Daytripper — Part One: Manzanita to Bay City
Text & Photos by Elaine Rea
BOOKENDED BY MANZANITA TO THE NORTH AND NESKOWIN TO THE SOUTH, TILLAMOOK COUNTY OFFERS YEAR-ROUND COASTAL FUN, VIEWS, AND EATS. ANCHORED BY THE CITY OF TILLAMOOK, THE COAST IS SPRINKLED WITH TOWNS, STATE PARKS, AND WAYSIDES. The Tillamook Coast website (tillamookcoast.com) gives visitors a one-stop reference with links to seasonal events, hikes, and Travel Oregon’s North Coast Food Trail.
In this issue we cover Manzanita to Bay City.
Be sure to watch for Part Two: Tillamook to Neskowin in the March/April 2023 issue.
Things to See and Do
North Coast Pinball
35995 7th Street, Nehalem
Opened in 2021, this cozy shop houses 20 modern and classic pinball machines. Children of all ages are welcome and the space can be rented for parties and events. High scores earn a photo in their Hall of Fame and tournaments are held monthly. The shop donates the proceeds of un-used game tokens to local schools and community services. They also sell kites!
Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad
306 American Avenue, Garibaldi
Running between Garibaldi and Rockaway Beach, the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad has preserved a fleet of steam engines and vintage railcars where travelers can enjoy extraordinary views and a relaxing atmosphere. Special seasonal excursions are offered such as Spring Break, Fourth of July Fireworks, Fall Splendor, and Candy Cane Express. Advanced bookings are recommended and can be made from the website. A roundtrip ride lasts 90 minutes.
Nehalem Bay State Park
South of Manzanita, just over the dunes from 4 miles of beach, Nehalem Bay State Park is a favorite for four-season day use and overnight camping. Site reservations can be made up to six months in advance via the Oregon State Park’s website and this park boasts 265 campsites with electricity and water, and 18 rentable yurts. It has bike, pedestrian, and horseback riding trails, and a boat launch for fishing in the nearby bay.
278 Marine Drive, Wheeler
The Wheeler Marina is a popular spot for accessing Nehalem Bay. At the marina they rent kayaks, canoes, and stand-up paddle boards. Guidebooks from the Tillamook Estuary Project for the Nehalem Water Trail are available on-line (tbnep.org/water-trails.php) and offer routes and advice to paddlers. Or take advantage of Nehalem Bay’s exceptional crabbing in a rented boat. The marina has the crab rings and bait available, and they will cook your catch at the end of the day.
Manhattan Beach Wayside
Located north of Lake Lytle, Manhattan Beach is a hidden gem. The wayside, often less crowded than nearby Rockaway Beach, offers parking and a picnic area shaded by pines. It is a short walk over a dune to reach a broad, flat swath of sand and endless ocean views. Check the tide tables for the best times to go beachcombing.
Places To Stay
The Inn at Manzanita
67 Laneda Avenue, Manzanita
Just a stone’s throw from the beach, the Inn at Manzanita is where “rustic meets luxurious” and all guest rooms feature a fireplace and jetted tub. The property is surrounded by lush garden landscapes and is conveniently in the delightful, coastal village of Manzanita.
The Hotel Garibaldi
502 Garibaldi Ave, Garibaldi
This family-owned hotel in the center of Garibaldi has a bright, welcoming lobby. Guests enjoy a complimentary hot breakfast buffet and amenities include a fish-cleaning station for the catch of the day. Room options range from standard queen rooms to family suites that comfortably sleep 6. The hotel is within walking distance of the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad depot.
Places to Eat
Wanda’s Café + Bakery
12880 H St, Nehalem
Nehalem is home to Wanda’s, a bustling café and bakery with indoor seating and a sunny patio. They serve breakfast all day and have lunch options as well as a kid’s menu. They serve beer, wine, and “brunch drinks.” Family-owned since 1999, the pastry cases are loaded with freshly-baked muffins, scones, cookies, and bars. Grab a loaf of their artisan bread to take home.
503 Laneda Ave, Manzanita
Yolk is a bright spot in Manzanita serving breakfast and lunch to appreciative foodies. We were served what the friendly staff called “life-changing” French Custard Toast — and it was! Two thumbs up for the Huevos Rancheros too. This place is not to be missed.
The Fish Peddler at Pacific Oyster
5150 Hayes Oyster Dr, Bay City
A full offering of Pacific Seafood’s products: fish, crab, shrimp, oysters, and clams are available from the seafood case. The deli menu includes clam chowder, oysters on the half shell, a crab and shrimp melt, and halibut and chips. The shop carries a line of Fish Peddler sauces and condiments to compliment the fruit de la mer.
Old Oregon Smokehouse
120 S Highway 101, Rockaway Beach
This light, bright restaurant features an 1880’s apothecary cabinet behind the bar and outdoor dining on Silver Creek. They do weekly “whiskey flights” and offer happy hour specials like Wagyu Beef Sliders.
Places to Shop
194 Laneda Ave, Manzanita
A well-curated gift shop, finnesterre is housed in two, shake-sided cottages in charming Manzanita. They have unique jewelry, apparel, home décor, and kitchen accessories, all in their signature style of “casual elegance.” A selection of goods are available at their online shop. They also ship!
Pelican & Piper Creative Prospectors
351-B Nehalem Boulevard, Wheeler
Pelican & Piper in Wheeler is a shop with a sense of humor…witty buttons, magnets, and socks are among their offerings. In the back is a studio where the owners create eco-friendly, screen-printed and embroidered designs on sweatshirts, T’s, hats, and totes. They operate an on-line store too.
North Coast Mudworks
35995 7th Street, Nehalem
Open for two years, North Coast Mudworks is a co-op pottery studio with seven members who sell their work in the store. The owner makes succulent gardens in her pots and she teaches pottery classes and sells clay and tools on site.
Warehouse 10 Market in Twin Rocks
19485 S Highway 101, Rockaway Beach
Warehouse 10 Market is 6,000 square feet of coastal and farmhouse items. The seasonal displays are magical in this light, bright building. Their selection of home décor… wall signs, throw pillows, trays, lamps, etc. is extensive and on-trend. The shop is open from Spring Break to Thanksgiving and hosts occasional pop-ups in the winter.
602 S Highway 101, Rockaway Beach
Naturally Pronto Pup has corndogs on the menu but this old-school, fast-food joint also sells deep-fried zucchini, cheese, and pickles. Children and adults alike love to saddle up on the coin-op corndog ride! You can’t miss this spot in Rockaway Beach… the roof houses the world’s largest corndog.
234 S Highway 101, Rockaway Beach
Since 1976, Flamingo Jim’s has been selling everything you don’t need, but love to buy anyway…magnets, coffee mugs, keychains, and tchotchkes… all with a Rockaway Beach logo! Beware the Zoltar machine (think “Big”).
Myrtlewood Factory Outlet
903 N Highway 101, Garibaldi
This shop carries work by local woodcrafters and artisans: turned bowls, cribbage boards, toys, and other gift items. It is woman-owned and features a Wood Room with blocks and slabs of redwood, cedar, juniper, walnut and of course, myrtlewood.
The Tillamook Coast is a vast area with so much to see and do, Elaine had to split it into two parts! Watch for Part two in our March/April issue!