Guide to Hug Point – Waterfall, Beach, Caves, and More on the Oregon Coast!

Cannon Beach is one of the most popular attractions on the Oregon coast – and while the iconic sea stack and the cute beach town is definitely worth a visit, if you drive just a little farther south, you’ll stumble upon some less crowded gems – including the Hug Point State Recreation Site.

The Hug Point waterfall is an incredible sight, but to see the unique ocean side falls, you’ll need to know when to visit! This guide will tell you all about exploring the Hug Point State Recreation Site – when to see the waterfall, things to do on the beach, and more.

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Getting to the Hug Point State Recreation Site

To get to the Hug Point State Recreation Site, all you need to do is continue south on Highway 101 (Oregon’s coastal route) from Cannon Beach! It’s less than 5 miles, and you’ll see signs for the Hug Point State Recreation Site.

Along the way, you can stop at Arcadia Beach – a scenic overlook with a quick walk to the beach. The jagged rock formation in the middle of the sandy beach makes for a nice place to stop for a few photos!

Afterwards, continue to Hug Point! The parking lot is pretty big, but this place can definitely get busy – so plan your trip for a weekday if possible, and aim to get there early, or closer to sunset.

Things to Bring to Hug Point

When you explore the Hug Point State Recreation Site, here are a few things you should pack to make your experience the best it can be!

Waterproof Shoes

There aren’t any trails at Hug Point, so unless you plan to do an intense walk down the sandy beach, you won’t need any hardcore hiking boots. But, I definitely recommend waterproof shoes! If you want to see the Hug Point waterfall, there may be some stream crossings in the sand depending on weather. Waterproof shoes also make it easier to get close to the tide pools, and to look out at the ocean without getting your socks soaked by a rogue wave.

I really am a lifelong fangirl for Chaco sandals, if you don’t mind your toes getting wet and sandy!

For more coverage, opt for some rain boots, or water shoes.


Even in the summer, a windbreaker is a must for visiting the Hug Point State Recreation Site! The wind on the coast can be intense, and being by the ocean means you can expect a breeze.

I recommend this RVCA Packable Anorak Jacket – it’s lightweight and easy to put in a backpack, but will keep you warm when you’re exploring.

A Day Bag

You won’t need a hiking backpack to explore at Hug Point, but a day bag is great for carrying water and snacks! I love my Topo Designs Y-Pack.

How to Get to Hug Point Waterfall

A waterfall by the ocean is a unique and beautiful sight, and along with the sea caves at Hug Point, you’ll want to check it out!

But, seeing the Hug Point waterfall takes a little bit of planning. 

when to See the Hug Point Waterfall

The best time to visit the Hug Point State Recreation Site is in the fall, or after heavy rain. Summers are usually drier on the Oregon coast, so the waterfall is usually little more than a trickle. Once the rainy season begins, however, the little Hug Point waterfall is a constant stream.

The Hug Point waterfall coming over the caves.

Low Tide at Hug Point

The other thing you’ll need to consider is that the only time you can see the Hug Point waterfall is at low tide. At high tide, this part of the beach is completely inaccessible. Check the tide chart ahead of time, and be careful! Once the tide comes in, you can get stranded on this part of the beach.

How to Get to Hug Point Waterfall

To get to the Hug Point waterfall, walk down from the parking lot to the beach. From there, head to the right. You’ll walk past sea caves and tide pools, and once you get around the cliff that encloses this part of the beach, you’ll see the waterfall! It’s a short walk, only about a quarter mile.

A sea cave at Hug Point State Recreation Site.

More to Explore at the Hug Point State Recreation Site

You can continue walking along the beach past the Hug Point waterfall for a look at the sea caves and tide pools. If you go left from the parking lot, you’ll see a unique pointy sea stack – past that, you’ll find a more secluded beach perfect for a picnic!

There’s a lesser known view of Hug Point too! From the parking lot, head to the right (if you’re facing the beach). There, You’ll see a narrow trail that goes up the cliffside. Climb up, and you’ll find a few picnic tables. Climb a little further, and you’ll be greeted with a view of Hug Point from above! Best of all, you’ll likely get this spot all to yourself.

A picnic table surrounded by trees at the Hug Point State Recreation Site.

Where to Stay Near Hug Point

An Adorable Cabin

For a unique place to stay during your trip, check out Hipcamp! It’s like Airbnb for campsites – and you can find yurts, cabins, glamping sites, and more.  There are several cute cabins to stay in near the Hug Point State Recreation Site, adding a fun experience to your trip, and a great place to relax after a hike!

You can even get $10 off your first booking here!

A Camper Van

With a camper van, you get a vehicle and a place to sleep, all in one! This is my favorite way to travel, and you can rent a fully decked out van with Escape Campervans.

Whether you car camp, tent camp, or rent a tiny home on wheels, The Dyrt is the best way to find campsites!

A Beachfront Inn

Close to Hug Point, you’ll find the town of Cannon Beach – with incredible getaways and places to stay for a relaxing trip! Here are a few of the best places to stay.

Tolovana Inn – a beachfront inn with an indoor saltwater pool, hot tub, and sauna!

Webb’s Scenic Surf – just steps from the beach and the iconic Haystack Rock

Puffin Place Cabana – a fully outfitted vacation home for a private stay right on the water


On this map, the star icon will show you the exact location of the Hug Point beach,  and the orange bed icons are places to stay!

Hikes Near Hug Point


Have you been to Hug Point, or any of these other hikes on the Oregon coast? Let me know in the comments below! 

Pin any of these photos to reference this Hug Point Beach guide later!

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