Access to the city of Coos Bay is granted to motor vehicles via Highway 101 to the north and south, and to air transportation via the Southwest Oregon Regional Airport in North Bend.
The climate in Coos Bay (just as with the rest of the Oregon coast), is cool and wet, with around 66 inches of rain annually. Winter temps rarely dip below 40F and summer temps rarely rise above 66F, so be sure to wear a sweater or light jacket, even during summer months. Expect rainfall between September and June. Humidity is high all year. Snow is an uncommon occurrence, with most years seeing only a mix of rain and snow on cold days; pure snowfall is rare.
Located just a few minutes North of Coos Bay, the Oregon Dunes Recreational Area is a place to ride any kind of off-road vehicle.The sand dunes offers a seemingly endless variety of trails and open riding areas that it is virtually impossible to run out of riding options. Experience and inexperienced riders alike can find a challenge here. From tall looming hills to flat open areas the riding is vast. You can pick a bowl to stick around and play in all day long, or you can ride from one end of the dunes such as Spinreel at the North end, to Boxcar at the South end. About a twelve-mile ride. During the summer months the evening darkness on the dunes can be cut with the headlights of off-road enthusiasts, making their way across the open sands.
The dunes are a very popular place come Memorial day weekend, Fourth of July, and Labor day weekend. People from as far away as Southern California make the trip to ride and participate in the madness. It is truly something one should experience at least once in their lifetime.
Located just minutes West and then a few more south, Cape Arago boasts three of the greatest State Parks, not just great in Oregon, but in the Nation.
Sunset Bay State Park is the residential area with an outstanding camp ground. As its name implies it is near a bay of the same name which has a nice beach and water tens of degrees warmer that on the open coast. The North shore of the bay has what probably are the most accessible tide pools on the Oregon coast.
Just south is Shore Acres State Park with the stunning botanical garden of the same name. A spectacular Christmas light display event. The Gardener's Cottage and the garden around it are all that remains of the Simpson Estate. Oh! but what a remainder; every season is glorious, Rhododendrons in the spring, Roses in the summer and Dalias in the fall.
At the southern boundary of Shore Acres State Park is the Simpson Reef Viewing Platform, financed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and built by Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). The offshore rocks, including Shell Island, are part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge and are a valuable resource for the four species of Seals and Sea Lions. The two Sea Lion species, California Sea Lions and Steller (or Northern) Sea Lions only loaf and rest here. Both of the Seal species give birth to pups here and mate to start the next years pups. Friday through Monday of most weeks from Memorial Day until Labor Day there are Docents of Shoreline Education for Awareness (SEA) at the viewing platform with powerful spotting scopes offered by knowledgeable wildlife interpreters who offer informative brochures. More details are found on SEA's web site http://sea-edu.org/
From the south end of the viewing platform to the turn around loop at the south end of the road is Cape Arago State Park. With views of Shell Island and Simpson Reef from another angle as well as a view of rocks south of the cape it is a better place to look for the Gray Whales who remain here through the summer and fall instead of continuing to the feeding grounds on both sides of the Aleutian Islands. There is also a steep but paved path down into South Cove where there is a much richer tide pool area; richer because it is harder to access.
Red Lion Hotel Coos Bay, 1313 N. Bayshore Dr (on Hwy 101, 6 blocks north of the Coos Bay City Center), ☏ +1 541-267-4141. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. A non-smoking, pet-friendly hotel with 145 rooms. Amenities include a fitness room, seasonal outdoor heated pool, spa, and a washer and dryer. On-site restaurant which specializes in Pacific Northwest cuisine, and a sports lounge with 8 TVs including two 52" plasma televisions.
[dead link]Waterfront Homes on Coos Bay, 91904 Cape Arago Hwy, toll-free: +1-800-962-2815. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. Two one-bedroom homes (one upper, one lower) at the water's edge overlooking Coos Bay. Upper unit allows for no more than two persons, lower unit no more than three (sofa bed in lower unit will accommodate one child or adult). Both units are strictly non-smoking and pets are not allowed. These quaint, comfortable homes are located within three miles of some of the greatest crabbing along the Oregon coast, as well as excellent clamming beds just yards away. $750/week.
Edgewater Inn Coos Bay (email@example.com), 275 E Johnson Ave, toll-free: +1-800-233-0423. Coos Bay's only waterfront motel, one block off of Highway 101 in the heart of the southern Oregon coast's recreational and business capital. Within minutes you can visit Oregon's sand dunes, ocean beaches and world-famous Shore Acres State Park.