Astoria, OR: The Coolest Town We Never Expected to Meet

It just so happened that our exploration of the Oregon coast left us camping a few miles south of Astoria, and so, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, we began our day with a jaunt through the town.  Not expecting much, we were pleasantly surprised again (and again and again), as our day unfolded almost magically.

First stop, the post office to mail a postcard to a friend.  It was closed and we were almost out of luck, except for the fact that a kind man gave us one of his stamps. “What goes around comes around” he said with a smile.  It must also be stated that we were in the oldest post office west of the Rockies — the building was constructed in 1847; it had style and class.

Post Office boxes - so beautiful!

Then, oh joy!, as we realized that right here is where ‘The Goonies’ was filmed way back in 1985, and we could actually go and see the house where part of the story takes place! As i had just introduced Chris to the magic of the Goonies, we were more than excited for this impromptu pilgrimage there (bonus: the family that currently lives there was having a yardsale that day, and we scored some delicious homemade oatmeal chocolate chip cookies)

This family must receive so many visitors, but they are good-natured about it!

From the celebrity house, we heard the sounds of sea lions barking in the distance, so from there commenced adventure #3: to the docks!  We were met with approximately 200 sea lions lounging about on the 6 local docks, some sleeping, some swimming, most of them grumpy and barking up a storm!

Copious Sea Lions

Then, onwards! The annual Regatta Parade was about to begin.  We hop out of the car to begin our walk there and we’re met with a most precocious 8 year old girl. “Let me guess.  The Regatta Parade. I hope you brought a bag for candy.” Yes!  In this moment, I really began to feel a part of the Astoria community (a small town of ~9,000 people) — these are the moments I am most happy to be traveling — to feel like I am seeing a place the way that locals do, to talk to people, to participate in what’s going on, to learn about life in a new place.

Finally, we decide it’s time to head out (we’d spent 3.5 hours in a place we were only planning to drive through).  On our way out, Astoria says “oh no, you shall not leave without a bang!” and we are gifted a ride on the longest continuous truss bridge in North America, 21,474 feet in length.

The Astoria-Megler Truss Bridge

Thanks Astoria, and thanks to the Ataris for providing us with the most appropriate driving music of the day as we set out for more adventures!

One Response to “Astoria, OR: The Coolest Town We Never Expected to Meet”
  1. Max says:

    Haaay, you guys!

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