Our front desk crew loves answering your questions—giving their own unique spin on the best of life in Newport. But just in case you don’t have time to swing by the front desk, we thought it would be good to ask our staff the questions you ask most and put all the info in one blog post.
We’ve covered a few of these subjects in past blogs, so check those out when you can. For now, see if your most frequently asked question is answered below!
What are some family-friendly activities available in Newport?
First, check out our blog on how to capture kids’ imaginations in Newport, including a trip to the Oregon Coast Aquarium, the tide pools at Yaquina Head, riding fat bikes on the beach and even a beach scavenger hunt!
Other fun and family-friendly options include:
The Hatfield Marine Science Center: This educational facility offers hands-on exhibits and activities that teach kids about the coastal ecosystems and how to protect them. It’s the perfect spot for kids to learn about marine science in an engaging and interactive way, and there’s nothing like a fun experience that’s also educational! (You’ll get SO many parenting points!)
Marine Discovery Tours: Take a family-friendly boat tour to spot whales, harbor porpoises, sea lions, and other ocean dwellers living their best lives. With seasoned Captains who have navigated spots from the Bering Sea to San Francisco Harbor, you can trust the experienced crew and knowledgeable guides to give you an entertaining, eye-opening trip!
South Beach State Park: Situated right next to Yaquina Bay Bridge, this state park starts in south Newport and stretches miles down the Oregon Coast—which makes it the perfect gateway for exploring Newport. There are lots of opportunities for picnicking, hiking, biking, beachcombing and, on breezy days, kite flying! There’s even an equestrian trail if you happened to pack your horse.
Devils Punchbowl State Natural Area: While this spot is more for observation rather than interactive activities, it’s a unique geological feature that’s definitely worth a visit. The “punchbowl” is a collapsed sea cave that creates a scenic bowl-shaped formation, and it’s just 16 minutes (about 9 miles) from Hallmark Resort Newport.
Agate Beach State Recreation Site: Do you have a rockhound in the family? Pick up some semi-precious chalcedony formed in volcanic rock millions of years ago at this beach known for the colorful stones strewn on its shore. It’s best to search at low tide when the rocks are more exposed. Look for rocks with distinctive colors and patterns, but don’t get so engrossed in your treasure-hunting that you miss a sneaker wave! Safety first, rockhounds.
“Where can I find dog-friendly dining in Newport?”
For dog-friendly dining and activities in Newport, first check out our blog on the subject featuring dog-friendly hikes, beaches and even galleries!
Our first choice would be our own Pacific Kitchen, right in the heart of the charming Nye Beach district. At Pacific Kitchen, you get many of the same rich flavors served up at Georgie’s (Chef Alfredo helms both!), but with the added bonus of a dog-friendly patio so your pup can enjoy a couple of morsels of Chef’s food, too! The Diablo Pasta and fresh-catch fish tacos are fan favorites.
Other great options include Wolftree Brewery’s patio (located on a real cattle ranch!), Newport Brewing Company (try the Yaquina Sunrise Pale Ale for an immersive Newport experience), and the Taphouse at Nye Creek, with 32 rotating taps and a rotating craft can/bottle selection that usually tops 90!
“What can we do in Nye Beach?”
Some Newport visitors spend all their time at the historic Bayfront and never discover Nye Beach, one of the most charming districts in Newport.
If you’re interested in art, Nye Beach is a definite hub. The Newport Visual Arts Center is the largest facility on the Oregon Coast built specifically to exhibit visual art. There are two gallery spaces—one a full 1,000 square feet—and each feature 8-12 new exhibits a year, so you’ll find new, exciting art each time you visit!
And if you’re looking for more upscale shopping than you generally get in a coastal town, Nye Beach is the spot. With shops like Jovi, Charisma Gifts and the boutique kitchenware shop Tu-Tu-Tu Kitchenware Cottage, you’ll undoubtedly find the perfect gifts for…well, let’s be honest—yourself.
And, of course, if you’re feeling a bit peckish, as we mentioned above, don’t forget to stop at our own Pacific Kitchen at Nye Beach. It’s TripAdvisor’s top-rated restaurant in Newport!
“Where can we find a good bakery in Newport?”
One of our favorite little shops in Nye Beach is the The Blue Pig Bakery, which features not only insanely delicious cupcakes, cookies, and pastries but wildly original new and vintage housewares from companies like Magnolia Pearl and Rescued Living. We walked out with cupcakes, a pillow and, of course, a tiara. Because everyone should own a tiara.
If you’re just looking for the baked goods, however, there are plenty of amazing spots to indulge your sweet (or savory!) tooth. Try the bear claw or the Oregon Marionberry danish at Seal Rock Espresso & Bakery. Lose your mind after taking a bite of the Hazelnut Chocolate Chunk Cookie at Panini Bakery or walk out with a whole loaf of their Three Cheese Sourdough under your arm. And don’t sleep on Coastie’s Roasties, voted Best Local Coffee Shop with their Supreme Croissant Roll—a chocolate croissant filled with their espresso pastry cream.
“What can we do at Newport’s Historic Bayfront, and is it walkable from Hallmark Resort Newport?”
Newport’s Historic Bayfront is just a mile from Hallmark Resort, so it is walkable if you’re up for about a 20-minute stroll. There are some hills involved, so if you have folks in your party who aren’t up for that it’s just a four-minute drive.
The Bayfront was the first economic hub of the city starting back in the early 1900s, and is the heart of Newport’s still thriving seafood industry.
The main attractions at the Bayfront are the Oregon Coast Aquarium—a must-see for curious kids and adults alike with new exhibits popping up all the time, and Ripley’s Believe it or Not/Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks, where you can come face-to-waxy-face with your favorite characters and grab a snapshot with Captain America, an actual shrunken head or any one of 500 other wonders and oddities in this cavalcade of curiosities.
But there are plenty of other things to see and do on the Bayfront, including:
Working boats and fisherman—Newport is a thriving port where you can watch live as fishermen bring in their catch and sell it right from the back of their boats. Impossible to find fresher fish than that on the Oregon Coast!
Delish sweets—Want to enjoy a hand-dipped ice cream bar with a bay view? Try Bayscapes Gallery and Coffeehouse! Looking for a delicious ice cream cone you can lick while perusing hundreds of items made from alpaca fur, including an alpaca guinea pig, next door? Try BJ’s, where even the mermaids enjoy a good waffle cone. (Next door to the Newport Alpaca Shop.)
And you can’t leave the Bayfront without a stop at the Newport Candy Shoppe for tons of flavors of homemade saltwater taffy and, toffee, fudge and even homemade caramel corn!
Fantastic galleries and shops with work from local artisans—in shops like Wind Drift Gallery and Gifts and The Galley Kitchen Shop (and SO many more!), you’ll find the perfect item to have on hand for anyone who asks, “What’d you bring me?” when you return from your jaunt to Newport. Beautiful pottery, framed art and beach-y mementos make for ideal gift shopping, especially during the holiday season (it’ll be here sooner than you think!).
“What are the best hikes in Newport and surrounding areas?”
There are so many great hikes in the Newport area that we can’t list them all here. We’ve covered the Mike Miller Educational Trail and The Yaquina Head Lighthouse and Tidepools here.
Just a few more include:
This is a hike marked “easy” with just a 1.5 mile loop and a negligible elevation gain just 16 minutes North of Hallmark. The first half takes you along a babbling creek and is near the campground, so might be a nice quick hike with kids!
An 11-minute drive from Hallmark, this moderate trail has a 450 foot elevation gain and is about 2 miles long. You’ll find a nicely-packed wide trail, moss-covered logs and a few areas where dogs are allowed off-leash.
For the truly adventurous, the Oregon Coast Trail stretches over 380 miles along the entire coastline of Oregon. Newport is in Section 4 of the trail, which stretches from Lincoln City to Waldport. The Newport portion moves from Beverly Beach State Park south to the Agate Beach State Recreation Site, Yaquina Bay State Recreation Site and South Beach State Park. This trail has it all—sandy beaches, forested paths, and rocky shores.
For those interested in birdwatching along with their hike, the Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge provides a serene escape about 32 minutes north of Hallmark. The trail systems here guide you through wetlands and estuaries, making it a prime spot to observe various bird species and other wildlife. In the coming months, hikers should be able to see thousands of shorebirds as they stop along the coast to feed and rest so they can continue migrating. Tiny Green-winged Teal, Mallards, Pintails and Gadwalls just to name a few.
This one is definitely a longer drive, but it’s worth it—the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area is a hiker’s paradise. Trails like the Captain Cook Trail and the Giant Spruce Trail lead you through lush coastal forests and offer incredible viewpoints of the coastline. The Cape Perpetua Overlook Trail is a highlight, where you can witness the waves crashing against the cliffs below.
Did we answer all (or some) of your burning questions? If you have something we’ve left unanswered, visit our Facebook page and ask away! Or always come by the front desk. We’ll be happy to give you our take on the best of Newport.