Exploring the Southern Oregon Coast: Your Guide to Popular Public Beach Access Points

June 4, 2024

The Southern Oregon Coast is a treasure trove of natural beauty, boasting rugged cliffs, pristine sandy beaches, and a myriad of wildlife. Whether you're a local or a visitor, discovering the best beach access points can enhance your coastal adventure. Here’s your guide to some of the most accessible and stunning public beaches along the Southern Oregon Coast.

1. Brookings

Brookings, known for its warm climate and picturesque scenery, offers several beach access points:

  • Harris Beach State Park: Located just north of Brookings, this park is famous for its dramatic rock formations and tide pools. The main beach access is well-marked and offers ample parking, restrooms, and picnic areas.
  • Lone Ranch Beach: A short drive north of Brookings, this beach features a large parking area with easy access to the sand. It’s a great spot for tide pooling and exploring marine life.

2. Gold Beach

Gold Beach is a charming coastal town with access to stunning beaches:

  • South Beach: Situated near the south end of Gold Beach, this expansive sandy beach is easily accessible from the parking lot at the end of Wedderburn Loop. It’s perfect for long walks and beachcombing.
  • Otter Point State Recreation Site: Just a few miles north of Gold Beach, this site offers breathtaking views and a rugged coastline. There are several trails leading from the parking area to the beach and bluffs.

3. Port Orford

Port Orford, the oldest town on the Oregon coast, has several scenic beach access points:

  • Battle Rock Park: Located in the heart of Port Orford, this park offers direct access to the beach with historical significance. Parking is available, and the park includes informational signs about the area's history.
  • Humbug Mountain State Park: A few miles south of Port Orford, this park has a beautiful, secluded beach accessible via a short hike from the campground or day-use area.

4. Bandon

Bandon is known for its dramatic coastline and charming Old Town district:

  • Bandon State Natural Area: This area has multiple access points along Beach Loop Drive, each providing stunning views of rock formations and wide sandy beaches. The Face Rock Scenic Viewpoint is particularly popular.
  • Bullards Beach State Park: Located just north of Bandon, this park offers a large beach accessible from the main parking area near the campground. The beach is great for walking, horseback riding, and kite flying.

5. Coos Bay and North Bend

The twin cities of Coos Bay and North Bend provide access to some unique beach experiences:

  • Bastendorff Beach County Park: Located just west of Charleston, this long sandy beach is accessible via a short drive from Coos Bay. The park offers parking, restrooms, and picnic areas.
  • Sunset Bay State Park: This park is part of a trio of connected parks, including Shore Acres and Cape Arago. Sunset Bay offers sheltered beach access with tide pools and calm waters, ideal for families.

6. Florence

Florence marks the northern end of the Southern Oregon Coast and offers beautiful dune-backed beaches:

  • Heceta Beach: Easily accessible from the end of Heceta Beach Road, this beach stretches for miles and is perfect for walking and beachcombing.
  • Jessie M. Honeyman Memorial State Park: South of Florence, this park features extensive dunes and two freshwater lakes. The beach is accessible by hiking over the dunes from the day-use area.

Tips for Visiting

  • Respect Wildlife: The Southern Oregon Coast is home to diverse wildlife. Keep a safe distance from seals, sea lions, and nesting birds.
  • Leave No Trace: Ensure you pack out all trash and belongings to keep the beaches pristine.
  • Check Tides: Be aware of tide schedules, especially when exploring tide pools or walking near cliffs.

The Southern Oregon Coast is a stunning destination with a beach for every type of explorer. From the rocky outcrops of Brookings to the sprawling sands of Florence, each beach access point offers its own unique beauty and charm. So grab your sunscreen, pack a picnic, and set out to explore the natural wonders of this breathtaking coastline.


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