Life at the beach doesn’t get much better than Seaside. The oceanside getaway stretches between the ruggedly majestic Tillamook Head and the mouths of the meandering Necanicum River and Neawanna Creek, a grand beach and a fun-loving town.

Seaside is Oregon’s first seashore resort and remains a popular year-round vacation and weekend destination. Visitors delight with dozens of specialty shops, art galleries, antique stores and sweet treats that surround the downtown streets. Broadway leads from U.S. Highway 101 to the turnaround in the center of Seaside’s famous Promenade, where a sculpture designates the end of the Lewis and Clark Trail.

The 1.5-mile long ocean front Promenade is perfect for strolling, jogging and bike riding. The “Prom” also gives access to those with mobility issues, getting them closer to the beach.

The beach is wide and sandy, making it available for all kinds of activities, from low-rider beach bikes, beach volleyball, wave watching, sand castle building, kite flying or a hot dog roast. 

The young at heart will enjoy such amusements as the carousel, arcades, miniature golf, bumper cars and boats, tilt-a-twirl, the miniature train, paddle boats and canoes.

Seaside has a plethora of culinary delights satisfying even the most discriminating taste buds. The town offers family fare, fine dining, ethnic cuisine, spirits, wine and brews, snacks and sweet treats. Local seafood and Pacific Northwest fare abound.

Many of the lodging properties, ranging from traditional hotels and motels to bed and breakfasts, inns, timeshares, condos, campgrounds and RV resorts, offer daily, weekly and monthly rates.

The Promenade and Turnaround • Seaside

In the center of town, Broadway’s lively shops, arcades and treat stores lead to Seaside’s Turnaround at the beach. With its magnificent view of the Pacific Ocean and a statue of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark that commemorates the explorers’ historic expedition, the Turnaround is the epicenter of Seaside.

Intersecting the turnaround is the popular Promenade, a 1.5-mile paved walkway past grand Seaside homes on one side and gorgeous dunes and beach views on the other. Walkers, runners and sweethearts out for a stroll all love the Prom, which is lined with benches for relaxing.

Seaside Aquarium

The Seaside Aquarium, located at the end of Second Avenue and North Promenade (about two blocks north of the Seaside Turnaround), is a landmark. Built in the 1920s, the structure housing the aquarium was used as a large saltwater swimming pool and converted to an aquarium in 1937.

Visitors enjoy the “Discovery Center” with its hands-on open tank that allows them to touch starfish and anemones.

The Seaside Aquarium was a pioneer in breeding harbor seals.

A favorite attraction for the younger set is the seal-feeding tank. The seals have developed different calls and behaviors to convince you to throw a morsel their way. Admission is charged. Open daily at 9 a.m. For more information, call (503) 738-6211 or visit www.seasideaquarium.com

Lewis and Clark Salt Works • Seaside

The Salt Works in Seaside marks the site where the Lewis and Clark expedition set up a camp and boiled seawater to obtain salt for use at Fort Clatsop and on the return journey to St. Louis.

The salt cairn display is located near the Prom at Lewis and Clark Way, south of the Turnaround.

The salt works in Seaside was crucial to the early explorers, who used salt to cure meat. Members of the expedition ate about 10 pounds of meat each per day.

Seaside Beach Volleyball Tournament

AUGUST 12, 2011

Thousands of volleyball enthusiasts will gather in Seaside Aug. 12 to 14 for a regional beach volleyball tournament. Professionals battle in fierce competition, while highly-ranked amateurs play yards away.

There is lots of comfy sand where visitors can put down a blanket and get a front-row seat to the action. In addition to the games, you can catch spiking and serving competitions. Just a warning – these folks play hard and a player diving into the crowd or sending a smoking volleyball careening onto a spectator’s beach blanket is a common sight.

When not used for tournaments, several sand volleyball courts are available in the summer for casual pickup games or friendly team rivalries. For information, visit www.seasidebeachvolleyball.com

Hood to Coast Relay

AUGUST 26-27, 2011

The Hood to Coast run is billed as the largest relay race in the world. It covers a grueling course with teams of 12 racing around the clock to the finish line. The race covers 195 miles from Mount Hood to Seaside. Related events include the Portland to Coast Walk, a 126-mile relay, and the Portland to Coast High School Challenge, a 125-mile relay intended for those 18 and younger. There’s always a big party at the finish line at the beach in Seaside.

Hood to Coast takes place Aug. 26-27. For more information about the race, go to the Hood to Coast Web site, www.hoodtocoast.com