Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip

San Francisco, CA to Cannon Beach, OR

Just some of the stunning scenery along the Pacific Coast Highway!

Alright you guys, I am SO excited to share our latest adventure with you! Not only did we get to add two new states to our list, but we had the most amazing time road tripping over 700 miles along the Pacific Coast Highway!

The boys’ first time to visit CA!
Our whole family’s first time to visit OR!

Below is our itinerary. It might look intimidating, with a lot of driving, but we really enjoyed the journey! Jereme was concerned about not having enough time in any given location, but it honestly felt like a great amount of time in most places. We all agreed we would’ve liked more time in Oregon and that’s probably the only part I would change!

I am also linking some of our outfits, I had so many messages about how well we matched!

Travel Itinerary

  • Day 1 – Flight to San Francisco
  • Day 2 – Full Day in San Francisco
  • Day 3 – Drive to Redwoods with a stop at Glass Beach, CA
  • Day 4 – Full Day in the Redwood National & State Parks
  • Day 5 – Drive to Cannon Beach, OR with a stop to hike in Brookings, OR
  • Day 6 – Full Day in Cannon Beach, OR
  • Day 7 – Drive to Portland for flight back to Texas

San Francisco

Golden Gate Bridge from Baker Beach

Our journey started with a smooth flight to San Francisco, where we stayed for 2 nights. Both Jereme and I had already visited San Fran several times, so we left it up to our boys on what we did. They really only cared about seeing the Golden Gate Bridge and fell in love with the Pier and kept asking to go back. So that’s what we did! I enjoyed all of the wonderful food, I think just about all we did was eat and I loved every minute of it!

We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Fisherman’s Wharf and really enjoyed the hotel and the location. They served a delicious free breakfast each morning and we had a partial view of the bay. It was only a 2 block walk to Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39 and that’s where we spent most of our time. We took full advantage of eating seafood at all of the outdoor locations in the wharf. We had the most delicious lobster rolls, shrimp tacos, and fish! I mean, you can’t really go wrong at any of those locations. Our favorite dinner was at Cioppino’s. I had a seafood pasta dish that was to die for, Jett had the spaghetti and meatballs, Jake had the best pizza ever (according to him), and Jereme had the clam chowder in a bread bowel. This was hands down our favorite dinner on the entire trip!

First photo of the trip!

Like I mentioned, we mainly stayed in Fisherman’s Wharf and at Pier 39. We visited the Aquarium of the Bay, strolled along the boardwalk shops, and watched the seals sunbathe. We also drove across the Golden Gate Bridge a few times and hiked the Battery Spencer Overlook trail to see an up close view of the bridge. The hike was fun, the boys picked me beautiful wildflowers along the walk, but it was so windy above the bridge! Our pictures turned out horrible here with the harsh sunlight and my crazy hair. So, we decided to hit up Baker Beach and had the best time. The views of the bridge and the photos we got were everything I wanted! The boys loved running in the sand and we even got to explore a sea cave! We spent a few hours here and then headed back to Fisherman’s Wharf for more food and then walked up to Ghirardelli Square for chocolate and ice cream! Even though we didn’t do a lot in San Francisco, the boys loved the city and how neat the houses looked on our drive.

Baker Beach

Glass Beach, Fort Bragg, CA

Glass Beach

Our next say of the trip was in Klamath, CA. The drive to Klamath, CA is about 6 hours. We decided to break up the drive and stop along the way. Glass Beach in Fort Bragg is the place we settled on and it was so beautiful and a wonderful stop! We all enjoyed walking along the beach and the boys loved exploring the rock formations and collecting different colors of sea glass. We only spent about 1 hour here because we wanted to get back on the road and make it to Klamath before dark. We also had plans to stop in the Redwoods along the way, but I was SO carsick on this drive. There are a lot of windy roads through the mountains and it was horrible for a while before the Dramamine kicked in. I highly recommend taking something for motion sickness before you start this drive. I am usually fine if I am driving and Jake never gets carsick, but we both felt pretty terrible.

The beach is gorgeous, but you have to be close to the shore to really see the extent of the colors of the sea glass.

The boys loved exploring the cliffs!

Klamath, CA (Redwood National Park)

From here, we continued the drive to Klamath and didn’t make any more stops on the drive. We were planning on eating dinner once we arrived, but to our surprise the town had zero places open to eat! And it was only 6:00 pm when we arrived, on a Tuesday evening. There are only about 2 restaurants in the town and they are very seasonal. But our hotel had a little grocery store inside and a wonderful staff that told us all the details of eating in town. So, we loaded up on microwavable meals and called it an early night! While we really liked out hotel, the Holiday Inn Express Klamath – Redwood National Park, but I would recommend driving another half hour to Crescent City to stay there!

Crescent City, CA (Redwood National Park)

Redwood National & State Parks

The following morning we decided to get up early and head to Crescent City for the day and explore the Redwoods. There are several different parks that make up the Redwood National and State Parks, so I had a hard time deciding which area to visit. We settled on Jedediah Smith Redwood State Park and the Stout Memorial Grove Trail to hike. I am so happy with this decision, we had the most amazing day in the Redwoods and ended our hike with a beach walk that was absolutely stunning! We encountered maybe 4 people on this day, at both the Redwoods and the beach! So, I highly recommend a visit if you want to experience a National Park with no crowds. The road to this trail does turn into a packed dirt road, but our 2 wheel drive rental car had no issues making the trip!

Such a fun trail! Stout Memorial Grove Trail

The Stout Memorial Grove Trail is about a 0.7 mile loop, with other trails leading off from the loop. Our boys loved climbing all the fallen trees, especially after being in the car for so long the day before. The pictures don’t really do it any justice, I have NEVER seen trees so big and tall in my life.

In awe the whole time!
Stout Memorial Grove Trail

We hiked down to the river and stopped along the rocks for a picnic lunch. Then we hiked back out and decided to head to Enderts Beach in Crescent City. I have never seen so many sand dollars! My boys loved collecting the ones that were on the beach and the cliffs in the distance were so picturesque. We ventured down to an area with tide pools and saw some sea anemones. We walked along the beach for at least two hours collecting sand dollars and viewing the tide pools. Once we left here, we headed to a Mexican restaurant in town for an early dinner before going back to our hotel in Klamath.

Enderts Beach
So many sand dollars!

Brookings, OR (Samuel H. Boardman Scenic Corridor)

After getting a good night’s rest, we left in the morning to begin the seven hour drive to Cannon Beach, OR. I have never been so in love with the views along a drive in my life! Oregon is the most beautiful state and I cannot wait to get back to the Pacific Northwest and explore more. There are SO many amazing locations that you can stop along the drive, but I chose the Natural Bridges in Brookings, OR off the Samuel H. Boardman Scenic Corridor. This hike is not very long (less than a mile), but I would consider it to be moderate/hard on the way back up. We had to climb up a pretty steep hill to get back to the parking lot and over some tree roots in one area. There is a boardwalk for viewing the Natural Bridges just a few feet from the parking lot if you don’t want to make the hike down and then back up! Even though the hike is a little tough, I am so glad that we did it! The views of the coast are absolutely stunning and we even got to watch a seal in its natural habitat swim and play along the jagged rocks in the ocean!

View from the overlook by the parking lot.
We were standing on the Natural Bridge!
The hardest part of the trail, climbing down and back up this steep slope over exposed tree roots!

Cannon Beach, OR

View from right outside our beach cottage

Finally, we made it to our final stay of the trip at Sea Sprite Inn at Haystack Rock in the wonderful city of Cannon Beach, OR! We pulled into our beach front cottage right at sunset and man, the views were amazing! I wish I would’ve booked this place for one more night because we loved it that much. We had so much space here, we loved the little grass yard and patio chairs, and the beach bunnies were adorable! Haystack Rock was basically in our back yard and the sunsets here are to die for! Two nights was definitely not enough, but we lucked out with amazing weather while we were here. A week-long weather system of rain moved in on the day that we left to fly home!

Sea Sprite Inn at Haystack Rock
Haystack Rock
Tide pools!
Another beautiful sunset

On our two nights/3 days here, we explored the beach, the tide pools at Haystack Rock, and ventured into the downtown area for some shopping, and had wonderful food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! The people here are SO nice and added to our enjoyment of the area. It was a very low-key and relaxing last two nights of the trip. We ended our evenings with bonfires on the beach and loved watching our boys run around and play together in the sand! Our favorite restaurants were the Pig ‘N Pancake for breakfast, our boys have never eaten so many pancakes in their life! Toms Fish & Chips was a great stop for lunch and the guys working there made it even more fun! The boys got little hats to wear and they stopped by to chat with us and were just so nice and pleasant! And our favorite dinner spot was Driftwood Restaurant and Lounge. We did have to wait for about 45 minutes for a table, but it was well worth the wait!

Beach bonfire

And like all good things, our trip quickly came to an end. The drive to the airport in Portland was less than 2 hours away. Fun was had by all and this is a great spring break destination! I am happy to answer any questions, so please don’t hesitate to reach out! Follow me on Instagram (linked on the homepage) to see videos of our trip!

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