**Must-dos for anyone visiting Portland**

  1. Powell's BooksVisit Powells
    what, do I have to sell this? They're the largest bookstore in the US, for cripes sakes. They have a coffee shop for reading, wifi-ing, and people watching.
    1. Powell's Technical BooksVisit Powells Technical Store (if you're a techie)
      Our beloved Fup no longer walks among us, but PTS is an awesome place to visit, or camp with your laptop.
  2. go to Voodoo Doughnuts
    No, they're not the world's best donuts, and if that's what you're looking for, you're missing the point. No, this is just the world's funkiest donut shop. You can get vegan donuts, non-vegan donuts, donuts in the shape of unmentionables, and even, a couple of years back, donuts with nyqyil in them. Marc Acito notes, "Let's not forget the donuts with bacon at Voodoo Donuts. Yummy and good for the arteries. LOL."
  3. Leave downtown and visit the east side
    If you're a foodie, know that the majority of excellent food options is on the east. The majority of ethnic food is on the east side (exceptions being Indian most notably). The best pubs, and some of the best brewpubs, are on the east side. The inner eastside is easily and quickly reached using TriMet, our local public transportation.
  4. Go for a ride on the tram
    Portlanders love to complain about the tram, but if you really want a good view of Portland, there is none better. McAuliflower of Brownie Points notes, "The tram is free to ride down (the #8 bus will take you up to the top), otherwise you need to buy a $4 tram ticket to ride it up." Course, if you're scared of heights, how's about checking out Council Crest, the city's highest point, and a lovely one, too, as Randy suggests.
  5. Go for a walk!
    You don't have to go all the way to Forest Park to get a good walk in. I have some suggestions for walks that are adjacent to downtown...

And here are some ideas that aren't for everyone, but, you know, might be right for you

  1. Go to Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade for some classic video-gaming
    home to video games from the 70s on, and the largest and best-maintained collection of pinball machines. After 7pm, you can have a beer with your game...
  2. See a Timbers Game
    The Timbers are our professional soccer league. And they have an army. Just saying.
  3. go to Forest Park
    there are trails, an arboreteum, mountain views, and, um, trails. You can mountain bike on Leif Ericksen, and run and walk just about all the rest
  4. History buffs must check out Pittock Mansion
  5. Check out the liquid of your choice vice
    We are the craftbrew center of the world. We're surrounded by some of the best vineyards (and wine producers) in the world. We're known by coffee lovers around the country as a hotbed of coffee roasters and master baristas. We even have shops devoted to the pursuit of tea, and restaurants that specialize in old-fashioned sodas.
  6. Visit a garden
    We have two rose gardens in Portland. We have a Chinese Classical garden, and a Japanese Garden. We have an arboreteum, and a rhododendron garden. And, we have the world's smallest park -- right downtown.

So, Portlanders, what do you consider the universals, that every visitor should do when they come to town?

filled under Sightseeing in Portland
February 24, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (12)


Gastronut said:

4) Timbers game

5) Forest park

6) Pittok Mansion

McAuliflower said:

great ideas! The tram is free to ride down (the #8 bus will take you up to the top), otherwise you need to buy a $4 tram ticket to ride it up.

I'm looking forward to more recommendations.

Marc Acito said:

Let's not forget the donuts with bacon at Voodoo Donuts. Yummy and good for the arteries. LOL.

* Walk the esplanade and cross at least one bridge
* Visit the Rose Garden
* Visit a Stumptown Coffee cafe

Jon Lee said:

Visit the world's smallest park!


Amy said:

I am actually visiting Portland next week. I plan to check out the Little Red Bike Cafe and Voodoo Donuts for breakfast. Any suggestions for Happy Hour?

Randy Primeaux said:

Visit Council Crest Park, "thought to be the highest point in Portland at 1,073 feet above sea level," reachable via TriMet bus 51 M-Sa. Stunning views on clear days.

Katez0r said:

I always take people to the international rose test garden, in Washington Park, and and Toro Bravo always wows people from out of town, especially if they're from a small city.

Doug Nordwall said:

While I'm not a Portlander, I go there quite often, it being just a few hours down the road.

1) The Japanese Garden - I can't emphasize this enough. best I've been to in quite a few.
2) Hit Stumptown Coffee. I'm particularly fond of the one in the Belmont district, but it's the coffee you go for.
3) Steppin' Stone Cafe - I love it. My wife stayed at the Silver Cloud down the street for a month and I hit there when I would visit on the weekends. Fantastic service and great food. The Dragonfly coffee shop on the way between them is excellent as well
4) Jimmy Mac's - if you like jazz of course, but who ever thought of greek + jazz? A Portland classic
5) Vista House - particularly a nice drive to it if you come up the Columbia River Highway from the east in the fall, but a great view none-the-less. The drive into town really gets you a great view of most of the facets of Portland.
6) It's a beautiful pizza, just down the street from the Belmont Stumptown (and across the street from the Blue Monk, another favorite of mine until recently). Good good pizza, and they serve Diet Rite from the tap!
7) Lucky Labrador Public House, on Capital Highway - I've not been to the other one, but this one has fantastic pizza and a great atmosphere.

pdxrocket said:

Doug's #6 struck me as just hilarious; It's a Beautiful Pizza and Diet Rite in the same bullet point of choice. I'd say I would ingest either only on a dare! Brings back memories of my mother having cases of that diet swill in her garage. blech! ...and I'm still not sure how the pizza place even survives on the quality of it's pies. Sorry, just my opinion.

Doug Nordwall said:

pdxrocket: you are certainly welcome to your opinion. I think the Diet Rite is as much a novelty as an actual quality drink. you just don't see it much. If you don't like the pie, that's fine, my wife and I enjoyed ours.

Dave Selden said:

I'd suggest hitting a few more beery landmarks. The Horse Brass, while admittedly pretty smoky, is, according to Karl Ockert, Bridgeport's Brewmaster, directly responsible for Portland's international beer reputation. They are open early for breakfast and soccer, and their scotch egg, while a definite gastronomic monstrosity, is something you won't find elsewhere in town. Great traditional English pub food, and reliably one of the best tap lists in town.

You really have to hit at least one brewpub, and I'd do one of the smaller ones before hitting one of the more corporate establishments (Widmer, Bridgeport, and soon, Deschutes). Good independents include Amnesia on Mississippi, Tugboat (next to Mary's), Roots and Lucky Lab in inner SE. HUB on Powell is supposed to be opening March 18th ... There are plenty of others (Portland has more breweries in its city limits than any other city in the world, after all), but those are my faves.

Other great beer bars: Produce Row (the other one Ockert points to), Green Dragon, Bailey's Taproom, Moon and Sixpence, and Belmont Station's Bier Cafe.

To add to the Crowne Point trip, I always include a stop at Double Mountain and/or Full Sail when I take people to Hood River. Double Mountain has great food; Full Sail a nice view of the Gorge.



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