Welcome to Portland
Oregon's largest city used to seem like a well-kept secret, for travelers as well as those who live here: it had all the cultural advantages of a major city, but the feel and affordability of a small town. But little old Stumptown is growing up, in many ways.Most of the changes happening in Portland are for the better. Sure, parking might be a little harder, and grubby dive bars now pretty scarce, but on the other... Read More
Top experiences in Portland
Portland Sightseeing Tour Including Columbia Gorge Waterfalls
You’ll be picked up from your Portland hotel in the morning and driven through downtown Portland to see sites such as Pioneer Courthouse Square, affectionately known as Portland’s ‘Living Room,’ while learning about the city’s history and modern-day culture from your guide. Learn about the final resting places of many prominent Oregon citizens, including governors and United States senators. Pass Portland’s famous food carts, which sell a diverse range of cuisine, from Vietnamese to Greek to Polish. Catch amazing mountain views from beautiful Washington Park. Stop to walk through Pittock Mansion, a French Renaissance château listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, and then continue to the Portland International Rose Gardens, where you can discover 550 varieties of roses on a leisurely stroll. Explore Portland's vibrant, eclectic neighborhoods such as Nob Hill, the Pearl District, North Mississippi, Alberta, North Portland, Vista Hills and Council Crest. Break for lunch (own expense) for an hour in Portland's famous food truck area before continuing to Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, where views of stunning waterfalls await you.Your guide will explain how these waterfalls formed: the great flood of Lake Missoula propelled miles and miles of water, ice, rock and mud across eastern Washington, cutting through the Columbia River Gorge and covering the Willamette Valley. You’ll see remnants of these geological forces as you explore the area and get up close to sites such as Bridal Veil Falls, Horse Tail Falls and Bonneville Dam. You can also walk up to the bridge that stands beneath Multnomah Falls.Your next stop is Crown Point Vista House, a marble-interior home built in 1916 and known for its scenic lookout points along the Historic Columbia River Highway. After your time here, you’ll return to Portland.
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.
Best of Portland Small-Group Sightseeing Tour
After downtown Portland hotel pickup in the morning, travel by luxury vehicle through Portland on a 4-hour sightseeing tour. Enjoy tea, pastries and seasonal snacks while taking in scenic views of the city and the surrounding volcanic peaks at historic Pittock Mansion. This mansion was home to influential Portland pioneers Henry and Georgiana Pittock from 1914 to 1919, and is now a city park and treasured landmark.Next, explore the neighborhoods of Portland’s four main quadrants: Northeast, Northwest, Southeast and Southwest. Each quadrant has its own distinct feel and unique attractions including art galleries, boutiques, cafes, restaurants and performance venues.Visit the Pearl Disctrict, Nob Hill and Hawthorne, and hear about the history of Portland’s ten well-known bridges from your guide. You’ll also explore at least two of the following parks: Washington Park, Mt Tabor Park, McCall Waterfront Park and, depending on the season, the International Rose Test Garden. Your guide will bring the parks alive by identifying the flora and fauna. End your tour at one of Portland’s greatest treasures, Powell’s Books, one of the largest independent bookstores in the world!
Small Group Columbia Gorge Waterfalls and Wine Tour from Portland
After pickup from your downtown Portland hotel, relax on a scenic drive by luxury vehicle to Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area. Travel along the mighty Columbia River and be on the lookout for bald eagles and osprey, all while admiring the towering basalt cliffs formed from the river cutting through the Cascade Mountains.When you arrive, your professional guide will take you to a few waterfalls. This area is home to the second-tallest perennial waterfall in the US, Multnomah Falls. Spend some time hiking around these stunning natural wonders, and be sure to have your camera ready! Then, continue driving east, where wet forests of the coastal Pacific Northwest provide views of oaks, pines and other arid vegetation, creating prime growing conditions for grapes. As you near the town of Hood River, embark on a tour of a few local wineries, each one unique and charming in its own way. At each winery, relax and sample some boutique wines found only in Oregon. The weather, views and wine make for an unparalleled vineyard experience. In between wineries, your guide will tell you about the history of the land and the region’s culture, giving you an understanding of how this incredible landscape has shaped the wine in your glass. Some of the wineries you may visit include Cathedral Ridge, Wy'East Vineyards, and others depending on the season. After your tour, relax on the drive back to your downtown Portland hotel.
Oregon Coast Day Trip from Portland: Astoria and Cannon Beach
After pickup from your Portland hotel in the morning, travel by van or mini-coach north to Astoria, located on Oregon’s western tip along the Pacific coast. First, visit the Astoria Column atop Coxcomb Hill, a historical site that was one of the first permanent American settlements west of the Rockies. Climb up the steps to the top and be rewarded with stunning views of the coastal town at the mouth of the Columbia River. You’ll then visit the Columbia River Maritime Museum, where you and your guide will browse historical exhibits offering interesting information about the region’s many shipwrecks, lighthouses, early European exploration, commercial fishing and the Coast Guard.You’ll also see different kinds of vessels, both life-size and models, indoors and out on the actual Columbia River, the major river of the Northwest that has been an important route for transportation and commerce. Afterward, enjoy free time for lunch in Astoria (own expense) before driving south along the coast to Cannon Beach, where you’ll see Haystack Rock, a designated marine sanctuary full of tide pools. Enjoy more free time here to shop, walk along the beach, and explore the shops and art galleries that fill this vibrant, charming town.On our return, you’ll stop at Camp 18, a historical logging museum that offers a glimpse into the history of Oregon’s important timber industry. You’ll be dropped off at your Portland hotel in the evening.
Morning Half-Day Multnomah Falls and Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Tour from Portland
Crown Point Vista House, best known of the scenic lookouts along the Historic Columbia River Highway, provides a panoramic view of the Columbia River. The Crown Point Vista House was built in 1916 and refurbished and completely remodeled in 2005, with its beautiful marble interior and brass fixtures.Latourell Falls plunges 249 feet (76 m) over a massive wall of columnar basalt, some of the best formations in the Pacific Northwest, before cascading hastily toward the Columbia River. This waterfall is usually most recognized for the large patch of bright yellow lichen adorning the cliff face to the right of the falls, and this characteristic has led many famous photographers to this captivating location. If you stand in just the right place, and look way up behind the falls, you can see other falls.A winding footpath and a bridge lead to a vantage point for Bridal Veil Falls. These falls consist of two cascades in quick succession along angling rock faces. When there is good water flow, the falls looks very much like its bridal veil namesake. This waterfall is one of the best kept secrets in the Columbia River Gorge. People read about, but rarely get a chance to view the actual waterfall.Wahkeena Falls, the "most beautiful" in the Yakima language, sometimes spelled Wah-kee-na, tumbles 242 feet in a cascading type of falls with three plunging falls. Behind this waterfall is a cascade which flows to Fairy Falls.Multnomah Falls is the second highest year-round waterfall in the United States. Nearly two million visitors a year come to see this ancient waterfall, making it Oregon’s number one public destination. Fed by underground springs from Larch Mountain, the flow over the falls varies but is highest during winter and spring.Horsetail Falls was named for its distinctive form and plunges 176 feet. The trail leads to Upper Horsetail Falls, also called Ponytail Falls. There, the trail leads behind the base of the falls. There is a great opportunity to stop and take some photos or simply enjoy the beauty of the surrounding area.