Luxury family travel, Travel planning, Travel tips

December 5, 2023

Sunriver: The best family vacation spot in Oregon

Every summer many people local to Oregon and Washington find themselves heading over the mountain pass and traveling 12 miles south of Bend, Oregon to the picture-perfect town of Sunriver. It is a quintessential family vacation spot. Sunriver is the best spot for a family vacation in central Oregon.  Here are some highlights of Sunriver. 

The Village:

Sunriver Village is packed full of activities for the family.  There you will find various shops, restaurants, and activities.  

  • They have Riverscape Arcade. It is a family-friendly classic arcade that will bring you back to your childhood. Riverscape Arcade is great for those late afternoons when it is just too hot.  They have arcade games such as Donkey Kong, NBA Jam, Simpsons, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ms. Pac-Man, and so much more.  
  • Throughout The Village, you’ll also find two bike rental shops. Village Bike and Ski and Sunriver Sports. Both offer a great selection of bikes for the whole family.  
  • Alpine entertainment- The fan favorite of most kids. Alpine Entertainment has various attractions for families. They have the Alpine Express Train ride for little ones. It is an electric, trackless train that takes little ones on a loop around the village. There are 3 bounce houses, a rock-climbing wall, a power jump, bumper cars, and miniature golfing. There is something for everyone here.  


There are nearly 40 miles of paved biking and walking paths throughout the resort.  You won’t need a car much during your stay here. The trails lead you all around Sunriver from the rental homes, the Village, and the Lodge, it is all connected.  Take the bike path from your rental home to the village for dinner. Head up to the lodge for nighttime entertainment or pack your towels and sunscreen and bike to the pool.  


There are plenty of options all around Sunriver. Here are a few worth noting. 

  • Goody’s Chocolates and Ice Cream is both a family favorite as well as arguably the favorite of all Sunriver’s regulars. They have great ice cream, milk shakes, sundaes, and plenty of candy. This is a must do for any family!
  • Sunriver Brewing is located in the Village and is a great spot for families as well as adults.  They offer a variety of burgers, salads, sandwiches, and of course beer. Plan on going early or expect a long wait. It is a very popular spot that I can assure you is worth the wait.   
  • Hola is a fun Mexican-Peruvian restaurant located at the Sunriver Marina. They offer inside and outside seating. You get a view of the Deschutes River from the table. 
  • Brewed Awakenings has great coffee and simple breakfast items. There is usually a decent line, but it moves quickly. 
  • Café Sintra is an excellent breakfast restaurant. You will not be disappointed here.


Summertime in Sunriver can best be enjoyed by the pool. 

  • If you rent through Sunriver Resort, you will have access to The Cove. This beautiful pool was recently renovated, and they added an indoor pool and waterslide to enjoy swimming year-round. The Cove features a small outdoor water slide, restaurant, private cabanas available to rent, and zero entry pool. You can see why the kids love this spot!
  • Another pool available to those that rent houses privately (double check with rental to confirm they have SHARC passes at the rental property otherwise you can pay for a day pass).  The SHARC (Sunriver Homeowners Aquatic and Recreation Center) is a year-round aquatic center. They offer both indoor and outdoor swimming. There are multiple outdoor pools. You will find a gated toddler area, a lazy river, zero entry pool, hot tub, and two large water slides. Kids absolutely love the SHARC. Add this to your Sunriver family trip!

Other Family Activities:

  • Horseback riding is offered at Sunriver Stables. They have trail rides for all experience levels and for ages children aged 7-adult and pony rides for younger riders aged 2-6. 
  • Sunriver Marina- here you can float down the Deschutes River on a raft, paddleboard, Kayak, or canoe.  They offer a family float night on Wednesday evenings in the summer that is completely worth it! 

Where to Stay: 

There are plenty of options to suit each family’s needs.

  • Rent a vacation home through Sunriver Resort is very easy. You will have access to the resort amenities and The Cove Pool. If you snag a rental in Caldera Springs you get access to their private pool and marina as well as all the Sunriver Resort amenities. 
  • You can also stay at the lodge. They have the River Lodge and Lodge Village guest rooms. The lodge accommodations are great for shorter stays, small families, and couples. 

Sunriver has been a longtime favorite for families from Oregon and Washington.  It is a truly special place that will leave you with lasting family memories and a need to return year after year. 

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