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Visit Ecola State Park - Oregon's Best State Park

Ecola State Park is a nine-mile-long coastal park between Seaside and Cannon Beach along the Oregon Coast. It offers hiking, surfing, tidepooling, and more.

The state park is widely considered to be one of Oregon's best and certainly one of the most scenic along the Oregon coast. Ecola State Park, located at Tillamook Head, is a fantastic place for surfers and hikers or to bring the whole family and enjoy the best that the Pacific Northwest coast has to offer.

It's filled with beauty and history with nearby trails that follow the Clark Expedition, like the Clark National Historic Trail.

You can visit the famous Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, walk the Oregon Coast Trail, and see the vast Sitka spruce forest that borders the coastline.

Nearby, you can also spend time at Oswald West State Park, visit Ecola State Park's famous tide pools, and watch the shoreline for gray whales.

Visitor's Guide to Ecola State Park

If you've never been to Ecola State Park or are going back for a much-anticipated second visit, there are a few things to keep in mind. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about what to expect at Oregon's Ecola State Park:

What to Expect at Ecola State Park in Oregon

Ecola State Park is a beautiful area of Oregon's coast, only a short drive from Portland. It is dotted with cliffside viewpoints, forested Ecola State Park hikes, and lighthouses. It is located on the north end of the well-known Cannon Beach and close to the Indian Beach Parking Area and has something to offer every visitor.

Ecola State Park View
A magnificent view of Ecola State Park

Whether you are looking for great views, wild-feeling hike, a peaceful day of picnicking and wildlife observation, or incredible surfing, you're sure to find something that makes the visit more than worthwhile.

Plus, if you're a movie fan, you can even scout out Goonies filming locations!

Check out our Cannon Beach Visitor's Guide for more information about this area.

Did you Know? Lewis and Clark once serarched Cannon Beach for a beached whale.

Parking Pass for Ecola State Park

Ecola State Park requires an Oregon State Park pass. You can buy $5 single-day passes, one per vehicle, or pay $30 for a year of unlimited visits. Oregon also offers $50 24-month passes. The permit is good for parking lots at any state park in Oregon. You can buy the passes here.

Ecola State Park Rock
One of the seastacks at Ecola State Park

Directions to Ecola State Park

Use the map below to get directions to Ecola State Park:

Accommodations in and near Ecola State Park

Camping on the beach at Ecola State Park is prohibited. But, visitors won't have to drive far out of their way to find camping opportunities. Some options include:

Ecola State Park View
One of the many amazing views at Ecola State Park

Ecola State Park Camping

If you're interested in camping at Ecola State Park, there are a variety of options to consider. Some sites are vetter-suited for RVs, and others are great for tent camping or even horse camping.

Sea Ranch Resort

This popular, upscale camping resort is only one mile from Cannon Beach and offers many well-maintained sites for both RV camping and tent camping. It's very close to Ecola State Park and offers views of Ecola Creek.

  • Close to Cannon Beach

  • Well-maintained sites

  • Close to the beach and shops

Ecola State Park Tides
A view of the ocean shore

Wright's for Camping

Wright's for Camping has been in business since 1959 and is a favorite with families traveling to Ecola State Park for a few days. The campground is best for tent campers and has a few critical amenities for those looking for an easy stay near the coast.

  • 0.5 miles from Cannon Beach

  • 22 campsites in the shade

  • Firewood available for purchase

  • Tent camping only

  • Picnic tables

RV Camping at Ecola State Park

Circle Creek RV Park & Campground

Circle Creek RV Park & Campground is a popular RV camping area near Ecola State Park. It's located on 11.5 acres of property, making it one of the largest sites near the state park. They offer full RV hookups, wifi, laundry, dish TV, paved spaces, and more.

  • 6 miles from Cannon Beach

  • 11.5-acre property

  • 44 campsites

  • Full hookups and wifi

  • Surrounded by Necanicum River

  • Onsite laundry

Eocla State Park Blue Water
The beautiful blue waters of Ecola State Park

Cannon Beach RV Resort

The Cannon Beach RV Resort is a full-serve RV camping area that has everything that you could want during your visit to this beautiful Oregon state park. The grounds are very well-maintained and include a convenience store and game room. There is also a large dining area and meeting room!

  • 0.7 miles from Cannon Beach

  • 99 hookup sites

  • Well-maintained

  • Kid's area

  • Indoor pool

  • Restrooms

What is the best time of year to visit Ecola State Park?

Summer is definitely the best time to visit Ecola State Park, with highs in the mid to upper 60s and lows in the mid-50s. But the weather can also be very nice in the late spring and early fall, periods during which you're likely to see fewer visitors.

Temperates can reach the mid-50s in the winter, but more likely, you'll see temperates in the 40s and a high possibility of rain.

Ecola State Park Forest
Forested path at Ecola State Park

Ecola State Park To Do

There are a wide variety of activities to enjoy at Ecola State Park. It's known for having some of the best surfing in Oregon, as well as incredibly scenic hikes and beaches to explore. Other activities at this Oregon State Park include:

  • Hiking

  • Trail running

  • Tidepooling

  • Sailing

  • Wildlife observation

  • Beach-going

  • Nearby shopping and dining

  • Camping (RV and tent)

  • Swimming

Ecola State Park Tree
Admiring the amazing trails around the park

Ecola State Park Tidepools

Ecola State Park has some of the best tidepooling opportunities on the Oregon coast. There are tidepools at Cannon Beach and at Indian Beach that are great spots for hunting through tidepools and observing incredible wildlife.

If you visit tidepools at Ecola State Park, make sure to stay back from the edges to avoid eroding the sand. Also, wildlife officials hope that all visitors will refrain from touching or disturbing the creatures.

Ecola State Park Tidepool
Tidepool at Ecola State Park

Cannon Beach and Ecola State Park

Cannon Beach is one of the most popular areas on Oregon's coast. Ecola State Park is located just north of Cannon Beach, and many visitors choose to spend time there as well. It's known for its incredible sea stacks, specifically Haystack Rock, which can be seen in almost every photo of the beach.

Cannon Beach's Haystack Rock
Cannon Beach's Haystack Rock

5 Best Hikes in Ecola State Park

The best hikes in Ecola State Park are the Crescent Beach Trail from Tillamook Rock, the Lewis and Clark Discovery Trail, Indian Beach Trail via Ecola State Park, and Bald Point via Indian Beach Trail with views of Indian Point.

Read more about these trails below!

Ecola State Park Spruce Forest
Views while hiking in the park

1. Crescent Beach Trail from Tillamook Rock

This fairly short trail near Cannon Beach is family and dog-friendly. Some parts of the trail can be muddy and may require some scrambling on wet rocks. But it's well-loved among locals and tourists!


Elevation Gain

Time Required


2.3 miles

538 ft

1 hr 15 mins


Trailhead Coordinates: 46.005906996648314, -123.98054032966344

2. Clatsop Loop Trail from Indian Beach

Clatsop Loop Trail from Indian Beach is a 2.8-mile loop trail that is quite popular with tourists and locals. You should expect to see other people while following this loop. But, it is open year-round and provides incredible views of Ecola State Park. This part of the coast is truly beautiful.


Elevation Gain

Time Required


2.8 miles

​784 ft

1 hr 30 mins


Trailhead Coordinates: 45.994459417646944, -123.971768402182

Ecola State Park Mist
A misty day at Ecola State Park

3. Lewis and Clark Discovery Trail

This long, challenging out-and-back trail with its starting point in Seaside, Oregon, and takes you through the park. It's named for Captain William Clark and Meriwether Lewis, famed explorers of the Pacific Northwest.

It gains just over 3,000 feet in elevation and provides beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean along the way.

But, hikers are often forced to deal with mud which can make the entire hike more difficult. Watch out for erosion on some areas of the trail!


Elevation Gain

Time Required


12.2 miles

3,000 ft

​6 hrs 30 mins


Trailhead Coordinates: 46.00059796499806, -123.95502084052849

4. Indian Beach Trail via Ecola State Park

Indian Beach is a popular area of the park where hikers can walk along the sandy beaches, see the Pacific Ocean, old-growth forests, and even elk in meadows. Like most hikes in this area, the Indian Beach Trail can be muddy. Keep your eyes peeled for whales, bald eagles, peregrine falcons, and sea lions!


Elevation Gain

Time Required


3.8 miles

843 ft

2 hrs


Trailhead Coordinates: 45.99827554047905, -123.97503971592297

5. Bald Point via Indian Beach Trail

This easy, 1.4-mile hike is close to one of the best things you can do near Ecola State Park-- visit Cannon Beach. Although it's not very long, it's incredibly scenic. Even if you don't do the whole 1.4-mile out-and-back trail, you won't be disappointed.


​Elevation Gain

Time Required


1.4 miles

416 ft

1 hr


Trailhead Coordinates: 45.9868263824817, -123.98602604340388

The land that's today Ecola State Park was deeded to the state of Oregon in 1932. Over the years, more land was donated by wealthy families, and other portions, like a 229-acre section, were purchased by Oregon. At the time, during the mid-1930s, it was hard to justify spending taxpayer money on park lands.

Historical records from the time note how the choice to buy Ecola State Park angered certain politicians. But, after the park was accepted, the much-needed infrastructure work created numerous jobs for local people.

Ecola State Park Overlook

In 1961, a famous landslide, also known as a land slippage, destroyed the parking area, roads, and some of the oldest buildings on the property. Today, the Parks system maintains certain precautions to keep an event like this from happening again.

Erosion is a regular issue the park faces. In fact, one famous viewing deck at Ecola Point had to be removed for jhsut this reason. It makes it all the more important to stick to established trails and avoid scrambling up banks or walking on loose ground.

But, the best precautions can't always keep nature at bay. Storms and landslides have resulted in Ecola State Park closing off and on since the park was established. In 2020, a landslide closed the primary entrance to the park. The park only reopened in April 2022 after being closed for nearly five months due to additional landslides and a sinkhole. Ecola State Park is open!


Is Ecola State Park open?

At this moment, in June 2022, Ecola State Park is open. It is often subject to closures due to landslides. Recently, it was closed for nearly 5 months after a sinkhole opened.

Is Ecola State Park worth visiting?

Ecola State Park is worth visiting! It's known for beautiful coastal trails, incredible scenery, and activities the entire family will enjoy. Over its 1,023-acre park, you'll also see some famous filming locations.

How much does it cost to get into Ecola State Park?

It's $5 a day to get into Ecola State Park. Or, you can pay $30 for a year-long Oregon State Parks pass. The permits are available for purchase at the fee station at the park's entrance.

What is Cannon Beach known for?

Cannon Beach is known as the best beach in Oregon and one of the best beaches on the Pacific Coast. It is also known for its sea stacks or incredibly beautiful sea rocks that jut out of the ocean.

Why is Cannon Beach called Cannon Beach?

Cannon Beach is called Cannon Beach because the man who established the first post office there, James P. Austin, hoped to find a lost cannon along the coastline.

Do you need a pass for Ecola State Park?

Yes, to park in the state park, you need an Oregon State Park pass. These cost $30 a year or $5 a day. You can buy them at terminals in most parking lots.

Tillamook Head Lighthouse

Address: WXPJ+WF, Cannon Beach, OR

The Tillamook Head Lighthouse, also known as "Terrible Tilly," is an impressive coastal feat of engineering that draws visitors from around the country. The lighthouse no longer functions, but it is incredibly beautiful and well-worth visiting. It's located 1.2 miles offshore and is visible throughout much of the park.

Similar Pacific Northwest State Parks

Cape Lookout State Park - Oregon

Cape Lookout State Park is another popular coastal state park along Oregon's shoreline. It's located in Tillamook and is known for its beautiful beach, forests, and camping opportunities. It is also open for camping year-round!

Nehalem Bay State Park between Nehalem and Manzanita is a popular coastal area that includes hiking and walking opportunities as well as a bike path. Visitors also fish, kayak, and go clamming.

Oyhut State Park - Washington

Oyhut State Park is a small, less-commonly visited state park along the Washington coast. You can access the coast from Ocean Shores and explore opportunities for birdwatching, hiking, and riding horses.

A very popular Washington state park that's spread out over 2,023 acres. It's popular year-round for tidepooling, swimming, boating, crabbing, and much more.

Deception Pass State Park is one of Washington's most beautiful state parks. It includes an incredible 4,134 acres and the famous Deception Pass Bridge.

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