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Holiday Hot Spots on the Oregon Coast
Published: 11/06/2018  Updated: 11/21/2018
Gray Whale holiday sculpture display at Shore Acres State Park near Coos Bay, Oregon
Gray Whale holiday sculpture display at Shore Acres State Park near Coos Bay, Oregon

From lighthouses to lighted boats, plan now to catch the best Christmas lights, attractions and wonders of the holiday season along the Oregon Coast.

Whether it's a brilliant light show at Shore Acres State Park on the South Coast or a Haystack Holiday getaway in Cannon Beach, visitors will find holiday festivities and illuminated decorations of all types up and down the Oregon coast. Here are five festive options for lighting up your holiday season.

Haystack Holidays in Cannon Beach
Cannon Beach, Oregon, puts fun back in the holiday season with a series of festive events in November and December. Haystack Holidays highlights include Mimosa Madness, Cannon Beach's refreshing alternative to the craziness of Black Friday, the popular downtown Lamp Lighting Ceremony and special holiday concerts. With festive window displays, great restaurants, outstanding shopping and a dozen art galleries, this charming village by the sea offers the perfect holiday season getaway. Visit Haystack Holidays 2018 or call (503) 436-2623 for more information.

Yaquina Bay Lighted Boat Parade
The holiday season in Newport, Oregon, kicks off on December 1 with a lighted boat parade on Yaquina Bay. Starting at dusk, local boats decorated with festive lights sail along Newport's Historic Bayfront. Watch colorful illuminated vessels from shore throughout the Bayfront or hop aboard a Yaquina Bay excursion. Boat rides can be purchased through Marine Discovery Tours. Call (541) 265-6200 for more information.

25th Annual Sea of Lights at Oregon Coast Aquarium
Over half a million colorful lights and holiday decorations will surround visitors with the spirit of the season as they explore Oregon Coast Aquarium after hours. SCUBA Santa will be busy diving in the Aquarium exhibits, posing for photos with visitors and noting family Christmas wishes. This family-friendly event kicks off with a special celebration Friday, November 30, through Sunday, December 2, from 6-9pm. Admission to opening weekend is $2 plus two cans of nonperishable food. Sea of Lights continues to illuminate the Aquarium on Friday and Saturday nights from 5-8pm through December. The aquarium is located on Yaquina Bay estuary just south of Yaquina Bay Bridge at 2820 S.E. Ferry Slip Rd., Newport, Oregon. For more information, visit Sea of Lights or call (541) 867-3474.

Victorian Christmas at Heceta Head Lightstation
During two weekends in December, this landmark lighthouse is a holiday destination for visitors and locals of all ages. Heceta Head Lightstation Victorian Christmas open house is from 4-7pm, on December 8-9 and December 15 -16. The restored Queen Anne-style Keepers House, now a bed and breakfast, will glow with Christmas lights and musicians will add to the magic, performing holiday favorites. Sample seasonal tidbits, hot drinks and, best of all, get a rare tour of this landmark at night. Santa Claus will also make a special appearance and the gift shop will be open for those last-minute shoppers. Admission to the Keepers House is free, but an Oregon State Parks day-use fee is required for parking. Shuttle service is available from the public parking located at Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint. Heceta Head Lighthouse is located on the Central Oregon Coast, halfway between Florence and Yachats, 92072 Hwy 101 South. Find out more online at Heceta Head Lighthouse Interpretive Center and Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint or call (541) 547-3696.

Holiday Lights at Shore Acres State Park
From Thanksgiving until New Year's Eve, brilliant displays of holiday lights attract visitors to Shore Acres State Park on Oregon's South Coast. Known for its illuminated displays of sea creatures like colorful puffins, pelicans and a life-size spouting whale, this park shines with over 325,000 lights. With paved and lighted paths throughout, the formal seven-acre garden is wheelchair accessible. The gift shop will be open for holiday shoppers and refreshments and entertainment will put everyone in the holiday spirit. Sponsored by the Friends of Shore Acres, Holiday Lights at Shore Acres has been a community tradition in Coos Bay since 1987. Nearly 75,000 visitors from all over the world enjoyed last year's holiday lights. Learn how it all began, read about sculpture design, fabrication and displays at the park. Parking is $5 or free with current Oregon State Park Pass. Shore Acres State Park is located on Cape Arago Highway, about 12 miles southwest of Coos Bay. Access the brochure at Shore Acres Holiday Sculpture Guide. For more information go to Coos Bay Holiday Lights or call the park at (541) 888-3732.

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