For those looking to escape the hectic city life and reconnect with a simpler time and their roots in nature, the Sunriver area in central Oregon is truly a magical place. Over the years, though, the area has become crowded at times, with thousands of people every year flocking to it’s gorgeous snow-covered slopes and hiking trails throughout the country side. If you came to Sunriver to escape the people, there are still some lesser known activities in Sunriver that surely won’t disappoint. Today, we want to go over our three favorite off the beaten path places to explore that you can check out the next time you’re in Sunriver.
Visit the Newberry National Volcanic Monument
Did you know that Yellowstone is not the only active volcano in the northwest United States? It’s not only true, but on your next vacation to the Sunriver area, you can actually go explore one for yourself! The Newberry National Volcanic Monument is home to Newberry Crater, a 17 square mile caldera in the heart of a volcano that is both seismically and geothermally active. This caldera lies in the heart of the national monument surrounded by 54,000+ acres of sparkling lakes, lava flows, and some of the most beautiful scenery you’ll find anywhere in Oregon. Hike the trails and explore the volcano, or head to the top of Paulina Peak, where you can see some of the most majestic views of the Cascades anywhere. When you visit the Newberry National Volcanic Monument, the choice is yours!
Spend a Relaxing Day at Todd Lake
One of the relatively unknown hidden jewels of the Oregon landscape is Todd Lake, a 45-acre body of water quaintly nestled away in the Deschutes National Forest. This area is absolutely perfect for you and your family if you’re looking to escape the crowds at the slopes and enjoy a relaxing day of fishing, picnicking, or more! The lake is also surrounded by alpine forests and mountain ranges, and so it will be sure to create images and memories that will last a lifetime.
Or Take It All in at Once with a Scenic Drive
So far, we’ve talked about lakes, mountains, volcanoes… There’s so much to do, it can be hard to know where to start! It’s easy to get overwhelmed, but before you worry too much, we have the perfect idea for you if you’re looking to just absorb all of the natural beauty that the Sunriver area has to offer as a whole: Take a trip on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway! Spanning 66 miles, the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway is one of the most breathtaking drives in the United States and will truly show you what makes central Oregon so special. There are also plenty of places to stop along the way, so don’t forget your hiking shoes just in case you feel the urge to get out and explore for yourself!
These are just a few of our favorite places, and we’re sure along the way you’ll find some new favorites, too! There is so much to do in Sunriver and so much free activities in Sunriver, so get out there and explore it for yourself today!