Seaside Stories

King Tides Safety and Viewing in Seaside

December 17, 2019 | by Josh Garhofer

Seaside Cove in stormy conditions (photo by Don Frank)

** Story updated for the 2020/2021 King Tides **

King Tides come each year to Oregon. As one of the most easily accessible beach towns in the Pacific Northwest, Seaside is popular destination for the annual phenomenon. Whether you’re catching a ride on a surrey through our charming streets or walking the 100-year-old seafront Promenade, understanding these powerful tides and following safe viewing practices are key elements for a fun and memorable visit.

What Are King Tides?

A King Tide – known as a perigean spring tide in the scientific community – occurs when the new or full moon is closest to the Earth. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this combination of gravitational force and the rotation of the planet creates a tidal flooding of the coastline. This phenomenon is both naturally occurring and predictable… and can make for some spectacular viewing from a safe distance.

The 2020/2021 spring tides will occur on:

November 15-17, 2020

December 13-15, 2020

January 11-13, 2021

Seaside’s many beachfront properties are a good bet for your King Tides visit. See our Stay page for a city-wide lodging directory and sort by Oceanfront/view rooms.

Necanicum Estuary during King Tides (photo by Dick Edwards)

For a deeper dive on the King Tides experience, check out the Oregon Tides Photo Project, an ongoing effort since 2011 to invite visitors and locals alike to photograph areas impacted by the King Tides. Users are encouraged to share their images on social media using the hashtags #kingtides and #orkingtides.

** Please exercise extreme caution when near the beach as King Tides bring unusually high water levels and even experienced tidal explorers can be caught by surprise. It is not advisable to drive through flood waters, which may be deeper than it appears and carry unseen debris. **

See our Seaside Tide Tables page for detailed predictions.

and so much more!

King Tides Safety and Viewing in Seaside

Seaside Cove in stormy conditions (photo by Don Frank) ** Story updated for the 2020/2021 King Tides ** King Tides come each year ...

Learn More
How to Build a Beach Campfire

It’s a longstanding Seaside tradition: listening to a crackling fire in concert with the crashing of the ocean waves. Campfires ...

Learn More
The Roaring Twenties on Broadway

The roaring twenties was an exciting era in Seaside.

Learn More
All About Storm Watching in Seaside

Having grown up in Seaside, Keith Chandler knows and appreciates the beauty and the power of watching storms and high tides on the...

Learn More
Holidays in Seaside

Some say Seaside, Oregon, shines brightest in winter — warm chowder, cheerful shops, blustery walks on the beach, all without th...

Learn More
Fruits of Your Labor

Picking blackberries on the Oregon Coast, local coastal berries

Learn More
Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day in Seaside

Seaside has many treasures “hidden” before our very eyes, ones we may take for granted because we don’t fully grasp their importance.

Learn More
The Big Storm

The Oregon Climate Service calls it the Great Coastal Gale of 2007, but here in Seaside we just call it The Big Storm.

Learn More
The Succulent Season

Celebrating the arrival of the Oregon Coast

Learn More
Accessible Adventures For Everyone

Seaside is open — and easy — for folks of all abilities. From where to stay to what to do, we’ve got a rundown of tips to ma...

Learn More
Watching Nature Run its Course in Seaside

Wonderful natural beauty in Seaside,

Learn More
Clam Chowder
Must-Eat Clam Chowders in Seaside

A look at five of the more than 20 clam chowders found in Seaside, Oregon

Learn More
COVID: What to Expect Dining In or Taking Out 

The local beer and Northwest wines are flowing, the traditional ice cream and artisanal gelato is ready to scoop, and your favorit...

Learn More
Trying to take flight during a wind storm on the beach in Seaside, Oregon.
Tides and Tide Tables: What You Need to Know

If your winter beach vacations to date have required sunscreen, then you clearly have not experienced a magical Seaside day in Jan...

Learn More
The Columbia River Maritime Museum: On the Water’s Edge

A visit to the Columbia River Maritime Museum in Astoria.

Learn More
Mushroom foraging near Seaside.
Mushroom Foraging Near Seaside

Oregon’s North Coast is a popular spot for treasure hunters. While some people might look for pirate treasure though, the on...

Learn More
Stop and Smell the Roses

Spending a little time with Seaside's pocket gardens

Learn More
Paragliding on the North Coast

Adventure and fun with paragliding on Oregon

Learn More