Eating Your Way Through Portland
Portland is the perfect foodie destination. The city’s culinary scene spans a myriad of cuisines—every style, genre and ethnicity can be found in the city, whether it be at a corner food cart or a fine-dining restaurant overlooking the beautiful Willamette River.
One restaurant not to be missed is Noble Rot. Found on the fourth floor of the Lower Burnside’s Rocket Building, the restaurant’s rooftop patio offers unmatched views of the downtown Portland area. Tables inside will find a light-flooded charming dining area, perfect to enjoy the delicious cuisine Noble Rot has to offer.
On the menu, you will find a variety of dishes, ranging from grilled sirloin to seared salmon, all nicely garnished. Ingredients are sourced as locally as possible, and many are grown on the restaurant’s rooftop garden. The menu even highlights ingredients grown on the roof. Noble Rot has a wine list with more than 300 options with 30-50 by-the-glass choices.
Noble Rot is open for dinner nightly starting at 5 pm. Reservations are recommended, especially for patio seating.
Two other recommended food stops are the Third Avenue Food Cart Pod and Pambiche. The Third Avenue Food Cart Pod is a no-frills, carts-only pod that is commonly referred to as the Gyro District. We had one, and they are delicious! If gyros aren’t your thing, Mama Chow’s Kitchen has delicious dumplings, and El Pilon has gluten-free Colombian food.
Pambiche is a trendy Cuban eatery with the classics. The brightly colored restaurant exemplifies the charm of Cuba with the food to go along with it. The pastries are a must while visiting. If you stop by for lunch or dinner, we recommend the Plato Cubano or the Pescado con Coco.
If you are in Portland during the weekend, visit the Portland Saturday Market. Recognized as the largest continuously operating open-art market in the county, the market is filled with more than 250 local small businesses selling arts, crafts and foods. Part of the market is found in the Tom McCall Waterfront Park. The park runs along the Willamette River and is a popular place for jogging, walking and biking. If you are visiting during the warmer months, stop by the Salmon Street Springs. It is a great place to enjoy some yummy treats from the market and let the kids play.
There is no better place to take in the cityscape than the Portland Aerial Tram. It is one of the only aerial trams for commuters in the country. It carries commuters 3,300 linear feet from the city’s South Waterfront district to the main OHSU campus. At the top, you can enjoy the city views and visit the nearby patios and cafes. A round trip fare is $5.10, and children younger than 6 are free.
The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) is another must-visit in Portland. There is something for everyone at the 219,000-square-foot museum. Visitors can enjoy watching a movie in The Empirical, a four-story, giant-screen theater; explore the universe in the planetarium and tour a submarine.
If you are visiting during the summer months, stop by the Hood River fruit loop and lavender farms on your way back to the Treasure Valley. You can stock up on some delicious Rainier cherries to enjoy on the way home!
Attracting more than two million visitors a year, Multnomah Falls is the tallest waterfall in the Columbia River Gorge dropping a remarkable 620 feet. After admiring the falls from the ground, take a short walk up to the postcard-famous Benson Bridge. It spans the lower falls and is a great place to take some pictures. When visiting the falls, consider taking the Columbia Gorge Express shuttle, visiting early in the morning or visiting late in the afternoon to avoid crowds.
Latourell Falls and Bridal Veil Falls
Two must-visit waterfalls in the Gorge are Latourell Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. Latourell Falls is surrounded by columnar basalt cliffs, letting the water freefall for 294 feet. There are paved paths to the bottom of the waterfall and to a viewpoint of the top. There is also a 2.1-mile loop that visits Upper Latourell Falls. The base, Bridal Veil Falls, can be accessed by a one-mile round trip, family-friendly trail. The trail has beautiful vegetation along the way with a spectacular waterfall at the end.
Vista House at Crown Point
The Vista House, originally built as a “comfort station” for drivers, overlooks the entrance to the Columbia River Gorge. The Vista House is most famous for its jaw-dropping views of the gorge and has some of the best views in Oregon. The balcony is the perfect place to breathe in the fresh air, daydream over the picturesque river and observe the boat traffic. Spend some time inside the Vista House learning about the history of the house, gorge and Oregon. There are restrooms and a gift shop in the basement.