Essential Things To Do In Portland, Oregon

Portland is one of the great Pacific Northwest cities.  The city is known for its eccentric people and there is a ton to do there.

I would say Portland is a pretty liberal city.  It’s a common theme for cities in the Pacific Northwest to be accepting of others unique qualities.  With that said, Portland has a lot of culture.  The city has good number of things to do and see in the area.

In addition, the mountains and forests aren’t too far from the city center.   It only takes a few hours to check out Portland’s many waterfalls, which is always a good idea.  The clean air, the morning mist and the rain sprinkles rain is a nice change from Los Angeles’ smog ridden skies.  Unfortunately, in Los Angeles, we don’t go outside for fresh air.  We go outside for sunshine and smog.

Anyway, I made a list of 10 things to check when in Portland, Oregon.  Here is my Portland essential things to do:


  • Horsetail Falls – The waterfall is amazing to see.  It’s about a mile up from Multnomah Falls and right off of Historic Columbia River Highway, so accessibility is very easy.
    Horsetail Falls
  • Multnomah Falls – The famous waterfall everyone comes to visit while in Portland.  The best time to visit it would be early in the morning.  It’s the best time to get a clean shot of yourself without anyone in the background and to avoid the crowds.
    Multnomah Falls
  • Fairy Falls – Fairy Falls is before Multnomah Falls.  It’s fairly accessible and it’s a good hike.  The trail elevates really fast and I found myself taking a break.  However, it was worth it even though it’s a much smaller waterfall compared to the others in the area.
    Fairy Falls
  • Wahkeena Falls – Wahkeena Falls is a multi-level waterfall.  The water’s crashes at every level, so expect to get wet next to it.  This one is a lot less crowded compared to Horsetail and Multnomah.
    Wahkeena Falls
  • Vista House – Vista House has the best view in Oregon.  The lookout point sits on top of a hill with a view of the whole area.  It’s a breathtaking view.
    Vista House
  • Pine Street Market – Every city has a food market.  Why would Portland be any different?  However, it’s okay to be weird in Portland.  It is Portland’s new food market.
  • Lan Su Chinese Garden – The Chinese Garden is an oasis in the grimy part of Chinatown.  The Chinatown is everything except Chinatown.  It looks like most of the merchants have deserted the area.  However, the Lan Su Chinese Garden is worth the trek.
    Lan Su Chinese Garden
  • Portland Saturday Market – It’s dubbed as the “largest continuously operated outdoor market” in the States.  The market occurs every Saturday in Tom McCall Waterfront Park next to the Burnside Bridge.  The vendors consist of arts, crafts and food.
    Portland Saturday Market
  • Pearl District – The Pearl District is famous for its many breweries.  It’s a good area to go bar hopping and try many of the local breweries in Portland.
    Pearl District
  • South Park Blocks – The South Park Blocks is a park that extends to PSU.  It’s the “good” side of town.  Portland State University has a farmer’s market every Saturday too, so it’s definitely worth checking out.
    South Park Blocks

Portland is a great city to visit.  The city has a decent foodie community along with its artsy community.  It’s a town worth checking out at least once for the experience.  Lastly, let us know if we should add anything in the comments section.  Safe travels.

Foodie. Traveler. Dreamer. Blogger.