Discover the many things to do in Portland, Oregon by taking a look at the following list of attractions. This is just a small list of Portland attractions available to you. Click on the links and find even more possibilities.
One of the best things about Portland is the number of fantastic day trips just an hour or two away. You have the choice of the beach, the river, or the mountains. Portland is a great place to use as a base for your vacation. You can see both the city and many of Oregon's spectacular sites as well.
If you are traveling without a car, you can still enjoy most of the things to do in Portland because of Portland's excellent public transportation system. See Portland Transportation.
Portland is situated where two of the Pacific Northwest's largest rivers meet. The waterfront plays a big part in Portland life and provides lots of things to do in Portland. The Columbia River flows past Portland to the north and into the Pacific Ocean. The Willamette River flows through the middle of Portland and into the Columbia River. So even though Portland is quite a distance inland from the ocean, it is a major port city. You can take short tours on the Willamette River only or tours on both the Willamette River and the Columbia River. See Columbia River Cruises.
Portland, Oregon is rich in choices for music and theater entertainment. The Portland Opera and Oregon Ballet Theater both perform at the Keller Auditorium in downtown Portland. You can also see a Broadway Play at the Keller Auditorium. The Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall is home to the Oregon Symphony. The Portland Center for Performing Arts has several theaters where you can see various plays and performances.
See Portland Entertainment for performances and tickets.
Many of Portland's museums are family orientated and are fun for both children and adults. OMSI, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, have enough exhibits and activities to keep you busy for a whole day. The Children's Museum is fun for even very young children. The Portland Art Museum has over 40,000 works of art. See Museums in Portland.
Portland has two wonderful markets that you don't want to miss. The Portland Saturday Market which actually takes place place on both Saturday and Sunday is a place to browse merchandise made by local artists and craftsmen, eat until you are stuffed, and people watch. The Portland Farmers Market features locally grown fruits and vegetables and also has some great food stalls where you can get a good lunch or snack.
If you want to watch a professional basketball game while you are in Portland, you can see Portland Trail Blazers basketball in action at the Rose Garden arena in the Rose Quarter. Or if you prefer ice hockey, go see the Portland Winterhawks. During the summer months you have the opportunity to see a Portland Timbers soccer match at PGE Park. Tickets for some teams are sold out early so it is wise to plan ahead.
It is rumored that Portland has more Brew Pubs than any other city in the USA. I don't know if it is true but one thing is for sure - Portland has a lot of them. See Portland Breweries for a sampling of where to go for the best hand crafted beer and where to go for a tour of one of Portland's largest breweries.
The Oregon Zooin Portland is made up of 64 acres of wildlife exhibits in a natural setting. The zoo sponsors concerts by famous artists in its amphitheater in the summer months and has a zoo train that will take you for a ride around the zoo and through the adjacent Washington Park. Between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day the zoo presents holiday light displays called "Portland Zoo Lights". See Portland Oregon Zoo for information on the zoo.
Among visitor's favorite things to do in Portland is its festivals. Portland's largest festival is The Portland Rose Festival which is always held the first part of June. It includes a Grand Floral Parade, a Starlight Parade, A carnival on the waterfront, visiting ships from the US and Canadian Navies, fireworks, and dragon boat races. The Waterfront Blues Festival is held in July in Tom McCall Waterfront Park. In 2010 it attracted 120,000 blues fans who saw 150 blues performances on four stages.
Shopping in Oregon is a dream. There is no sales tax in Oregon. Well-known shopping areas include The Pearl District, Nob Hill, the downtown area, and the Lloyd District. Major malls in the Portland area include Lloyd Center, Pioneer Place, Washington Square, Clackamas Town Center and the newest mall, Bridgeport Village. Many of Portland's malls are on the Max Lightrail line. Book lovers enjoy shopping in Powell's Books, the largest new and used book store in the world.
If you are looking for antiques, the Sellwood/Moreland neighbourhood is where you want to go.
The best neighborhood for vintage clothing and home furnishings is the Hawthorne District.
Portland has an abundance of beautiful parks which include Forest Park, a 5,100 acre forestry reserve with over 40 miles of hiking trails. Washington Park on the western edge of downtown Portland includes the Portland Japanese Garden, Portland Oregon Zoo, Hoyt Aboretum , and the International Rose Test Garden.
Much of Oregon's spectacular scenery is just an hour to an hour and a half away. Snow-capped Mt. Hood can be seen from the city. There you will find two of Oregon's largest ski resorts - Timberline and Mt. Hood Meadows. Timberline Lodge and a ride on the Magic Mile Ski Lift is worth a visit in the summer months. See Mt. Hood Skiing. Learn about the other things to do on Mt. Hood.
No one should leave Oregon without seeing the Oregon Coast --an hour-and-half drive to Seaside and Cannon Beach. A trip on the Historic Columbia River Highway to see the beautiful Columbia River Gorge and Multnomah Falls is a good day's entertainment. At the same time you might take a ride on the Mt. Hood Railroad. Wine lovers will enjoy a tour of some of Oregon's best vineyards and wineries. See Oregon Wine Tasting. Cruises on the Willamette River and the Columbia River can be enjoyed by the whole family -- Columbia River Cruises. Antique lovers will enjoy visiting the quaint town of Aurora, Oregon a few miles south of Portland. You can see the famous Spruce Goose built by Howard Hughes at Evergreen Aviation Museum in McMinnville.