Explore Oregon’s Hidden Gems 5 Small Towns for a Perfect Weekend Escape

Travelers are captivated by Oregon, sometimes known as the “Beaver State,” by its breathtaking scenery, which includes a rocky coastline, verdant forests, and tumbling waterfalls. However, hidden gems beckon with their own beauty just beyond the well-traveled tourist trails.

All around the state, we have found quaint towns full of personality that provide a welcome change of pace from the norm. Are you itching for some small-town charm, outdoor exploration, or cultural immersion? Everyone can find something to enjoy in Oregon’s hidden gems.

So grab your belongings, head off on the open road, and explore the fascinating towns that will guarantee an amazing weekend away!

Cottage Grove

Cottage Grove is known as the Covered Bridge Capital of the West because of its several covered bridges, including the Dorena, Stewart, Chambers, and Currin Covered Bridges.

In addition to being historic, the town is home to a number of museums, such as the Oregon Aviation Historical Society & Museum, Bohemia Gold Mining Museum, and Cottage Grove Museum. Great lodging may be found at the Cottage Grove Inn or City Center Motel, and there’s always fantastic dining at Stacy’s Covered Bridge Restaurant.


Perfect for a weekend escape by the sea, Florence is a gorgeous hamlet located at the mouth of the Siuslaw River on the Pacific Ocean. The 56-foot Heceta Head Lighthouse and the sea lion-inhabited Sea Lion Caves are just two of the coastal sights that guests can explore for the duration of a weekend here.

Explore Oregon’s Hidden Gems: 5 Small Towns for a Perfect Weekend Escape

Florence offers first-rate lodging options such as the Driftwood Shores Resort and the Best Western Pier Point Inn, as well as fantastic dining options like the Waterfront Depot Restaurant and 1285 Restobar.


Once known as Silver Lake, Joseph is a small, charming hamlet in Wallowa County that draws retreat seekers with its peaceful, picturesque setting.

The Wallowa Lake provides the backdrop for boating, fishing, swimming, and kayaking with views of the Wallowa Mountains. Spend a weekend there at the neighboring Wallowa Lake State Park.

For those who appreciate art, there are seven enormous, life-size bronze sculptures at the Joseph Art Walk on the main street.

Don’t forget to treat yourself to delicious meals at Embers Brewhouse and spend the evenings at some of the greatest lodging options in the area, such as Eagle Cap Chalets and the Jennings Hotel.

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Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach is a distinct community that has become well-known for its amazing natural wonders. This town is home to a picturesque coastline with striking rock formations, such as the 237-foot-tall Haystack Rock.

Explore Oregon’s Hidden Gems: 5 Small Towns for a Perfect Weekend Escape
Image By: Visit Oregon

Retreat seekers can come to this beach to explore the breathtaking 237-foot sea stack at low tide, play with waves, have picnics, boat, swim, and watch the sunset.

One of the greatest art towns in America is Cannon Beach, where you can visit galleries like House of Orange, DragonFire, and Bronze Coast. Stay the night at Cannon Beach’s Ocean Lodge or Inn during the weekend.

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Due to its location along the Columbia River, which meets the longest and deepest ocean in the world, Astoria is a stunning town with a laid-back appeal and picturesque air.

Located in the historic Clatsop County Jail, this oldest town in the state is home to multiple museums, including the Oregon Film Museum, Heritage Museum, and Columbia River Maritime Museum.

The Riverfront Trolley, which runs along Astoria’s waterfront and makes stops at several historical sites, is another characteristic of the town.

For upscale lodging, consider Cannery Pier Hotel and Spa or Hampton Inn & Suites.

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To Conclude

From the breathtaking scenery of Cannon Beach to the historic charm of Cottage Grove, Oregon’s hidden jewels provide a wide range of experiences for an unforgettable weekend getaway. Cottage Grove offers museums and covered bridges, and Florence offers a coastal getaway.

The Wallowa Mountains are serenely rendered by Joseph, and Cannon Beach is breathtaking with its recognizable Haystack Rock. And lastly, Astoria, located along the Columbia River, has a relaxed charm and a rich history.

So, grab your bags and head off to explore the hidden gem that’s waiting for your weekend getaway, regardless of your cravings for nature, culture, or a little history!


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