The Best Way to Experience Portland, Oregon - Go Wandering

The Best Way to Experience Portland, Oregon

By Shannon Alfes |
The Best Way to Experience Portland,  Oregon
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Portland is such an iconic city to visit, especially if you love all things related to art, food, and nature. Portland is full of fun quirks, and it is the largest and most populous city in the state of Oregon. Portland’s climate is described as warm, dry summers and cool, rainy winters. This climate is ideal for growing roses, probably why Portland is referred to as the “City of Roses.” You can easily be entertained for several days if you’re planning a trip to Portland, but we’ve listed five of the top attractions and must-sees when immersed in this northwest wonderland.

Top 5 attractions/sights in Portland

Portland is a city vibrant with activity, cultural festivals, theatre, and musical entertainment. The city’s artistic activity, however, makes up for the damp Pacific Northwest winters. The rains also nourish the city’s impressive gardens, a top attraction for tourists who love nature parks. Green parks range from colorful roses, rhododendrons to classical Chinese gardens. Unfortunately, due to the recent global health crisis, some of the attractions mentioned are temporarily closed. Before visiting Portland, it is essential to know the top attractions, those that appeal most to you, and those that you would love to try for the very first time. Portland libraries also offer library cardholders the cultural day pass. One is granted free access to various attractions in the city, which sounds like a good deal for those living in the city.

Washington Park

Once referred to as a wildland, the city first purchased it in 1871. The Washington Park contains many tourist attractions such as the famed International Rose Test Garden, a zoo, and museums. The park is located west of the city. Tourists usually most of their time strolling through the park exploring the unique attractions and unusual gardens.

One of these unusual gardens is the International Rose Test Garden, where new roses are grown. Given the city’s mild climate, roses continue to flower into autumn. In addition, there is the annual Rose Festival slated for May and June. Another worthy escape should be the Portland Japanese Garden, considered the largest outside Japan, landscaped on the old zoo grounds.

Other popular activities you must partake in include; present-day Oregon Zoo, the Portland’s Children Museum, and Hoyt Arboretum. The Oregon Zoo at Washington Park has a vast number of animals from across the globe, such as American beavers, African crocodiles, and Asian elephants. The Hoyt Arboretum is 190 forested acres and features 12 miles of stunning hiking trails for visitors’ enjoyment.

Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area

The Columbia River is a remarkable sight for all that visit Portland. It marks the Oregon-Washington state border. The River Gorge National Scenic Area sits on 292,500 acres along the Pacific, Northwest’s largest river. There are a vast number of activities such as hiking, viewpoints, and locks.

Visitors that make their way to this region often stop to photograph the waterfalls that edge the route; these include the famous Multnomah Falls, Oneonta Gorge, and Latourell Falls in Guy W. Talbot State Park. Other top destinations in the area include Vista House at Crown Point and the Angel’s Rest hiking trail. Camping is also available at the gorge, mainly at the Ainsworth State Park.

Pittock Mansion

The Pittock Mansion was built in 1914. It was set up by Henry Pittock, the founder of Oregonian Newspaper. He lived in this house for only five years up to his death in 1919 at 80. That is set on 46 acres; the home was known for its unique features such as the central vacuum system, intercoms, and indirect lighting. What makes this a Portland treasure is how united the people of Portland become when the landmark was designated for demolition. The people managed to persuade the City Authority to purchase it through a private auction.

Forest Park

If you ever want the perfect getaway, then Forest Park is it. Forest Park lies west of the city and is about 5,000 acres of lush forest cover. Forest Park covers the eastern slope of the Tualatin Mountains, and it is one of the largest parks in the United States with over 80 miles of hiking and walking trails that are ideal for getting a delightful dose of nature. This park is home to many popular hiking trails in the area, such as the 30-mile long Wildwood Trail, Maple Trail Loop, and access to the Pittock Mansion.

Lan Su Chinese Garden

The Lan Su Chinese Garden opened its doors in 2000 to enlighten the Portland residents on Chinese culture and history following Suzhou’s relationship in China. The beautiful blend of the environment is therapeutic for so many tourists who want a feel of the Chinese culture. It comprises rocks, plants, trees, gardens, and a lake on about 40,000 square feet. Artisans from Suzhou came to design and construct their traditional buildings and walkways and planted imported native Chinese plants. There is also the famous tea house where special events like Mahjong, Tai chi, and tea tastings occur.

There are many more activities in Portland that are not mentioned, which means it is certainly a city worth a visit. The versatile cultures on display make it among the top destinations in the entire country. People flock to the city to experience different global cultures all packed up in this little heaven. Portland is a land rich in culture and activity, and this city lives on within you even long after you leave the city.

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