From the nearby mountains and coastline to downtown parks and the banks of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, there are plenty of places to hike, bike, and stroll. Pack a picnic and spend the day at Tom McCall Waterfront Park or discover the dangerous beauty of Mount St. Helens, just an hour’s drive away.
Explore the history of The City of Roses with a visit to the Pittock Mansion. Or enjoy a unique cultural experience at the Portland Japanese Garden, widely considered to be one of the most authentic gardens outside Japan.
Visitors will be enchanted by eco-conscious Portland, which puts an emphasis on the use of locally made and sourced products. It also has more breweries that any other city in the world. The Downtown area is a mix of hip pubs, organic cafes, clothing shops, and book shops. Portland is home to Powell’s, the largest independent new and used book shop in the United States, which is spread over an entire block of space.
Live music is a huge part of Portland’s identity. Some well-known American acts were formed in Portland, including the Kingsmen back in the 1960s and the contemporary indie-rock band The Decemberists. Music events and festivals are held just about everywhere, from Waterfront Park to Cooper Mountain Vineyards.
Get around on one of the finest bikeways in America or hop on Portland’s efficient and inexpensive public transport system when exploring the downtown area. The MAX light rail service also goes to Washington Park, just 3.2 kilometres from downtown. Here you can enjoy a fun family day at the Oregon Zoo or smell the roses at the International Rose Test Garden—the first of its kind in the United States.
Outdoors, there is plenty of adventure to be found at Cannon Beach or at the Grotto, but Portland is notorious for rainy days, and there is also plenty to do when the weather takes a turn. Admire the exhibits at the Portland Art Museum, which displays pieces from old European masters, early American artists, and Japanese print-makers. Young and curious minds will appreciate the interactive exhibits at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), where visitors are encouraged to delve into the fascinating world of science and make their own discoveries with hands-on activities.