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Visiting the Tillamook Creamery, Oregon

Do you love cheese? If you said, yes, then visiting the Tillamook Cheese Factory is for you! We’ve got the low down on all their cheesy things to do and eat. Check it out!

We were driving the Pacific Coast Highway all the way from California to Washington, and we loved stopping at all the sights and eateries on the way. To our delight, we learned the Tillamook Creamery was just off the road; we had to stop.

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Driving the PCH north, we had such a wonderful time seeing things like Mission San Juan Capistrano, Los Angeles, the Golden Gate Bridge, Bandon, Astoria, and so much more that we were thrilled to add the Tillamook Creamery to the list.

When we arrived at the dairy, we were hoping to see cows, learn all about the cheese-making process, and of course, eat and buy lots of cheese. Have I mentioned that we really love cheese? And milk? Oh, cream. We really love ice cream!

The entrance to Tillamook Creamery, Oregon.
Flower, this beautiful cow welcomes everyone to the Tillamook Creamery.

The first thing we noticed as we pulled into the free parking lot was how full it was. Rows and rows of cars and RVs. I don’t think we were expecting it to be such a popular place. But, popular it is. There were people everywhere. Luckily, the business is well-planned and we never had to wait too long in a line. The ice cream line was by far the longest, and even there we only waited about 10 minutes. It was well worth it.

Tillamook Creamery Plan

The way the Tillamook Creamery is set up is that you enter the main doors and immediately are confronted with a huge staircase, inviting you to climb. It’s the right choice.

Blocks of Tillamook cheese go by on the production line.

When you get to the second floor, you look down a huge corridor with information panels along the left wall and windows along the right. The left wall walks you through the entire process of raising the dairy cattle to collecting the milk and making it into all their wonderful products such as cheese and ice cream.

As you walk along, you can also look down onto the factory floor to see what is going on, and watch real people at work.

Interactive and fun displays kept all the information attainable for people of all ages. Kids, especially, were loving the exhibits where they could simulate milking a cow, pushing buttons, and playing games.

Interactive exhibits, like this child feeding a baby calf, make it a must-do along the Pacific Coast Highway.
Interactive exhibits, like this child feeding a baby calf, make it a must-do along the Pacific Coast Highway.

Having plenty of stations where you can try out cheese is also a highlight. I think we tried at least six different cheeses. Yum!

After exploring the second floor, we headed downstairs to the main showroom, café, shop, and ice cream parlor. We bought, ate, drank, relaxed, and enjoyed all things dairy for quite some time. We loved it!

One of many station where you can taste the Tillamook cheese.

Activity Rating

4 Star Activity Rating.

Driving past the Tillamook Creamery would be a shame. For a free thing to do, you can’t get better than taking a break from the road, trying some cheese, eating ice cream, and learning all about dairy farming. We loved it.

We ended up spending almost two hours here, and the time just flew. If you are in the neighborhood…stop!

How to Get to Tillamook Creamery

I think most people are driving, just like we did. Tillamook is located as I mentioned right on the Pacific Coast Highway, and well worth the stop.

However, if you are just in Oregon on business or visiting some of the larger cities, it’s still well within your reach.

From Portland – Driving time is about an hour and a half along Route 6 West or US 26. Portland is where the main intersection of I-5 is as well, so if you’re traveling up I-5 and have a few hours, it’s certainly doable, especially if you wanted to spend the night on the coast.
From Salem – It’s still only about 1.5 hours, taking Oregon Route 22 West until it intersects with Route 101 North.
From Astoria – This city lies due north of Tillamook Creamery, and I have to say it’s my favorite city in all of Oregon, trumping even Portland, so if you get a chance, visit. It’s also about 1.5 hours from Tillamook Creamery.

Bags and blocks of cheese are everywhere at the Tillamook Creamery.

How to Visit Tillamook Creamery

No reservations are required to visit Tillamook Creamery, and it’s open 363 days a year (all except Thanksgiving and Christmas) from 10:00 – 6:00.


Needless to say, Jim and I loved every minute we spent at Tillamook Creamery. It was all at once informative and fun. We tried all kinds of delicious cheese, and had some of the best ice cream we tried all summer. No matter what your reason for visiting Oregon, make a quick trip to Tillamook and at the very least stop for ice cream.

Author Bio – Corinne is an avid camper and traveler. She’s been to all 50 of the US states and has four more Canadian provinces to visit. However, she’s not stopping yet. There’s always more to see of this great continent! Corinne loves local foods, getting outdoors, landscape photography, and road trips.