My Favorite Beach Town

Having lived in Southern California most of my life, you’d expect my favorite beach town would be something like Laguna, or Newport or maybe even Venice. While they all have their charms, my favorite beach town is actually in Oregon. I love Cannon Beach.

Haystack Rock view from our room at the Tolovana Inn

Places to Stay

While I haven’t stayed in every hotel in Cannon Beach so can’t offer the definitive list, here are a few of the places I’ve stayed that I can recommend.

1. Stephanie Inn. This beautiful property would likely be on most people’s list of top places to stay. It’s a wonderfully appointed luxurious boutique hotel right on the water. If you can’t get in there, try The Ocean Lodge right next door. Both are centrally located with spectacular views of Haystack Rock. These are the kinds of places you want to book for that special anniversary trip.

2. Tolovana Inn. A nicely appointed and more budget friendly option, this resort is on the south side of town bordering Tolovana Beach Park. This is where we’ve stayed the last two times we’ve visited, and we’ve had oceanfront rooms with Haystack Rock views both times. For our most recent trip we booked a two bedroom, and it was very nice having a full kitchen, dining area and living room to relax in.

3. Hallmark Resort. This is where we stayed when we first started going to Cannon Beach years ago. We chose the Hallmark because they’re extremely dog friendly and we were traveling with our miniature schnauzer. It’s also in a great location with oceanfront rooms and Haystack Rock views.

Places to See, Places to Shop.

You can spend hours walking around downtown shopping and eating. Here are a few of my favorite places to visit when I’m in town.

1. Ecola State Park. Just north of town, this beautiful state park has hiking trails, picnic areas and spectacular views. The park has the best views of “Terrible Tilly”, the Tillamook Rock Lighthouse. If you’re interested in learning about the storms, deaths and hauntings that earned Tilly her terrible moniker, read this Clatsop News article.

3. The Butler Did It. A great little antique shop in the center of town. It’s a small shop that’s chock-full of fantastic vintage collectibles.

2. Sesame and Lilies. A higher end design store with furniture, antiques and accessories. We haven’t had a visit yet where my husband Dennis hasn’t found something here that we have to figure out how to get home.

Places to Eat

There are tons of great restaurants in town. We usually opt for the more budget-friendly, casual places. Here are a few of my favorites.

1. Mo’s. Great chowder in a great location. I love casual seafood “shacks” and Mo’s is one of the best. For our most recent trip we got takeout to eat on our balcony (and since our balcony overlooked the restaurant we had the same great views)!

2. The Lazy Susan Cafe. My favorite breakfast place, they have the most wonderful baked goods. The menu varies depending on the season. If you see a waffle with pears and lemon curd offered don’t hesitate – it was amazing!

3. Surfcrest Market and Pizza. Our first night in we just wanted to relax and have pizza delivered. I was impressed with the pizza and the service from this small market close to Tolovana Beach.

Sunset Over Mo’s

With all that’s on offer, my favorite thing to do in Cannon Beach is just walk. I love walking along the beach in the morning and in the evening when the crowds have died down. The view of the sunset on Haystack Rock is a fantastic way to end your day.

If you’ve been to Cannon Beach and have your own favorite place to stay or place to eat, feel free to add those to the comments. Thanks!


  1. Tom Westendorf says:

    Bin to Mo’s several times. First time was with Dennis’s sister Jackie back in 1968.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carol says:

    I live that stretch of Oregon beach. I have only visited once. We stayed in manzanita-nehelen. We went north as far as Acadia and south to cape meres. Visited cannon beach on one day. It was spectacular!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ross says:

      We drove down to Manzanita one day and I really liked it. A little quieter than Cannon Beach and just as beautiful!


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