The Best Things to See and Do in Depoe Bay

January 20, 2022

Categories: Depoe Bay | Central Oregon Coast

Aerial View of Depoe Bay - Credit SeaQuell condo

Aerial View of Depoe Bay ~ SeaQuell Condo

The best things to see in Depoe Bay, are the beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean and the wildlife. While visiting this area, you should not miss watching a sunset from Cape Foulweather or the Rocky Creek Scenic Viewpoint.

Depoe Bay is a popular destination known as the "whale watching capital" of the Oregon Coast and has the world’s smallest navigational harbor. There are many activities you can do while in Depoe Bay area, and these are some good ones!


The Best Things to Do in Depoe Bay


Whale Watching:

The Oregon State Park Whale Watching Center is a great place to visit if you are interested in whale watching. This center offers information about whales, as well as binoculars and spotting scopes so you can see them up close! If you want to learn more about gray whales, then be sure to stop by. The center is open with reduced hours please check the Whale Watching Center website for updates (the viewing deck is always open!)


Spouting Horns:

Along the seawall, running the length of downtown Depoe Bay, natural rock tubes are flooded by the incoming tide. The waves run beneath lava beds, build pressure, and spout geyser-like sprays as high as 60 feet into the air! During turbulent seas and stormy weather these streams arch over Highway 101, dousing vehicles and visitors alike!


Boiler Bay State Scenic Viewpoint:

This beautiful scenic viewpoint is named for an old shipwrecked boiler residing in the bay from a 1910 ship explosion. The boiler can be seen if the tide is extremely low. Enjoy amazing panoramic views from this popular spot, great for whale watching and storm watching too!


Cape Foulweather:

Cape Foulweather is an excellent spot to visit if you want to see some fantastic views of the Oregon Coast. There are a few different trails that you can hike, and on a clear day, offers some of the best views along the Oregon coast. It's an excellent spot for whale watching (during certain times of the year) as well as taking pictures.


Devil's Punchbowl:

The Devil's Punchbowl is a great spot to visit if you are looking for something a little bit more adventurous. It is a large cave formed by the ocean waves eroding the rock. Make sure you bring your camera! It is said that the devil himself created this punchbowl, and it is now considered one of the most popular attractions just 5-miles south of Depoe Bay.

Devils Punchbowl State Park walk along the shore

Photo by David Fulmer


Rocky Creek Viewpoint:

The Rocky Creek State Scenic Viewpoint is another excellent stop along Oregon Coast Highway 101. This viewpoint offers fantastic views of the rocky coastline and creek below. There is also a small parking lot and picnic tables, so it's a great place to stop for lunch or take some pictures.


Fogarty Creek State Park:

This is a great place to visit if you are looking for someplace peaceful to relax. Fogarty Creek State Recreation Area is in the forest and offers a variety of trails to hike. It's a great place to go for a walk on the beach and there are also picnic tables under a covered area.


Gleneden Beach:

The Gleneden Beach State Recreation Site is a great place to visit if you want to get away from the crowds. It's a great place to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet of the ocean. If you're looking for a serene, peaceful spot to relax.


Best Things to See and Do in & Around Depoe Bay

Now that you know some of the best things to see in Depoe Bay, here are some of the best activities to do while there!


Deep Sea Fishing & Whale Watching Charter Boats:

Sport and commercial fishermen seek to go fishing here for salmon, halibut, flounder, and many other species of bottom fish. There are also charter boats available to the public for whale watching excursions, fishing, and crabbing.

Depoe Bay Whale Watching charter boat with cute dog

Photo by Nicki Dugan Pogue


Take a Scenic Drive:

One of the best ways to enjoy the Oregon Coast is by taking a scenic drive. There are plenty of spots where you can pull over and take pictures or just admire the view. The road is also full of twists and turns, making it an exciting drive.



There are several great hiking trails located near Depoe Bay. Some offer incredible views, while others take you through forests and meadows. Make sure that you bring your camera, as you will want to take pictures along the way! Popular hikes include Cape Foulweather, Devil's Punchbowl, and Otter Crest Loop.


Visit a Local Winery or Brewery:

If you love to try different hand-crafted beers and wines, you will want to visit one of the local wineries or breweries nearby. They offer tastings and tours, and you can buy some to take home with you! Popular places to check out include Depoe Bay Winery, Pelican Brewery & Pub in Lincoln City, and Rogue Ales Distillery in Newport.

Depoe Bay Winery store front view with sunset


Day Trips to Lincoln City & Newport:

Both trips are just under 20 minutes each way

  • Visit Lincoln City: Lincoln City is just 12.5-miles north of Depoe Bay, and it offers plenty of great activities for visitors. Some popular attractions include the Chinook Winds Casino Resort, Devils Lake State Park, and more!

  • Visit Newport: Just 13 miles south of Depoe Bay is the city of Newport. This coastal town is home to fantastic restaurants, shops, and hotels. Some famous attractions in Newport include the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse, Oregon Coast Aquarium, and more.


Where To Stay? 

Relax in a private vacation rental! At Beachcombers NW, we have a great selection of oceanfront and ocean view Depoe Bay homes and condo rentals for your next getaway.

Depoe Bay Sheltering Pines vacation rental view of the ocean and trees

Ocean view from Sheltering Pines ~


Getting Around:

The drive will take about 2 hours and 15 minutes to drive from Portland to Depoe Bay. If you are coming to Depoe Bay from Seattle, it will take about 5 hours. Depoe Bay is a small town, so you can easily walk around the main areas. You can rent a car or taxi to travel the area if needed as well.


How Long Will it Take to See Everything?

It will take about two days to see all the tourist attractions and things to do in Depoe Bay and the Central Oregon Coast scenic area. If you wish, you could easily spend a week or more here and not run out of things to do!

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