5 Best Things To Do At Crater Lake, Oregon — Our Wanders

How was Crater Lake formed? Why is it so blue?

Is one day enough to visit Crater Lake National Park?

1. Drive the Rim Drive

2. Get out of your car often!

  • Sinnott Memorial Overlook
  • Discovery Point: it’s said to be the location where the first European-American laid eyes on the lake
  • Watchman Overlook: everyone stops here because of the fantastic view of Wizard Island
  • Devils Backbone
  • Cloud Cap Overlook: it’s at the end of a 1-mile road just off the Rim Drive, and it’s the highest paved road in Oregon (at nearly 8000 feet); you bet views are breathtaking
  • Pumice Castle Overlook: while most of the drive enchants with blue colors, orange is the highlight of this overlook; Pumice Castle is the nickname of the eroded orange pumice rock formations that resemble the shape of a medieval castle
  • Phantom Ship Overlook: in addition to Wizard Island there’s a second, smaller island in Crater Lake that looks like a sailboat, and you get great views of it from this lookout
  • Pinnacles Overlook: another short detour off Rim Drive leads to colorful, pinnacle-shaped rocks; the 100-foot tall spires rise from the floor of the canyon, and they were formed when volcanic fumaroles rose through volcanic ash, cementing it into rock
  • Vidae Falls: this 100-foot waterfall drops down onto a series of rock ledges, and it’s right by the road

3. Take a boat ride to Wizard Island

4. Take a scenic trail

If only have a day, do some short hikes

If you have several days, choose a day hike

5. Visit Plaikni Falls

Can you swim in Crater Lake?

Is kayaking allowed on Crater Lake?

Best time to visit Crater Lake

Where to stay?

Crater Lake campgrounds

Campsites near Crater Lake National Park

Things to do near Crater Lake



Family travel blog sharing travel tips and adventures. Hikers, waterfall and road trip addicts, budget travelers.

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