A Solo Traveler’s Guide to Astoria and Warrenton
Whether it’s across the country or venturing to a city nearby, traveling alone can seem extremely daunting, but we promise the leap of faith is worth it. Solo traveling to destinations, such as the North Coast, can create liberating, eye-opening, and easy-going experiences for any explorer looking for a chance to discover themselves and the world around them. Sampling delicious seafood, browsing local stores, and crafting a self-made schedule near the coast has never sounded more appealing! Thus, we’ve listed some of the best endeavors + explorations to tour solo in Astoria and Warrenton and welcome readers to pick and choose the wonderous activities that resonate with them.
Cozy Up with Local Cafes + Bakeries
Traveling solo in this area has its perks, and one of them is enjoying quiet mornings and afternoons in unique coffeehouses with stellar views or grabbing a fresh and delicious pastry on your own time. For javaphiles, head to Astoria’s Coffee Girl and enjoy an espresso while taking in charming views of the Columbia, or visit Red Leaf Organic Coffee while you’re exploring Warrenton. Visitors can also grab a quick pick-me-up at drive-thru locations like A-Town Coffee.
Have a sweet tooth? Swing by local bakeries such as Jambot Donuts for a delicious treat or The Nest Bakery (located near Sunset Beach) to devour a fresh cinnamon roll. Whatever you’re feeling that day, Astoria and Warrenton are here to provide. For a full list of coffeehouses and food-to-go, click the link here for more of our favorites.
Treat Yourself to Locally Made Goods
Astoria prides itself as a walkable city presenting dazzling boutiques and storefronts curated to anyone’s interests and hobbies. Take yourself on a trip into the Astoria Downtown Historic District and browse artisan goods, handmade garments, and artistic creations guaranteed to catch anyone’s eye. Additionally, if your visit falls on a Sunday from Mother’s Day through mid-October, stroll on over to 12th Street to visit creative vendors at the Astoria Sunday Market.
Below we’ve provided a broad range of shops in Astoria to get you started, but readers can view a more extensive list of stores in both Astoria and Warrenton by clicking here.
Cargo: Travel around the world and discover timeless and handmade jewelry, garments, ceramics, and more, crafted by artisans and merchants coming from Japan, India, Vietnam, and beyond.
Gimre’s Shoes: View an array of boots, slippers, sandals, and athletic footwear from the oldest family-owned shoe store on the west coast. Stocking up on a variety of small and large sizes, Gimre’s Shoes also carries a wide range of accessories from trendy tote bags to warm knitted beanies.
Hello Doe: Discover tasteful knickknacks and home goods from lavender candles to stylish men’s and women’s clothing, all specifically curated in the Pacific Northwest.
Lucy’s Books: Find your next read by peeking into one of Astoria’s small and beloved neighborhood bookstores filled with a wide range of books fit for both children and adults.
Young at Heart Paper Crafting: The one-stop-shop for any craft lover. Browse materials for scrapbooking, cardmaking, stamping, and art kits. Stop by and discover a new hobby or fun activity to do on the waterfront.
Tour Instagram-Worthy Top Attractions
Photo courtesy of @thatoneadventurecouple
While in Astoria and Warrenton, bright cityscapes and maritime views will allure solo travelers to fall even more in love with the area. As you create lasting memories on your journey, why not capture a photo or two along the way? Not only do the area’s landmarks make for intriguing history, but you’ll also find them handy for stunning vistas.
Don’t know where to start? View a couple of our suggestions below or click the link here for a full list of everything there is to see + do in our coastal cities.
Astoria Column: When walking up to the 125-foot-tall column, visitors can get up close to view stunning illustrations depicting the explorers and early settlers who were dedicated to expanding the U.S. Pacific Coast. Climb the 164-step spiral staircase and capture a photo of a bird’s eye view of the region.
Astoria-Megler Bridge + Riverwalk: Throughout Astoria’s 6+ mile waterfront trail next to the Columbia River, tourists can visit numerous eateries, breweries, local storefronts, and businesses during their excursion. While you’re out and about, don’t forget to snap a picture of passing ships and the iconic Astoria-Megler Bridge, the longest continuous truss bridge in North America.
Columbia River Maritime Museum: For all things nautical, the Columbia River Maritime Museum is a great place to start when learning about the historical forces who sailed along the Pacific Coast. While the museum is a great place for history buffs interested in detailed maritime exhibits, the landmark also serves as an exceptional place for fun photo ops! Spot a giant anchor out front, life-size displays of fish, and the U.S. Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat sailing over a 20-foot wave.
Flavel House + Garden: Resting at the edge of downtown and spanning over an entire city block, The Flavel House and its renovated grounds showcase elegance and charm with elaborate woodwork and delicate Victorian plants. As one of the best-preserved examples of Queen Anne architecture, visitors can take stunning shots of the grand entrance and hand-carved fireplace mantels.
Fort Stevens and the Wreck of Peter Iredale: One of the most notable Instagram-worthy shots near Warrenton is the Peter Iredale shipwreck. Take a drive to Fort Stevens and view the damage that occurred to a four-masted steel ship sailing over The Columbia River Bar. The abandonment of the ship not only makes for good sightseeing but also stunning imagery when taking photos on the beach.
Marinas: The Warrenton and Hammond Marinas are popular for viewing recreational and commercial fishing fleets - or launching your personal boat for a Columbia River fishing excursion. You may see successful fishers cleaning their catch once they return to the dock! Additionally, book a tour with Arrow Tugboat & Tour Company online and do some sightseeing through the lower Columbia.
Go All Out with Trendy Restaurants and Breweries
Since Astoria and Warrenton are specifically known for their extensive breweries, growing community of big-talent chefs, and spectacular seafood restaurants, it goes without saying one of the biggest must-dos on a solo trip is taking advantage of the delicious grub. Check out the nightlife by hitting up snazzy bars like Blaylock’s Whiskey Bar, The Knot Bar, or Bar 600 at the Cannery Pier Hotel for a luxury cocktail. You can also fill up on mouthwatering seafood cakes at Bridgewater Bistro or enjoy fresh pasta at either Fedé or Fulio’s Pastaria if that’s more your style. Wherever you choose to go, we’re sure you’ll be raving about it back home. Check out our directory here, which includes other restaurants, cafes, and food carts.
Explore with Guided Tours and Activities
Too many options to choose from? Perhaps you’re looking for a planned itinerary for the day! Below, we’ve listed guided tours and self-directed activities to do alone or in a group setting:
Astoria Underground Tour: Go underneath the streets and sidewalks of Astoria to view a time capsule of history waiting to be discovered. Tours are offered mostly on weekends, and the cost is $35 per person for a ninety-minute expedition.
Highlife Adventures Zip Line Tour: Soar 15-75 ft off the ground through seasonal timber and across a seven-acre lake with highly trained guides. The cost is $109 per person, and participants can check out available bookings online.
Untold Uniontown Walking History Tour: Prefer not to spend time on a guided tour? Download the Untold Uniontown Walking History Tour to soak it all in at your own pace. Receive expert knowledge of the city’s rich history through text, audio, video, and interactive photos. Participants can buy the program for $10, and it can be downloaded on any smartphone.
No matter if you’re looking to get out of the house or need to recharge yourself, Astoria and Warrenton welcome you with open arms, and we can’t wait to see you in town.