The road between Cape Meares and Netarts heads into the beach-house community of Oceanside (pop. about 340). Many of the homes are built into the cliff overlooking the ocean, Sausalito style. This motif reaches its apex atop Maxwell Point.
You can peer several hundred feet down at Three Arch Rocks Wildlife Refuge, part-time home to one of the continent’s largest and most varied collections of shorebirds. A herd of sea lions also populates this trio of sea stacks from time to time.
While low prices and a window on the water can be found at Ocean Front Cabins (1610 Pacific Ave., 503/842-6081 or 888/845-8470, www.oceanfrontcabins.com, $65 and up), the older, smallish guest rooms here might give some travelers pause. Nonetheless, for as little as $65 (a sleeping unit without a kitchenette)—or two-bed rooms with full kitchens for $110—you’ll find yourself literally a stone’s throw from Oceanside’s beachcombing and dining highlights. Pets are accepted in some cabins.
The aptly named Clifftop (1816 Maxwell Mountain Rd., 503/842-6030, www.theclifftop.com, $129 and up, hostel space for $45 per person or $175 for a group of five) is perched on a bluff at Maxwell Point, with both seclusion and cliff-side ocean grandeur. Although this property has been around for a while, it has undergone a bit of a renaissance, with the focus now on sustainability and wellness.
Several rooms are television-free, some can accommodate pets, and all are individually decorated using work by local artists and artisans. A five-bed bunkroom (with two bathrooms and a kitchenette) is good for solo travelers who don’t mind a bit of mingling; it can also be rented by a group. An infrared sauna (extra fee) and massages are available, and the proprietors encourage groups to come for wellness retreats.
Another good lodging option is Bender Vacation Rental Properties (503/233-4363), boasting six units with cliff-side ocean views, large private decks, and full kitchens (except for one unit). Other amenities include fireplaces, TVs, VCRs, and microwaves. Pets are welcome at most locations. For $95–150 per night with a two-night minimum, this is a great deal.
A popular draw for hungry Three Capes travelers,
Roseanna’s Oceanside Cafe (1490 Pacific Ave. N.W., Oceanside, 503/842-7351, 10 a.m.–8 p.m. Sun.–Thurs., 10 a.m.–9 p.m. Fri.–Sat., $11–19) garners high marks from just about everyone. At first, the weather-beaten cedar-shake exterior might lead you to expect an old general store, as indeed it was decades ago.
Once you’re inside, however, the ornate decor leaves little doubt that this place takes its new identity seriously. From an elevated perch above the breakers, you’ll be treated to expertly prepared local oysters, fresh salmon, a bevy of chicken dishes, and interesting pastas, such as gorgonzola and pear with penne noodles. Be sure to save room for blackberry cobbler; order it warm so the Tillamook Vanilla Bean ice cream on top melts down the sides, and watch the waves over a long cup of coffee.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel