Oh sure, you could drive the most diverse and spectacular coastal highway, but what fun would that be if you’re a cyclist?
Oregon’s bicycle tourism contributes an average of $1.1 million per day to Oregon’s economy.
That means we love cyclists.
It also means lots and lots of pedal-powered two-wheelers are on Highway 101 with you all year. But of course, spring, summer, and fall are the absolute best times to take in the dramatic panoramas.
There are 363 incredibly scenic miles of Highway 101 starting in Astoria at the border with Washington to Brookings near the border with California. The entire Pacific Coast Scenic Byway provides views of amazing coastal scenery. The road winds by estuarine marshes, clings to seaside cliffs, passes through agricultural valleys, and brushes against wind-sculpted dunes.
And Florence is right smack dab in the middle of it. Of course, we think the best part of the journey is the 20 miles in each direction from Florence.
This portion gives cyclists thrills, challenges, and unforgettable delights around every curve. And there are lots of curves! From the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area to our north to the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area to our south, the diversity of ocean, lakes, forests, rivers, streams, and waterfalls is amazing.
Add to that the variety of wildlife in the air, on the land, and in the water, and you’ll want to slow down and stop at every turnout to take it all in.
We highly encourage that. We don’t want you to miss the breaching whales, playful sea lions, bald eagles, Roosevelt elk, and more.
While you’re in town, be sure to try sandboarding at Sand Master Park, golf at beautiful Sandpines or Ocean Dunes golf links, a thrilling sand rail ride on the dunes (some 500 feet tall) at Sandland Adventures or Sand Dunes Frontier, or try clamming, crabbing, or fishing at several prime spots nearby.
Once you get a small taste of the Florence area you’ll realize why we call this Oregon’s Coastal Playground!
Florence is a bike-friendly town too. We have a variety of bike trails and bike lanes in town to get you where you want to go—river, beach, dune, park—or to the local hardware store, camping supply places, or our local bike shop—to meet your needs.
Florence also features in-town overnight accommodations like camping at The Port of Siuslaw or bike-friendly inns (just in case you need a clean, comfortable room with an actual bed, bath, and breakfast). Each are just a few steps to the heart of Historic Old Town Florence and all of its great restaurants, shops, galleries, and entertainment venues.
You may just want to add a day or two to your stop in Florence for scenic side trips to really explore everything this area has to offer. Take a day and head inland to see some of Oregon’s wine country, the rare covered bridges, and roaring waterfalls.
Explore the rest of our website for more adventure ideas, call us at 541-997-3128 for more tips, or request a Florence Visitor’s Guide here.
Here are a few more resources to help plan your adventure.
Eugene, Cascades & Coast/Travel Lane County
Eugene, Cascades & Coast Cycling
Eugene, Cascades & Coast Pacific Coast Bikeway
Oregon Coast Visitors Association
Travel Oregon (Oregon Tourism Commission)
Travel Oregon Cycling Florence