As a follow up to Going to be Oregon Gone Gone, here’s what I did on my latest Oregon road trip.

I’ll be marking off the highlights as quick as I can with photos. Down the road I might write posts in a little more depth of some of these activities.

Or maybe not.

Newsflash: I’m now retired and making final preparations to be a nomad!

Crossing the US border

Sometimes the longest part of a trip to the United States is waiting in line at the border crossing!

I cross at the Lynden/Aldergrove border which is open between 8am and midnight. I headed down on Monday morning, May 22, around 9am and there was less than a 5 minute wait. Whew!

Long Beach, Washington

On past road trips to Oregon, my first night is at Astoria or Seaside where I stay at the Motel 6 due to its pet policy – free! I just hate the cash grab of charging for pets.

I went to (affiliate link) to search for hotels and decided on the Boardwalk Cottages in Long Beach, Washington, about 20 miles north of the Oregon border. It cost me around $185 CAD so it was a bit of a splurge.

Cute place. And as has happened with me before, upgraded me from a studio to a studio with kitchenette. Really all I needed was a fridge, not cooking facilities!

After I unpacked, I took advantage of the free bike rental and rode a paved path along the beach and around town. Cheap bike. It’s the first time in decades I’ve ridden a bike without handbrakes and it was a little weird.

It was a comfortable cottage and I would definitely stay here again due to it’s proximity to walk to the beach and around the village. The only thing I found odd was that the gas fireplace would randomly fire up in the middle of the night when it got cold. I think I lowered the setting to 63F. It’s the beach. It’s the Pacific Northwest. There was a cold wind blowing. It was just a little weird to wake up due to the light from the fireplace flame.

Amazing morning!

In the morning, just before 9am, a basket of big old fashioned donuts was dropped off on the porch. I ate one donut before taking a photo of the remaining two. I snacked on those while driving south later in the day.

But before I hit the road – I went horseback riding on the beach! A two hour ride. Luckily the check out time at the Boardwalk Cottages is noon.

The two hour ride is only at 9am and cost me $120 US dollars. That’s the same price as a one hour horseback ride on the beach at a stable near Lincoln City. This was a better deal!

I rode Amigo.

The Long Beach Horse Rides is the stable I rode with and there is another horse riding stable across the street.

Cannon Beach

Before I knew it, I was driving south down Highway 101 enjoying the Oregon coast line.

I made a last minute decision to stop in Cannon Beach to take pictures of the Haystack Rock and visit Bruce’s Candy Kitchen.

My candy haul displayed on an ocean themed bench.

This English toffee caramel apple is about the best candy apple I’ve ever eaten! Thank you Bruce!

Tillamook Creamery

The Tillamook Creamery is pretty hard to miss while driving on Highway 101 in Oregon. An enormous parking lot with enormous buildings.

On the upper floor is a self-guided tour. There are glass windows into the production area and signs about the cheese making process. There is also a station to get free cheese samples. They’re in small vacuum sealed packages.

You can time yourself to see how long it takes to fit a milking device on a cow’s teats.

From up here I can see the huge line for ice cream.

And yeah, I was dumb enough to join it. I must have finished off the donuts by this time!

I chose a double scoop: peaches and cream and white chocolate raspberry. It cost about $7. In Canadian dollars, $9.73 went through my credit card.

Lincoln City, Oregon

Once again I stayed at the Ester Lee Motel in Lincoln City. My place to be! This time I stayed in a motel room instead of a cottage and it was OK, but next time I’ll go back to a cottage.

The toll free number for the Ester Lee is missing from their web page: 1-888-996-3606.

I did my usual things: shop the outlet center, walk on the beach, and eat seafood.

I even saw a very unhappy cat being walked on the beach at Lincoln City, trying desperately to escape.

The first night I went to Mo’s Lincoln City for dinner.

I had the shrimp sandwich for dinner with shrimp coleslaw.

Depoe Bay, Oregon

Depoe Bay is about 10 miles south of Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast. I booked a whale watching tour with Dockside Charters for $30. A bargain when you consider the price of whale watching tours from Seattle, Vancouver, and Victoria are upwards of $100.

My first stop would be grabbing a snack at my favorite bakery – Depoe Baykery. Get the play on words?

But what’s this? The little cottage bakery is deserted. The sign is gone. It’s closed! WTF? I’d looked at their web page recently. Talk about disappointing.

On to my 11am whale watching tour. Even if I didn’t see any whales, I’d still get an hour out on the ocean. Mermaid alert. I love the water. Most of my whale sightings are seeing the splash as the whale goes underwater. Though I have seen whales at Cape Foulweather, further south between Depoe Bay and Newport.

I posted a video on YouTube of my whale watching adventure.

A little tip if you’re planning to take photos of the splash as the whale goes under, don’t use your cell phone. It would be too easy to lose your grip and watch the Pacific Ocean claim it. The waves are rough and you get bounced around on the boat. I saw a foolish lady with an iPad of all things.

I enjoyed being out on the water, even though it was windy with high waves. Loved it! By the end of the day my back was feeling it. I was on the port side of the boat, about halfway between the bow and stern. The people at the front (bow) would have taken the brunt of the pounding waves and probably had sore backs for days.

Wildflower Grill

After the whale watching boat ride, I had lunch at the Wildflower Grill. I believe it’s changed ownership. The food and service is still wonderful, but the hours have changed. It’s no longer open for dinner, closing at 3pm. So just breakfast and lunch are served. I arrived around 2:15pm, and a few other people came in after me.

I ordered the shrimp po’boy again. Good, but different. They still say on the menu that breads are baked daily, but I’m positive I had a store bought sub bun. The fries looked different, not bad, just different. The photo on the left from 2019 was definitely a home baked bun, lots of filling, lots of fries. The photo on the right is how the current shrimp po’boy looks.

Things to do in Lincoln City, Oregon

After lunch, how could I not resist stopping at a candy shop named The Chocolate Frog, located just before the Ester Lee on Highway 101?

Depoe Baykery

Let’s revisit the Depoe Baykery. That night I checked the website and found they’re relocated to the shops at the Salishan Resort, about halfway between the Ester Lee and Depoe Bay.

So I unknowingly drove right by it! Sucks to be me!

I was determined to try a Depoe Dong, because I was a big fan of Ding Dongs when I was a kid. They haven’t been sold in British Columbia in decades since the Terry Lynn Bakeries closed down. I don’t know if they’re sold anywhere else in Canada. Luckily I can buy them at the Walmart in Bellingham, just across the border if I’m craving them.

Back to the Depoe Baykery’s version of the Ding Dong. I arrived at the bakery just after 8am.

Only to discover the Depoe Dongs weren’t ready for sale yet, still setting.


I was getting ready to drive to Bend, Oregon, but decided to hold off my departure so I could wait an hour for a Depoe Dong to eat on the road.

Verdict? Definitely not worth waiting for. Stick with the other amazing goodies Depoe Baykery sells.

Bend, Oregon

Onward to Bend, Oregon where I’d booked a night a night at the Red lion Inn & Suites with (Affiliate link.)

Nice room with a huge comfortable bed and full bathroom.

The Red Lion Inn & Suites offers breakfast in the morning, so one less expense.

I headed over to the Boot Barn and Absolute Horse, fortunately next door to each other. Unfortunately, I didn’t buy anything. I wanted to replace a T-shirt I bought at Absolute Horse. It was really cute purple and pink Tee, had their logo on it, and said Bend, Oregon. They were out of stock in all colors. The sales lady tried to sell me on a cup, a baseball hat, and something else.

Weird sales tactic for someone looking to buy a T-shirt!

Painted Hills

After breakfast, I drove to the Painted Hills in the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument.

Aren’t these colors amazing? Nature’s palette!

I’ve uploaded a video on YouTube of my Painted Hills walking tour.

Now where?

My tentative plans were to head northeast and spend the night in Pullman, Washington.

It was Thursday and traffic was already getting busy for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend happening on Monday. Hotels were going up in price.

I was kind of annoyed I wasted time going to Bend when I could have spent a couple more days on the coast. But I did want to see the Painted Hills, so mission accomplished.

I turned my car north and headed home, crossing the border around 10:30 that night.

Goodbye sweet Oregon. Another fun road trip!

Posted by Cheryl @ The Lifestyle Digs on June 12, 2023.

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