25 Surreal Places In Portland You Won't Believe Exist
Portland, how are you this amazing?
People think they know everything about Portland from Portlandia. But Portland is so much more than just everyone's view of it as hipster central. News flash: Not everyone wears plaid and a beanie every single day!
Sometimes, it can feel like you've seen it all when it comes to a city you've lived in for ages. But there are always things to see and do when it comes to a vibrant city like Portland. There are waterfalls, parks, gardens, and new cafes for you to visit and tell all your friends about.
There's something for everyone here. There are places for you to embrace the great outdoors, coffee shops for you to just sit and relax, and places for you to pretend you're cultured and classy. So scan the list, pick out the places that seem the most interesting to you, and head on out. It's your own choose your adventure come to life!
Where: 4000 SW Fairview Blvd
Even if you aren't a total geek for nature, you'll love the Hoyt Arboretum. This luscious space boasts over 2,000 species of trees. And what's different about this park from others is that you can take a guided tour! The tour only takes 90 minutes for only a suggestion donation of $3.
Where: Guy W. Talbot State Park, Corbett
A 30 minute drive to see a waterfall isn't far at all! Even if you aren't a hiking enthusiast, the walk isn't too steep and you won't be drenched in sweat and huffing your way to the top. The trail leads you straight up the mountain to the top of the falls. Apparently, you can walk behind the falls, but be careful!
Where: 9252 SE Harold St
Fancy making some new friends? If you're friends with the right people, it won't take much convincing on your part to get them to come with you to hang out with goats for an afternoon. The community lets you get right up close to these cute animals. If you're nice to the goats, they might even let you join the herd.
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
Where: 1037 SW Broadway
You've passed by it a million times, but have you ever gone in? The concert hall holds several kinds of events and all you have to do is bite the bullet and find one that suits you. You can come see a musical, a stand-up show, or even the Oregon Symphony playing the Star Wars soundtrack. So get dressed up and enjoy a night out with your friends or your SO. The best part? You can brag to your friends the next day that you went and saw a show. Because if you can't rub it in your friends' faces then what is the point of all this?!
Where: 4330 SE Division St
You got to love a place with a name that gets right to the point. You come here when you are in the mood for any flavor of tea that you can imagine. Any drink you order will be served in a masion jar because Portland has to stay on brand. If you love bubble tea, make sure you try the vanilla rose flavor. Your tastebuds will thank you for it!
The Heathman Hotel
Where: 1001 SW Broadway
There's tea and then there's Russian tea. You don't have to be a guest to take advantage of the hotel's services! Treat your SO this unique tea experience. You'll both walk away with a belly full of food and a bladder full of different kinds of tea. Ah, romance.
Where: Forest Park
Don't be alarmed by the Stone House's other name, Witch's Castle. To get there, just walk on the Lower Macleary Trail and you can't miss it. If you see anything unusual, just know that the place is supposedly haunted. So either embrace it or run away! It's best to visit the place when it's bright outside, but for those who are brave enough, the Stone House is waiting for you after sunset.
Where: 2448 E Burnside St
Milennial pink lives and breathes here. Come here to eat delicious Middle Eastern food. It's highly recommended that you order one of their delicious drinks to go along with your meal. And how can you pass up a pastel pink drink when you're there? After you've stuffed your face, take your time setting up the perfect Instagram shot because every corner of this place is worthy of being your background!
Cathedral City Park
Where: 6635 N Baltimore Ave
Pick a park, any park. But Cathedral City Park is really something else. It's a quiet area just under the St. Johns Bridge. Take a walk around the park, bike, or just sit and have a picnic on the grass while you look onto the water. It's the place you go to when you want to get away from the city as it's not as popular as the other parks. If you can, try and catch an outdoor concert! It's a nice way to spend time with your loved one underneath the stars.
The Wishing Tree
Where: 2954 NE 7th Ave
In need of a little magic in your life? Head to the Wishing Tree where you can anonymously write your wish down on a tag and hang it for people to see. It's fun to come up with your own, but it's also interesting to read other people's wishes! A wishing tree might be even better than a genie. Who's to say unless you try it out yourself!
Solabee Flowers & Botanicals
Where: 801 N Killingsworth St
Step inside this indoor jungle. As soon as you step inside, you won't want to leave. The place is flooded with sunlight and the shop is inviting with plants and flowers everywhere you look. If you're looking to replace your slowly dying plants in your apartment, definitely head here. The employees are also extremely helpful in telling you how to care for the plants and will help you suggest what will go best in your apartment.
Where: 8840 NE Skidmore St
The Grotto is a peaceful place to visit located just minutes from downtown. To get to the shrine, you walk through the botanical garden that's filled with fir trees and rhododendrons. The shrine is located in a rock cave that's carved into the base of a 100-foot cliff. It's popular spot so make sure you get there earlier in the day to avoid the crowds.
Where: 3229 NW Pittock Dr
The French Renaissance style historic home is stunning. You can take a guided tour of the mansion and learn about the first residents or take a walk around the grounds to see the plants and trees in the garden. After you're done on the grounds, walk the Wildwood Trail or head to the woods behind the mansion that are a part of Forest Park!
Where: 16448 NW MacNamee Rd
File this under things you never could have imagined. For some reason, people have taken to bringing troll dolls and hanging them onto the bridge. Not everyone has a troll doll on hand, so some people have drawn the troll dolls on the bridge with chalk. It's definitely a cute spot to check out and is definitely a conversation starter for when someone asks you what you did on the weekend.
Portland Japanese Garden
Where: 611 SW Kingston Ave
You won't regret coming here. This garden has a number of different areas from koi poinds to waterfalls to a zen rock garden. The walk around the park isn't strenous, but definitely make sure you wear good walking shoes if you want to explore the whole place! You can definitely take a tour if you want to, but it's also a great experience if you walk around by yourself. After all, there's no better company than yourself!
Where: I-84, Cascade Locks
The largest waterfall in Oregon is only a 30 minute drive from Portland! You have the chance to get up close and personal with this 620 feet waterfall. From the parking lot, it's only a short 5 minute walk until you're being sprayed in the face with this icy cold water. And if you don't take this opportunity to take cheesy photos of you looking like the waterfall is going straight into your mouth, then was the trip even worth it?!
Powell's City of Books
Where: 1005 W Burnside St
Book nerds, this one is for you. The flagship store has over one million books! Come here if you want to walk through nine color coded rooms to find the rarest of books. And if that doesn't tickle your fancy, you can take it one step further and join their free tours on Sunday. It happens twice a day and takes around 45 minutes.
International Rose Test Garden
Where: 400 SW Kingston Ave
Located within Washington Park, this rose garden is for when you don't have anyone buying you roses. When you visit, you will be able to see over 500 varieties of rose plants and sometimes that's better than receiving a bouquet from Costco.
Never Coffee Lab
Where: 4243 SE Belmont St
This is the minimalist's dream. This coffee shop has a white interior with pops of color on the menu and on the wall with fun art prints and decals. This might not be up to par with where the hipsters are going, but you can still come here and enjoy a cup of coffee.
Where: SE Salmon St
When you're here, you can't help but admire the city skyline. Take a stroll along the park, but don't miss out on the floating walkway that's about 1,200 feet long. It floats along the level of the Williamette River and is a real treat to experience.
Ira Keller Fountain park
Where: SW 3rd Ave & Clay St
Take your shoes off and dip your feet in! The water will be cold so this one's on you if you freak out at the temperature. If you can't get away from the city to go see a waterfall, this is your best chance. You can sit and eat your lunch here or bring a book so you can listen to the water falling. Nothing's more relaxing than that!
Portland Aerial Tram
Where: 3303 SW Bond Ave
Portland's more fun in the air. The tram is in frequent use by commuters, but you can avoid the rush hour traffic by visiting on the weekends. It's only a four minute ride, but it's worth it just to see the city from up above.
Lan Su Chinese Garden
Where: 239 NW Everett St
This walled Chinese garden covers a whole city block! Come explore the tranquil gardens for an afternoon. If walking around a garden isn't something you want to do, the gardens hold a number of events. You can learn calligraphy, listen to a demonstration of traditional Chinese music, or even take part in a yoga class.
¿Por Qué No? Taqueria
Where: 3524 N Mississippi Ave
Don't know where to go for Taco Tuesday? You come here! This taqueria has two locations and they are both vibrantly decorated and have delicious tacos. Make sure you go in with an empty stomach because the taco menu will make your head explode. Yes, it is possible to have that many choices for tacos. And plus you get to eat in what looks like a millennial pink house. And that's #Goals.
Seven Virtues Coffee Roasters
Where: 3538 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Did you think this list would end on anything other than a coffee shop?! For your caffeine fix and your daily dose of an Insta-worthy background, you need to come to one of Seven Virtues' locations. Come on, you can't beat that 'Be kind drink coffee" sign that's begging for you to sit below it for a photo. While you're there, make sure to snag a bagel because that's the coffee shop's other specialty!