Welcome to Columbia River Gorge


Hikers have plenty to keep them busy in the gorge, which features many steep, lovely trails that lead through canyons lined with ferns and gushing rivers, and across wildflower fields to grand vistas. Summer wind sports are legendary – the gorge channels westerlies inland against the current, creating world-class windsurfing and kiteboarding conditions. There are also mountain-biking and rafting possibilities, especially around Hood River.

Not into strenuous activity? The gorge offers highlights such as lovely waterfalls, agricultural bounties (don't miss the cherries in July!) and fine wine tasting. This is a special place, so take time to enjoy it.


Top experiences in Columbia River Gorge

Recent articles

Travel guides

Starting at $38.99

Image for

Columbia River Gorge activities

$100 Day Trips & Excursions

Mt Hood, Multnomah Falls, and Hood River from Portland

Your day of exploring some of Oregon’s most famous natural attractions starts with hotel pickup in Portland. Then head out of the city to the Multnomah Falls, the second tallest waterfalls in the United States!As you relax in your tour vehicle, enjoy the natural beauty while knowing it's just a taste of what's to come, starting with your first stop at Multnomah Falls, the most famous waterfall in Oregon. The second-highest year-round waterfall in the United States, iconic Multnomah Falls is fed by Larch Mountain’s underground springs.  Continue east along the highway to Hood River, a quaint valley town located at the confluence of the Columbia and Hood rivers on the Columbia River Gorge. Listen as your guide talks about the town’s environmental and cultural history, and hear about the kiteboarders and windsurfers who skim across the waters of the gorge, one of the county's top stops for these two wind sports. When you arrive in town, you have free time for lunch on your own. Pick one of the many restaurants to grab a bite, and then peruse the shops and wine-tasting rooms, if you wish (own expense). Back with your guide, return to your tour vehicle and visit Rowena Crest, a farm stand (seasonally), Trillium Lake (seasonally), and Timberline Lodge, positioned at an elevation of 11,249 feet (3,429 meters) on Mt Hood, Oregon’s tallest peak. Hop out to tour the lodge or take a short walk around the lodge to enjoy its mountain scenery. Your day trip ends with the drive back to Portland, returning to the city for hotel drop-off.

$59 Tours & Sightseeing

Portland to Multnomah Falls and Columbia River Gorge Tour

Your tour departs from Pioneer Square in downtown Portland in the morning. Hop aboard an air-conditioned coach and get ready for a beautiful 1-hour drive east to the Columbia River Gorge, which carves a spectacular corridor through the Cascade Mountains in Oregon and Washington. This vast canyon and its surroundings are designated as a National Scenic Area to protect the natural, cultural and recreational resources of the Columbia River Gorge. This area is home to a spectacular combination of landscapes, rare plants, wildlife, farmland, ancient Indian rock art and other sites, many of which you’ll discover on your tour.Traveling along the historic Columbia River Gorge Highway, enjoy your guide’s informative narration as you admire sweeping views from hundreds of feet above the Columbia River, stopping for photo opportunities at Crown Point and Vista House.Then descend along the highway loops on your way to pristine Latourell Falls, where you’ll stop for 20 minutes to view the falls.Continue past Wahkeena Falls to Oregon’s most famous natural attraction, Multnomah Falls. This dramatic waterfall is the tallest in Oregon and the second-tallest in the US! Stop here for 25 minutes to admire the dramatic, multi-tiered waterfall that is famous for its views, walkways and Great Depression-era lodge.Next, view the Oneonta Gorge and Horsetail Falls on your way to Bonneville Dam, a national historic site in the heart of the gorge. During your 30-minute stop here, learn about the amazing engineering feat of the damn and fish ladder at the visitor’s center and admire the dam from the outdoor viewing area.Return to Portland along the river-level route of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Enjoy the unfolding panorama including Beacon Rock, Cape Horn and Rooster Rock, all sights first noted by the famous explorers over 200 years ago. You’ll arrive back in Portland in the afternoon.

$129 Day Trips & Excursions

Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls and Mt Hood Small-Group Tour

This is a full day tour, typically offered from 9AM to 4:30PM. Please note, the tour route and sights may vary depending on the time of year and weather conditions. It is always our goal to provide you with the most interesting adventure possible. We will depart downtown Portland and head east along the Columbia River to Troutdale, known as the Gateway to the Gorge! We will join the beautiful Historic Columbia River Highway, the first planned scenic roadway in the United States, and wind our way to our first stop for the day: Crown Point Vista House. This famous overlook sits 733 feet above the Columbia River, atop the remains of a lava flow that swept through the Gorge around 14 to 17 million years ago! Here, we will find amazing 180 degree views of the Columbia River Gorge and explore the Vista House. An intricately designed observatory and museum, the Vista House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. From there, we will drive deeper into the Columbia River National Scenic Area. Our first waterfall for the day will be the dramatic Latourell Falls which plunges 249 feet over a massive wall of columnar basalt. Depending on the season, a short .25 mile paved trail hike will be led to get a closer view of the falls. The next waterfall we will visit will be the grand Multnomah Falls. Plummeting 620 feet in two major steps, Multnomah Falls is the highest waterfall in Oregon and second highest in the nation! Here, we will explore the Multnomah Falls Historic Lodge (a Cascadian style stone and timber lodge built in 1925) as well as the beautiful Multnomah Falls itself. During the gorge fire of 2017, the wildland fire crew fought tirelessly and ultimately saved this historic landmark. The easily accessible viewing platform offers a full view of the Benson Bridge and cascading falls beyond it. Onward to Hood River, also known as the Windsurfing Capital of the World, we will pause for an hour with a chance to explore the town and eat lunch. Following lunch, we will set out heading south, through the picturesque Fruit Loop orchards and lavender farms. If time permits, we may even make a brief stop at one of the farms stands! Continuing, we will wind our way, climbing to roughly 6,000 feet in elevation, to Timberline Lodge. This National Historic Landmark sits proudly against Oregon’s highest peak- Mt. Hood! Attracting over 10,000 climbers each year, Mt. Hood is a mammoth to behold. We’ll go on a walking tour inside the lodge and enjoy the surrounding Cascade Mountain Range views from the lodge’s outdoor patios. If time allows, a short hike to the Pacific Crest Trail crossing just behind the lodge will be led by your guide. After the full day of adventures, you will return to Portland (approximately 1.5-hour drive).

$99 Outdoor Activities

Bike and Hike: Columbia River Gorge Adventure from Portland

Your journey starts on a 45-55 minute drive to the Historic Columbia River Highway. On the way, stop to take photos of scenic vistas. When you arrive the Columbia River Gorge, hop on your bike and follow your guide on an easy, 6-mile (9.5-km) ride along gentle hills. This ride will give you a sense of what it was like to travel along the country’s first National Scenic Highway. You’ll make several stops at waterfalls to embark on short nature hikes, where you’ll feel the cool, pulsing mist of water from amidst the lush green forest. Keep an eye out for native birds such as osprey and bald eagles. Small snacks are available throughout your tour, and you may also bring food and drinks with you aboard the van. After soaking in the Pacific Northwest’s famous natural landscapes, you’ll be taken back to Portland.

$69 Day Trips & Excursions

Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Tour from Portland

This is a half day tour. Please note, the tour route and sights may vary depending on the time of year and weather conditions. It is always our goal to provide you with the most interesting adventure possible. Departing downtown Portland, we’ll head east along the Columbia River towards the quaint town of Troutdale, known as the Gateway to the Gorge. We will join the beautiful Historic Columbia River Highway, the first planned scenic roadway in the United States, and wind our way along the Sandy River to our first stop for the day: Crown Point. This famous overlook sits 733 feet above the Columbia River, atop the remains of a lava flow that swept through the Gorge around 14 to 17 million years ago! There, we will find 180-degree amazing views of the Columbia River Gorge and have time to explore the Vista House. This intricately designed observatory and museum is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. From there, we will again join the historic highway as we drive deeper into the Columbia River National Scenic Area. Our first waterfall for the day will be the dramatic Latourell Falls, which plunges 249 feet over a massive wall of columnar basalt. Depending on the season, a short .25 mile paved trail hike will be led to get a closer view of the falls. The grand Multnomah Falls will be the next stop in our journey. Plummeting 620 feet in two major steps, Multnomah Falls is the highest waterfall in Oregon and second highest in the nation! There, we will explore the Multnomah Falls Historic Lodge (a Cascadian style stone and timber lodge built in 1925) as well as the beautiful Multnomah Falls itself. During the gorge fire of 2017, the wildland fire crew fought tirelessly and ultimately saved this historic landmark. The easily accessible viewing platform offers a full view of the Benson Bridge and cascading falls beyond it. Onward to Bonneville Fish Hatchery. There, we will spend about 20 minutes on a short walking tour of this impressive Fish Hatchery (the largest in Oregon) and Sturgeon viewing center! At the viewing center we will visit local celebrity: “Herman” the sturgeon. Herman is over 70 years old, 10-feet long, and 450 pounds! Our journey will return us to Portland via the Columbia River scenic route (approximately 45 mins).

$94 Tours & Sightseeing

Portland and Columbia River Gorge Tour, Hop-On Hop-Off Pass

Hop-On Hop-Off Portland Sightseeing TrolleyEnjoy a narrated 1.5-hour tour of Portland on a sightseeing trolley, hopping on and off as you wish at the 11 stops (see Itinerary for a full list of stops). Your trolley pass is valid for two days, so there’s no need to rush. See why Portland is nicknamed ‘Rose City’ at the gloriously colorful and fragrant International Rose Test Garden in Washington Park. Fall in love with the herd of Asian elephants at the Oregon Zoo, and lose yourself among the endless shelves at Powell’s City of Books, the world’s largest independent new and used bookstore. Your trolley pass also makes it easy to see the city’s historic buildings, interactive science museum and trendy shops. Plus, a portion of all ticket sales goes toward breast cancer awareness and research.Columbia River Gorge TourAlso included in your combo is a captivating 4.5-hour tour of the Columbia River Gorge, a long, gorgeous canyon stretching through the Cascade Range. You can take this tour before, after, or during the course of your two-day hop-on hop-off trolley pass -- the choice is yours. From downtown Portland, travel by coach along the winding Historic Columbia River Highway, taking in placid green hills and the impressive Columbia River as your driver provides commentary. After stopping for panoramic views from the Vista House at Crown Point, loop down to Latourell Falls, a waterfall that dramatically plunges against a backdrop of massive rocks. Take your fill of photos before continuing your drive past Wahkeena Falls. Your next stop is Oregon’s most popular natural attraction, Multnomah Falls and Lodge. The tallest waterfall in Oregon at roughly 620 feet (189 meters), magnificent Multnomah Falls has two stunning tiers and numerous scenic overlooks, and the lodge houses an interpretive center and gift shop. Take in more natural splendor as you pass Oneonta Gorge and Horsetail Falls on your way to Bonneville Dam in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. In summer, marvel at the remarkable sight of thousands of salmon and steelhead swimming upstream along a fish ladder to navigate the dam. On your return trip to Portland, follow the river-level route that the Lewis and Clark Expedition took more than 200 years ago as they made their way toward the Pacific Ocean. You’ll see landmarks that these two famous explorers documented on their epic journey, including Beacon Rock, Cape Horn and Rooster Rock.

Columbia River Gorge in detail