Thursday, November 30, 2023


Charleston, Ore. – a working fishing village

Charleston Marina is the heart of “a working fishing village.”  (Julianne G. Crane)

Summer is the perfect time to explore small fishing communities along Oregon’s coast. One standout is Charleston, just a couple of miles south of Coos Bay.

This small working fishing village came on our radar when we passed through it on our way to camp at Sunset Bay State Park (about four miles south) and visit the perennial gardens and grounds of Shore Acres State Park.

Parking lot viewed from our space at Marina RV Park.

As for parking your rig–a perfect place for recreation vehicles, of any size, is the marina lot, only a few blocks off Cape Arago Highway. Turn west onto Boat Basin Road and follow it, less than 1/2-mile, to Guano Rock Blvd.; turn right and you will see the marina parking lot.

 If you are going to stay longer than just driving through, pick up a
“Chart a course to Charleston” brochure with features a wonder map of
all the community’s attractions.  They are available at many business
and at the Visitor Center, 91141 Cape Arago Highway, (541) 888-2311, May 1-Sept. 30. 

Fishermen’s Wharf market & cafe.  (Julianne G. Crane)

 The brochure offers many places to visit including the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology Marine Life Center.  Also worth a consideration are:

Fishermen’s Wharf Seafood Market,  63534 Kingfisher Rd, Charleston, Ore.; Tues.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Closed Monday. (541) 888-8862

Mike, owner of market, is ex-Coast Guard (Julianne G. Crane)

Located on the D-Dock in Charleston’s scenic boat basin, this family-owned business offers “only the freshest local fish and seafood products,” according to owner Mike LeDoux, a former Coast Guard guy. “Our business depends on the fishermen,” says Mike. “We will not underpay them, and we will not overcharge you.”

The day we were there live crab were moving around in their 250-gallon salt-water tank.

Miller’s At The Cove opens at 11 a.m., daily.

— Miller’s At The Cove, 63346 Boat Basin Road in the Oyster Cove Plaza, within easy walking distance of the harbor and Marina RV Park. Open everyday starting at 11 a.m.

We asked a couple of locals about a casual place for a beer and good fresh seafood. They raved about Miller’s.

On the Friday evening we visited, it was busy with both locals and tourists. That said, after we were seated, I walked up to the small sports bar to check out what was on tap. The friendly bartender, also the owner, offered recommendations of local micro brews and offered samples ($4.50 pint).

As for dinner, we took advantage of the Halibut special (6 pieces with fries for $19.95; two fish tacos for $9.95). Quick, friendly service. Six TV monitors were showing soccer and baseball.

For more information on camping overnight while exploring the area or going on a fishing charter, click here to read more on the Charleston Marina RV Park.

Julianne G. Crane

To read more about the RV lifestyle, go to

Julianne G. Crane
Julianne G. Crane
Julianne G. Crane writes about the RVing and camping lifestyles for print and online sites. She was been hooked on RVing from her first rig in the mid-1980s. Between 2000-2008, she was a writer for The Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, Wash. One of her popular columns was Wheel Life about RVing in the Pacific Northwest. In 2008, Crane started publishing RV Wheel She and her husband, Jimmy Smith, keep a homebase in southern Oregon, while they continue to explore North America in their 21-foot 2021 Escape travel trailer. Over the years they have owned every type of RV except a big class A. “Our needs change and thankfully, there’s an RV out there that fits every lifestyle.”



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Stephen Goldman (@guest_60843)
7 years ago

We stayed at Oceanside Beachfront RV Resort for about 2 weeks. It was just outside the village. Beautiful beach and my dog loved running free on it. Ate at Portside restaurant in the village several times. Quite good.

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