Things to Do:

Portland Metro Area

Set along the Willamette and Columbia Rivers, Portland was originally founded as an inland port for harboring ocean-going ships.
Portland City
It’s become a progressive metro area that includes five counties in Oregon and two in Washington State, with the largest cities including Vancouver, Portland, Hillsboro, and Gresham.
Portland offers many varied experiences for just about every type of visitor, renowned for its breweries, food, shopping, and music scene. Outdoor adventurers and nature lovers will love it as there’s lots of green space right in the city and throughout the metro area, while mountains and beaches are just a short drive away.
Forest Park is only a 10-minute drive from downtown and hosts more than 5,150 wooded acres with 80 miles of scenic trails as the largest forested natural area within a city’s limits in the entire U.S. It flanks the hills on Portland’s west side overlooking the Willamette River and is also a great spot for wildlife watching, with over 60 types of mammals and more than 110 species of birds.
Hills of Portland
Those into the paranormal are drawn here for the “Witch’s Castle,” which was built in the mid-1800s by a man who ultimately became a murderer. His daughter was imprisoned here after she fell in love with the hired help and he killed the man, claiming that his wife had “bewitched him with a spell.” He became the first person to be legally hung in Oregon and ghostly figures have been reported ever since, often seen late at night.
Witch's House
The suburb of Lake Oswego is home to the only etropolitan state park in Oregon, with the Tryon Creek State Natural Area featuring 658 acres of lush forest with abundant flora and fauna.
Nicknamed the “City of Roses,” Portland has long been an incubator for the flowers with the Rose Test Garden in Washington Park founded in 1917. The country’s oldest continuously operated public test garden, it develops new rose varieties along with miniatures.
Visit between April and October and you’ll be able to walk among seven thousand rose bushes burst with color. They’ll be at their peak in June.
Rose Test Garden
The Portland Japanese Garden is a 5.5-acre oasis near the Rose Test Garden. A tranquil space of beauty ideal for quiet contemplation, there are pagodas, bridges, winding streams, and an authentic Japanese tea house.
It has five different gardens styles, all designed to evoke a sense of peace, and on a clear day, an awe-inspiring view of Mount Rainier.
No visit to Portland would be the same without experiencing world-famous Voodoo Doughnuts.
Doughnuts are the only food Portland is known for. There are many farmers’ markets throughout the metro area, not only in Portland but Beaverton and Oregon City. The food carts have become famous for their unique and delicious offerings with everything from juicy BBQ and comfort foods to out-of-this- world desserts.
If there was ever a place that exemplified the city’s slogan, “Keep Portland Weird,” this is it. You might even catch a wedding between its really big fans. But the highlight, of course, is the doughnuts, with unique options like the Voodoo Doll that’s filled with raspberry jelly, topped with chocolate frosting and a pretzel “stake.” The Bacon Maple bar is a big hit as is the Grape Ape with vanilla frosting, lavender sprinkles, and a dusting of grape powder.
Portland is one of the world’s top beer cities, sometimes called “Beervana,” with roughly 70 breweries here and it hosts nearly as many beer festivals.
You could easily spend weeks here just touring the local pubs, with countless offerings providing something for everyone. Shopping the many vintage stores is another popular pursuit – the scene has even drawn a few big-name celebrities like Carrie Brownstein from “Portlandia.” The Hawthorne District is a hotspot but there are venues throughout the city for your browsing pleasure.
If you want to explore history you might head to Fort Vancouver, a national historic site. Located just across the river in Washington State, it was a 19th-century fur trading post that served as a headquarters for the Hudson’s Bay Company. It sits along the water and offers fabulous views of the mountains and the city of Vancouver. With a wide range of music venues and just about every type of genre played live here on any given night, you’ll find plenty of shows to keep you entertained.