Take a side road from almost any major road in the north Willamette Valley and you’ll find yourself surrounded by beautiful rolling hills dotted with forests, farms and vineyards. Here are just a few ideas:
- Wander through the Eola-Amity Hills (there is a good road map with wineries noted on the website of the Eola-Amity Hills AVA)
- Take Hwy 153 East, then take the Wheatland Ferry across the Willamette through sprawling hop fields.Continue east and use maps to find other destinations on the east side of the valley, including the Oregon Garden, Silver Falls State Park, the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm, the Aurora Mills Architectural Salvage, and so much more!
- Explore the back roads around Yamhill and Carlton. Take Hwy 233 north to the Lafayette Highway to reach Lafayette. Turn left on 99W in Lafayette, and a couple of blocks later turn north on Bridge Street, which later becomes Abbey Road. Turn left from Abbey Rd onto Hendricks Road, which will bring you into Carlton (be sure to visit the Republic of Jam in Carlton). From there, loop back to McMinnville on Hwy 47, or continue through Carlton on Meadowlake Road, and then take Westside Rd south back to McMinnville, continuing on to Amity on Hwy 99.
- Take Rob and Barb’s favorite slow-route to the Oregon Coast (this takes a full day but it is beautiful!). Head west from Amity Flats on 5th Street, which soon becomes Hwy 153. Continue on 153 to Hwy 18, a major road to the Oregon Coast, until you reach Sheridan. Take Main Street through Sheridan to Willamina, then turn north on Willamina Creek Road. This becomes the Coast Creek Rd, then Gilbert Creek Rd, and eventually T’s into the Nestucca River Road. From here you use NF-85 toward Blaine, and from there to Beaver, where the road intersects with Hwy 101. From there you can explore the coast, or head down 101 to Hebo, turn east on Hwy 22, which will take you back to Amity.