Small fishing boats parked in the Coquille River marina in Bandon, Oregon.

Bandon, Oregon

Bandon is a small city situated in Coos County on the southern side of the Coquille River's mouth in the US State of Oregon. The huge cranberry fields in Bandon have earned the city the honorary title of "Cranberry Capital of Oregon." George Bennet, an Irish peer, named the town after his hometown Bandon in Ireland. This little, quaint city is well-known for its famed golf courses at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort as well as its historic Coquille River Lighthouse.

Geography And Climate Of Bandon

Stairway leading down to rocky beach at Coquille Point in Bandon, Oregon
Stairway leading down to rocky beach at Coquille Point in Bandon, Oregon. 

The small city of Bandon is situated at a point where the meandering Coquille River empties into the Pacific Ocean. Bandon covers a total area of 8.15 sq. km, of which 7.18 sq. km is occupied by land and 0.97 sq. km is covered by water. Bandon is one of the most visited places along the southern Oregon Coast.

According to the Köppen Climate Classification, Bandon experiences a warm-summer Mediterranean climate. The winters are lengthy, cold, wet, and primarily gloomy in Bandon, while the summers are cool, dry, and generally clear. The average annual temperature fluctuates between 42°F and 66°F, rarely falling below 34°F or rising above 72°F. August is the year's hottest month having an average daily high temperature exceeding 63°F. Having an average daily maximum temperature of less than 55°F, December is the year's coldest month. On average, Bandon receives 62 inches of rain and 0 inches of snow yearly.

Brief History Of Bandon

Bandon Historic District, Bandon, Oregon
Bandon Historic District, Bandon, Oregon. Image Credit: Visitor7 via Wikimedia Commons

George Bennet named the town in remembrance of his Ireland hometown and settled there in 1873 after coming across a location known as "The Ferry." The Coquille Indians inhabited the region before 1850. Then, in 1851, the French Canadian trappers found gold at nearby Whiskey Run Beach, however the gold rush had little effect on the region. When Bennett first arrived in this small portion of the Coos region, he thought it offered excellent potential for economic growth. Because of the nearby timber and the lush vegetation at the time, the region provided rich, suitable soil for agriculture. Bennett brought the Gorse shrub to the newly founded Bandon to give it a flavor of his hometown. However, this action would lead to the town's nearly total devastation 63 years later. A shift in wind direction on September 26, 1936, caused a forest fire that killed ten people and destroyed all but 16 of Bandon's 500 houses. The fire was directed toward the gorse hedges, which were four feet high by that time in some parts. Bandon successfully transformed into the charming beach resort it is today, even though gorse is now subject to rigorous rules.

The Population And Economy Of Bandon

Waterfront seafood restaurant on the shore of Coquille River, Bandon, Oregon
Waterfront seafood restaurant on the shore of Coquille River, Bandon, Oregon. Editorial credit: steve estvanik /

Bandon has 3,373 residents as per the latest US Census. Bandon's population is currently growing at a pace of 0.78% annually. White (Non-Hispanic) (87.9%), Two+ (Non-Hispanic) (9%), White (Hispanic) (1.15%), Two+ (Hispanic) (1.06%), and Black or African American (Non-Hispanic) (0.705%) make up the top five ethnic groups in Bandon. Bandon has a 20.45% poverty rate and a $44,507 median household income. The median monthly rental cost in the last few years has been $742, and the median value of a home is $316,300. In Bandon, the average age is 59.2 years, with 59.3 years for men and 59.1 years for women.

Attractions In And Around Bandon

Kronenberg Park

Coquille Point Beach, Kronenberg Park, Bandon, Oregon
Coquille Point Beach, Kronenberg Park, Bandon, Oregon. 

Kronenberg Park is the ideal location to visit if you ever want to see some rocks by the water while traveling along the Oregon coast. You should not miss the stunning sight of the waves breaking against the rocks when looking out towards the coastline of Oregon. If you visit at the proper time of year, you can see a variety of marine species here, including seals and even whales. 

Shore Acres And Cape Arago State Parks

Dramatic shoreline with strange rock formations at Shores Acres State Park, Coos Bay, Oregon
Dramatic shoreline with strange rock formations at Shores Acres State Park, Coos Bay, Oregon. 

When considering what to do in Bandon Beach, Shore Acres and Cape Arago are two charming state parks that carry a powerful punch despite their tiny size. Shore Acres State Park is a special combination of lovely natural elements and man-made features, such as the meticulously designed gardens home to flora from all over the world. It is set on rocky sandstone cliffs high above the ocean. After viewing the formal gardens, rose gardens, and Japanese gardens, you can venture into the park's more natural areas, such as the trail that descends to Simpson Beach's hidden seaside cove.

Bandon Dunes Golf Resort

Bandon Dunes Golf Course and Lodge
Bandon Dunes Golf Course and Lodge. Editorial credit: Manuela Durson /

Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, regarded as one of the best in the country, offers five courses with stunning coastal vistas. You may explore the region's distinctive dunes on winding pathways that round the courses while admiring views of the ocean and golf course. In the main lodge, both rooms and private cottages are available, and visitors may take advantage of the resort's spa and its many restaurants, bars, and lounges.

The Elephant Rock And Coquille Point

View of Elephant Rock from Coquille Point
View of Elephant Rock from Coquille Point. 

For those who want the best view of Elephant Rock in the city, go to the beach at Coquille Point in Bandon. Visitors may enjoy other areas of the park without worrying about tripping over rocks or wind-blown rubbish, thanks to the path that runs along the edge of this overlook. Here, the surroundings are breathtaking, made even more so by one of the numerous sculptures perfect for Instagram photos at the top of the bluffs. Storms can be seen rolling into the ocean just steps away from lounging at the top during less severe weather.

Coquille Lighthouse

The Coquille River Lighthouse on the Oregon coast.
The Coquille River Lighthouse on the Oregon coast.

One of the best locations to see in Bandon Beach is the Coquille River Lighthouse, which is located within Bullards Beach State Park and was first constructed in 1895. The tower itself is accessible to the general public, allowing one to learn more about the intriguing past of this building. It is a magnificent sight and is used to help seamen pass the bar at the Coquille River's entry. One may access the jetty from the lighthouse and take in views of the river and a lovely section of the beach.

West Coast Game Park Safari

A female lion takes a nap on gravel at the West Coast Game Park in Bandon, Oregon
A female lion takes a nap on gravel at the West Coast Game Park in Bandon, Oregon. 

In Bandon, Oregon, there is a 53-year-old walk-through safari called West Coast Game Park Safari. This functions as a petting zoo and exhibits uncommon breeds of cats, including Bengal tigers and African lions, in addition to snow leopards. The park also prioritizes raising endangered animals like cougars and emus.

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