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Beat the Heat

This weekend is an especially good weekend to beat the heat by hitting the coast.  We always end up at Cannon Beach for the day: it's just about 1 hour and fifteen minutes from here, there is plenty to do on the main drag if we ever get tired of just lounging on the beach (god forbid!), and there is that pizza place just by the beach entree where we always pick up snacks.  We typically leave around 11am, which is just around the time that our 2-1/2 year old Tati is getting ready for naptime.  She snoozes on the way out while we sing songs or play games with our 5-1/2 year old Philly.  By the time we get there, everyone's ready for some beach fun.

We have also rented a 4-bedroom house in the springtime in Manzanita, and it was heaven!  We shared it with a few other urbanFamilies, so there were 4 families playing and hanging out for the weekend.  It's a great time, to rent a beach house with other families.  You can have a complete run of the place; it's pretty liberating.

Liz is looking for more ideas:

I am planning a long weekend at the coast and am wondering if anyone has recommendations on a place to stay that is kid friendly. I have a 3 yr old and 6 mos. old. It could be a hotel, b&b or vacation house. Also any fun ideas of things to do?

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I concur with Olivia on Cannon Beach and Manzanita. Our favorites about each:

Cannon Beach - tidepooling at Haystack Rock, hiking and visiting "Goonies" movie site at Ecola State Park

Manzanita - picking up picnic food at the Little Manzanita Grocery and/or bakery Bread Ocean, Nehalem State Park

For places to stay, we have rented a home thru Manzanita Rentals which was fantastic. Next time (when it cools down) we would like to try a yurt at Nehalem State Park.

We are headed that way on Saturday. Will keep on the lookout for other urbanfamilies!

Just wanted to put in a word for the great shopping in Manzanita, especially an "eco-logical" clothing store called Unfurl. Clothes foor adults and little kiddies!

For kid-friendly, you can't beat Seaside (indoor carousel; a little train that goes round a little track, grownups can ride holding the kids; a great toy store; lots of touristy shopping; a small but sweet aquarium where you can feed the seals; and of course BEACH. And it's only 2.5 hours away. And it's affordable, with lots of kid-friendly restaurants (NOT my experience in Cannon Beach).

And my absolute favorite, although it is 4 hours away or so, is Long Beach Washington. There's the sweet old carnival rides section, Marsh's free museum (home of Jake the Alligator Man), and other typical, affordable (read; not ritzy - there is one fine dining place where you can pay $20 for a plate of pasta, if you want) shops and stuff. Great playgrounds, too. We usually stay at Shakti Cove cottages in Ocean Park, just 15 minutes north of Long Beach proper. It's a great getaway just a short dune hike to the beach, with a ring of cabins around a grassy shady area.

I'm all for affordable and kid-friendly. If I am going away with grownup friends, then I will go to Cannon Beach. :-)

We were at Cannon Beach on Sunday and it was a good time. We love to go there because it's the closest beach town and the girls love the beach wherever whenever. Endless digging and pouring water on sand? It's such a great getaway. The main drag is cute with a really great wine shop and some essential cafes, dinners, and ice cream shops.

We've also recently been to Florence, OR (Honeyman Park) and the dunes there. It's a very manageable 3 hours away in the Central Coast, and it is awesome. There are bike paths in the park, immense play structures among the campgrounds, and dunes, dunes, and more dunes. You can march around on the dunes forever or just climb up to slide down a big dune right into the lake. It's so beautiful and great fun.

Next weekend, we're camping at Ft. Stevens park up near Astoria. We were there a couple of months ago and the beach is some great coastline. I have heard lots about the bike paths around the park, so we're planning to bring the bikes / tag-along / trailer for some cruising fun, if the kids tire of the digging and sand-castle-making (which I doubt). I'm thinking it'll be a great time.

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