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Sea Lion Caves An Enjoyable Day Trip On the Oregon Coast

This Oregon weekend, I am happy that you have decided to take the trip to Sea Lion Caves with us. Grab your camera and binoculars, maybe a snack if you wish, and we are off! Our journey will take us into Florence before getting to Sea Lion Caves. We have chosen Eugene as our starting point because it is centrally located for most all of our day trips. Are you ready? Then here we go.

We start our trip by heading west on Hwy 126 the (Florence-Eugene Hwy). About 10 miles outside of Eugene we make our first stop. Most people just drive by Fern Ridge Reservoir. We want to stop and enjoy this beautiful sight for a few minutes.

Fern Ridge Resevoir

Now is a good time to talk about our philosophy on day trips. This is what we are talking about when we say enjoy the drive as much as the destination. When you are driving and something catches your eye, pull over and stop. Check it out, you will be amazed at the things you will see and enjoy. Besides, it gives you a chance to slow down and relax. You do not have to race to your destination. As the old saying says Stop and Smell the Roses you will be glad you did.

Florence BeachWhen we arrive in Florence, we decide to take a stroll along the sandy beach. These beaches stretch for miles and are a great way to just relax and do some beach combing. After some time at the beach, we head north on Hwy 101. In about 11 miles, we reach our destination. Parking is located on both sides of the street. The attraction is family owned.

Stellers sea lion

You can see sea lions from outside, but there is a fee to go into the cave. After paying your fee, you will go down an elevator some 208 feet to the cave below. There is also a gift shop for souvenirs.

Stellers sea lion

The cave is as tall as a 12 story building. You are not allowed to take flash photos within the cave as it would disturb the Sea lions. However, with a good camera you should have no problems getting good shots.

Heceta Head Lighthouse

From here, you can see our next destination. The Heceta Head Lighthouse is just a short drive to the north. As we leave the Sea Lion Caves, we drive through a tunnel, and then a quick right turn takes us down to the beach parking lot just below the Lighthouse. We walk along this beach for some more beach combing. The bag that my wife is carrying is getting full of little goodies she has found. The tour of the Lighthouse is not open today. It is open from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Brandts Cormorants

We are getting ready to head back home, but we had to stop at this viewing area to take a last look at the lighthouse and the birds that abound here. There are more than 137 species of birds along the Oregon Coast.

Now it’s time to head back. South to Hwy 126 then east all the way back to Eugene. It has been a great day. We never had to rush and we were able to see many wondrous sights. We are glad you came along with us. Return soon for another adventure on our Oregon Weekends.

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