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Thor's Well in Portland 2024-2025

A seemingly bottomless sinkhole on the coast of Oregon

Best time: all year round

Thor's Well
Thor's Well
Thor's Well

This hole looks like it's draining or sucking the Pacific Ocean. Some even call it a "gate to hell." It's considered to be a dangerous spot that can swallow people. However, in reality, Thor's Well is just a peculiar phenomenon, and it is not too dangerous. Located in the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area, it's about 6 km south of Yachats and some three-hour drive from Portland. Thor's Well is a sea cave dug out by the water before the roof eventually collapsed, leaving an opening at the top. When the tide is high, the waves roll underneath the cave, filling it until the water bubbles out or makes a burst. When water rolls back into the hole, Thor's Well appears bottomless. This interesting phenomenon presents a great opportunity for photographers.

Cape Perpetua is a large forested headland in Lincoln County, central Oregon. It is forming a high steep bluff above the water, rising to over 240 m (800 f) above sea level.

The best time to visit Thor's Well is one hour before the high tide, to explore the area and choose a safe spot. Then you can stay for a few hours and observe the wave-and-rock spectacle.

Practical info

Where is Thor's Well located, and how far is it from Portland?

Thor's Well is situated in the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area, six kilometers from Yachats and a few hours' drive from Portland. Cape Perpetua in Lincoln County, Central Oregon, is a vast forested headland with a high, steep cliff rising over 240 m above sea level. Show more

When is the best time to visit Thor's Well?

The ideal time to visit Thor's Well is an hour before high tide to find a safe spot in the area. By checking the tide timings and getting there at the right time, visitors can witness the ever-fascinating spectacle of the sea cave filling up with water, followed by a compressed water geyser-like burst from the top. Visitors can take their time exploring and appreciating the natural wonder for a few hours. Show more

What makes Thor's Well a unique phenomenon?

Thor's Well is an extraordinary ocean phenomenon where the wave and ocean come together, making the seemingly bottomless sinkhole. During high tide, the waves roll under the cave, creating compressed water that bursts out of the top, giving the effect of a geyser. The opening was formed when the cave roof collapsed, giving the illusion of a never-ending pit. During low tide, the well sucks the Pacific Ocean in again, creating a mesmerizing natural wonder worth seeing. Show more

What precautions should one take while visiting Thor's Well?

Visiting Thor's Well can be dangerous, and visitors must remain cautious. Sturdy shoes with good grip are recommended because the rocks may be slippery. Visitors must also remain at least 20 feet away from the well as waves can surprise and sweep people off their feet. It's best to skip the well during storms and high winds as the conditions can be treacherous. Lastly, visitors must keep an eye on the tide tables to avoid getting trapped by the incoming tide. Show more

What are some other attractions nearby Thor's Well that visitors can explore?

Apart from Thor's Well, the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area offers visitors many possibilities, including the interpretive center, tide pools, and 26 miles of trails. Visitors can also head to the Devil's Churn, located a few miles out, to find churning waves where a carve has created an opening in the rock. The Heceta Head Lighthouse, located about 16 miles south of Thor's Well, remains open, providing visitors with outstanding views and an opportunity to explore. Show more

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