If you want to stop and smell the roses, the largest city in Oregon may be the optimal location to do so. Why? Because Portland is home to world-famous Portland Rose Festival. And is there a more fitting place to “stop and smell the roses” than the Rose Festival in The Rose City? Of course not! But alas, in case you didn’t find yourself in Portland during last weeks of April and the beginning of June, don’t despair! We have a few ideas on how to spend your time in The City of Roses when you (regrettably) miss the Rose Festival “window”.
1. Washington Park
First and foremost, Rose festival certainly isn’t the only opportunity to revel in the beauty of these wonderful flowers! Washington Park has a Rose Garden which you can visit during the whole summer! Once you’re already there find the time to walk through the Japanese Garden, visit the Zoo and the Holocaust Memorial. Also, near the Forestry Center in the park, you’ll run into Vietnam Remembrance Memorial. Plenty of hiking trails are to be found in the area, if you want to get your heartrate up while enjoy the hilly terrain. And don’t forget about the delightful Shakespeare Garden with a lovely outdoor amphitheater that is used for plays during the summer. The locals and tourists unanimously agree-this is a must-see!
2. Oregon Historical Society
If you are a history buff, do we have a recommendation for you. Oregon Historical Society offers you a chance to learn more about how this state came to be. The tickets are budget-friendly, and you’ll find out more about the Oregon Natives, the Westward expansion of the pioneers, World War II. We have been told that the JFK exhibit is particularly interesting, as well. It goes without saying that you can learn about history from the internet, but spending an afternoon in a museum is much more enjoyable than skimming through copious amounts of text, right?
3. Hoyt Arboretum
Nature is your friend, and Hoyt Arboretum will undoubtedly show you why! Bask in beautiful redwoods in this amazing living tree museum. Find your way between diverse maple trees, encounter blooming magnolias, take a few snaps of the sequoias while you are walking beside firs and spruce trees. These 200 acres of gorgeous walking trails are just waiting to be explored. The staff in the visitor’s center are always eager to help with useful info about the area. Pro tip: If you ask nicely, you’ll get a free cup of tea!
4. Portland Art Museum
The oldest art museum in the Pacific Northwest has a prestigious collection of European artworks, Japanese screen prints, American modern art-works and a whole area dedicated to photography. In case you want more of a 3D artistic experience, don’t miss a chance to stop by the sculpture garden. This museum has a Native American gallery, filled with the artifacts from 200 different tribes. Pro tip: You can omit the admission fee if you decide to stop by on Fridays.
5. Powell’s City of Books
Attention! All the bookworms should be notified about this venue! You never know what wonderful finds you’ll encounter here. The hours spent between the shelves will seem like minutes. If you prefer an approach that’s a bit more systematic, you don’t have to rely on luck to find that special book you’ve been searching for, for a while now. In Powell City, rooms are color-coded, grouped by individual themes and besides that- you can use their computer to find the title you need. Or you can simply go the old-fashioned way and ask the person in charge and add a true bookish flavor to your experience.
6. Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
This is a wonderful activity for kids and adults alike. Interact with robots, enjoy the chemistry lab, don’t miss the fossil display, attend the planetarium show and savor the sublime submarine tour. A simply delightful place for all the curious people who want to know everything about everything. Be sure to take your time exploring this place, since there is soooo much to see. And after a whole day spent on your feet, you don’t have to depend on public transport when going back home or to your hotel. Hail your trusted Radio Cab to take you anywhere you like and tell the driver about all the new adventures you had in Portlandia!