May 4, 2018

Location summary:
Astoria, OR–> Newport, OR
Pier 39 (Astoria, OR)
Astoria Column (Astoria, OR)
Hug Point (Clatsop County, OR)

Tillamook Cheese Factory Visitors Center (Tillamook, OR))
Local Oceans Seafood (Newport, OR)

Pier 39

We had a pretty early wake up time of 7:00am today due to the amount of driving needed to get us to Newport! We had breakfast in the hotel before heading to quickly explore the surrounding area, which boasted peaceful views in the early morning.

Our exploration also included venturing over a wooden bridge to get to Pier 39, which houses the Bumble Bee Cannery museum and a few businesses.

Astoria Column

After the pier, we made a quick stop back at the Astoria Column to purchase some last-minute souvenirs for a friend (they sold small wooden gliders stamped with “Astoria Column” and we thought it was the perfect gift for our aerospace engineer buddy). It was a good thing that we went, too—we were there at the same time as a group of school children who all purchased gliders to throw off of the top of the column. It was quite a sight to see perhaps 10-15 gliders flying and twirling every which way with a horde of giggling children excitedly watching their respective planes’ descent.

We also finished writing our postcards up at the column:

Hug Point (+ drive from Astoria, OR-> Tillamook, OR)

We then spent a good chunk of the day driving on the coast of Oregon to get to Tillamook, OR. Needless to say, we had to make some bathroom breaks that sometimes may or may not have been timed with scenic recreation points such as Hug Point! (Funnily enough, we actually drove by Haystack Rock without realizing that it was an icon of the Oregon Coast… *sad face*.)

While walking around the beach, we noticed this beautiful arch that had been erected–possibly for a recent wedding ceremony??? The flowers at the top were still perfectly healthy!

Annnnnnnd onward to more photos from random stops on the coast other than Hug Point:

Tillamook Cheese Factory Visitors Center

Even though Tillamook was a bit out of the way of our final destination of Newport, we thought that it would be fun to stop at the highly-recommended cheese factory that produces our favorite cheeses! (Hehe I would like to point out that Darren drove most of the way… I was dead asleep in the passenger seat most of the time.)

It was definitely worth the drive even though we were only able to visit their temporary visitors center (they were currently in the process of opening up their new center). There, we had a lunch of tomato soup+cheese curds and a grilled cheese sandwich before moving on to the obvious highlight of this place: ICE CREAM!!!! There were so many flavors from which to choose, but after some deliberation, we decided on a scoop of huckleberry ice cream and a scoop of maple whiskey (totally worth the extra $1 per scoop) on a waffle cone.

Lastly, we walked around their shopping area that carried everything from t-shirts and bottle openers to wildflower honey and cheese curds (defined as “The fresh curds of cheese that squeak against the teeth when bitten into, which some would say is their defining characteristic.”)! I was sad that the squeaky cheese curd samples were no longer squeaky when we tried them, hahaha.

We ended up buying an ornament (I don’t think I’ve mentioned this yet, but Darren and I want to buy an ornament for each major city that we visit on our trips), some meat sticks, and honey. We also took home a couple penny presses (I also haven’t yet mentioned this, but as a child I collected penny presses and I am now making it one of my souvenir priorities).

*Fun story about this bus: we had been waiting for it to empty of children and RIGHT when it finally did, Darren had to go to the bathroom… hence no photo of us inside of it :(.

Newport, Oregon

Following Tillamook was more driving (or sleeping if we’re talking about me hehe) until we reached our beautiful destination of Newport, Oregon! It was pretty late by the time we arrived, so the majority of our evening was spent checking into the hotel, having dinner at Local Ocean Seafood (unfortunately, no photos of our delicious seafood consisting of local raw oysters and fried razor clams), and walking around the pier and boardwalk.