The Ultimate Guide To Haystack Rock

The Ultimate Guide To Haystack Rock

The Ultimate Guide To Haystack Rock

Haystack Rock, a striking rock formation rising from the ocean floor!

Haystack Rock is an iconic rock formation of the Pacific Coast, located in the charming coastal town of Cannon Beach, Oregon!

The massive Haystack Rock sits right at the shore of Cannon Beach, rising about 235 feet above the golden sandy pacific coast. Haystack Rock is also home to several seabirds, and its many tide pools serve as a dwelling place for several marine creatures, including colorful starfishes, crabs, aquatic snails, and others. However, Haystack Rock is a protected area and is better enjoyed from a distance, as climbing and disturbing marine life is strictly prohibited.

Located in Cannon Beach, a quaint coastal town in northwest Oregon, Haystack Rock is about 80 miles west of Portland. Besides Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach is also popularly known for its Arcadia Beach, Ecola State Park, and Hug Point State Park. With its several resorts and boutique hotels, the town of Cannon Beach also serves as an excellent stop along the Pacific Coast Highway!

Haystack Rock and the adjacent smaller rock formations are collectively known as the Needles of the Cannon Beach!

The formation of the Haystack Rock and the nearby rock structures started several million years back when tremendous lava flow from the nearby mountainous region reached the pacific coast and cooled off. Later exposed due to the receding sea level and geological upheaval, and since then, erosion continues to shape Haystack Rock.

Though there aren’t really many activities or things to do near Haystack Rock, the views of an enormous rock structure jutting out of the ocean floor and the marine life in its tidal pools make Haystack Rock an excellent stop along the Pacific Coast Highway and one of the must-see places in Oregon!

Here is my ultimate guide to Haystack Rock, featuring essential trip-planning information, nearby attractions, and recommendations on hotels and restaurants near Haystack Rock!

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Planning Your Trip To Haystack Rock

Planning Your Trip To Haystack Rock

Haystack Rock is a year-round destination, spring & summer being the peak seasons, and I would recommend avoiding the weekends to beat the crowd!

Best Time To Visit Haystack Rock: Spring and Summer with pleasant temperatures is the best time to visit Haystack Rock! Winters are wet and at times snowy, but if planned according to the weather forecast, a trip to Cannon Beach in winter can be gratifying with views of snow-capped Haystack Rock, and you could have the beach to yourself. The only other recommendation is to avoid the weekends if you’re planning to photograph the Haystack Rock, as it gets really busy during the weekends, especially during the Summer months.

Getting To Haystack Rock: The best way to get to Haystack Rock is by flying into Portland and then driving to Cannon Beach. However, you could alternatively take a bus or a train to get to the closest city near Haystack Rock and then rent a car and drive to Cannon Beach.

  • Flight: Portland International Airport (PDX), Portland, Oregon, is the nearest international airport to Haystack Rock, located about 90 miles from Cannon Beach. You could rent a car at the airport and then drive to Cannon Beach. 
  • Train: You can ride an Amtrak train to Portland, the nearest full-service Amtrak station to Cannon Beach, about 90 miles from Haystack Rock, or to Kelso-Longview Amtrak station in Washington, about 80 miles from Cannon Beach.
  • Bus: Greyhound offers bus services connecting several cities in Oregon to other cities and states in the US. The nearest Greyhound bus stops to Haystack Rock are Portland, Oregon, about 90 miles from Cannon Beach, and Kelso, Washington, approximately 80 miles from Cannon Beach.

Other Attractions Near Haystack Rock: There’re a few other attractions near Cannon Beach that you could visit on your trip to Haystack Rock, including a couple of state parks and a beach located just a few miles south and north of Cannon Beach.

  • Arcadia Beach: Located about 3.5 miles south of Cannon Beach, Arcadia Beach is a small beach popular for sunbathing, swimming, and surfing. 
  • Hug Point State Park: The Hug Point State Park, about 5 miles south of Cannon Beach, is a gorgeous cove with caves and tide pools.
  • Ecola State Park: Located about 4 miles north of Cannon Beach, Ecola State Park offers sightseeing and hiking opportunities. 

Time Required At Haystack Rock: While a couple of hours are sufficient to explore Haystack Rock and its tidal pools, you can spend the entire day exploring nearby beaches and state parks close to Cannon Beach. If you’re driving from Portland or driving along the Pacific Coast Highway, Cannon Beach, with its many resorts and hotels, is an excellent spot for an overnight stay.

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Lodging & Dining In Cannon Beach

Lodging & Dining In Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach, located just 90 miles from Portland, about one and half hours drive, is a perfect day-trip destination from Portland. So you could either drive back to Portland or stay overnight at one of the beachside resorts and bread and breakfasts in Cannon Beach with spectacular views of the pacific coast and beach access. 

Resorts & Hotels Near Haystack Rock: There’re several lodging options in the town of Cannon Beach, ranging from luxury resorts to locally owned bread and breakfasts. I, however, recommend staying in one of the oceanfront properties with gorgeous views of the coast and Haystack Rock. Here’re my top picks for resorts and hotels near Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach.

  • Hallmark Resort Hotel & Spa: Just a few steps away from the Haystack Rock, the Hallmark Resort Hotel & Spa is a luxury resort with exemplary service.
  • Surfsand Resort: The oceanfront Surfsand Resort, located right on the beach, with several dining options, excellent guest services, and exceptional ocean views, is a great choice to stay near Haystack Rock.
  • Schooner’s Cove Inn: Located a mile from Haystack Rock, Schooner’s Cove Inn might not offer the best views of Haystack Rock, but you still get to enjoy great coastal views and access to the beach.

Restaurants Near Haystack Rock: Cannon Beach is a resort town and offers a few great dining options, including oceanfront casual and fine dining, locally owned and chain restaurants, and several cafes and joints offering quick bites. Here’re my top picks for restaurants near Haystack Rock – The Wayfarer Restaurant and Lounge for seafood and great views, Pelican Brewing casual dining and patio seating, and Newmans at 988 for fine dining.

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The Ultimate Guide To Haystack RockI hope you enjoyed reading the post, The Ultimate Guide To Haystack Rock, and I hope this will help you plan your trip to the Haystack Rock! You can find other Oregon attractions in my Oregon Travel Guide.

Happy feeding your soul!

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