Yachats (pronounced yah-hots) may be a small city, but it is the perfect place for a peaceful weekend vacation. The scenery around this area of Central Oregon is just what many people need after a hard month of work. The blood pressure will drop considerably just driving your car along Highway 101 to the north and south of Yachats, as this is some of the best stretch of Highway 101 in all of Oregon. There are also some terrific areas to explore including; Smelt Sands State Park, Yachats State Park, Cape Perpetua and Heceta Head.
Smelt Sands on the North Side of Yachats offers a nice place for an evening walk. The area is scenic and relaxing and everything that Yachats is all about.
A little further south, right in the center of Yachats is Yachats State Park. It is easy to get lost in your day while traversing the rocks and looking for all of the treasures brought in by the Pacific Ocean. The terrain in this park is very rocky, but there are literally thousands of shells, agates and pieces of driftwood thrown onto the shore with every wave. The kids will love this area, but we recommend very close adult supervision when down next to the ocean at either Smelt Sands or Yachats State Park. The ocean is deceivingly dangerous in these areas, especially because of the rugged terrain.
A little further South of Yachats is Cape Perpetua. This cape offers a coastal haven of rock, title pools and picture taking opportunities. There are over 20 miles of hiking trails, a 10-mile bike trail and numerous spots to just stare a nature. There is also a campground and an overlook that are worth mentioning. The overlook at Cape Perpetua is more than 800-feet above sea level offering you the opportunity to see far enough to notice the curvature of the earth; bring your camera.
Fifteen minutes south of Yachats is Heceta Head State Park and Lighthouse. This is one of our favorite places to visit on the Oregon Coast. You enter this park off of Highway 101, dropping down to an ocean-level day-use parking lot. From here you are literally looking straight up at the Cape Creek Bridge. You are then able to explore the creek, walk a gorgeous sandy beach, and take a hike up to the lighthouse for a tour and some great photo opportunities. The hike is 3/8 of a mile; almost all of it up hill, so eat your Wheaties and bring your walking shoes. If you have not done so before, you absolutely can't go to Yachats without visiting Heceta Head. There is a fee to park, but it is well worth the money, and after visiting a park like this you will feel good about that contribution.
For a very pleasant vacation with an accommodating city of friendly people, you will love the Yachats area. It may be one of the smallest tourist destinations on the Oregon Coast, but it is also one of the most enjoyable.