Off to the Pacific Northwest
Long Beach Travel Blog› entry 2 of 7 › view all entries
I met Paul at the Portland airport, and we rented a convertible there, and headed toward the coast via US 4 which follows the Columbia River on the north side of the river in Washington State. Basically, you drive north from Portland on Interstate 5, cross the Columbia River and state line to Vancouver, Washington and on up to Kelso. At Kelso, you veer west on US 4 and take it on out to Ilwaco, Washington. Long Beach is just north of Ilwaco. It claims to have the longest beach in the world. Ilwaco and Long Beach are on a peninsula that stretches north from the mouth of the Columbia. It is said that the peninsula was created by the force of the Columbia pushing sand, rocks and silt out into the Pacific, and then it turned back north to form the land area.
The drive was really beautiful -- very green and lush, with lots of spring flowers along the way. It took us a little over 2 hours to get out to Long Beach.
We did have to stop in Ilwaco at the English Pub for a beer and fried oysters when we arrived, as we were both dry and hungry. Funny thing, although it's called the English Pub -- they only had Irish and American beers! I had a draft of an Irish ale and Paul got a Guiness to go along with our Willapa Bay oysters. It really hit the spot!
We joined the wedding group after our "snack" at the hotel in Ilwaco where most of the party is staying (the Inn at Harbour Village). From there, it was on to Long Beach for a pre-wedding dinner for the group. We had a nice dinner at the Castaways Seafood Grille in Long Beach.
From dinner, it was on to the beach house that the Bride and Groom had booked Paul and me into -- along with one of the Bride's cousins and her fiance. They were coming down from Seattle by car, and arrived late.
The beach house was large, airy and very comfortable. It's called "the Dunes" locally and is available for rental for folks to spend time at the beach. It has a nice front lawn that is filled with clover that was in bloom with pink, white and red blossoms -- very pretty and sweet smelling. We gave John and Holly the master bedroom, and Paul and I each got our own rooms upstairs. I crashed after a long day of travel and a good dinner and wine.