city in and county seat of Clatsop County, Oregon, United States

Astoria is a city on the Northern Oregon Coast. It is a small rainy town on the edge of the Columbia River and the Pacific Ocean. It is famous for being the terminus for the Lewis and Clark Expedition, the setting of the movie The Goonies, and its Victorian-era homes built into the hillside overlooking the Columbia River.

Astoria Column view of Astoria

Understand edit

History edit

The history of Astoria begins with the Clatsop Indians who lived there for thousands of years. In 1792, Captain Robert Gray located the mouth of the Columbia River and sailed up the river. In 1805, the Lewis and Clark Expedition spent the winter near the current site of Astoria at Fort Clatsop. The city of Astoria itself was not settled until 1811 when John Jacob Astor's Pacific Fur Company established a fur trading post, making it the oldest American settlement west of the Rocky Mountains.

With the start of the War of 1812 between the United States and England, Astor's fur traders sold the post to the British Northwest Company so that from 1813 to 1818, the British owned Astoria and it was known as Fort George. The 1818 treaty with England established the Oregon Country, although the fur trade largely remained in the British control until the mid-1840s.

Get in edit

By car edit

  &   U.S. Route 101 runs north-south through the city; the Astoria-Megler Bridge to Washington terminates near downtown (at W Maine Dr). U.S. Route 30 provides access from the east, including Portland. If you are coming from Longview/Kelso, Woodland or anywhere north (such as the Puget Sound Area) you can also go through take Exit #39 from I-5 in Longview and cross over the Columbia River to get on US Route 30. Astoria is the western terminus to US 30 after spanning 3,073 miles (4,946 km) across the country from Atlantic City. It is the third longest U.S. highway, after US 20 (Florence, OR) and US 6.

      An alternate route from Portland is to take U.S. Route 26 West and OR-103 North to Jewell. Then take the scenic OR-202 north to Astoria. There are observation points along Highway 202 where it is common to see wild elk relaxing in a meadow. Highway 202 is known as a particularly enjoyable road to take if you happen to be driving a motorcycle or high-performance car. OR-202 enters into the southside of town as Cherry Ave, alongside Youngs River, which ends at US 101 in Smith's Point. Likewise travelers can go north on 7th Ave into town from Cherry.

By bus edit

The central bus station is the 1 Astoria Transit Center on Marine Dr & 9th St in downtown Astoria for the following:

  • Oregon Point (Northwest Point, operated by MTR Western), (bus stop) Astoria Transit Center @ 900 Marine Dr, +1 541-484-4100. Goes up to Astoria from Portland via Beaverton, Elsie along US Hwy 26 and Seaside, Cannon Beach, Gearhart and Warrenton along US Hwy 101. Picks up from the Northwest Union Station and Sunset Transit Center (Beaverton) in the Portland Metropolitan area. Bus is also an Amtrak Thruway bus. Connections to Greyhound, Cascade Point (to Eugene), Amtrak and other bus lines are in Portland.
  • Pacific Transit, (bus stop) Astoria Transit Center @ 900 Marine Dr, +1 360 875-9418. Goes up to Ilwaco on Routes and 24 or 50. The #50 bus continues towards Raymond from Ilwaco. Schedules are infrequent so check schedules closely.
  • 24 - Goes up to Ilwaco Port via Chinook Store.
  • 50 - goes up to Raymond via Rocket Diner in Naselle, Dock of Bay Center, and South Bend. In the other directions goes to Ilwaco via Chinook Store. Passengers connect with Wahkiakum on the Move (see below) at Rocket Diner to continue towards Longview/Kelso by bus.
  • Wahkiakum on the Move, (bus stop) Rockets Diner, Naselle, WA, +1 360 795-6212. Bus from Longview and Kelso to Rockets Diner in Naselle, WA via Cathlamet, WA (major town and county seat) in Wahkiakum County, along WA-Hwy 4. Connections to Greyhound, Amtrak, and other bus lines are in Kelso.
  • 2 Sunset Empire Transportation District, (bus station) 900 Marine Dr, +1 503 861-7433. Operates local public transportation in and around town and down to Seaside and Cannon Beach from the Astoria Transit Center on Rt #101 (weekdays) and the Pacific Connector (weekends).

By cruise edit

Cruise ships stopping in Astoria typically dock at 3 Pier 1. near the Astoria-Megler Bridge.

Get around edit

The Astoria Riverfront Trolley runs along the Riverfront between Basin St & 39th St (Pier 39 Retail complex), $1 for a round trip, $2 for full day. Schedule changes seasonally and is subject to weather. The 9th Street stop is the nearest stop to the transit center (central bus station).

See edit

The Astoria Column
  • 1 Astoria Column, 1 Coxcomb Dr (Atop Coxcomb Hill. Follow signs from 14th St or 16th St), +1 503-325-2963. Column dawn-dusk. Gift shop: May-Sept 9AM-7PM, Oct-April 9AM-4PM. Registered in the National Register of Historic Places, the 125-foot-high column sits 600 feet above the town of Astoria, providing spectacular panoramic views. A spiral staircase leads to an observation deck at the top of the tower. You can buy a wood glider at the gift shop and launch it from the top. The paintings of the side of the column depict scenes from the settling of the area. Parking $5/vehicle (1-year pass).    
  • 2 Columbia River Maritime Museum, 1792 Marine Dr, +1 503-325-2323. Daily 9:30AM to 5PM. Explore interactive activities that show different aspects of life and work on the Columbia River. The building has been renovated and has huge windows that showcase the beautiful views of the Columbia River. Take a tour of the historic Lightship Columbia, which served as a floating lighthouse 5 miles from the mouth of the Columbia River from 1951-1979.    
  • 3 Oregon Film Museum, 732 Duane St, +1 503-325-2203, . Celebrates film making in the state of Oregon. Located in the former Clatsop County Jail, where the opening scene of the Goonies was filmed. Make your own short film on one of three sets. Adults $6, Youth $2.    
  • 4 Flavel House Museum, 714 Exchange St (at 7th St), +1 503-325-2203, . A Queen Anne-style house built in 1884-85 for Captain George Flavel and his family and restored to reflect the Victorian period. There is a visitor center and museum store next door in the family`s Carriage House. Adults $7, Seniors $6, Youth $2.    
  • 5 Uppertown Firefighter's Museum, 2968 Marine Dr. Vintage and antique fire equipment used by the Astoria Fire Department, in a historic fire station. It was built in 1896 as a brewery, was closed by Prohibition in 1915, and became a fire station in 1928. Free, donations.    
  • 6 Garden of Surging Waves, 11th & Duane St. (Across from City Hall). A plaza and garden in the center of the city created as a monument to the Chinese heritage and contributions to the city of Astoria and the Lower Columbia River Basin.    
  • 7 Clatsop County Heritage Museum, 1618 Exchange St, +1-503-338-4849. 10AM-5PM daily.    
  • 8 Doughboy Monument (Astoria Victory Monument).    
  • 9 East Mooring Basin. Public dock and boat ramp with a consistent congregation of sea lions.
  • 10 Fort Astoria, 1498 Exchange St. Recreation of the original Fort Astoria settlement with interpretive signs.  

Nearby Attractions edit

  • Astoria is centrally located to the sites and parks of the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park including Fort Clatsop just a few minutes' drive from town. See the article for more details.
  • Youngs River Falls is a very short hike to a beautiful 45 foot waterfall only 20 minutes from town. Just follow OR-202 south to the Youngs River Loop Road.

Do edit

Buy edit

Eat edit

  • 1 Bowpicker Fish & Chips (Corner of 17th & Duane St, across from Maritime Museum), +1-503-791-2942. A popular "food cart" serving Albacore tuna fish and chips, with thick steak fries, from a converted gillnet boat. Expect a line. They can close during poor weather, especially high winds.
  • 2 Fulio's Pastaria & Tuscan Steak House, 1149 Commercial St, +1 503 325-9001. Has a wide variety of entrees and appetizers to choose from. A bit of an upscale feel, but very casual.
  • 3 Silver Salmon Grille, 1105 Commercial St, +1 503 338-6640. Su-Th 11AM-9PM, F Sa 11AM-10PM. While you are waiting for your food the table is covered with paper and is supplied with crayons for your enjoyment. Brings you back to feeling like a kid again.

Drink edit

Sleep edit

  • 1 Rose River Inn Bed & Breakfast, 1510 Franklin Ave, +1 503-325-7175, toll-free: +1-888-876-0028. The rooms are clean, nicely decorated, and comfortable. The owners are super attentive, from wonderful breakfasts, advice, and even freshly dipped chocolate strawberries in the evening. They seem to like nothing better than cracking open a beer (or uncorking a bottle of wine) in the afternoon with their guests. $90-150.
  • 2 Hotel Elliott Astoria, 357 12th St, +1 503-325-2222, toll-free: +1-877-378-1924. In downtown Liberty District, hotel with views of Astoria and the Columbia river. The hotel combines historical elegance with modern amenities.
  • 3 Cannery Pier Hotel, 10 Basin St, +1 503-325-4996. A luxury hotel built on 100-year-old piling in the Columbia River, at the former site of a fish cannery. Sauna, hot tub, and spa services are available. $450-500 per night.
  • 4 Astoria Crest Motel, 5366 Leif Erikson Dr, +1 503-325-3141, toll-free: +1-800-421-3141, .
  • 5 Best Western Columbia River Waterfront, 3420 Leif Erikson Dr, +1-503-325-2000. Mid-range hotel located near the East Mooring Basin along the Columbia River.

Go next edit

  • Seaside is Oregon's most popular beach destination. Just 30 minutes south on U.S. 101.
  • Long Beach is a popular beach town on the Washington side of the Columbia River, and the gateway to the Long Beach Peninsula. Explore sites from Lewis and Clark National Historic Park along the way, just 30 minutes north on U.S. 101
  • Astoria is an excellent home-base to explore the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park sites that are located on both sides of the Columbia River.
Routes through Astoria
END  W   E  RainierPortland
AberdeenIlwaco  N   S  WarrentonTillamook

This city travel guide to Astoria is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.