Before we went there, I kept calling it "Uh-story-uh." After spending the weekend there, I have learned everyone down there calls it "Ass-story-uh." It's a pretty little seaside town right at the mouth of the Columbia River. It's only about 3 1/2 hours drive from Bremerton, so it makes for a nice not-too-far weekend getaway.
View from Holiday Inn Express
We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express right under the Astoria bridge. It was a pretty nice place - and the prices reflected it, but we got some sort of weekend getaway discount deal. They serve a pretty decent continental breakfast in the lobby, too.
It turns out there are several movies that have been filmed in Astoria, not just Goonies. Some of the others we recognized were Kindergarten Cop and Short Circuit. If you stop at the Chamber of Commerce, for $1 you can have a paper map and an audio CD that takes you through a tour of the town and past all the movie locations. We went by the Goonies' house, the winding road where Mikey's older brother chased them on the little girl's bike, the window where Chunk smashes his milkshake while watching the police chase, the museum where Mikey's father worked and was taking down the flag at the beginning of the movie, and the jail.
Crater Lake root beer they had on tap at the Wet Dog Cafe was delicious!
Columbia River Maritime Museum. I've been to a lot of small-town museums before, and 99% of them have been boring and lame - some collection of random odds and ends and local history with the name "museum" slapped on the building to try and create a tourist attraction. Not so in this case.
Graveyard of the Pacific, the local US Coast Guard rescue boats, the Columbia River pilots, the salmon fishing industry, and a wing of Navy stuff from the battleship USS OREGON and the two WWII cruisers to carry the name USS ASTORIA. The boys loved playing in the tug boat pilot house.
Fort Clatsop National Historic Park. After Lewis & Clark reached the Pacific coast, this is where they spent the winter before heading back east. This is a replica of the fort that was built using the drawings from Lewis & Clark's journals.
The boys with Sacagawea.One of the stories I learned from the Park Ranger was how Lewis & Clark referred to her simply as "the squaw" until one day a canoe full of their precious journals and scientific instruments capsized, and she dove in and saved the stuff. It wasn't until she saved their gear that they bothered to learn her name and refer to her by her name in their journals.
Overall it was a wonderful trip. If you're looking for a weekend getaway from Bremerton, or even just a day-trip, I highly recommend checking out the view from the Astoria Column, taking a ride on the trolley, visiting the maritime museum, and doing the Chamber of Commerce's driving tour of the movie sights.