Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint
Heceta Head Lighthouse is an Oregon coast icon. It sits on Heceta Head at 206 feet above the crashing waves of the Pacific ocean. The Heceta Head State Scenic Viewpoint also has beach access and a B&B, but the highlight is definitely the 56 foot tall lighthouse. It was built in 1893 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
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Know Before You Go
Location: 15-20 minute drive north of Florence, Oregon
Parking: Parking lot half mile from the lighthouse
Fees: Day use fee for parking is currently $5. Check the OSP website for current pricing.
Hours: Day use, year round
Lighthouse Tours: 11AM – 3PM in the summer, 11AM- 2PM in the winter
View from the Parking Lot
This area of the Oregon Coast is so lovely that even the view from the parking lot is spectacular. There’s beach access and a good look at Heceta Head (the lighthouse can just barely be seen between the trees). Up on the rocky bluff is what used to be the assistant lightkeeper’s house. It is now Heceta Lighthouse B&B where guests can stay and might have an encounter with Rue, the possible ghost on site.
Heceta Lighthouse Trail
From the parking lot is a well maintained half mile trail to the base of the lighthouse.
Along the walk to the lighthouse there are great views of the Pacific coastline.
To get a different perspective of the lighthouse, take the trail that shoots off from the main trail close to the lighthouse. It goes up and behind the lighthouse.
Looking for longer hiking adventures? This trail continues 1.5 miles down to Hobbit Beach. It is also part of the Oregon Coast Trail, so potentially you could hike all the way north to Fort Stevens.
The kerosene lamp was first lit in 1894 and lightkeepers had to keep it burning all night. By 1963, with help from modern electricity, the lighthouse was fully automated. The light is amplified by a first-order fresnel lens similar to the one at Cape Meares Lighthouse and flashes once every ten seconds.
This is such a good vantage point to see Heceta Head, the lighthouse, and the B&B. However, you can’t get this shot while you’re at the park. There is a pull out on Highway 101 south of the park, about a quarter mile north of the Sea Lion Caves.
Cormorants, common murre, and pigeon guillemot can be seen on the nearby sea stacks, which are part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge. Seals and sea lions can also be seen in the area, as well as migrating gray whales. We spotted a juvenile bald eagle on our hike to the lighthouse.
Thinking About Visiting Heceta Head Lighthouse?
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