Answers to a reader question on where to stay and where to dine on the Oregon Coast.
Q: We are going on our honeymoon next week and taking my 11-year-old son with us. We are planning on stops at Cannon Beach, Tillamook, McMinnville and Lincoln City to see the sea lions. Do you recommend any particular places to stay and places to eat? We are somewhat on a budget, so nothing too fancy, but swimming pools are appreciated by my son!
— Dawn, Kirkland
A: You’ll pay a premium no matter where you stay in popular Cannon Beach, but it might be worth a splurge — it is your honeymoon — to spend your first night at a resort such as the Surfsand, where a Jacuzzi suite (with sleeper sofa for your son) is $269, oceanfront with private balcony, fireplaces and an indoor pool; www.surfsand.com or 800-547-6100. Save money later in the trip: The Ester Lee Motel in Lincoln City sits high on a bluff, for spectacular ocean views, with paved access to the beach. Pick from homey cottages or modern motel rooms, renting from $67 to $106 midweek in October; 888-996-3606 or www.esterlee.com. Be aware that Tillamook, while worth a stop for a cheese-plant tour, isn’t on the ocean; but 30 miles south is an undiscovered secret called Neskowin, with the aptly named Proposal Rock Inn (www.proposalrockneskowin.com), reasonably priced condos on a gorgeous white-sand beach. For Oregon coast flavor, try chowder at Mo’s in Cannon Beach or Lincoln City; www.moschowder.com. For McMinnville tips, see Carol Pucci’s recent story on seattletimes.com; search for “Oregon wine country.”
— Brian J. Cantwell