available at the top of the column, allowing visitors to write a message or sign their name before it is placed in a time capsule. Every few years, the time capsule is opened and a new roll of paper is added, preserving the memories and messages of those who have visited.

While the climb to the top may require some effort, the breathtaking views and the chance to participate in a living piece of history make it well worth it. Whether you’re a history buff, an art enthusiast, or simply seeking a memorable experience, a visit to the Astoria Column is sure to leave a lasting impression.

Visit the Columbia River Maritime Museum

One of the top-rated attractions in Astoria, Oregon is the Columbia River Maritime Museum. Located near the mouth of the Columbia River, this museum is dedicated to preserving the history and culture of one of America’s most dangerous waterways.

Step inside the museum and you’ll be greeted with fascinating exhibits that tell the story of the Columbia River and its vital role in the maritime industry. From shipwrecks to navigation tools, there’s something for everyone to learn and explore.

One of the highlights of the museum is the Lightship Columbia, a floating lighthouse that once guided ships safely through the treacherous waters of the Columbia River Bar. Climb aboard and imagine what life was like for the courageous crews who manned this important vessel.

While exploring the museum, be sure to check out the fascinating displays on the fishing industry, which has played a central role in the economy and culture of the area. Discover the tools and techniques used by local fishermen and learn about the challenges they face in their daily lives.

For those interested in the history of maritime trade, the museum offers a glimpse into the region’s past as a bustling hub for ships carrying goods from around the world. Explore exhibits on the Lewis and Clark expedition, the development of the salmon canning industry, and the rise of the Astoria-Megler Bridge, an engineering marvel that connects Oregon and Washington.

Whether you’re a history buff, a lover of the sea, or just looking for a unique museum experience, a visit to the Columbia River Maritime Museum is a must-do when in Astoria, Oregon. Prepare to be amazed by the stories, artifacts, and interactive exhibits that bring the rich maritime heritage of the Columbia River to life.

Discover the Historic Flavel House Museum

Explore the rich history of Astoria, Oregon by visiting the historic Flavel House Museum. Located in the heart of downtown Astoria, this beautifully restored mansion offers a fascinating look into the lives of one of the city’s most prominent families.

The Flavel House was built in 1885 for Captain George Flavel, a prominent businessman and river bar pilot. This Queen Anne-style home features stunning architectural details, including intricate woodwork, stained glass windows, and ornate furniture.

Step inside the Flavel House and take a guided tour to learn about the Flavel family’s influence on Astoria’s early development. Explore the opulent rooms, including the grand parlor, dining room, and bedrooms, which have been meticulously preserved to showcase the family’s original furnishings and decorations.

In addition to its architectural significance, the Flavel House Museum also offers insight into the history of the local area. Discover exhibits that highlight Astoria’s maritime past, including displays on the Columbia River Bar Pilots and the city’s role as a major port. Learn about the challenges faced by early settlers and the growth of Astoria as a vital hub for commerce and trade.

After touring the Flavel House Museum, take a stroll in the beautifully manicured gardens surrounding the property. Admire the historic landscaping and enjoy the peaceful ambiance of this picturesque location.

Visiting the Flavel House Museum is a must for history enthusiasts and anyone interested in exploring Astoria’s past. Gain a deeper understanding of the city’s rich heritage and learn about the individuals who shaped it into the vibrant destination it is today.

Location Hours Admission
441 8th St, Astoria, OR 97103 Monday-Saturday: 12pm-4pm $6 for adults, $5 for seniors, $2 for children

Explore the Astoria Riverfront Trolley

The Astoria Riverfront Trolley is a charming way to explore the historic city of Astoria, Oregon. This vintage trolley takes visitors on a scenic journey along the waterfront, offering breathtaking views of the Columbia River and the iconic Astoria-Megler Bridge.

Originally built in 1913, the Astoria Riverfront Trolley was used for transportation and freight services. Today, it has been restored and converted into a popular tourist attraction. The trolley offers a unique and nostalgic experience, allowing visitors to step back in time and imagine what life was like in Astoria during its early days.

During the approximately 3-mile ride, passengers can enjoy the trolley’s open-air design, which allows for an unobstructed view of the surrounding scenery. The trolley is manned by knowledgeable guides who provide interesting commentary about the history and landmarks of Astoria.

A highlight of the trolley ride is passing by the historic Cannery Pier Hotel, which was formerly a cannery and is now a luxurious waterfront hotel. This iconic building serves as a reminder of Astoria’s rich fishing heritage.

The Astoria Riverfront Trolley operates from May to October and runs approximately every 45 minutes. It is a popular attraction for both locals and tourists alike, providing a leisurely and enjoyable way to explore the city.

Don’t miss the opportunity to hop aboard the Astoria Riverfront Trolley and experience the charm and beauty of Astoria’s riverfront.

Take a Tour of the Bumble Bee Cannery Museum

If you’re interested in learning about the history of Astoria’s fishing industry, a visit to the Bumble Bee Cannery Museum is a must. This museum offers a fascinating look into the past, showcasing the evolution of the fishing and canning industry in the Pacific Northwest.

The Bumble Bee Cannery Museum provides visitors with the opportunity to explore the historic cannery building and immerse themselves in the sights, sounds, and smells of a working fish processing plant. You’ll get to see firsthand how fish were caught, processed, and canned in the early 20th century.

As you walk through the museum, you’ll discover a variety of exhibits that tell the story of Astoria’s fishing history. From the earliest days of the fishing industry to the modern techniques used today, there is something for everyone to learn and appreciate.

One of the highlights of the museum is the preserved canning line, where visitors can see the equipment and tools used to can fish in the past. You’ll also find displays of vintage labels, photographs, and memorabilia that provide a glimpse into the daily lives of the workers in the canneries.

During your visit, be sure to take part in one of the guided tours offered by knowledgeable museum staff. These tours offer additional insight and information about the exhibits and history of the cannery. The guides are passionate about sharing the story of Astoria’s fishing heritage and are happy to answer any questions you may have.

After your tour, you can visit the museum’s gift shop, where you’ll find a range of souvenirs and books related to the fishing industry and Astoria’s history. You can also relax in the picnic area and enjoy a packed lunch while taking in the stunning views of the Columbia River.

Whether you’re a history buff, a fishing enthusiast, or just curious about the local heritage, the Bumble Bee Cannery Museum is an engaging and educational experience that shouldn’t be missed during your visit to Astoria, OR.

Go on a Brewery Tour at Ft. George Brewery

When visiting Astoria, Oregon, a must-do activity for beer enthusiasts is to take a brewery tour at Ft. George Brewery. This local craft brewery is known for its award-winning beers and unique brewing methods.

During the brewery tour, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the brewing process and the history of Ft. George Brewery. Knowledgeable guides will take you through the different stages of beer production, from fermentation to canning.

As you walk through the facility, you’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at the impressive brewing equipment and barrels used to create their signature beers. The tour also includes a visit to the barrel aging room, where you can see the special techniques used to create aged and sour beers.

After the tour, you’ll have the chance to sample a variety of Ft. George Brewery’s beers. From hop-forward IPAs to rich stouts, there is a beer for every palate. The knowledgeable staff members are happy to discuss the different flavors and recommend a beer that suits your taste.

Additionally, if you’re hungry, the brewery has a bar and restaurant onsite where you can enjoy a delicious meal paired with your favorite Ft. George beer. Their menu features a variety of pub fare, including burgers, sandwiches, and classic Northwest seafood dishes.

If you’re looking to bring a piece of Ft. George Brewery home with you, there is also a gift shop where you can purchase their beers in bottles or cans, as well as merchandise like t-shirts, glassware, and beer-related accessories.

Overall, a brewery tour at Ft. George Brewery is a fun and educational experience for beer lovers visiting Astoria. Whether you’re interested in the brewing process, want to sample some unique beers, or simply enjoy the lively atmosphere, this tour is a great way to immerse yourself in Astoria’s craft beer scene.

Hike to the top of Coxcomb Hill

If you’re looking for a scenic outdoor adventure in Astoria, Oregon, a hike to the top of Coxcomb Hill is a must-do activity. This hike offers breathtaking views of the city, the Columbia River, and the surrounding landscape.

To reach the top of Coxcomb Hill, you can choose from several trails that vary in difficulty. The easiest trail starts near the Astoria Column and is suitable for all skill levels. This trail is well-maintained and offers benches along the way where you can sit and take in the views.

For a more challenging hike, you can take the Coxcomb Trail, which starts near the Maritime Museum. This trail is slightly steeper and requires more physical exertion, but the reward is well worth it. Along the way, you’ll pass through lush forests and encounter diverse wildlife.

As you ascend to the top of Coxcomb Hill, keep an eye out for the iconic Astoria-Megler Bridge, which connects Oregon to Washington. The view from the top is truly breathtaking and provides an excellent photo opportunity.

Make sure to wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water, especially on hot days, as the hike can be strenuous. Don’t forget to pack a camera to capture the stunning panoramic views.

Whether you’re a hiking enthusiast or simply enjoy spending time in nature, a hike to the top of Coxcomb Hill is an experience you won’t want to miss during your visit to Astoria, Oregon. So put on your walking shoes, grab your camera, and get ready to embark on an unforgettable adventure.

Visit the Oregon Film Museum

If you’re a film enthusiast or just interested in the industry, a visit to the Oregon Film Museum is a must-do when in Astoria. The museum is located in the historic Clatsop County Jail, which adds to its unique charm and atmosphere.

The Oregon Film Museum celebrates and showcases the rich history of filmmaking in the state of Oregon. It highlights the significant contributions that Oregon has made to the film industry, with a particular focus on the films and TV shows that have been filmed in the area.

Inside the museum, you’ll find an impressive collection of exhibits that explore various aspects of filmmaking. From props and costumes to behind-the-scenes stories and interactive displays, the museum offers a comprehensive overview of the filmmaking process.

One of the museum’s main attractions is its feature on the famous movie “The Goonies,” which was filmed in Astoria. Visitors can explore the actual jail cells where scenes from the movie were filmed and learn about the making of this beloved film.

Another highlight of the museum is the Barney Room, which showcases a replica of the jail cell from the film “Short Circuit” and provides information about other movies shot in the region.

Whether you’re a fan of classic films, contemporary blockbusters, or indie productions, the Oregon Film Museum has something for everyone. It’s a great place to learn about the history of filmmaking in Oregon and to gain a deeper appreciation for the art and craft of cinema.

So, make sure to include a visit to the Oregon Film Museum in your itinerary when exploring Astoria. It’s an experience that will enrich your understanding of the film industry and provide a fun and educational outing for the whole family.

Enjoy the Astoria Sunday Market

One of the highlights of visiting Astoria is experiencing the vibrant atmosphere of the Astoria Sunday Market. Held every Sunday from May to October, this popular open-air market showcases the best of the region’s local produce, arts, crafts, and live music.

Stroll through the rows of stalls and discover an array of fresh fruits and vegetables, artisanal bread and cheese, homemade jams and honey, and much more. The market supports the local farming community, so you can feel good about supporting small businesses and sustainable agriculture.

In addition to the delicious food, the Astoria Sunday Market is also a great place to find unique handmade crafts and art. Browse through the stalls to find beautiful jewelry, pottery, paintings, and other one-of-a-kind treasures. Whether you’re looking for a special gift or want to add something new to your home, you’re sure to find something that catches your eye.

While exploring the market, you’ll also be treated to live entertainment from local musicians. Sit back and relax as you listen to the sounds of talented performers playing a variety of genres, adding a lively and festive atmosphere to your visit.

After shopping and enjoying the entertainment, take a break and grab a bite to eat from one of the many food vendors at the market. Choose from a wide variety of international cuisines and local specialties, including fresh seafood, gourmet burgers, wood-fired pizza, and more. Enjoy your meal while soaking up the lively ambiance of the market.

Whether you’re a foodie, an art enthusiast, or simply looking for a fun way to spend your Sunday, the Astoria Sunday Market is a must-visit attraction in Astoria, Oregon. Don’t miss the chance to immerse yourself in the local culture, taste delicious food, and find unique treasures.

Explore the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park

Nestled on the banks of the Columbia River in Astoria, Oregon, the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park provides a unique opportunity to step back in time and learn about the famous journey of exploration made by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark in the early 1800s. The park encompasses various sites along the Lewis and Clark Expedition’s route, including Fort Clatsop, the Salt Works, and the Netul Landing.

One of the main highlights of the park is Fort Clatsop, a replica of the fort where the expedition members spent the winter of 1805-1806. Visitors can explore the reconstructed fort, with its period furnishings and exhibits that depict the challenges faced by the explorers during their stay. Guided tours and ranger-led programs offer a deeper insight into the daily life of the expedition and the encounters they had with Native American tribes.

Another fascinating site within the park is the Salt Works, which was established by Clark and several members of the expedition to harvest salt from seawater. Visitors can see the reconstructed salt cairns and learn about the processes used to produce salt during the time of Lewis and Clark.

The Netul Landing is the spot where the expedition members first set foot on the Pacific Coast. Here, visitors can take a walk along the riverfront trail, enjoy scenic views of the Columbia River, and imagine the sense of awe and accomplishment felt by Lewis and Clark upon reaching their final destination.

In addition to these sites, the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park offers various hiking trails that wind through the beautiful Pacific Northwest landscape. These trails provide opportunities for outdoor activities such as birdwatching, picnicking, and wildlife spotting. The park also features a visitor center with informative displays, a bookstore, and a theater that screens educational films about the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

Address 92343 Fort Clatsop Rd, Astoria, OR 97103
Opening Hours 9:00am – 5:00pm
Admission Free
Contact Phone: (503) 861-2471

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, nature lover, or simply seeking a serene outdoor experience, the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park is a must-visit destination in Astoria. Explore the rich history, marvel at the stunning natural beauty, and gain a profound appreciation for the courageous spirit of exploration embodied by Lewis and Clark.

Check out the Astoria-Megler Bridge

One of the most iconic landmarks in Astoria, Oregon is the Astoria-Megler Bridge. Spanning the Columbia River, this stunning bridge connects Oregon to Washington and is a must-see attraction for visitors to the area.

Completed in 1966, the Astoria-Megler Bridge is over four miles long and was the longest continuous truss bridge in the world at the time of its construction. Today, it still holds the title as the longest continuous truss bridge in North America.

Driving across the Astoria-Megler Bridge offers breathtaking views of the surrounding area. As you cross over the Columbia River, you’ll be treated to panoramic vistas of the water, as well as the charming town of Astoria and the picturesque Pacific Northwest landscape.

If you prefer to explore the bridge on foot, there is a pedestrian walkway on the south side of the bridge. This allows you to take your time and fully appreciate the incredible engineering and majestic views that the Astoria-Megler Bridge has to offer.

Whether you choose to drive or walk across the bridge, be sure to bring your camera. The Astoria-Megler Bridge is a popular spot for photographers, with its dramatic architecture and stunning backdrop creating the perfect photo opportunity.

Visiting the Astoria-Megler Bridge is an absolute must when in Astoria, Oregon. Don’t miss the chance to experience this impressive feat of engineering and take in the breathtaking views.

Discover the Oregon Film Museum

Located in Astoria, Oregon, the Oregon Film Museum is a must-visit attraction for film enthusiasts and history buffs alike. This unique museum celebrates the rich film history of the state and showcases iconic movies that were filmed in Oregon.

Step inside the museum to immerse yourself in the world of cinema. The museum is housed in the historic Clatsop County Jail, which was featured in the opening jailbreak scene of the movie “The Goonies.” As you explore the museum, you’ll learn about the film industry in Oregon and discover interesting facts about movies that were shot in the state.

One of the main highlights of the museum is the exhibits dedicated to “The Goonies.” This beloved 1980s adventure film was set and filmed in Astoria, and the museum pays tribute to its enduring popularity. You can see props, costumes, and memorabilia from the movie, as well as learn about the making of the film and the impact it had on Oregon’s film industry.

In addition to “The Goonies,” the Oregon Film Museum features exhibits on other famous movies shot in the state, such as “Kindergarten Cop,” “Free Willy,” and “Twilight.” You can also learn about the different aspects of filmmaking, including camera equipment, special effects, and editing techniques.

Visiting the Oregon Film Museum is not only a chance to explore the world of movies, but also an opportunity to support the local film industry. Oregon has long been a popular filming location due to its diverse landscapes and unique locations. By visiting the museum, you are contributing to the continuation of Oregon’s filmmaking legacy.

Whether you’re a fan of “The Goonies,” interested in the history of Oregon’s film industry, or simply looking for an intriguing cultural experience, the Oregon Film Museum is a must-visit attraction in Astoria. Step inside to discover the magic of movies and gain a deeper appreciation for the impact of the film industry on the state of Oregon.

Relax at the Astoria Riverwalk

One of the top attractions in Astoria, Oregon is the Astoria Riverwalk. This scenic stroll along the Columbia River offers stunning views and a peaceful atmosphere. Whether you’re looking for a quiet place to relax or an outdoor adventure, the Astoria Riverwalk is the perfect destination.

The Riverwalk spans four miles, starting at the Astoria Riverfront Trolley and ending at the Maritime Memorial Park. Along the way, you’ll find benches and picnic areas where you can sit and enjoy the view. The path is paved and well-maintained, making it accessible to everyone, including those with strollers or wheelchairs.

As you walk, take a moment to appreciate the beauty of the Columbia River. Watch as boats and ships pass by, and keep an eye out for wildlife such as seals and sea lions. The Riverwalk is also a popular spot for birdwatching, so be sure to bring your binoculars.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can rent a bike or a surrey to explore the Riverwalk at a faster pace. There are also guided kayak tours available for those who want to get out on the water and experience the river up close.

Along the Riverwalk, you’ll find several attractions worth visiting. Stop by the iconic Astoria-Megler Bridge, one of the longest continuous truss bridges in the world. Visit the Astoria Column, a historic tower with panoramic views of the surrounding area. And don’t miss the Columbia River Maritime Museum, which offers exhibits on the region’s maritime history.

Whether you’re a nature lover, history enthusiast, or simply looking for a relaxing experience, the Astoria Riverwalk has something for everyone. Take a leisurely stroll, enjoy a picnic, or go on an adventure – the choice is yours. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the beauty of the river and create lasting memories of your visit to Astoria, Oregon.

FAQs

What are some top-rated attractions in Astoria, OR?

Some top-rated attractions in Astoria, OR include the Astoria Column, the Columbia River Maritime Museum, Fort Stevens State Park, and the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park.

What can I do in Astoria, OR?

In Astoria, OR, you can visit the historic downtown area, explore the breweries and distilleries, go hiking or biking in the surrounding nature, visit the museums and galleries, take a river cruise, or go fishing.

How long does it take to visit the Astoria Column?

Visiting the Astoria Column usually takes about 1-2 hours. You can climb to the top of the column for a panoramic view of the city and the surrounding area. There is also a gift shop at the base of the column.

What is the best time to visit Astoria, OR?

The best time to visit Astoria, OR is during the summer months of June, July, and August when the weather is mild and there are many outdoor activities to enjoy. However, Astoria can be visited year-round and each season has its own charm.

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Caroline Lascom

Caroline is a seasoned travel writer and editor, passionate about exploring the world. She currently edits captivating travel content at TravelAsker, having previously contributed her exceptional skills to well-known travel guidebooks like Frommer’s, Rough Guides, Footprint, and Fodor’s. Caroline holds a bachelor's degree in Latin American studies from Manchester University (UK) and a master's degree in literature from Northwestern University. Having traveled to 67 countries, her journeys have fueled her love for storytelling and sharing the world's wonders.

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