Stretching for nearly 50 miles between Florence and Coos Bay, the Oregon Dunes form the largest expanse of oceanfront sand dunes in the USA. The dunes tower up to 500ft and undulate inland as far as 3 miles to meet coastal forests, harboring curious ecosystems that sustain an abundance of wildlife, especially birds. The area inspired Frank Herbert to pen his epic sci-fi Dune novels.
The very northern and southern sections of the dunes are dominated by dune buggies and dirt bikes (off-highway vehicles, or OHVs); avoid hiking in these areas. It's possible to rent vehicles south of Florence and around Winchester Bay. The central section of the dunes is closed to OHVs and preserved for wildlife and more peaceful human activities such as hiking and canoeing.