Located on the craggy cliffs south of Coos Bay, Oregon, Shore Acres State Park boasts both natural surroundings and lush, breathtaking man-made gardens. A variety of plants, colorful flowers and elaborate landscaping and trails winding through the luxurious gardens give visitors a first hand view of cultivated settings accompanied by the natural beauty of the pacific ocean and rugged beaches. Outdoor aficionados, can enjoy the rustic backdrop, countless hiking trails, abundant gardens, beaches and cliffs with the many activities and sites that can be seen and experienced at Shore Acres State Park, Oregon.
Hiking Accommodations and Trails
From a mere half mile to a more difficult 4 mile, uphill looping trail, there are different hiking options for various visitors trekking through the state park. Observation decks overlook the crashing waves, rocky cliffs and barking sea lions that can be witnessed from views near the garden pathways, making for a beautiful, light hike with much to see. For more adventurous hikers, on the other hand, an unpaved path up a cove-side creek, looping back to the beginning of the trail. Views from the longer, more rugged trail range from tree dotted paths to beautiful seas side views to a historical World War II bunker located within the actual hike, appealing to both American history buff and those longing to be within natural landscaping.
Camping Locations and Amenities
One mile north of the state park are numerous overnight campsites, where hikers, campers and nature-loving visitors can pitch tents or set up the comforts of an RV as they take in the sites and beauty of the surrounding areas. Just a mile south of Shore Acres park, visitors have access to campsites at Sunset Bay State Park. Amenities at the campsites include: RV hookups, electricity, tent campsite areas as well as yurts, restrooms and picnicking areas. In addition to traditional camping amenities, visitors can also call up to nine months prior to arrival and reserve a teepee for their stay at Shore Acres State Park.
Seaside Gardens and Seasonal Events
Though the beautiful gardens located at Shore Acres State Park are filled with diverse plants, flowers and botanics located near the famous Louis J. Simpson Mansion are brilliant on their own, the garden sparkles and shines with greater luminosity during the late fall and winter months at the park. The Holiday Lights at Shore Acres Park event brightens the beauty of the extensive gardens with more than 300,000 L.E.D. lights. Thousands of visitors flock to the event where they pay witness to light sculptures and gleaming trees and plants, lit up with various colored and sized holiday lights. Despite highlights surrounding the botanical beauty of the gardens, the holiday light event also features lighting themes surrounding the maritime history and focus of the state park, enveloping visitors in both nature and the nearby oceanside. Winding into the famous garden caretakers residence gives visitors sweet and spicy apple cider to ease the chill of the wintertime weather.
In addition to showcasing the area’s winter beauty with gleaming holiday lights, the gardens are similarly a sight to see throughout other seasons at the park. During the short period of April and May, azaleas are prevalent in the area and drawing countless visitors with the flower’s simple beauty. From May to September, hikers and other visitors can take in the sweet scent of over 5,000 perennials planted across the location. As many as 600 rose bushes are also blooming through the summer and autumn months. Additionally, Dhalias round out the plant and flower filled seasons in the alluring gardens at Shore Acres State Park.
Although an entrance fee of $3 per vehicle is collected at this particular state park, visitors will not be disappointed with access to formal gardens, an oriental garden and pond, greenhouses, rose gardens, a pavilion, the largest Monterey Pine in Oregon and numerous observation decks.
Though the state park is filled with events and beautiful plant life, its hard to ignore the majestic sea life surroundings at the ocean side state park. The beach access gives travelers a firsthand view of the marine animals inhabiting the area as well as the secluded atmosphere of the nearby cove. Following a winding trail down to Simpson beach provides radiant ocean views and beach access at the year round Shore Acres State Park.