There’s something about the rainy, rocky Oregon Coast that gets the creative juices flowing. Maybe nowhere is that more clear than in Cannon Beach. Tucked between Ecola State Park and Arcadia Beach State Recreation Site, with some of the most jaw-dropping views of the northern Oregon Coast, Cannon Beach forces calm on a busy mind.
Start by getting your toes dirty with a walk on the beach. While Haystack Rock is beautiful, there are plenty of other nearby spots away from the crowds to reconnect you to nature. Hug Point State Recreation Site is just 5 miles south of Cannon Beach, and there was a time when the only way to travel this area of the coast was by stagecoach—it’s still possible to see the wagon wheel ruts here. Farther south is Oswald West State Park—one of the few places in the country with an old-growth forest trail that leads to a surfing hotspot.
Back in town, stoke your own creativity by visiting one of more than a dozen galleries in town. Looking for inspiration from working artists? Check out Icefire Glassworks, a working blown glass studio that’s been around since 1971. If your goal is to improve your skills or try something new, head over to Tolovana Arts Colony, which offers wellness classes like Pilates and Zumba, but also sharpens minds with drawing courses, ukulele club and belly dancing classes as well.
Cannon Beach celebrates its creative class with festivals throughout the year—a spring “unveiling” arts festival May 5-7, a book festival May 19-21, a sandcastle contest and plein air painting event in June. And just because winter comes doesn’t mean art stops being made: the Stormy Weather Arts Festival takes place November 3-5.
CANNON BEACH, Oregon
Key Creative Resources:
Cannon Beach Arts Association
Tolovana Arts Colony
Stormy Weather Arts Festival
Historical Artists :
Part-time resident Ursula Le Guin, author
An up-close encounter with Haystack Rock
Median Home Price: