The Best Things to Do in Portland
Collected by Jay Rymeski , AFAR Local Expert
No matter the time of day, weather, or your mood, your list of Portland to-dos will stay stacked with good times and stellar flavors. Grab some chow from the city's famous food carts, shop downtown Portland, tour Pittock Mansion, or take a bike ride through one of the city's many parks. Up for something else? You could always spend the day browsing Powell's City of Books. Or the whole weekend. Here, some fine ideas to get you going.
1005 W Burnside St, Portland, OR 97209, USA
At a time when it seems like another brick-and-mortar bookstore disappears every day, it is really refreshing to witness the throngs of readers crowding into Powell's Books in Portland on a sunny Saturday. When you go, if you're a word nerd like...
701 SW 6th Ave #196, Portland, OR 97204, USA
When my partner and I visit a city, we love to study the public transportation. We lived in Asia for a few years, and we learned the value of understanding the subways, buses, and the trains. We loved the light rail in Portland! I highly recommend...
1155 SW Morrison St #102, Portland, OR 97205, USA
Hand-crafted donuts for food nerds like me! Flavors of these delightful treats range from simple vanilla sugar to bourbon blueberry basil—all awesome! Forget that other Portland donut shop with lines around the block and disappointing fare. These...
1889 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97201, USA
Portland's food cart scene is obscene. There are so many "pods"—small to large groups of carts at a single location—it's impossible to keep track of what's located where. That's the kind of obscenity any community would love to have out in the...
2 SW Naito Pkwy, Portland, OR 97204, USA
The #1 thing recommended to me to see in Portland was the Saturday Market. It lived up to its hype! I spent a few hours Saturday morning wandering around the market and was floored at the talent of the vendors. I was also shocked at how reasonably...
934 SW Salmon St, Portland, OR 97205, USA
Every year, tens of thousands of locals and visitors interrupt their hibernation for a mid-winter trip to the movies. Over 100 movies, not to be exact. It's the first week in February and the days don't seem to be getting any longer, just wetter....
53000 East Historic Columbia River Hwy, Corbett, OR 97019, USA
Go for a quick drive east of Portland, Oregon. Enter the Columbia River Gorge, winding above the southern bank of the river...and you'll be able to walk a short trail to Multnomah Falls—the height of a 60-story building, one of the tallest...
1219 SW Park Ave, Portland, OR 97205, USA
This is one of the best museums in the U.S. Its well curated exhibits and collections hold the interest of any observer. Exciting art experiences and the interactive phone apps only add to the experience here. One collection I particularly enjoyed...
SE Salmon St, Portland, OR 97215, USA
Right inside the city limits, the dormant volcano Mount Tabor is one of Portland’s many natural treasures. The park in which it sits was designed in 1936 by Emanuel Tillman Mische, who, for most of his career, worked for the Olmsted...
400 SW Kingston Ave, Portland, OR 97205, USA
I have to admit that when I saw that one of the tourist attractions in Portland was the International Rose Test Garden I didn't get all that excited about trekking to the outskirts of the city to check it out. This is probably because I consider...
6600 SW Macadam Ave, Portland, OR 97239, USA
Portland’s many bridges aren’t just for show—most of them are for crossing the Willamette River, which bisects the city. In recent years, and after much cleanup, a push to reclaim the river for recreation has been successful....
3229 NW Pittock Dr, Portland, OR 97210, USA
The mansion and grounds around this Portland icon are impeccably kept and constantly visited. It was even featured recently on CBS's Amazing Race. The views are stunning and if you're into hiking, there is access to the Wildwood Trail which...
611 SW Kingston Ave, Portland, OR 97205, USA
Portland is not lacking for parks and gardens—I've heard the Chinese garden in the Pearl district is a stunner—but I highly recommend the Japanese Gardens in Washington Park. Portland's a relaxed place anyway, but the Japanese gardens, said to be...
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