With the University of Oregon, the Cascade Mountains and the spectacular Oregon coastline, Lane County residents may be excused for believing there is no reason to be anywhere else. Eugene is the county seat and regional cultural hub. It’s also a great college town with fabulous restaurants, stores and fun year-round events. The university town has so many trails and trees that it is hard to distinguish the city from the surrounding national forests (there are three).
Planning a visit? Consult Travel Lane County—Eugene Cascades & Coast.
Trails through the old growth forests of the Cascade Mountains send hikers to dozens of waterfalls, including the powerful Salt Creek Falls, the state’s second-highest single fall at 286 feet. The 26-mile McKenzie River Trail has been touted as America’s best hike, and its wonders include the river’s source at the Tamolitch Pool, which boasts crystal-clear topaz-colored water.
The riverfront port city of Florence anchors the Oregon seacoast. North of town, a 200-foot elevator descends into Sea Lions Cave, the country’s largest sea cave. To the south, the continent’s most expansive coastal dunes spread across 40 miles for dune buggy riders, beachcombers and sand sledders. Cape Perpetua serves up unforgettable ocean sunsets.