Historically a shipping port and named on a coin toss, Portland is a haven of outdoor recreation opportunities, a booming craft distillery and beer scene, and an indelibly mellow vibe. Whether you’re visiting Portland for business or fun, there are plenty of things to do and sights to see that’ll enrich your itinerary.
Portland is abundant with East Asian influences in its cuisine, art, and landmark attractions. One of the most popular is the Portland Japanese Garden in Washington Park, just ten minutes from downtown. There, you can take a calming walk through uniquely composed gardens and get an authentic and immersive look into Japanese garden history and design. When you’re ready for a change of pace, you don’t have to go far. The Oregon Zoo, Children’s Museum, and a number of playgrounds and picnic areas also are right there in Washington Park.
If you’re into art and local history, visit the Oregon Historical Museum in downtown Portland and see the coin that decided Portland’s name. Take a trip to the Portland Art Museum and peruse its world-famous 42,000-piece collection of historic art, many from early Native Americans. If you’re chasing a more immersive historical experience, you can dine and spend the night at the Benson Hotel, a historic Portland landmark. It wouldn’t be a trip to Portland without visiting Powell’s City of Books, home to over two million volumes and hundreds of author events each year—truly a testament to the power of the printed word.
In town for a while? Escape to the coast and spend a day at the beach. If you’re a fan of cheese, you can’t miss the Tillamook Creamery on your way out there. Get a tour of the facility, see where it all gets made, and grab a snack for the road.