I’m a big fan of girlfriend getaways. Since I have little kids, I don’t get to do them very often. But, I think it’s so important to get away from my #momlife every once in awhile and recharge. When I was invited on an Astoria, Oregon girls getaway, I didn’t think twice.
Astoria is located about 3.5 hours South of Seattle and about 2 hours West of Portland. If you are driving up the coast, Astoria makes a great Oregon road trip stop. The Astoria, Oregon history is very PNW. It started out as a salmon cannery town and still has much of that charm. You’ll find a lot of historic homes, small businesses, and an unbeatable view of the Columbia River.
The Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa
We were lucky enough to stay at the upscale Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa. This is one of the premier Astoria, Oregon hotels and has an impressive view of the Astoria-Megler bridge. They also offer pet friendly rooms complete with dog beds, treats and a toy. My friend brought her dog, Lili, who was quite a happy camper!
What makes the Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa extra cool is that they have an on-site spa, that is fabulous! They also offer complimentary bicycles and chauffeur service. It’s truly a top notch Astoria, Oregon accommodation.
If you’d like to know more about the Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa, read my full review.
Astoria, Oregon Things To Do
If you’re wondering about Astoria, Oregon attractions, I’ll tell you what we did in our weekend getaway. We walked around downtown Astoria, Oregon a few times. It’s quite a small area, but it’s filled with quirky shops and little restaurants. It’s awesome that our hotel had bikes, because it’s a very bike-friendly area. We could walk everywhere we wanted to see from our hotel.
OREGON FILM MUSEUM
Have you seen The Goonies? This is a must-stop on any Astoria, Oregon Goonies tour. The opening scenes of that movie are filmed right there at the Oregon Film Museum. When we walked around town on our first day, I hadn’t seen the movie yet. My friend was absolutely giddy about seeing the jailhouse! So, that night we rented The Goonies and I’m so glad we did! It made exploring the Oregon Film Museum that much more fascinating!
For fans of The Goonies, this is a must-visit attraction. Located in the actual jail cells of the old Clatsop County Jail, the Goonie Gallery contains all the Goonies information you’ll ever want, including the Corey Connection, Goonies Memorabilia, the Goonies Jailcam, and even Data’s Jacket. Guests are encouraged to leave a message for the Goonies and vote for their favorite Goonies character. There are also fun cutouts of the characters.
The Oregon Film Museum invites visitors to explore the films and production behind making movies in Oregon. Besides The Goonies, it features memorabilia from Kindergarten Cop, among other movies filmed in Astoria, Oregon. Fun fact: the elementary school from Kindergarten Cop is also easy to see in Astoria.
The Astoria-Megler Bridge towers over the western end of Astoria, Oregon. It was right outside our window at the Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa. You really can’t miss it. This Astoria, Oregon bridge is an attraction of its own and you can see it from some of the top spots around town. I love bridges, so this was one of my favorite attractions in Astoria.
The sturdy bridge is designed to withstand some of the toughest fores of nature, including wind gusts of 150 miles per hour. Another cool thing about this bridge is that it’s the final link in the Mexico-to-Canada highway system.
Astoria Riverfront Trolley
If you walk along the riverfront, you can’t miss the Astoria Riverfront Trolley. This Astoria, Oregon trolley runs Memorial Day to Labor Day Noon-6 p.m. daily. It takes about an hour to ride round-trip. You can ride all day long for just $2. The trolley runs from the Astoria Red Lion Inn to the foot of 39th Street.
If I come back with my kids, I know we’ll be riding this trolley up and down all afternoon! There’s also the Uppertown Firefighter’s Museum and Astoria Children’s Museum, that would be perfect for Astoria, Oregon with kids. And playing at the beach, of course!
Flavel House Museum
Another Astoria, Oregon museum is the Flavel House Museum. Built in 1884, the Flavel House was the home of Captain George Flavel and his family. He was Astoria’s first millionaire and employed many of its residents. His home is one of the best preserved examples of Queen Anne architecture in the Northwest. The house is massive. It’s more than 11,000 square feet and features 5 bedchambers, 12-foot ceilings, a flushing toilet and an enclosed tin-plated copper bathtub.
We thought we could just enter the house since we had bought tickets at the Oregon Film Museum. However, we were instructed to head to the Carriage House to pick up a Victorian-style calling card and watch a 13 minute film about the house and the Flavel family. We were running short on time, so we saw about 5 minutes of the film (which was quite interesting) and then headed back to the house.
While walking through the house, it reminded me a lot of Craigdarroch Castle in Victoria, B.C. Both homes are set up in a way that really allows guests to feel like they have stepped back in time. I was most surprised to find an old high chair in the kitchen.
A really cool feature of the Flavel House Museum is that they have a room for children. They offer an assortment of Victorian-style dress-up clothes for kids, books and toys. They actually encourage kids to play and explore. In a museum like this (that has roped off areas) it’s really refreshing to cater to small children. I know my kids would hang out and play a bit here.
Another feature of the Flavel House Museum is the garden. Head to the back of the house for really beautiful stops to take photos. Or just sit on a bench and soak up the scenery. We were there in the Spring and it was really pretty!
When I told some friends that I was visiting Astoria, they highly recommended Bridgewater Bistro. Lucky for me, it was mere feet away from the Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa! As I said before, we didn’t drive anywhere during our girlfriend getaway in Astoria, Oregon. Having restaurants like this one so nearby was really helpful!
Since my friend had her dog with her, we requested outdoor seating. We really lucked out with the weather because it was sunny and we had an undisturbed view of the bridge. Between the sun, the view, and the food, it was an awesome lunch! It was quite windy, though.
As soon as I opened the menu, my eyes zeroed in on my three favorite words: Cougar Gold Cheese. For those who don’t know, I’m a proud Washington State University graduate. Our mascot is the cougar. WSU Creamery makes Cougar Gold Cheese that is tangy and absolutely incredible. But, it’s hard to find! So, I knew I needed to try their cheeseburger! It was one of the best burgers I’ve experienced!
The Astoria Column is a definite must-do attraction in Astoria, Oregon! There are tons of signs to direct cars up to the parking lot at the top of a hill. It is $5 for an annual parking pass. The lady who sold me my parking pass also recommended I purchase a glider for $1. She said that people throw them from the observation deck. I thought that sounded like such a fun idea so I bought one!
The park itself is gorgeous. There are stunning views of the water and lush greenery. It features an unrivaled view of Young’s Bay, the Coast Range, the mighty Columbia River, and the Pacific Ocean.
Going up in the column was surprisingly exhausting. There are 164 steps in the spiral staircase to climb to the top. Thankfully, there are several areas to rest on the way up.
When I got to the observation deck, I couldn’t believe how gusty the wind was. It was perfect for flying my glider! It was absolutely exhilarating to see my glider take off and soar beyond the trees! There were a few other people up there and we cheered each other on. This was the best way to end my Astoria, Oregon weekend getaway!
Other Astoria, OR Things To Do
If you have more time, check out some of these other Astoria attractions and activities:
MUSEUM OF WHIMSY
The Museum of Whimsy in downtown Astoria is a museum like no other. It’s located in a neo-classical bank building from 1934 that has been refurbished. It’s two floors filled with a collection of oddities and quirky objects you’ve never seen before. Some of the exhibits include Iroquois beadwork, masks from around the world, a canal narrow-boat cabin replica and even a tiny taxidermy horse. I bet it would be fun to go wine tasting and then come here!
LEWIS & CLARK NATIONAL HISTORIC PARK
This is the number one thing I wished we had time to do. If you’ve ever played the epic game Oregon Trail, you’ll want to come here. This is where the Lewis and Clark Expedition team spent the winter. This park has a replica of the 50 foot square fort, a visitor center, hiking trails, kayaking and more. Come in the summer to experience living history programs, ranger-led hikes, and a canoeing program. Doesn’t that sound cool?
COLUMBIA RIVER MARITIME MUSEUM
Take a turn steering a tugboat in one of their four interactive and hands-on exhibits. Plus, you can watch a film about Bar and River Pilots as they worked on the Columbia River. It covers the gamut of boats, from early canoes to sailing vessels to modern boats. Oh, and they have a new 3D theater!
PACIFIC COAST CRANBERRY RESEARCH FOUNDATION
Ok, I love quirky tourist attractions and this is something I really want to do. Here, you’ll find a demonstration cranberry farm. They have a self-guided walking tour of the cranberry bogs, a gift shop filled with cranberry products (including cranberry ice cream!) and a museum about everything cranberry. And if you come the second weekend of October, you can see the cranberry harvest.
Back in 2010, June 7th was declared “Goonies Day” in Astoria, Oregon. It usually takes place on the weekend closest to June 7th and features trivia events and Truffle Shuffle opportunities. Plus, there’s a screening of The Goonies film.
Thank you to The Astoria and Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce and The Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa for hosting our 2-night stay and spa treatments. All opinions are my own.
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