Beyond Portland's City Limits: The Best Day Trips
Collected by Jay Rymeski, AFAR Local Expert
You can take your rented bike and pedal down to a waiting Zipcar and get out of town. From the mountains to the coast—and everything in between—you'll enjoy an easy break from the urban outlook, usually with an hour of driving, or less.
53000 East Historic Columbia River Hwy, Corbett, OR 97019, USA
Multnomah Falls is a gorgeous sight located about 45 minutes by car outside of Portland, Oregon, on the Columbia River Gorge. Several hikes of differing degrees of difficulty offer vantage points to view the falls. The sound of the rushing water...
NW Reeder Rd, Portland, OR 97231, USA
Perched on a not-so-lonely nude beach on the northern end of Sauvie Island is an enigma. Well above waterline lies a 30-foot orb that piques the imagination and challenges explanation. The "spaceship" origin is not interstellar but certainly...
Banks-Vernonia Trail, Vernonia, OR 97064, USA
An old railroad transformed into a smoothly paved multi-use path, Banks-Vernonia Trail is an essential Oregon experience for anyone with a love for biking. The trail winds its way through idyllic pastures, small farms, woodland groves, fern...
Pegleg Falls, Oregon, USA
Lo, witness a perfect swimming hole deep in the Mount Hood National Forest. More than an hour from the closest large settlement, yet less than two miles from the far more popular Bagby Hot Springs, Pegleg Falls probably gets its name from the...
500 NE Captain Michael King Smith Way, McMinnville, OR 97128, USA
Outside Portland, OR, the area is known for its pinot noirs as it has vineyards balore and beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. And right out there is the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum, in McMinnville just a short drive from downtown...
1 Abbey Dr, St Benedict, OR 97373, USA
For my day away, I went to Silverton, OR. On the way is Mt. Angel. I had never been to either place but heard about an abbey of Benedictine monks. I couldn't pass it by. This abbey was established in 1882 by the Abbey of Engelberg, Switzerland. It...
5510 NE Breyman Orchards Rd, Dayton, OR 97114, USA
Red Ridge Farms has been growing grapes in the Dundee Hills for 40 years. In 2005, it added olives to its repertoire, becoming the only commercial producer of olive oil in Oregon. Call ahead to visit the mill and sample such varieties as Arbequina...
Warrior Rock Lighthouse, St Helens, OR 97051, USA
Minutes from downtown Portland, there's a hike on the northern tip of Sauvie Island that takes you through bird-sanctuary beauty and wilderness isolation. The walk out to explore Oregon's smallest lighthouse can be a comfortable sunny stroll...
65670 US-26, Welches, OR 97067, USA
On Route 26 to Mount Hood, keep an eye out for the brightly painted sign ushering travelers into the Wildwood Recreation Area. Full of idyllic picnic sites surrounded by trees blanketed in Spanish moss and the lively Salmon River, the day-use area...
29645 NW Quail Run Dr, Gaston, OR 97119, USA
Summer and Scott Catino, owners of Quail Run Creamery, are truly passionate about cheese making, their really cute goats, and most of all running a sustainable business. Located in the beautiful coast range, the farm is populated by Nigerian Dwarf...
McKenzie Hwy, Blue River, OR 97413, USA
A trip up to the Dee Wright is a required trek for all my guests who visit Oregon. If you want to experience the power and beauty of the planet, the Old McKenzie Highway delivers an eyeful. Starting in Ponderosa Pine forests and climbing to 5,300...
10 Basin St, Astoria, OR 97103, USA
The Cannery Pier Hotel is a delightful property in the old cannery district on the Columbia River waterfront in Astoria. The 360-degree feel of the water makes a stay at the Pier more like a luxury cruise line port of call. The views are bound to...
20 Basin St, Astoria, OR 97103, USA
Astoria's Cannery Row has enjoyed a resurgence as a tourist destination for Oregon Coast visitors. As the former state capital clings to the Columbia River with the determination of a stubborn child, dwindling fishery and logging economies give...
Blue River, OR 97413, USA
A black, awe-inspiring lava landscape is the welcome mat to our trek into Oregon's iconic volcano reserve. The Three Sisters: Faith/North, Hope/Middle, and Charity/South are ringed by a trail network that includes a stretch on the infamous Pacific...
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