Newport is the keystone of the Oregon coast. The town occupies a favored site bordered by broad sandy Pacific beaches and a calm harbor sheltered by bluffs near the Yaquina River mouth. Beachfronting state parks and harborside marinas provide ample recreation, while Old Town provides a unique commercial hub. A moderate climate supports maritime industries year-round, and attracts vacationers from spring through fall. Winter storm-watching attracts the hearty.
Seafaring and tourism have always been the mainstays of Newport, named in the 1880s after the Rhode Island resort. Initially it was a rustic coastal getaway for Willamette Valley residents who lived in tents in what is now Nye Beach (still one of the city’s most intriguing districts). Completion of the splendid Yaquina Bay bridge during the Great Depression opened the entire Oregon coast to tourism.
Today, conventional businesses line the blufftop highway through town. Below, in the bayfront shadow of the bridge, Old Town remains the soul of Newport. An exhilarating hodgepodge of fine regional arts and crafts galleries and specialty shops, restaurants (most featuring local seafoods) and bars share refurbished Victorian buildings amidst unpretentious canneries, seafood markets, and other maritime businesses. Visitors can opt to stay at plush bayside or oceanfront lodgings while exploring Old Town, the Oregon Coast Aquarium, Hatfield Marine Science Center, and diverse recreation on the bay, beaches, ocean and Coast Range mountains.
For more information, go to Newport Chamber of Commerce.
Return to links to all Oregon Great Towns