drive from San Francisco to Portland

Aug 15th, 2004, 03:47 PM
  #1  
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drive from San Francisco to Portland

We will be driving from San Francisco to Portland with 2 kids ages 12 and 14. We'll be doing this drive in 2-3 days. What should we definitely stop and see? I know it's not much time.

Thanks.
ikemarrus is offline  
Aug 15th, 2004, 04:15 PM
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The Redwoods, the coast line from Eureka to Cannon Beach, and the sea lion caves.
jimshep is offline  
Aug 15th, 2004, 04:25 PM
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How do you plan to go. While the coastal route is indeed beautiful, it will take three solid days of driving to go from San Francisco to Portland along the coast, not leaving much time for activities.
If you go up I-5, it is of course less scenic generally, but much, much faster. That way you do pass Mount Shasta. Ashland, Oregon, just over the border is a nice spot or Grant's Pass near by would offer a fun jet boat or raft trip on the Rogue River. You could also detour off a bit to visit Oregon Caves National Park, and Crater Lake. There are also beautiful waterfalls along short hikes on the route north from Crater Lake to get back to I-5. You could DO a lot more in your three days going that way in my opinion.
Patrick is offline  
Aug 15th, 2004, 07:24 PM
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Let us know which route you plan to take and we can help you fine-tune your plans! Patrick has great suggestions for stops in Ashland and Grant's Pass.

We enjoy both stops very much. There are also the covered bridges around Cottage Grove that are interesting and nice to photograph. When you let us know what route you plan to take, I can help you with some great places to stay and eat! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 15th, 2004, 08:34 PM
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Stay on 101 as far as the south-central part of the Oregon coast. With only two days, make your first overnight around Brookings or Gold Beach, taking plenty of time to drive through the Redwoods - take the "Avenue of the Giants" byway and pull into a couple of the State Park groves off the road.

The second day, continue up the coast as far as Reedsport then take SR 38 up the (gorgeous) Umpqua canyon until you join I-5 north of Roseburg. From there it's a rather boring but quick 2 1/2 hours or so to Portland.

If you have 3 days, I'd start by going north from SF on SR1, one of the prettiest drives in the Lower 48, but slow. Overnight somewhere around Eureka (dinner at the Samoa Cookhouse should please the kids). Next day, up the Oregon coast to Newport or Yachats. Last day, go all the way up to Astoria so you all can see the amazing mouth of the Columbia, then continue east on the WA side of the river, through some very cool historic landscape, into Portland.
Gardyloo is online now  
Aug 15th, 2004, 09:58 PM
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IMO - best route is 101 to Eureka- will take about 5 hours plus the time used to go thru the Avenue of the Giants. (which is well worth it--your kids may be the last generation to see these awesome trees as some people in our era seem intent on cutting then down to build houses)
Samoa Cookhouse is good idea for Eureka. Up the coast which is still 101 to Gold Beach, where you can ride the Jet Mail Boats--My kids loved this --we even saw an Eagle on the trip.( i am sure they have a web site--do a search on Google for "jet Mail Boats Rogue River Gold Beach OR."
On up the coast is beautiful ocean /beach scenery and lots of places to
pull of road --have picnic lunch, walk on beach or just enjoy the view.
Near Reedsport are expanses of sand dunes-- dune buggy rides available,
Cape Perpetua has paths down to tidepools and is also near the Sea Lion Caves.
At Newport you can cross over to Eugene-very good road and then you are only 2 hrs to Portland.
My kids (ages 12 & 15) thought the trip was boring all the way to Astoria, except for Tillamook Cheese factory where they had all sorts of stuff to buy and the best ice cream on the coast.
(there is a noteable Air Craft Museum a little south of Tillamook which is quite popular)
There is a good road from there over to Portland --don't know how long it takes?
One thing to keep in mind--the time to travel the miles between cities on the coast can be deceiving--Traffic speed averages 35-50 MPH. due to summer traffic (worse on weekends)
and going thru lots of little towns
It is a wonderful coast line--
good luck...




traveler24 is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 08:35 AM
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You might want to check out the Wildlife Safari, in Winston, OR. It's a drive-through zoo and lots of fun. If you like wine, there are some very good wineries. I like Abacela and Paschal in Talent.

Further north, The Enchanted Forest is a fun amusement park around Salem and the Willamette Valley Vineyards is right next door. Lots of fun things to do if you know what to look for!

Your kids may also enjoy a stop at the Woodburn Company Store outlets, right outside of Portland. A beautiful outlet place with great shops. ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 08:41 AM
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www.wildlifesafari.org and www.enchantedforest.com are the websites! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 08:43 AM
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mms
 
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Having spent my youth in Salem and been to this place many times...Enchanted Forest is geared toward much younger kids than 12 and 14. IMO, I wouldn't recommend this to anyone though...it just is not worth the stop when there are so many other great places to see. I don't want to be a wet blanket...but just cannot recommend this place.
mms is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 11:10 AM
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We stopped here for a break last trip, we had SIX teens with us and we had a great time! There have been many changes made to this place over the past couple of years!! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 01:00 PM
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mms
 
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Kim, glad your kids enjoyed it. I still would not recommend it though. I have been there recently...not by choice though, and even the other parents we were with were cringing. But their little kids were having fun
mms is offline  
Aug 16th, 2004, 01:31 PM
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How horrible, to pay that admission price and "cringe"!! LOL We must have a lot more sense of fun than you!! This was a wonderful way to break up our fourteen hour drive!!

We thought the comedy show was so funny!! We all have a great sense of humor, tho!

Ikemarrus: I would recommend the Riverside Inn in Grant's Pass for the jet boats. I could give you more info if you're interested.

We also really enjoy Newport, the aquarium is great fun for ALL ages. We have a lot of fun there and were able to see Keiko before he left.

The Hallmark Resort is a great place to stay with kids. Pool, jacuzzi, Georgie's Beachside Grill is really good.

Take your kids to Seaside, it's a great place for kids! Walk the prom, surf on Avenue U, have some clams at the Shilo Inn, feed the seals at the aquarium! www.seasideor.com Two of my family members are there now surfing and soaking in the sun at the beach.

The rest of us are off to Pismo for the weekend to surf for one last weekend of fun before school starts!! (Daughter is in HS water polo, a starter, so they depend on her quite a bit, tho is does limit our traveling.) ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 17th, 2004, 06:46 PM
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Thanks for all the responses. I think I'll allocate 3 full days to the drive. I'm wondering if I can go through sonoma & napa, and then up to the redwoods and Eureka. Then up the coast to newport. Cutover to route 5 and straight up to portland. Would like to stop in napa, sonoma, optionally 1 winery, petrified trees, little old faithful, 1 walk through redwoods, 1 walk on the beach (which one?), the sea lions, the dunes. Optional: the aquarium. Does this sound doable? Are we missing something awesome? Not really interested in the enchanted forest or the safari this time around. However, I'm really sad not to be able to make it up to cannon beach , seaside, etc. And the jet boat sounded like fun, but perhaps too time consuming. Where should we stop each night? Good food?

Thanks again for all the help.
ikemarrus is offline  
Aug 18th, 2004, 02:21 PM
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Take your kids to the wine country, ikdmarrus! They will have a great time here!!

Stay at the Sonoma Mission Inn and let them swim in the pool there! Have a great trip!! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 18th, 2004, 03:19 PM
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I would take Gardyloo's SR1 suggestion rather than a Napa or Sonoma routing. Heck, if you left early on day one, you'd be through those places before the wineries opened anyway. Spend the first night around Eureka, second night in Yachats. With what you're planning, you'll easily fill days one and two. The best dunes are just south of Florence; plan on a couple hours there.

In stead of cutting over to I-5 at Newport, continue up the coast to 18 just north of Lincoln City. It's a quicker route to Portland, and takes you through a little of Oregon's wine country.


beachbum is offline  
Aug 18th, 2004, 07:10 PM
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Will follow that plan from Eureka on (though I'm tempted to stop before Yachats - maybe in Florence - to allow more time for beaches, dunes, sea lions). I can get into Portland fairly late.

Since we're spending so much time on the coast in Oregon, I'm tempted to do something different in California - that's why I am thinking about Napa - maybe leaving San Francisco mid-day on Tuesday (leaving 3-1/2 days for the journey to Portland), driving to Calistoga by Tuesday night, then driving from Calistoga to Eureka on Wednesday. We can see petrified trees & geyser in Calistoga. Maybe tour a winery if one is open. An alternative is to go via the gold country in California, but that may be too far east, and there might be too much to do to do it justice.

Thoughts?
ikemarrus is offline  
Aug 18th, 2004, 07:20 PM
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The Gold Country from SF is too far to add, plus any drive from the central valley to the coast north of Sacramento - regardless of route - is pure torture IMO. I've tried most of them, CA SR 20 being the one I use if I have to, but really only if there's no alternative.

The Napa/Calistoga loop is easy. You'll miss precisely nothing on the part of 101 you cut off. (Sorry Santa Rosa - you're more than "nothing." )

Florence is fine, nowhere on the central coast is out of range for Portland the next day.
Gardyloo is online now  
Aug 19th, 2004, 04:08 PM
  #18  
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Any suggestions for hotels? Our planned route (can be adjusted a bit):

Day1
SF (leave 1PM) - Sonoma - Napa - Calistoga -- stay somewhere between Napa & Calistoga
Day2
Calistoga - Eureka -- maybe stay somewhere very near Redwoods in case it's dark when we arrive & we have to do
this in the morning
Day3
Eureka - Florence
Day4
Florence - Portland
ikemarrus is offline  
Aug 19th, 2004, 04:12 PM
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The geyser in Calistoga is more like a broken sprinkler. LOL I wouldn't waste my time there.

Go to the Sterling winery, your kids will enjoy the tram ride there. Stay at the Indian Springs Resort, www.indianspringscalistoga.com is the web address.

The Wappo Bar & Bistro is a great place for lunch or dinner. Let us know how it goes! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Aug 19th, 2004, 05:14 PM
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Oh, that's too, too funny!!! I won't go to the geyser! Are the petrified trees worth it or are they a bust too?
ikemarrus is offline  

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