Oregon

Things to do in Oregon

It’s no surprise that many of the most unforgettable things to do in Oregon take place in the great outdoors. The state boasts thousands of acres of state and national parks, filled with verdant forests, crystalline alpine lakes and more, all primed for hiking, camping and biking. Windsurfers congregate on the Columbia River each summer, an area where moments on land can be spent strolling through the scenic Hood River, a hotspot for artists, or hiking to the top of Multnomah Falls, which towers more than 600 feet.

For snow bunnies, a list of things to do in Oregon includes powdery slopes on Mount Bachelor and Mount Hood. Other state landmarks include the Painted Hills to the east, Crater Lake its central Cascade Range, and a myriad of cliff-side vantages along its rugged coastline. Plan a day’s visit to the Tillamook Cheese Factory for fresh cheddar or window shop at artisan boutiques up north in Astoria.

A list of what to do in Oregon wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Portland and its offbeat attractions. Reserve a table at one of its many foodie-favored restaurants, breathe fresh air in its International Test Rose Garden and stop in at Powell’s City of Books, the largest independent bookstore in the country. The riverside Oregon Museum of Science & Industry is another popular draw.

For oenophiles, an itinerary of what to do in Oregon revolves around the Willamette Valley and the hundreds of vineyards that call it home. Taste its world-famous pinots straight from the barrel and pair them with first-rate cuisine.

Since the mid ’80s, Steve McCarthy has been harvesting fruit from his brother’s orchards in Parkdale, near the base of Mt. Hood, to produce localized fruit spirits using copper pot stills in Portland’s industrial Northwest.

Brian's Windsurfing & Kitesurfing can point you in the right direction, and hook you up with equipment and instruction.

This weekly happening benefits charity and is broadcast over airwaves in Oregon and southwestern Washington courtesy of the Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB) system.

An offbeat mix of students, progressive political activists, hippies, and young professionals inhabits this East Side neighborhood. Its main drag, Hawthorne Boulevard, is lined with teahouses, hemp shops, and vegetarian cafés.

Head to the Old Mill District, where there are vast outposts of REI and Helly Hansen, as well as one-off boutiques like Vanilla (should your needs run more to Cosabella lingerie) and Dieci Soli (for covetable Provençal faïence and Umbrian majolica).

This cocktail lounge complements adjacent Gracie’s restaurant in downtown Portland’s Hotel deLuxe. The space has cushioned banquette seating, alligator skin and shark skin railing, moody wall sconces, and the namesake driftwood affixed to a purple back bar.

Insider clout: Niskanen recently set up a meeting in New Delhi with leading academics to discuss Indian politics. Special booking: He's set up lunch for a client with the U.S. ambassador to New Zealand as well as a Fourth of July picnic in the Botswanan bush.

The tiny café has a passionate following for its smoked-sea-salt bagels and its trademark “ocean rolls” (like a cinnamon roll, but with a cardamom kick).

A collectively run coffeehouse lousy with laptop beatniks conforming in their devotion to the fight-the-power manifestos the management has posted on placards: We Want to be an Example of an Ethical, Nonhierarchial, Worker-Run Operation.

This deluxe spa in Oregon’s lush Willamette Valley wine country encompasses 15,000 square feet of the sprawling wood and stone complex, complete with 12 treatment rooms, sauna and steam rooms, and separate lounges for men and women, plus a co-ed compromise.

More than 200 wineries—among them some of the country’s top producers of Pinot Noir—are spread across this lush river valley, just a 45-minute drive from downtown Portland.

Ristretto Roasters founder Din Johnson first contributed to the city's booming specialty coffee scene in 2005 by opening this Beaumont coffeehouse with wife Nancy Rommelmann.

Stop along the 35-mile Hood River Fruit Loop, where farm stands sell homemade, fruit-filled pastries.