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Oregon: Central Coast – The Devil’s Punchbowl

The Devil's Punchbowl is one of the most spectacular geologic features along the Oregon Coast, especially during the winter. In the quieter summer months during low tides you can hike your way inside.

The Devil’s Punch Bowl is located between Newport and Depoe Bay on the Oregon coast. This Natural Area is run by the Oregon State Parks and there is a day-use area that is very popular with visitors. Beware the parking is limited here so go early or later in the day not to be disappointed. The park is also a great place to spot whales, especially in the months from December through the end of April when Gray Whales migrate to and from Alaska and Mexico.

The cavernous rock formation of Devils Punch Bowl could be as old as 18 million years and is formed from a mix of sandstone and siltstone. As a soft rock, the waves continuously ate away at the sandstone until the rocks collapsed, forming one of Oregon’s most well-known, natural attractions.The winter is the best time to visit if you want to see the Devil’s Punchbowl at its most spectacular. Violent winter storms slam the Oregon coast pushing waves with a thundering roar into a hollow rock formation shaped like a huge punch bowl. The surf churns, foams, and swirls and boils. 

Don’t forget to explore the tidepools on the north side of the punch bowl!

The Devil's Punchbowl viewed from above - Devil Punchbowl Natural Area
The Devil's Punchbowl viewed from above

During high tide, the ocean pours into Devil’s Punchbowl through several openings in its sides, thrashing viciously against the rock. But at low tide the water recedes, allowing hikers to walk inside for a closer look.

There is a trail on the north side of the Punchbowl that takes you down to a small sandy beach. Beware the path down can be quite slippery! The trail to the mouth of Devils Punchbowl runs along this beach to a series of slippery rocks and tide pools. It requires some care to avoid taking a tumble into the rocky shallows.

It’s also worth noting that not every low tide is a safe time to enter. You should avoid going during winter months or stormy weather when the surf is especially high.


We were delighted to find an old British Police box in the yard of one of the houses close by the parking lot for the State Park. For us Brits, especially of our generation, these boxes are iconic and forever associated with the great BBC series, ‘Doctor Who’. A wonderful discovery!

Traditional British Police Box at Otter Rock, Oregeon
Traditional British Police Box

Where is the Devil’s Punchbowl?

Location:Devils Punchbowl State Natural Area, Otter Rock, Oregon
Hours:Open for day use year around
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