7 Sights to See in Portland ...

Jenny

7 Sights to See in Portland ...
7 Sights to See in Portland ...

There are so many fascinating sights to see in Portland, it is a city full of unique sights, smells and sounds that will have you never wanting to leave. I have always loved to travel. By the time I graduated from high school I had visited 4 countries and I have since been to well over half of the states in the US. This week I’m on my way to Mexico with my husband. My point is I travel a LOT. It is by far my favorite thing to do, but I have one very particular city that is my absolute favorite and that is Portland, Oregon. Every city is unique in its own way but the sights to see in Portland are different from those you will see anywhere else. One of my very best friends lives in Portland so I have been fortunate enough to have visited the city several times. If you are planning a trip sometime in the future, head to Portland!

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1

Lan Su Chinese Garden

Lan Su Chinese Garden The Chinese Garden is a relaxing oasis within the busy city and is one of my favorite sights to see in Portland. This gorgeous garden is one city block full of Chinese architecture and authentic plants. The climate in the city is similar to that in China, which allows the garden to maintain the vast array of beautiful flowers and interesting trees that you don’t get to see anywhere else. Nestled inside the garden is the Teahouse, which serves several traditional varieties of tea in a relaxing environment. The Lan Su Chinese Garden remains interesting regardless of how many times you visit because they offer a variety of activities from tai chi and mahjong to a guided tour chock full of interesting plant info. One secret for first timers, the walkways are made out of stones turned on their sides, if you take off your shoes and walk on them it provides a phenomenal foot massage!

2

Pittock Mansion

Pittock Mansion This gorgeous historical mansion sits 1,000 feet above the city and provides the most spectacular view of Portland and Mt. Hood! I have hundreds of pictures of the city taken from the grounds of Pittock Mansion because it is so breathtaking to look out over such a vast city and see everything. It is honestly the best view you could hope to have. The mansion itself was built in 1914 for Henry and Georgiana Pittock, who helped make the city of Portland what it is today. After they had passed away in 1918 and 1919, the remainder of their family continued to live in the home until they sold it to the City of Portland in 1964. After a great restoration project was completed, the historic home was open to the public in 1965 and has allowed visitors to roam its halls, taking in the beautiful eclectic architecture and furniture left by the Pittocks ever since.

3

Portland Japanese Garden

Portland Japanese Garden If you are looking for true natural beauty, the Portland Japanese Garden is the perfect place to escape to. It has been called the most authentic Japanese garden outside of Japan and contains five distinct garden sections, all of which are truly breathtaking. My favorite of the five gardens is a Karesansui Garden, popularly called a Zen garden. It is a large garden of sand and stones with interesting patterns drawn in the sand. While it is commonly understood to be a garden that inspires peace and meditation, it is actually meant to provoke contemplation. Either way, it is simple, serene and beautiful. The second garden is the Strolling Pond Garden. The zig-zag bridge and moon bridge follow the stream that connects the upper and lower ponds. The trickling sound of the stream is the perfect accompaniment to the interesting plants surrounding you. The Flat Garden is more like looking at a living painting. The flat ground is accented by the various arrays of plants and trees that create the illusion of great depth. You can view this garden inside the pavilion or on the veranda, either way the picturesque view is framed by the window or the sides of the veranda, making it seem as though you are looking at a painting hung on a wall. If you follow the serene stone walkway you will come to the traditional Teahouse surrounded by the Tea Garden. Inside you will sit on tatami (mats) on the floor while you enjoy your delicious tea as you relax. The last garden is the Natural Garden. It is the only one of the five that contains flora not found in Japan. It has been re-worked several times to feature differing plant life and currently is inhabited by plants and trees native to Portland.

4

Pioneer Square

Pioneer Square Ah Pioneer Square, my favorite place. Whenever I went to Oregon for a visit, I would inevitably end up with a few days where I was left on my own to wander the city and I invariably wound up spending hours at Pioneer Square. It is a giant outdoor brick structure that is always bustling with activity. There are rows and rows of bleacher type seats made out of brick that surround a flat square foundation. You never know what you might find if you linger there. Many free events are held in the square annually and when there isn’t a publicized show taking place you can still find all sorts of interesting things to watch, from people playing hacky sack to flash mobs. Scattered around the top portion of the square are several eateries as well as a Starbucks. My favorite thing to do was grab a mocha frappuccino from Starbucks and a hot dog from the hot dog cart and sit on the steps to watch whatever unexpected entertainment unfolded before me.

5

International Rose Test Garden

International Rose Test Garden I have decided that there is no place in the world as beautiful as the International Rose Test Garden. The garden is home to approximately 7,000 plants, containing just under 600 species of roses. Every year many new varieties are sent here to be tested for various qualities such as fragrance, color and disease resistance. If you are a lover of flowers or beauty, you will absolutely love this place. There are various art structures and ponds mixed in to break up the rows of roses and add to the beauty of the garden, which is separated into several mini sections such as the Shakespeare Garden, which was created to feature only plants and herbs discussed in Shakespeare’s plays. The Gold Medal Garden features new varieties of roses that have done remarkably well. There are no other gardens like this in North America, so if you find yourself in Portland, it really is worth checking out.

6

Saturday Market

Saturday Market The Saturday (and Sunday) Market has everything you could possibly imagine! There are insane amounts of people handcrafting items or using their artistic talents to draw portraits or caricatures of you and your companions. You can find anything from woodworking booths to silk screen tees as well as the Spoon Man, who creates astonishingly gorgeous jewelry out of forks and spoons! I bought the most beautiful fork necklace from him and it is still one of my favorite jewelry pieces! There are also food booths or catering carts with every kind of food you could possibly want, from burgers to Indian cuisine. It is definitely a day-long endeavor and even then you’re unlikely to see everything they have to offer. This is a MUST see!

7

Underground Tunnel Tour

Underground Tunnel Tour The Underground Tours are incredible if you are looking to unlock little known secrets about the city. As well as taking you literally underground to explore the tunnels that lie beneath Portland, you will hear the twisted tales of the underground subcultures and shady scandals of the past. There are also underground ghost tours for you freaky friends of mine who like to be scared out of your wits as much as I do. The historic sights and the stories of immoral behavior will intrigue and awe you.

Portland is a very busy city, it amazes me how much natural and man-made beauty you can find within it. There truly is no place like it. The history, the mish-mash of cultures and the ever present excitement you feel as you explore will make you dizzy with delight. If the sights and sounds don’t do it for you, the phenomenal variety of food certainly will! What's your favorite thing to do in Portland?

Feedback Junction

Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

I live in Portland as well. Fabulous city. Rated #1 to have and raise kids in.

Being a Portlander, may I suggest traveling Alberta street! Especially on the last Thursday of each month!

I live in Portland! Love my town <3

I live in Portland.

I too love visiting Portland! One of my fav cities thus far!! &#x 263a;

These are amazing! Nice article :)

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