The beautiful state of Oregon in the Pacific Northwest is full of memorable and fun activities to do and places to visit in the winter. If you’re looking to plan a trip here, here are seven off-the-beaten-path hidden gems to check out in this state this winter.
1. Yachats, Oregon
Home to stunning views of the Oregon coast, as well as historic lighthouses, Yachats, Oregon is a beautiful place to visit any time of year. It does offer some unique winter draws as well, however. For example, head over to Heceta Head Lighthouse to check out their Christmas celebration which features holiday light displays as well as live music.
2. Explore Mount Bachelor
If you enjoy outdoor winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding, you won’t want to miss checking out Mount Bachelor. This gorgeous mountain is home to some of the best winter sports opportunities in the state, and the Mount Bachelor Ski Resort offers multiple lifts, as well as on-site eateries.
3. Relax At McCredie Hot Springs
Get back to nature and enjoy a relaxing, warm soak at McCredie Hot Springs. Located along Salt Creek in the Willamette National Forest, McCredie Hot Springs is a fairly accessible series of pools with temperatures varying from 98 to 110°F on average. Because of this potentially higher range, you’ll likely want to test the temperature before jumping in.
4. Visit Bend, Oregon
The city is a bit smaller than the more well-known Portland, but it’s still a great place for a getaway. you will want to check out the old Mill District to enjoy exploring a number of restaurants, local shops, and even Riverside trails if it isn’t too cold out. Another fun thing to do when you’re in Bend is to look into cross-country skiing opportunities. Head over to Meissner Nordic, for example, for a fun day out in the snow. There are also a number of places that offer rentals for ski gear for those that do not have some of their own.
5. Go Cosmic Tubing
Head over to Mount hood to enjoy a snow tubing experience that is anything but typical. Called the best party on the mountain, this high-energy nighttime event features laser light shows, music, and even occasional fireworks to create a truly one-of-a-kind backdrop for snow tubing. Due to the event’s popularity in years past, reservations are required.
6. Visit 10-Mile Sno Park
If you enjoy winter recreation, this is the place for you. The 10-mile snow Park offers amazing opportunities for various winter sports, including snowmobiling. It’s also an excellent place to enjoy a snowy hike as well as take in the stunning Oregon scenery. 10-Mile Sno Park is located about 40 minutes outside of Bend, meaning it can make a great afternoon trip for those visiting the city. There’s also a number of lodges nearby for those looking to enjoy a weekend getaway.
7. Go Whale Watching
During the winter, gray whales migrate along the Oregon coast as they head toward warmer waters. This makes winter a great time to view them. The Whale Watching Center in Depoe Bay is a great place to catch a glimpse of some whales.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com