Places to Visit: Burns Oregon

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Burns Oregon

Burns, Oregon is a friendly little western town located 130 miles southeast of Bend in the 9th largest county in the U.S. Read More

  • Located 130 miles southeast of Bend in one of the largest and most sparsely populated counties in the U.S.
  • A friendly cowboy town with several hotels, RV parks, and restaurants.
  • A great place for hiking, horseback riding, fishing, and camping.
  • Just 30 miles north of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, a haven for nearly 300 species of birds.


One of the best places to truly get away from it all is the small cowboy town of Burns, also known as the gateway to beautiful Steens Mountain in southeastern Oregon. Burns is located in Harney County, a sparsely populated county that is larger than many states on the East Coast. The town is surrounded by wide open grassy plains and hills dotted with sagebrush and juniper.


Burns, OR is located on Hwy 20 in Central Oregon. It is 130 miles southeast of Bend.


Burns offers its visitors several hotels, a B&B, and RV parks for lodging. There are also several dining options including delis, pizza parlors, a steak house, and Mexican and Thai restaurants.


Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy the variety of recreational opportunities around Burns. There are plenty of places to hike, ride horseback, or backpack in Harney Basin and the Ochoco National Forest. Fishing, boating, and camping are popular activities at nearby Malheur Lake. Rock hunting for thunder eggs, fossils, petrified wood, and agate is also popular in this part of Oregon.


While you’re in Burns take some time to visit the Harney County Historical Museum. Displays include artifacts from the turn of the century including wagons and a pioneer kitchen, Northern Paiute Indian artifacts, and cowboy photos from long ago.

Located 30 miles south of Burns is the Malheur National Wildlife Reuge. Spread over 185,000 acres, this refuge is a paradise for anyone who enjoys bird watching. It is a regular stopping point for nearly 300 species of birds.

Getting Here

To get to Bend from Burns just follow Hwy 20 west. One of the highlights of the drive is the Glass Buttes. Approximately 60 miles west of Burns just south of Hwy 20, the Glass Buttes attract rock collectors from all over the world in search of the beautiful obsidian for which they are famous.