8 Fun Fall Activities in Klamath for the Whole Family
Family trips are the ones that we cherish for decades. They are where we can spend time with our kids in a different environment and experience new activities together. Klamath County, Oregon, is one of those places that everyone in the family will enjoy—and remember forever. This sunny region of southern Oregon is filled with outdoor adventures, and you’ll enjoy some of the most scenic views the country has to offer. Close to Crater Lake National Park, Klamath Falls can serve as your basecamp for exploring the region. Ready to get started? Here are eight activities that families won’t want to miss in and around Klamath.
1. Kid-Friendly Activities
Head to Crater Lake Zipline and soar above the landscape of Klamath Falls and take in views of ancient volcanoes and a stunning lake. For nearly three hours, kids ages 10 and up can fly through the air and see it all. Crater Lake Zipline also has a 90-minute adventure perfect for kids ages 5-12, Sasquatch Hollow. Once done zipping, head indoors to the family-friendly lanes at Epicenter, Klamath Falls’ favorite bowling alley. With bumpers for beginners and cosmic bowling at night, it is hard to beat a few hours knocking down pins in this lively destination. Or, if you would rather stay outdoors, follow the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway from Crater Lake Zipline to the Klamath Fish Hatchery. The Klamath Hatchery provides legal and trophy sized rainbow trout, fingerling rainbow trout, brown trout, and cutthroat trout to Klamath and Lake counties, and fingerlings for lakes from the southern Cascade Mountains east to the Idaho border. The hatchery produces about 3 million fish each year. A great learning experience for the young, and young at heart. You can even feed the fish! Feeling hungry? Head to Starv’n Marv’n Family Restaurant in Klamath. This kid-friendly destination offers huge portions, excellent food, and great service—it will quickly become a favorite when visiting.
2. Exploring Museums
Families with young kids will want to stop by The Children’s Museum of Klamath Falls. Fun for kids of all ages, the Collier Logging Museum and State Park is perfect for an afternoon stop. It’s full of all sizes of logging equipment and great for kids who love machines, trains, and trucks. For more history of the region, the Klamath County Museum shares the area’s rich heritage and culture. To round off the museum tour, hit up the Favell Museum, where you’ll see an extremely impressive display of Native American artifacts and Western art. Before you get started exploring the region’s history, give yourself the needed fuel for the day by taking your family to the Waffle Hut and Eatery. It features 18 styles of waffles and numerous other breakfast options—your family may just want to return here several times on the trip.
3. Swimming and Boating at Lake of the Woods
Your kids deserve to enjoy one of the clearest natural lakes in Oregon, which is what you’ll find at Lake of the Woods. Enjoy incredible fishing, boating, swimming, hiking, and relaxing at this fantastic resort—it just may be the highlight of your child’s summer. Stay at cabins or at the campground for a few nights and enjoy s’mores over a campfire and the spectacular star-filled skies at night. The Lakehouse Restaurant on the resort grounds is perfect for kids of all ages, even serving up fancy dishes for mom and dad.
4. Hiking and Biking
Klamath Falls is ideal for families who hike and bike together and the Klamath Trails Alliance can help you find the best route to fit your family. For more suggestions of biking around the area, as well as bike rentals, head to Zach’s Bikes. More adventurous hiking families with older kids should head to the Sky Lakes Wilderness, where miles of trails to awesome ridges and alpine lakes await, or, Lava Beds National Monument where they can explore above and below the Earth’s surface. After exploring all day, you’ve earned a good meal. Mac and Cheese Steaks food truck offers just that, with mouthwatering options for all ages.
5. Arts and Crafts
Families who love art and painting will find two fine options in Klamath Falls. Wild Pigments Art Studio features classes for everyone, and you can be creative and expressive in many different mediums. At Next of Kiln, you can pick all sorts of ceramic objects to paint. After painting at either of the stops, try a different type of art, this time in the form of pizza. Rodeos Pizza & Saladeria is a local favorite and is sure to hit the spot after a few hours of expressing yourself creatively.
6. Outdoor Activities with ROE
For more than 30 years, ROE Outfitters has given families on vacation the “Real Oregon Experience.” ROE makes adventure easy and offers family fishing excursions, kayaking trips in the pristine waters around Klamath Falls, and even rentals if you want to have your own paddling adventure. The Spring Creek kayak trip is a perfect summer’s day of paddling. Once you have finished on the water, head to the classic Klamath Basin Brewing Company. It has beer for mom and dad, sodas for the kids, and the best pub fare in town.
7. Badger Run Wildlife Rehab and Wildlife Refuge
As you’d expect, this region of Oregon is filled with opportunities for wildlife viewing. Badger Run Wildlife Rehab is dedicated to helping injured and orphaned animals. Tours of the facility are available (by appointment) so you can learn more about the region’s wildlife and how Badger Run works. Next head out to one of the six wildlife refuges near Klamath Falls and see if you can spot birds and mammals in the wild. Whether you choose Upper Klamath, Bear Valley, Tulelake, Clear Lake, Klamath Marsh, or the Lower Klamath Basin, you won’t be disappointed. Head to C and D Burger Shoppe for your post adventure meal. The family will enjoy the tasty burgers, including the famous chili cheeseburger.
8. Take a Trip to Crater Lake National Park
No vacation to Klamath County is complete without exploring Crater Lake. Just 60 minutes outside town, this national park is a world-class destination for the entire family. If you choose to drive in, make sure you stop by the lodge and ranger station for advice on the perfect adventure. Those who want to leave the driving to someone else should book a trip on the Crater Lake Trolley available seasonally May through September.
This two-hour trip travels around the rim of Crater Lake and features a ranger talking about the history and formation of the lake as well as answering questions. The ride has five to seven stops during which you’ll have plenty of time to take the perfect family picture with the unmatched beauty of Crater Lake as a backdrop. (Note, for a separate fee, there is a second transportation service that will transport you from Klamath Falls to the national park.) Before ending your day, swing by the Ruddy Duck Restaurant at Running Y Ranch Resort and enjoy their New American cuisine with a twist in a casual, kid-friendly environment.
Written by Douglas Scott for Matcha in partnership with Discover Klamath Visitor and Convention Bureau.