Pacific Coast in Lincoln City.Monday, Aug. 1, 2011

NEWPORT, OR — There is something to be said for traveling with local guides as opposed to the automated directions calculated by a mapping website.

The bonus for us was taking a northern route to Newport via Lincoln City that passed through a beautiful swatch of Pacific coastline (the web suggested a route through Albany that was probably faster but had no coastal drive). It was two lanes for most of the journey, but those two lanes passed scenic cliffs, boats, marinas and crashing waves.

The path also wound through some captivating wooded hills (I say captivating, my wife, who got motion sickness, said nauseating).

On the way down, we stopped by the Chinook Winds casino for the buffet, and the kids caught their first glimpse of the Pacific Ocean on the beach behind the casino. From there it was south to Newport, where we stayed at the Whaler. The rest of the day was spent hunting in tidal pools and flying kites on Nye Beach. For dinner we closed down the Sizzler.

Assorted notes:

— Before starting off of the coast, we got up early and attempted to visit the Japanese gardens at Washington Park in Portland. They didn’t open until noon, so was opted for the rose garden just downhill. Also found a neat playground nearby.