Portland, Oregon… a city of wanderers, artists, and nature lovers. The unique atmosphere of Portland is unrivaled by any other city in the United States. Here you'll find hippies, farmers, accountants, musicians, entrepreneurs, and artists coexisting in the rainy Oregon climate. Sustainable living has taken root and taken over. In a city of sublime restaurants, galleries, coffee shops, and yoga studios, it is easy to see why Portland is such a well loved destination.
The diversity of Downtown Portland creates a bustling and bubbling atmosphere of West Coast Life. Hop on the Fareless Square and travel Downtown for free, as you explore this small yet eclectic city. Peruse literature in the largest book store in America; Powell's Books, and then explore the art galleries of the Pearl District. Watch a movie on the giant couches in the Living Room Theater, and get as much coffee as you can handle at Café Umbria. Downtown Portland is easily explored by foot if the weather is accommodating. Don't miss wandering Chinatown during the daytime, a rough and tumble little section of Downtown Portland. And if you're craving a Maple Bacon Donut, Voodoo Donuts is open 23 hours a day, and is absolutely not-to-be-missed.
The Multnomah District is a true glimpse of how most of Portlanders live. With beautiful little houses and home grown gardens, this area is considered true Portland. The quaintness of the main street is the best place to explore in this attractive and quiet neighborhood. Check out the Multnomah Art Center, which is well-loved by the people who live here.
Portland's beautiful Waterfront is a great area to view the spectacular Willamette River that separates the east and west sides of Portland. During the day, walk the length of Waterfront Park. Every June, the Rose Festival sets up shop here, a city wide party and parade that illustrates Portland's dedication to life and celebration. The Waterfront is always full of locals, and on a beautiful Portland summer day this is a relaxing and unique area to explore.
Old Town is one of the more colorful and unique parts of Downtown Portland. It is here that a visitor can really discover the dark underbelly of Portland's history. Wander the Classical Chinese Garden, an oasis in a busy and bustling city. During the day, take a tour of the Shanghai Tunnels, which run under Old Town and were once used for human trafficking. The nightlife here is a fun experience but borders on the nitty and gritty, especially because Portland has the most strip clubs per capita of any city in the United States, including Las Vegas.
Northwest Portland, or the trendy shopping area of Portland, boasts beautiful old homes, snazzy clothing boutiques, and a glimpse of the more 'comfortable' lifestyles in Portland. Also known as Nob Hill, both 23rd Street and 21st Street have some of the best shopping in Portland, with a range of local independent designers and upscale clothing chains. If you have a love of shopping, this is well worth the visit.
The Pearl District
The Pearl District is most akin to NYC's Meat Packing District. With cobblestone streets, urban living, and art galleries galore, it's easy to see the comparison. Trendy bars and restaurants are popping up here on a weekly basis, making the Pearl District an interesting and luxurious neighborhood of Downtown Portland. On the First Thursday of every month, the galleries open their doors to the general public into the late hours of the night, turning this upscale neighborhood into a loud and bustling party for all.
Sellwood is a quaint neighborhood, and home to the best antique shops in Portland. Nicknamed Antique Row, this is a great area to spend an afternoon perusing shops and drinking coffee. If it's a nice day out, the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge is a scenic spot to spend an afternoon. Sellwood has a distinctly 'livable' feel, and it's hard to not feel like a true Portlander when wandering this quietly beautiful area.
Convention Center Area
The Convention Center Area is located just across the river from bustling Downtown Portland. The Rose Garden Arena is the largest venue in Portland, and is the home of the Portland Trailblazers, Oregon's well-loved basketball team. If you're in this area, don't miss the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (also known as the OMSI), especially if you're toting little kids around on your travels. The children's exhibit is fantastically interactive. Although this area can be a little difficult to get to, it is worth a gander if you're planning on attending any concerts while you're in the area. The Oregon Convention Center is located here, and is busy every night of the week with a different local event. When your travel dates are finalized, make sure to check out the local happenings here!
The Hawthorne District is what Portland is known for. Whether you enjoy record shopping, local coffee shops, or browsing unique stores, this area is well-loved by all. Mount Tabor, an inactive volcano, towers over this eclectic district, and if you have time, the sunset is rather enjoyable from the top of this redwood-filled park. The local bars and restaurants in this area provide great entertainment and enjoyment for the evening no matter what kind of night you're looking for.
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