No road trip along the coast in Oregon is complete without a stop at Sea Lion Caves. The caves are located about 11 miles north of Florence, OR on U.S. Highway 101.
There is a big parking lot right of 101 but be careful crossing the highway. Sometimes cars speed around the curves here.
The cave formed 25 million years ago and it’s the largest cavern in the America’s – with a height of a 12-story building and the length of a football field.
Stellar Sea Lions find their year-round home in this caves made of basalt. Until 1961 the cave was only accessible by a quarter-mile steep trail with 250 steps. Today you can access the caves by an elevator and a short trail from the visitor center. After you exit the elevator you walk in a down a corridor to a small cave with a great view of the Sea Lion Cave.
Enjoy the view of the sea lions and see a skeleton of a sea lion in the center of the room. The steps to your right bring you up to a lookout with a great view of Heceta Head Lighthouse.
Heceta Head would be another great stop on your road trip along the coast.
Below a short video, I took of the main cave area.
When I came across this place, I was not even aware that it existed until I saw the just shortly before the pullout. The weather was not the best and visibility was quite low along the coast.