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Experience Nehalem Bay State Park: A Guide

Located on the northern coast of Oregon, Nehalem Bay State Park is a popular destination along Highway 101. The area of Oregon is known for its sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean, scenic cliffside hikes, beautiful campgrounds, and small PNW towns that are worth visiting all on their own.

Here's everything you need to know about visiting Nehalem Bay State Park.

Nehalem Bay State Park

If you're interested in visiting Nehalem Bay State Park, you should also take a look at our other guides to scenic coastal destinations in the Pacific Northwest:

Nehalem Bay State Park: At a Glance

  • Location: Tillamook County, Oregon

  • Nearest Town: Nehalem, Oregon

  • Why Visit? The beautiful beaches and water-based activities

  • Family Friendly? Yes, absolutely!

  • Camping: Tent and RV camping at the state park and nearby.

  • Parking Pass: Yes, an Oregon State Park pass is required.

To get there, you can take US Highway 101, which runs along the Oregon coast. The park is easily accessible by car, and there is plenty of parking available.

Nehalem Bay View
A bottle washed up on the beaches of Nehalem Bay.

Where to Stay

There are several hotels and vacation rentals in nearby Nehalem. Some popular options include:

  • Rockaway Beach Resort

  • Sea Treasures Inn Hotel

  • Surfside Resort

  • Inn at Manzanita

  • Sunset Surf Motel

You can also check out some of the best camping options at Nehalem Bay State Park below.

If you're planning on camping at Nehalem Bay State Park, you're in for a treat. Nehalem Bay is one of the most popular state parks in Oregon, so reserving campsites a year in advance is not uncommon. There are a number of nearby campgrounds that are worth checking out:

Nehalem Beach Hills

Nehalem Bay State Park Campground

Distance from Nehalem Bay State Park: 0 mins

Nehalem Bay State Park Campground in Oregon is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and families alike. The campground offers 307 sites that are nestled in a beautiful wooded area, just a short walk from the beach. The sites are spacious and well-maintained and include picnic tables, fire rings, and access to clean drinking water.

Some are for tents, others are for RVs. There are also 18 yurts which you can read about below!

The campsites range from $35 to $60+ a night.

The campground is equipped with modern amenities, including:

  • Hot water

  • Showers

  • RV dump station

  • Flush toilets

  • Drinking water

You should keep in mind that, as per the state park website, Loops A, B, C, and D, and the Horse Camps are reservable year-round, and E and F loops are first-come, first-served November 1 - April 30.

Nehalem Beach Access

Barview Jetty County Campground

Distance from Nehalem Bay State Park: 30 mins

The Barview Jetty County Campground is a picturesque camping destination located in Tillamook County, Oregon, USA. Situated just a few minutes away from the popular coastal town of Garibaldi, this campground offers easy access to the beautiful Pacific Ocean and a range of outdoor activities.

The campground offers campsites, including both tent and RV sites, each of which comes with a fire pit and a picnic table. The campground also offers hot showers, restrooms, and drinking water. The campsites are well-spaced, providing ample privacy for campers. The campground also provides a boat launch, making it easy for visitors to explore the nearby Tillamook Bay.

Old Mill RV Resort

Distance from Nehalem Bay State Park: 33 mins

Old Mill RV Resort is a picturesque camping destination located in Garibaldi, Oregon, USA. Situated on the banks of Garibaldi Bay, this resort offers visitors easy access to the stunning coastal scenery and a range of outdoor activities.

The resort offers 195 RV sites, including both back-in and pull-through options, with full hookups for water, electricity, and sewer. The RV sites are spacious, providing ample room for larger RVs and slide-outs. Additionally, the resort offers several amenities, including a clubhouse with a game room, a heated pool, a hot tub, and laundry facilities.

Nehalem Shores RV Park

Distance from Nehalem Bay State Park: 12 mins

Nehalem Shores RV Park is a tranquil camping destination located on the banks of the Nehalem River in Nehalem, Oregon, USA. This RV park offers visitors easy access to the stunning coastal scenery of the Pacific Northwest and a range of outdoor activities.

Nehalem Bay Beach

The RV park offers RV sites, including both back-in and pull-through options, with full hookups for water, electricity, and sewer that are $50 a night. The sites are spacious and well-maintained, providing a comfortable setting for visitors to enjoy their stay. The RV park also offers several amenities, including free Wi-Fi, a laundry facility, and clean restrooms with hot showers.

One of the most popular camping options at the state park are yurts! For the uninitiated, yurts are portable, round tent-like dwellings traditionally used by nomadic people in Central Asia.

Yurts have a circular frame made of wood or bamboo, are covered with felt, canvas, or other sturdy fabric, and are held together with ropes and tension bands. They are easy to assemble and disassemble, making them ideal for nomadic lifestyles, but they are also becoming popular as eco-friendly and low-impact housing options for people around the world.

There are yurts all around the Pacific Northwest at state parks and as privately owned rental properties; some of the best are at Nehalem State Park! The yurts at the state park can be rented online until the morning of your check-in day. They cost $62 a night or $434 a week.

There are 18 yurts total spread through the state park campground. They can be rented for a maximum of 8 people at a time. Some are ADA-friendly, and some are pet friendly (some are also both!). Make sure to reserve your yurt well ahead of time, as they are very popular.

Nehalem Bay Shore

To Do at Nehalem Bay State Park

There's no shortage of things to do near Nehalem Bay State Park. If you're interested in fishing, you can try your luck at Nehalem Bay, which is just a short walk away. There are also a number of nearby hiking trails to check out. These are discussed in more detail below but include Nehalem Spit Trail and the Nehalem Bay Trail Loop.

For those who enjoy water activities, you can rent kayaks or paddleboards in Nehalem and explore the nearby bay and estuary. Plus, you can always spend time exploring the beach!

For those interested in wildlife, Nehalem Bay State Park is home to a variety of animals, including elk, beavers, coyotes, and a wide variety of birds. The park is also home to several species of fish, including salmon and steelhead trout, which can be caught in the Nehalem River.

Nehalem Bay Hiking Trails

Nehalem Bay State Park offers a variety of trails for hikers and bikers of all skill levels. The park's trails offer beautiful views of the bay and surrounding forest, with options ranging from easy, flat trails to more challenging uphill treks.

Nehalem Spit Trail

This is an easy-to-moderate 4.3-mile trail that is entirely flat. It should be pretty easy for most hikers depending on how much you just like walking! It takes you out along the Nehalem Bay Spit from north to south.

Nehalem Bay Trail Loop

This is a shorter, 2-mile hike that is also entirely flat. The trail is within the state park and takes you on a simple, short loop starting from the campground. It's not the most scenic trail in the world, but it's nice if you're camping nearby.

Plus, you can always venture out onto the beach and walk as far as your feet can stand, or until you run out of sand, before turning around!

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