Our Front RV view at Winchester Bay (D section)

Our Front RV view at Winchester Bay (D section)

A superbly located (and inexpensive) water-front dry-camping area in the Winchester Bay Marina on the central Oregon Coast.

Link to campground here: Winchester Bay Marina, OR
Link to map location here: Winchester Bay Marina, OR

  1. Site Quality = 2.5/5
    Very, very basic, but well-located sites here. The marina camping area is separated into 6 different sections (B through G) which vary slightly in location and price. All sites are basically on a large concrete parking lot separated by lines.  No privacy here, but site size is spacious, mostly flat and views are fully open. Sites in sections B, C, D are waterfront sites costing $14/night (or $18/night for the larger “prime” end sites designated by red lines). These are definitely the best-located sites with full (excellent) water views, picnic tables and grills. Sites in E, F, G are interior sites costing $11/night with more limited views and no extras, but still good space. No hookups and all sites except the “prime” end sites are first-come-first-serve. You can see a MAP of the camping locations HERE.
  2.  Facilities = 3/5
    Basic, but very nice facilities here. There are several flush toilets in the marina plus shower stalls (pay only, unfortunately). There is also an on-site fresh water & dump station (the website says it costs $5 for campers, but we got a coupon to dump for free from the camp host).
  3. Location = 5/5
    The best part about this camping area is location. You are parked literally right ON the waterfront with relaxing views of the marina boats, and walking/biking distance to downtown Winchester Bay. The marina itself has pleasant waterfront pavement, a crabbing dock and several green areas including a large park (Ork Rock Park) at it’s northern tip. Lots of interesting attractions around here including the locally-grown oysters, the sand dunes, Umqua River Lighthouse and Ziolkouski Beach Park‎ .
  4. Pet Friendliness = 5/5
    Great location for doggie. There is spacious areas to walk pooch in the marina, including the green Ork Rock Park at the north tip. Short drive to Ziolkouski Beach Park‎ for off-leash beach-play.

Overall Rating = 3.9
BONUS ALERT = Camp ON the waterfront at Winchester Marina!

Summary: I had a hard time “grading” this campground since I wasn’t quite sure how to classify it. This is not really a campground, nor is it a boondocking site. It’s a completely unique and very cool Marina dry-camping area! The campsites themselves are definitely not what you come here for. They are ultra-basic, concrete spots with not much in the way of privacy or “extras” except for a good deal of space and a basic grill + picnic table (B, C, D sites only). BUT…and here’s the big secret…they are RIGHT on the waterfront with full, gorgeous 180-degree views of the marina and docks, and all this for only $14/night. I don’t know anywhere else on the coast where you can get this close to water for that low a price! Plus you are walking distance to downtown Winchester Bay and a short drive to exploring the awesome coastal dunes, Umqua River Lighthouse and the beach. There are 166 “sites” in the marina, but it always seems mostly empty, even on summer week-ends. All sites are first-come-first-serve except for a select few on the end of C & D sections which may be reserved by phone. We found camping by the water ultra-relaxing and totally loved our view. We expect this to be a regular stop on our OR travels, and definitely recommend it for others.

Extra Info:  Full 4G LTE signal. Sites cost $11/night ($66/week,  $198/month) for “interior” sites (sections D, E, F), $14/night ($84/week, $252/month) for “waterfront” sites (sections B, C, D) or $18/night for the larger end “prime” sites. See MAP of camping area HERE. No reservations except for “prime” sites. On-site dump station and water.

Extra, Extra Info: OTHER CAMPING? FHU SITES? For those of you wanting hookups Winchester Bay RV Resort lies just across the water from the dry camping area and offers gorgeous hookup sites and the same excellent water views for $39-$42/night. For those looking for a cheaper option next-door Windy Cove offers FHU sites for $23/night. No water-views here and sites are not nearly as nice, but it gets you on location for a cheaper price. For dune riding lovers head over to Discovery Point RV Park located RIGHT next to the dunes. I wouldn’t recommend it for non ATV’ers, but it’s the perfect spot for those who like to ride.

Left-side view of our site in D Section. We paid $14/night.

Left-side view of our site in D Section. We paid $14/night.

Right-side view. We had lots of empty space around us.

Right-side view. We had lots of empty space around us.

View of our RV site from across the marina.

View of our RV site from across the marina.

View across the parking lot (behind our RV) in D section

View across the parking lot (behind our RV) in D section

View to right of our RV in D section. Lots of empty sites.

View to right side of our RV in D section. Lots of empty sites.

View of one of "prime" $18/night end sites in D Section. These are HUGE!

View of one of “prime” $18/night end sites in D Section. These are HUGE!

View of RV's in "interior" F Section. Sites are $11/night here.

View of “interior” F Section. These sites are $11/night.

View down G section. These are also $11/night.

View down G section. These are also $11/night.

View of picnic table & grill (only in B, C, D sections)

View of picnic table & grill (only in B, C, D sections)

View of facilities

View of facilities

Walking around Ork Rock Park at the end of the marina

Walking around Ork Rock Park at the end of the marina

23 Responses to Harbor Campground Review – Winchester Bay Marina, OR

  1. Luke Alexander says:

    It is good to see you young folks discovering what we old folks discovered long ago. There is a reason Windy Cover is called Windy Cove. How are the oysters this year? Go have fish and chips and wine on the little house boat restaurant.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Ah yes, the wind. We had no wind during our stay, but I’ve heard stories…Sadly I’m allergic to shellfish so no oysters for me. I did hear the fish & chips spot is worth the visit. Will have to try that one when we come back to the area.
      Nina

  2. Newbets (@Newbet) says:

    We’re sitting in Albany and will head toward the coast on Monday. Great timing for these reviews. Can’t convince another RVer here to venture out. They have a new 40 f t. and are determined to find pull-thru’s before they head out. Maybe we’ll see you along the way. Happy Trails!

    • libertatemamo says:

      Well, there ARE pull-throughs in the middle portion of the Marina, but I’m sure they’re not the type your friend is looking for LOL.
      Have a great trip. If you make it down to Bandon come see us at the lighthouse.
      Nina

  3. Sounds like a level of boon docking we could handle, at least for a few days! Any restrictions on generator use since we’re not entirely self-contained?

    • libertatemamo says:

      I didn’t notice the restrictions, but I’m pretty sure they’re just standard daytime hours. We heard generators in AM & PM.
      Nina

  4. Carol says:

    Anxiously await your posts! I hope one day you’ll make it to the southern coast, I’ve been scouring the net for places to camp near Cape Sebastian where my husband wants to photograph at sun rise and set. Looking forward to fish and chips in Bandon as we travel south from Seal Rock Cove!

    • libertatemamo says:

      Yeah, we’re hoping to do the southern coast at some point too. We haven’t made it past Cape Blanco so far! I’ve heard Harris Beach State Park (down by Brookings) is an awesome state park, plus I’ve heard rumours of some low-cost boondocking around Gold Beach. Don’t know much more yet :)
      Nina

  5. Charlotte says:

    We will absolutely stay at this park. We lived and traveled on a sailboat for 14 years and one of the things I miss the most is the sound of the wind in the rigging. Here we could have the best of the RV & boat world.

    Just started our full time traveling this weekend, looking forward to visiting many of the places you have shared with us. Thanks for the great blog!

    • libertatemamo says:

      Oh this place would be RIGHT up your alley then!
      Congrats on getting to full-timing! Good travels to ya.
      Nina

  6. Charlotte says:

    Thanks Nina, we are exciting about our new adventure. Another RV’er told me today that when traveling in Oregon we will have a hard time getting a site unless we reserve it 6 months ahead. I haven’t noticed that ya’ll have a problem finding great sites. We like the same type campgrounds that ya’ll visit, Should I need to plan that far in advance? What is your recommendation?

    • libertatemamo says:

      I don’t quite agree with that. Summer does get booked up in State Parks on the coast (esp. when kiddies are out of school) so we do tend to book ahead for those months, but during weekdays you can usually still find spots, plus there are several parks/areas which are first come first serve (e.g. Cape Blanco, Carl G. Washbourne, Winchester Bay Marina). Once school is back on things open up considerably. So, don’t be too worried. If there are state parks you really want to see during summer vacation I’d try and book ahead, but otherwise plan to hit the non-reservation parks and be flexible in where you go.

      Nina

  7. Roberta says:

    We have put our home up for sale and it’s our hope to purchase an rv and mosey on up the road north from California. We have camped along the Oregon coast but we will be able to take our time next time..

    • libertatemamo says:

      Well, congrats to you! Hope the home sells fast and you get on the road soon!
      Nina

      • Roberta says:

        Thank you! We have much to do and knee surgery for my husband coming up in a few days but we’ll get there. First of all selling of items we really do not need or want. Then sorting of books and pictures..Oh my!

  8. Donna K says:

    Nina, wanted to comment on the Bandon post but the comment box is MIA!! I see you already have some comments but the box does not show. Anyway, have a good time in Bandon and maybe we’ll make it down that way sometime this summer.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Cheers for the link! We use WeatherBug on our Android Phone and iPad and LOVE it. Very cool weather app, especially the real-time satellite images.
      Nina

  9. Tamara says:

    We just kicked off a two month tour of the Pacific Northwest, and will be pulling into the Winchester RV Park in just about a week. Photos of the area look outstanding, thank you Nina

    Hoping to get in my miles running along or near the beach while we are there. Did you happen to observe if that is feasible during your stay by chance?

    • libertatemamo says:

      Cooool!! Enjoy the area. We’ve been getting some pretty windy days this past week so hope it isn’t too windy for ya. There’s plenty of beach-front down by Ziolkouski Beach Park‎. You can actually run directly from the RV park, but some of it will be on road. Once you get to the beach you’ll have lots of space to roam.
      Nina

  10. […] more savings if you pay by the week or month. We discovered just such a gem at Winchester Bay (Salmon Harbor Marina $11-$18/night) and have since found other reasonable dry-camping rates at Newport (Port Of Newport […]

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