Coastal Spotlight: Manzanita

Coastal Spotlight: Manzanita

Some of my earliest childhood memories stem from trips to the Oregon coast as a child. My parents started taking my older brother, twin sister and I to Neahkahnie when we were very young. We’d rent an ocean front home on Ocean Rd. and play in the sand and those freezing cold waves of the Pacific. It was the 90s, and even then, my parents new Manzanita was special.

I mention their purchase of our beach house in a previous blog post, The Power of Equity, which took place in 2001. From that moment on, Manzanita was our second home. We’d spend every holiday there, summers, special events. It wasn’t long before Manzanita became a permanent residence for my parents, a rarity in a town filled with second homes and vacation rentals. They are 2 of 680 who reside full time. In the summer Manzanita is bustling with activity, in the way any small beach town would, and in the winter, it is a sleepy dream of overcast ocean waves. They love it.

Manzanita is 15 miles south of Cannon Beach off HWY 101, a much larger and more populated beach town. From Portland, it is a 1 ½ - 2-hour drive, a straight shot west on HWY 26. The climate is mild, it has its fair share of rain, and somehow 60-degree days always feel like 70… I’ll never get it.

The main street is Laneda Ave, there you’ll find everything you need. Our go-to grocery store is The Little Apple, it’s been owned and run by the Lee family since 1998. They have the best made to order deli sandwiches. Left Coast Siesta is another special spot, they’ve been around for over 30 years and my whole family loves the tequila lime chicken enchiladas. Yolk for brunch is a must, newer to Manzanita and a bit more mainstream. If you’re looking for something lighter, Manzanita News & Espresso is across the street. They carry some of Wanda’s (Nehalem) baked goodies – I’m a sucker for the raspberry almond bar.

Aside from those few spots, there are plenty of additional restaurants and shops scattered up and down Laneda, be it art, wine, or pup supplies, pizza, a spa, ice cream, and more, anything you’d need for a weekend getaway, and then some.

But what you really came here for was the beach.

If you’re going to do anything, I hope you take a long walk on the 7-mile stretch of sand and surf, soaking up the view of Neahkahnie Mountain. It is unlike any other coast line in America and it’s sure to steal your heart, even if only for a moment.

If you can only spare a day, make the drive! If you have the luxury of a long weekend, book a beach house and prepare to fall in love. 




Picture: The far north end of the beach on a late evening in July. 

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