Lace up your running shoes and get ready to tackle this thrilling course! Be sure to hang around for a few days to enjoy the very best of Oregon’s South Coast.
Oregon’s Adventure Coast: Coos Bay, North Bend, Charleston is a runner’s paradise with miles and miles of natural running trails, moderate rolling hills, temperate weather, and coastal beauty that can’t be found anywhere else in the country. Not to mention, Coos Bay is the hometown of one of our country’s greatest running icons, the late, great Steve Prefontaine ! We are looking forward to welcoming hundreds of runners (and their cheering squads) from all over the region the weekend of August 12, 2023, who are competing in the Circle the Bay 30K . There is still time to sign up to run this exhilarating course that spans a distance of 30 kilometers (18.6miles). Starting from Ferry Road Park in North Bend, runners will venture through the picturesque Coos Bay waterfront, Eastside, and ultimately return to Ferry Road Park. Here’s a list of events to choose from:
Whether you’re up for the challenge of running the entire course solo or prefer to team up with two others for a run-cheer-athon, this event promises an unforgettable experience. Once the run is over, stick around and experience more of what Oregon’s Adventure Coast has to offer! Here are some “do’s and don’ts” to help you enjoy the best of Coos Bay, North Bend and Charleston, Oregon - whether it’s your 1st visit to our area or the 100th.
**DO Check Out The Prefontaine Memorbilia at the Coos Art Museum. **Spend some time browsing the museums, galleries, and other cultural gems in our area, like the Coos Art Museum, where runners can see the rare personal items of champion runner Stever Prefontaine!. Click here to see more wonderful additions to our network of museums and galleries.
DON’T Forget to Order a Visitor Guide/Packet. The Oregon’s Adventure Coast visitor center staff are always happy to answer any questions you may have, and will mail a visitor information guide upon request. Once you get here, be sure to visit one of the visitors centers representing Oregon’s Adventure Coast:
Coos Bay Visitor Information Center 50 Central Ave Coos Bay, OR 97420 (541) 269-0215. Find information, maps, and public restrooms. Open Mon – Fri, 9am-5pm, Sat 11am-3pm. Extended summer hours include Sun 10am-2pm (Memorial Day – Mid-October).
Charleston Visitor Information Center 91143 Cape Arago Hwy Charleston, OR 97429 (541) 888-2311
DO Check Out the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. For a truly unique Oregon coast adventure, explore the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area , the largest expanse of coastal sand dunes in North America. Runners will appreciate this local treasure because Steve “Pre” Prefontaine used to run on these very dunes while training. The majestic dunes are one of our favorite attractions on the Southern Oregon Coast, because they give visitors plenty of opportunities to find relaxation and adventure. If you’re looking for a non-motorized experience on the dunes, be sure to visit the John Dellenback Trail .
DON’T Forget to Reserve an ATV or OHV. If you plan to go on a thrilling ride on the Oregon Dunes, you’ll probably want to reserve your All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) or Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) in advance. There are multiple local businesses recommended for ATV/UTV, Sand Board & Sled Rentals, and tours like Sun Buggy and Steve’s ATV Rental, but first-time riders consistently rave about Spinreel Dune Buggy & ATV Rentals in North Bend . Read Wanted: First Time ATV Riders on the Oregon Dunes for more tips and advice.
**DO Explore the Sights on Cape Arago Highway. **While you’re visiting, spend some time exploring the beaches and state parks along the Cape Arago Highway. Take a walk and watch the surfers on Bastendorff Beach, or search for natural treasures in tidepools in the protected beach in Sunset Bay State Park. For Complete Details, download our PDF Guide for the Cape Arago Beach Loop.
DON’T Forget to Pack Binoculars! If you don’t own a pair of binoculars, you can order them here .
**DO Observe Marine Life in a Natural Setting. **Diverse marine habitats and ecosystems are practically everywhere on Oregon’s Adventure Coast: Coos Bay, North Bend, Charleston, and can frequently be observed in one-of-a-kind tidepools as you stroll along our undeveloped beaches and estuaries. We recommend grabbing your binoculars and taking some time to explore the Simpson Reef and nearby Shell Island to view and listen to the seals and sea lions. Be sure to look for sea lions, harbor seals, and occasional elephant seals in the viewing area overlooking Shell Island.
DON’T Touch or Disturb Marine Life in its Natural Habitat. Please do not touch the wildlife under any circumstances, and remember to treat the area with care. These are living plants and animals in their natural environment. Please do not bother the seal pups you may find on the beach. They are not lost, only waiting for mom to return. Also, the bleeding, hurt looking elephant seals are not dying. This is only a molting process they go through while resting before continuing their journey.
**DO Fuel Up On Local Food & Drink. **There are many local restaurants dishing out the freshest seafood and chowder you could possibly hope for! If seafood isn’t your thing, don’t worry! There is a restaurant for every taste and dietary preference - whether you’re craving a juicy burger, a delicious salad packed with nutrients, steak, Thai, Mexican, German, Japanese - we have it all! At the end of the day, grab a craft beverage at one of our local pubs, like 7 Devils Brewing Co in Coos Bay. Download our Local Restaurant & Dining Guide and/or Coffee Shops, Bakeries & More Guide to carry with you, or visit oregonsadventurecoast.com/dining to see all of our local restaurants.
**DON’T Forget to Call the Restaurant Ahead of Time. **Due to the popularity of some restaurants and/or staffing issues, we recommend contacting the restaurant of your choice before visiting the establishment for reservations or seating information.
DO Get Out On The Water. With so many lakes, rivers, bays, estuaries and more, Oregon’s Adventure Coast is the gateway to some of the best outdoor fun on the Oregon Coast. Choose from kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, surfing, and skiing! For the ultimate South Coast Adventure, it doesn’t get much better than fishing, wildlife viewing, and exploring the peaceful waterways on a guided kayak tour along Oregon’s South Coast. Need equipment? No problem! You can rent everything from fishing gear, boats, kayaks, stand-up paddle boards and more. Click here to see a list of where to rent equipment on Oregon’s Adventure Coast.
**DON’T Underestimate the Power of the Ocean. **This is a big one! Our quiet, peaceful, undeveloped beaches are great for training runs, long walks, hiking, photography, picnicking, and tide-pooling. If you ignore some simple safety guidelines (like NEVER turn your back to the ocean), what should be a beautiful day by the Pacific Ocean could suddenly become unsafe without warning. Read Take Care Out There, Be Wave Safe and Enjoy Your Time on Oregon’s Adventure Coast to learn more about sneaker waves and other potential hazards.
DO Try Your Luck in One of Our Casinos. Did you know that our little corner of the Pacific Northwest is home to two of the area’s best casinos? Whether it’s slots, cards, or games, you’ll find round-the-clock adventure, fun, and (fingers crossed) big jackpots right here. Our two casinos are located within a ten-minute drive of each other, so play your cards right and visit both. You won’t regret it. Learn more .
DON’T Forget to Learn About our Native American History & Culture. Oregon’s Adventure Coast is rich with American history and Native American culture. Our region is the homeland of many Native American Tribes, including the Coquille Indian Tribe , Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians, and the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians . Travel Oregon recently published a Guide to Tribal Nations (copies are available at the Coos Bay Visitor Center or click here to download the guide) . The guide highlights each of the nine federally recognized tribes of Oregon, including those on Oregon’s Adventure Coast: Coos Bay, North Bend, Charleston.
DO Visit the South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (South Slough NERR). We can’t get enough of beautiful outdoor destinations, like the South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (South Slough NERR) , a 5,000-acre natural area located in the Coos estuary near Charleston. Not only are there miles of hiking trails and waterways to explore, but visitors can also enjoy an abundance of wildlife viewing. Take a self-guided tour through this protected area of land and estuary, and you’ll likely spot various birds and wildlife like Bald Eagles, Osprey, Great Blue Herons, Egrets and Belted Kingfishers.
DON’T Forget to Pack Layers. Layered clothing allows you to adjust for changes in temperature accordingly. While our area is temperate year-round, there are daily fluctuations. Be sure to check the local, extended forecast before you go. We encourage you to bring hiking boots if you plan to explore. A light, waterproof jacket and sweaters help with the evening breezes, and depending on the season, a combination of shorts and long pants will give you some options for daytime adventures.
DO Go on a Scenic Drive. We highly recommend taking a scenic drive along the Cape Arago Highway Beach Loop while you’re here and exploring our glorious trifecta of state parks (Sunset Bay State Park, Shore Acres State Park and Cape Arago State Park), or try Lighthouse Hunting, Charleston to Bandon Tour Route. Download our Charleston Bandon Tour Route Map (PDF) - This chunk of Pacific Coast Scenic Byway showcases a glorious stretch of coastline. Included in this drive are six state parks, two National Wildlife Refuges, and America’s first National Estuarine Research Reserve.
Looking for more ideas? Visit our featured adventures page and our trip ideas page to find more travel ideas and inspiration, and/or contact the Coos Bay – North Bend Visitor & Convention Bureau. You can also follow Oregon’s Adventure Coast Facebook, @travelcoosbay on Instagram, and TikTok to find inspiration on the best spots to visit, eat, stay and explore any time of the year.