Sutton Mountain Scenic Byway

Why You Should Explore Oregon’s Scenic Byways

The Ultimate Road Trip: You Should Explore Oregon’s Scenic Byways!

Are you ready to take a break from the monotony of everyday life and embark on a thrilling adventure? Look no further than this state’s scenic byways. With its stunning natural beauty and charming towns, this road trip promises to be the ultimate escape. From the majestic Mount Hood to the captivating Oregon Coast, this journey offers something for absolutely everyone. So, fasten your seatbelts and prepare for the ride of a lifetime as we explore the 11 or more must-see stops along Oregon State’s scenic byways. Don’t forget to pack your camera and appetite as we immerse ourselves in the culture of this incredible state. Get ready to experience the adventure of a lifetime!

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Historic Columbia River Highway

Our next stop on this epic road trip brings us to the historic Columbia River Highway. This stretch of road boasts breathtaking views of the Columbia River Gorge and is also known for its rich history. The highway was originally constructed in the early 1900s and was considered a marvel of engineering at the time.

Columbia River Highway
Columbia River Highway

Today, it is designated as a National Historic Landmark and offers visitors a glimpse into the past. As you wind your way through the scenic route, take time to explore the many waterfalls, hiking trails, and viewpoints along the way. Don’t forget to snap a photo at the iconic Vista House, a stunning observatory perched atop a cliff overlooking the majestic Columbia River. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a scenic drive, the historic Columbia River Highway is not to be missed on this unforgettable road trip. Next up, we’ll be exploring the vibrant city of Metro Portland.,

Metro Portland

As we venture deeper into the heart of Oregon, we find ourselves in the bustling city of Metro Portland. This vibrant metropolis is known for its eclectic mix of urban culture and natural beauty, making it a unique destination for travelers. If you’re interested in exploring the city, there is no shortage of things to see and do. Take a stroll through the famous Powell’s City of Books, one of the largest independent bookstores in the world, or head to the iconic Pioneer Courthouse Square to soak in the local atmosphere.

Downtown Portland
Downtown Portland

But if you’re in search of some outdoor adventure, you’re in luck. Just a short drive from the city, you’ll find the stunning Columbia River Gorge, where you can hike, bike, or simply take in the breathtaking views of the river and its surrounding mountains. You can also explore the nearby Forest Park, one of the largest urban forests in the US, offering over 70 miles of hiking trails.

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After immersing yourself in the excitement of Metro Portland, it’s time to hit the road again and make our way to Oregon’s famous wine country. Get ready to taste some of the finest wines in the world and experience the tranquil countryside, all on our ultimate road trip through Oregon State’s scenic byways.,

Oregon’s Wine Country

After taking in the bustling city of Portland, our road trip through Oregon’s scenic byways leads us to the tranquil countryside of Oregon’s wine country. The state boasts over 700 wineries, producing exceptional wines such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Riesling. The Willamette Valley, located just an hour from Portland, houses the majority of Oregon’s wineries and offers countless opportunities to sample and savor the local wine varietals.

Why Oregon Wine Producers Are Seeing Pink – Fergy’s Travel (fergystravel.com)

Dundee Oregon - Wine Country
Dundee Oregon – Wine Country

But it’s not just about the wine. The rolling hills and lush vineyards of Oregon’s wine country provide a serene atmosphere perfect for a leisurely drive or a relaxing picnic. The region also boasts charming small towns, each with their own unique character and local flavors.

A Potpourri Of Chardonnays Oregon – Fergy’s Travel (fergystravel.com)

As we continue our journey, we leave behind the vineyards and head towards the stunning Oregon Coast. With over 360 miles of coastline, it offers unparalleled natural beauty and a wealth of outdoor activities.,

The Stunning Oregon Coast

As we continue our journey through Oregon’s scenic byways, the rolling hills and lush vineyards of wine country give way to the stunning Oregon Coast. With over 360 miles of coastline, the beauty here is unparalleled, and the opportunities for outdoor adventure are endless.

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Oregon Coast
Oregon Coast

From the dramatic cliffs of Lincoln City to the secluded beaches of Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, the Oregon Coast offers a diverse range of landscapes to explore. Take a hike through the old-growth forests of Cape Perpetua or go crabbing in Coos Bay. Marvel at the unique rock formations of Cannon Beach or catch a glimpse of migrating whales off the coast of Depoe Bay.

But the Oregon Coast isn’t just about the natural beauty. There are also charming coastal towns to discover, each with their own unique character and local flavors. Stop in at a seafood shack for some freshly caught crab or explore the galleries and shops of the artsy town of Yachats.

As we make our way south along the coast, our next destination awaits us in Coos Bay and Bandon Dunes.,

Coos Bay and Bandon Dunes

As we continue our journey down Oregon’s scenic byways, we reach the charming coastal towns of Coos Bay and Bandon Dunes. Coos Bay is a bustling port town where you can watch fishing boats come in with their daily catch.

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Coos Bay bridge
Coos Bay bridge

For some fun in the sun, head over to Bandon Dunes, featuring some of the world’s top-rated golf courses with breathtaking ocean views. Of course, fresh seafood is always on the menu here, with plenty of local restaurants to indulge in.

Bandon Dunes
Bandon Dunes

But our adventure doesn’t end here. Just a short drive away from Coos Bay and Bandon Dunes is the natural wonder of the Oregon Caves. Descend into the depths of these ancient underground formations and explore the fascinating geological wonders created over millions of years. Let’s gear up and prepare to uncover the mysteries hidden beneath the surface.,

Oregon Caves National Monument

Just a short drive away from the charming coastal towns of Coos Bay and Bandon Dunes lies a natural wonder waiting to be explored – the Oregon Caves. This underground maze features fascinating geological formations created over millions of years. Descend into the depths of these ancient caves and discover the mysteries hidden beneath the surface.

Oregon Caves National Monument
Oregon Caves National Monument

After experiencing the beauty of the Oregon Caves, it’s time to hit the open road again and continue our journey down Southern I-5 Corridor.,

Southern I-5 Corridor

The Southern I-5 Corridor offers a diverse landscape of lush forests, rolling hills, and sparkling rivers. Make your way down this stretch of highway, and you’ll find plenty of opportunities for adventure and relaxation alike. Take a scenic drive through the Siskiyou Mountains and admire the breathtaking views, or stop off at one of the many charming towns dotting the route. And don’t forget to make a pit stop at the Oregon Vortex, a fascinating roadside attraction that will leave you scratching your head in wonder. Next up on our itinerary is Crater Lake and Klamath Falls – two more must-see destinations on our ultimate Oregon road trip.,

Crater Lake and Klamath Falls

Located in southern Oregon, Crater Lake National Park is home to the deepest lake in the United States. The brilliant blue water is fed entirely by snow and rain, and it’s surrounded by towering cliffs and dense forests. Take a drive around the rim of the lake, and you’ll be treated to stunning views at every turn. If you’re feeling adventurous, hike down to the water’s edge, or take a boat tour to Wizard Island in the center of the lake.

Crater Lake, Oregon
Crater Lake, Oregon

After you’ve soaked in the beauty of Crater Lake, head over to Klamath Falls for more outdoor adventure. This small city sits at the base of the Cascades and offers plenty of opportunities for hiking, fishing, and kayaking. One must-see attraction in Klamath Falls is the Favell Museum, which houses an impressive collection of Western art and artifacts.

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But the fun doesn’t stop in Klamath Falls – our next stop is Bend and Sunriver. These destinations offer a different kind of outdoor experience, with miles of mountain biking and hiking trails, as well as world-class skiing in the winter. So buckle up and get ready for more breathtaking scenery on our ultimate Oregon road trip.,

Bend and Sunriver Resort

Bend and Sunriver are two adjacent destinations that offer an abundance of outdoor activities for visitors. Bend is a popular mountain town with a laid-back vibe and plenty of craft breweries, while Sunriver is a resort community nestled in the Deschutes National Forest. Together, these destinations make for the perfect stop on our road trip through Oregon.

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In Bend, you can explore the Deschutes River Trail, which offers 19 miles of scenic hiking and biking paths. If you’re feeling adventurous, try your hand at rock climbing at Smith Rock State Park or go skiing at Mount Bachelor in the winter. Bend is also home to the High Desert Museum, which showcases the cultural and natural history of the region.

The Lakehouse Pool at SunRiver Resort Bend Oregon
The Lakehouse Pool at SunRiver Resort Bend Oregon

Next door in Sunriver, you’ll find miles of paved bike paths that wind through the resort community and into the surrounding forest. Sunriver is also known for its world-class golf courses, including the Crosswater Club and the Meadows Course. In the winter, the resort offers skiing and snowboarding at the nearby mountain.

After exploring the outdoor playground of Bend and Sunriver, our next stop on the ultimate Oregon road trip is the High Desert Country. Here, you’ll discover the stunning landscapes of the Painted Hills and the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument.,

High Desert Country

After soaking up the lush green scenery of Bend and Sunriver, it’s time to head east to explore Oregon’s rugged High Desert Country. This vast and sparsely populated region is a stark contrast to the verdant forests of the Cascade Mountains. But what it lacks in trees, it makes up for in dramatic landscapes and geological wonders.

Painted Hills, Oregon
Painted Hills, Oregon

One of the must-see attractions in the area is the Painted Hills, a colorful masterpiece of nature’s artistry. The hills get their name from the vibrant hues of red, gold, and green that streak across the landscape, creating a surreal and almost alien-like panorama. The best time to visit is during the late afternoon when the setting sun illuminates the hills, making the colors appear even more intense.

Another highlight of the High Desert Country is the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, a paleontological wonderland that offers a glimpse into the earth’s distant past. Here, you can explore three separate units that showcase different geological eras, including the Painted Hills Unit, the Clarno Unit, and the Sheep Rock Unit. Each unit provides a unique perspective on the area’s rich natural history and features a range of interpretive exhibits and hiking trails.

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Clarno Unit, Oregon
John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Clarno Unit, Oregon

After experiencing the High Desert Country’s unique beauty, it’s time to journey further east into Oregon’s rugged and remote Eastern region. Here, you’ll discover even more outdoor adventures and breathtaking scenery, including the stunning Wallowa Mountains, the wild and scenic Snake River, and the charming pioneer town of Baker City. So buckle up and get ready for the ultimate road trip through Oregon’s diverse and awe-inspiring landscapes.,

Eastern Oregon

After exploring the High Desert Country, it’s time to venture further into Eastern Oregon, where you’ll find captivating landscapes and thrilling outdoor activities. One of the region’s main attractions is the Wallowa Mountains, which offer some of the most picturesque views in Oregon. Here, you can hike through pristine forests, take in the awe-inspiring vistas, and even ride a gondola to the top of Mount Howard for a bird’s eye view of the area.

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Gondola at the top of Mount Howard near Wallowa Lake, Oregon
Gondola at the top of Mount Howard near Wallowa Lake, Oregon

Another must-visit spot in Eastern Oregon is the Snake River, one of the wildest and most scenic rivers in the United States. You can take a guided tour down the river or take in the views from one of the many overlooks along the way. The river is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including river otters, bald eagles, and even black bears.

Baker City, Oregon
Baker City, Oregon

For a taste of Oregon’s rich history, head to Baker City, a charming pioneer town that was once a bustling gold rush hub. Here, you’ll find beautifully preserved buildings and museums that recount the area’s colorful past. Don’t miss the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center, where you can walk in the footsteps of the pioneers who crossed the country in covered wagons.

After all the adventures, be sure to take some time to relax in one of the region’s many hot springs, which offer a soothing respite after a long day of exploring. Whether you’re soaking in a natural pool under the stars or enjoying the amenities at a resort, you’re sure to leave Eastern Oregon feeling rejuvenated and refreshed.

landscape oregon
landscape oregon

In conclusion, Oregon State’s scenic byways offer a truly unforgettable adventure for road trip enthusiasts. From the historic Columbia River Highway to the natural beauty of Crater Lake, and quaint towns along the way, there is something for everyone. Whether you want to explore the wine country or the high desert, this road trip covers it all. So pack your bags, grab a camera, and hit the open road to fully immerse yourself in the beauty and culture of Oregon. Don’t forget to stop at local shops and restaurants to experience the unique flavors and crafts.

So what are you waiting for? Get ready for the adventure of a lifetime and create memories that will last a lifetime. As the famous writer John Steinbeck once said, “People don’t take trips, trips take people.”

More: Visit Oregon | Oregon Travel & Vacation Guide

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Adventures, Destinations, Features, Oregon, Travel, Travel Tips and Advice, USA Travel

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