The Whale Watching Center, Depoe Bay

4.8
#3 of 6 in Wildlife in Depoe Bay
Dolphin / Whale Watching · Wildlife Area
The Depoe Bay Whale Watching Center, also known as the Depoe Bay Ocean Wayside, is an Oregon State Parks staffed visitor center in Depoe Bay, Oregon, U.S. to help visitors observe whale migration and provide information about whales and other marine mammals including history, economics, and their environmental and ecological influences. The wayside provides a sheltered platform from which to view the ocean. First established as a wayside parking area on the Oregon Coast Highway in 1930, the wayside building was built in 1956 as a restroom facility for the popular spot. It is located just to the north of the Depoe Bay Bridge, also on the National Register.
The 1-1/2 story concrete building stands directly on the rocky coast at a slightly lower level than the highway, directly adjacent to the entrance to Depoe Bay. The main level consists of a single room used as a display and concession area, with a stairway to the lower level, where the toilets are located. The main room has large windows facing the ocean. A stair in the center of the space leads up to an octagonal observation room in the middle of the roof terrace, with five windows facing the ocean. The roof supports an open-air observation deck.
The structure is surrounded by a concrete plaza that also overlooks the ocean, with a low stone-capped concrete wall surrounding the area. A promenade runs northwards from the wayside along the shoreline, shielded by a stone wall that served as the prototype for the decorative stonework at the wayside's plaza. The observatory building's appearance is essentially the same as its 1950s appearance.
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The Whale Watching Center reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
116 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • No whales today but great waves! If you haven seen the waves crash here, then you’re really missing something! Also, Got the required Depoe Bay saltwater taffy!  more »
  • This was one of the most delightful experiences I had over the summer when I visited the State of Oregon. Staff members at the center were so helpful to explain many facts about the whale and it was.....  more »

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