Whether you’re looking for a coastal escape or seclusion in the forest, Oregon’s campsites and parks offer the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in nature. There are plenty of wild sites within easy reach of Portland for fun weekend trips, or pack the car and discover the towns along the iconic Highway 101. Here’s our pick of the best camping sites in Oregon.
Located on Highway 101, between Bandon and Port Orford, this coastal town was famous for its blue cheese until the factory burnt down in the 1950s. Today, it’s a popular destination for outdoor adventure – think camping at Cranberry Overlook at Black Moon Farms, kiteboarding and windsurfing on Floras Lake, hiking in Cape Blanco State Park and exploring the coastline on a fat bike. For a taste of rural Oregon, head to Langlois Market, which serves up burgers and sandwiches, as well as its world-famous hot dog.
This quiet campsite in Oregon is located in a secluded corner of an organic farm that produces cranberries, blueberries and chestnuts. As the name implies, it overlooks one of the farm’s three cranberry bogs and is surrounded by pretty trees and 30 roaming sheep. Hike around the 75-acre (30ha) property – or take a tractor or all-terrain vehicle tour – and you’ll also discover wild lobster mushrooms, 12 ponds and a 5-acre (2ha) grove of chestnuts. The farm is just 1mi (1.5km) from the coast and it’s an easy trip to Bullards Beach State Park, which boasts 4.5mi (7km) of sandy beaches.
There’s plenty to explore around this abandoned mining town in Southern Oregon’s Applegate Valley – from the intense blue waters of the 1,943ft-deep (600m) Crater Lake and the marble caves found beneath the Siskiyou Mountains, to the Sterling Mine Ditch trail systems and glamping at Camp Cowgirl at Surf Ranch in the Wine Country. The Collings Mountain Trail is even home to an inactive Sasquatch (Bigfoot) trap, the only one of its kind in the country. In Buncom, three buildings still stand testament to the town’s mining history – the general store, livery stable and post office.
Take the camping experience up a notch at this luxe glampsite – one of the best camping spots in Orgeon – which boasts a full-size bed with flannel sheets and wool blankets, a cooking stove that keeps the tent cozy, and a deck for al fresco dining and sundowners. There’s a fire pit and a barn kitchen, a swing over the river, plenty of forest trails and even an outdoor bath for relaxing under the open skies. Campkeeper Gina also offers ranch-raised, grass-fed beef from the nearby Salant family ranch, and bespoke gift baskets full of goodies from surrounding farms and local producers.
The charming town of Newberg, in Yamhill County, sits at the edge of Portland’s suburbs and is surrounded by farms, orchards, wineries and idyllic Oregon campsites, such as Reuven’s Backcountry Oasis. The Willamette River runs past the historic town, and offers lots of coves and secluded beaches for picnicking and swimming. You can also rent kayaks, paddleboards and canoes to explore the river from the water. Yamhill County boasts more than 80 wineries and 200 vineyards, and Downtown Newberg is home to 10 tasting rooms where you can discover some of the region’s finest wines.
Got all the camping gear you need and simply looking for a beautiful spot to pitch your tent? This secluded setting of this campsite in Oregon, just half an hour from downtown Portland in the heart of Oregon wine country, is surrounded by cow pastures and forests, and is just minutes from some of the region’s best wineries. Reuven, the friendly Campkeeper, also offers the opportunity to pick your own blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, or explore the inside of an active beehive before trying some of the pure, natural honey produced.
If you want to explore Oregon’s foodie side, head to Yamhill in the heart of Willamette Valley wine country. The town is surrounded by beautiful farmland and vineyards growing Oregon’s famous pinot noir grapes. There are plenty of wine and culinary tours alongside restaurants and bars, such as the Kookoolan World Meadery, which has more than 100 varieties of mead from around the world. Stay in one of the quaint bed and breakfasts, or set up camp at a secluded hilltop site or by a pretty creek at Darlingwood.
Get back to nature at Darlingwood’s West Park, a bucolic campsite in Oregon nestled among a grove of Douglas fir and white oak trees. The adjacent hill offers spectacular 360-degree views over the surrounding landscape, as well as the opportunity to spot deer and elk. The site has private access to Haskins Creek and an artesian well for naturally filtered spring water. Nearby Darlingwood, you’ll discover farmer’s markets, wineries, and flea markets.
The North Campground at Darlingwood is located next to the banks of the picturesque Haskins Creek – and campers are lucky enough to have private access to the creek, which is home to wildlife including beavers, bald eagles, salmon and newts. The campsite is run by a young family who offer camping essentials for hire, such as chairs and flashlights, and sell delicious homemade jam made of locally sourced fruits. There are also plenty of spots for swimming and hiking nearby.
This small town had its heyday as a 1920s railroad town and, while it’s much quieter today, it’s perfectly located for exploring some of Oregon’s spectacular State Parks. Get a glimpse into the area’s rich railroad history at Banks-Vernonia State Trail, a multi-use path paved over a decades-old train bed that’s now popular for walking, jogging, mountain biking and horse riding – or there’s the family-friendly LL Stub Stewart State Park for picnicking and camping. For a more secluded camping experience, pitch a tent on an organic farm at the Oasis in Nature retreat.
Combine a camping retreat in Oregon with a wellness escape at this organic farm and healing centre, set in 40 acres (16ha) of forest and pasture land. Alongside the permaculture farm, geodesic greenhouses and fruit trees, there are three private campsites secluded among the trees; if camping isn’t your thing, book one of the three rooms in the house. The onsite retreat centre offers physical and emotional healing facilities – think dream interpretation, a sauna, flotation tank, and a PandoraStar light machine that allows a safe and easy way to reach deep trance states.
This pretty campsite in Oregon is also found on the Oasis in Nature organic farm, and sits on the edge of the property with views of the Oregon Coast Range. While the campsite is just 45 minutes from Portland, you’ll feel completely secluded in nature as there are no other campsites or houses within view. Want to explore the area around Buxton? The coastal towns of Cannon Beach and Seaside are just an hour away, and there’s a disc golf course next to the Buxton woods. The farm itself is home to goats, pigs, llamas, chickens, ducks and geese, as well as an alternative health and wellness centre with a hot tub and sauna.
The Ona Beach to Seal Rock walk takes in the most scenic spot on the central Oregon Coast. The small seaside village of Seal Rock sits between the cities of Newport and Waldport, and has been a popular Oregon beach camping destination since the 1880s. It’s named after the sculptural lava formation that runs parallel to the shore and is home to dozens of seals and sea lions. The nearby Ona Beach State Park is ideal for beachcombing and picnicking – and the 5.5mi (9km) beach trail is ideal for family day trips. Planning a trip to Ona Beach? Pitch a tent at the nearby Forest and Beach campsite.
This two acre campsite has been in Campkeeper Andrea’s family for more than 50 years, and is a natural paradise with tall summer grass, a creek and organic blackberries. Just keep in mind that this is proper barebones camping for those who want to immerse themselves in the great outdoors – there’s a shovel for digging a toilet pit, a single campfire, and no water supply or camping gear on site. Nearby, you’ll find some of Oregon’s best beaches and the Beaver Creek Conservation Area and Interpretive Centre, where you can learn about native plants and animals and go hiking.
Christmas Valley is located on the northern edge of the Great Basin, and takes its name from the nearby dry lake bed. It’s a nature-lover’s dream, with natural hot springs, dramatic caves and sand dunes, alongside more unusual natural wonders, including the 2mi-long Crack in the Ground volcanic fissure, and the whimsically named Lost Forest, a remnant of an ancient ponderosa pine forest that covered much of central Oregon thousands of years ago. Looking for a place to stay in Christmas Valley? One of the best ways to experience the region is to pitch a tent in the sprawling wilds of High Desert Outback.
Looking for a quiet spot where you can escape civilization? Pitch a tent and sleep under the stars in the sand at High Desert Outback. The only noise you’ll hear is the coyotes howling at night, and you’ll wake up to glorious desert sunrises. Order fresh eggs from the campkeeper for breakfast, laid by the homestead flock of barred Plymouth Rock hens, or organise an hour of family fun on the trampoline. There’s also more than 20 acres of sagebrush in which to hunt rabbits or practice shooting, archery or falconry.
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