Looking for free things to do in Clatsop County, Oregon? If you’re bored with this area’s beautiful beaches, you might find some of these adventures appealing. We’ve looked for free and cheap fun in Clatsop County’s major cities of Astoria, Cannon Beach, Gearhart, Seaside and Warrenton. Our list is below. If you know of anything we’ve missed, please leave us a note in the comments!
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Astoria & Warrenton
Discover hidden gems in the city with downloadable audio tour tracks! Learn more about historical attractions like the Pier 39 Cannery and the fire that destroyed downtown Astoria… and then learn about Astoria’s role in popular movies like The Goonies, Short Circuit, Kindergarten Cop, The Ring II and TMNT 3. You can find all 35 audio tours on the Travel Astoria page.
Stop by Pier 39 to explore the free Hanthorn Canning Museum. You’ll see historic canning equipment, explore an industrial freezer and learn about 130 years of community and cannery history.
While you’re in town, hop aboard The Astoria Trolley for just $1! The Trolley was built in 1913 and can carry 40 passengers at a time. The Trolley only operates during the summer months.
For a $5 day use parking fee, you can explore the 4,300 acre Fort Stevens State Park. The park features trails, swimming areas, fishing areas, canoeing areas and more. You can explore the cavernous cement gun batteries. In the summer, you may even find historical reenactments on site! If you stop by, make sure to see the shipwreck of the Peter Iredale on the Clatsop Spit!
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Another $5 per adult (children 15 and under are free) can get you into the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park. The visitors center features a replica of Fort Clatsop, where Lewis and Clark stayed during the winter of 1805-1806. Ranger-led programs, trails and two films are available.
Dubbed one of the eight most adorable beach towns in the US by ABC News, Cannon Beach is a charming seaside village. When you’re tired of admiring the ocean view, though, there’s more to explore!
Browse the Cannon Beach History Center and Museum’s exhibits. There is no admission charge but donations are always appreciated. Low-cost concerts occur periodically.
Stop by Icefire Glassworks to watch the artisans at work as they create stunning pieces before your eyes! The gallery and hot shop operate between 10am and 5pm, Thursday through Monday.
Be sure to spot Tillamook Rock Lighthouse while you’re there! Although it’s not open to the public, this decommissioned lighthouse is located 1.2 miles offshore and offers a great photo op!
Gearhart is a quiet town located three miles north of Seaside. There is a gorgeous beach, public tennis courts and lovely little shops.
It’s a small town without much going on… but you can check here for local events!
Seaside is one of the most popular cities on the Oregon Coast. Walk the 1.5 mile oceanfront Promenade, explore museums or kick it at the skateboard park!
The Seaside Historical Society Museum and Butterfield Cottage showcases over 2,000 years of Seaside history with artifacts dating back to 700 BC. Admission is just $3 per adult and $1 per student. Children under age 6 are free. On Open House days, admission is free and refreshments are provided.
For $5 per adult (children 15 and younger are free), you can visit the Salt Works. This is where the Lewis and Clark expedition had to obtain salt in order to preserve meat for their trek home. They built a furnace, acquired wood to burn and boiled ocean water to obtain the salt. They boiled water 24 hours per day to produce enough salt. Learn more about this history and the salt-making process at the Salt Works!
Children love taking a ride on Seaside’s historic carousel! Go for a spin on your favorite animal for just $2 per person.
Skateboarders, skaters, BMX riders and more will enjoy the Seaside Skate and Ride park. Helmets are required but there is no fee or age limit for the park.
If you enjoy hiking, be sure to check out this extensive list of local Seaside trails! You can also find a list of Seaside City Parks at this link.
There’s always something going on at Seaside! Check here for the local events calendar.