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Cape Perpetua Scenic Area. The highest lookout point on the Oregon Coast, Cape Perpetua towers 800 feet above the rocky shoreline. Named by Captain Cook on St. Perpetua's Day in 1778, the cape is part of a 2,700-acre scenic area popular with hikers, campers, beachcombers, and naturalists. General information and a map of 10 trails are available at the Cape Perpetua Visitors Center, on the east side of the highway, 2 miles south of Devil's Churn. The easy 1-mile Giant Spruce Trail passes through a fern-filled rain forest to an enormous 500-year-old Sitka spruce. Easier still is the marked Auto Tour; it begins about 2 mile north of the visitor center and winds through Siuslaw National Forest to the ¼-mile Whispering Spruce Trail. Views from the rustic rock shelter here extend 150 miles north and south, and 37 mile out to sea. The Cape Perpetua Interpretive Center, in the visitor center, has educational movies and exhibits about the natural forces that shaped Cape Perpetua. 2400 U.S. 101, 9 miles south of Yachats, Yachats, OR, 97498. 541/547-3289. www.fs.usda.gov/siuslaw. Parking fee $5. Visitor's Center: Daily 10-5:30.
Neptune State Park. Visitors will have fun searching for animals, watching the surf, or hunting for agates. The benches set above the beach on the cliff provide a great view of Cumming Creek. It's also a terrific spot for whale-watching. At low tide, beachcombers have access to a natural cave and tidal pools. U.S. 101 S, 3 miles south of Yachats, Yachats, OR, 97498. 800/551-6949. www.oregonstateparks.org. Free. Daily.
Yachats Ocean Road Natural Site. Drive this one-mile loop south of Yachats, and discover one of the most scenic viewpoints on the Oregon Coast. Park along the loop to see where the Yachats River meets the Pacific Ocean. There's fun to be had playing on the beach, poking around tide pools, and watching blowholes, summer sunsets, and whales spouting. Yachats Ocean Rd., off U.S. 101, Yachats, OR, 97498. 800/551-6949. www.oregonstateparks.org.
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