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1st trip to Portland

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1st trip to Portland

Hi. I am so glad to have found this board. We (me, hubby and 12 year old daughter) will be visiting Portland in July for the first time.

I am actually going due to a medical issue to see a doctor there but will have 5 days before my procedure to sight see.

I would like to list some of the things that we really want to do while there. Could someone help me with the order in which to do these activities?

Science Museum (Bodyworlds exhibit)

Cannon Beach (just for the day)

Mt Hood

Japanese Gardens

Zoo

Pittock Mansion

Columbia River Gorge

Astoria

Shopping (Powell Books, Portland Saturday Market, Pearl District)

Am I missing anything really important??????

Also, we will be there for a total of 8-10 days. Any suggestions on where to stay for that length of time that will not totally break my piggy bank?

Thanks in advance.

Travelor from TN

Portland, Oregon
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1. Re: 1st trip to Portland

First of all I would combine Astoria and Cannon beach. We took a lovely drive last summer, following the Columbia River out of Portland towards the NW and over to Astoria....then we traveled through Seaside (fun stuff for a 12 yr old) and down to Cannon Beach. I highly recommend paying the day use fee to go to Ecola State park. You might want to pack a picnic and have lunch there. Then you can tour Cannon Beach and head back to Portland on Hwy 26.

Personally, and at the risk of being beaten black and blue by several local experts here, I would skip Mt Hood. The views of it from the city are gorgeous. On the day that you go up the Columbia River gorge you can travel on to the city of Hood River, and watch the amazing windsurfers.

The science museum has many other exhibits besides Bodyworlds so plan plenty of time there.

I haven't been to the Pittock but my understanding is that if you are really into restored Victorians it is well done.

Shopping is great downtown as well at many nearby regional malls. No sales tax!

Now, as far as less expensive lodgings, I might suggest you check further than downtown Portland. There's a certain ambience staying in the heart of the city, but the suburbs offer less expensive choices. I live in Tigard for instance and we have two Phoenix Inn's (daily breakfast, nice rooms, under $100 a night) and a Marriott Residence Inn, which gives you a kitchen area with a real refrigerator - could prove worthwhile to stock drinks and snacks and breakfast items. They generally have a cooktop and microwave as well. Complete with dishes and pans. Tigard is, in good traffic (not rush hour) about 20 min from downtown and as little as 30 min from the airport.

Texas
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2. Re: 1st trip to Portland

Well, I'm going to Boston for our vacation, but was looking into going to Maine and I came across a spring rate at the Samoset resort for 99.00 to 109.00 for 3 as a Spring special. It looks like a great place to stay, but you never know all the add ons...put the word "spring" in the promotional code.

We are from Texas so can't give you any "I've been there" advise.

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3. Re: 1st trip to Portland

Hi and welcome to the forums! Sounds like you will be covering a lot of ground. For some fun shopping in Portland, you may want to also consider the Nob Hill area of Portland. Fun boutiques there and it's an interesting area of Portland. If you like antiques, Sellwood is also pretty cool.

Astoria is about 30 minutes away from Cannon Beach, you may want to make a stop at Fort Stevens State Park on your way over to Astoria. A very pretty place with the wreck of the Peter Iredale and there is Coffenbury Lake which is very pretty. Fort Clatsop is now completely re-built and open to the public, we saw the re-build this past March on our trip. Lots of history here, your daughter should enjoy this.

Astoria has many fun things to do, the Astor Column, the Maritime Museum, the riverfront trolley, the Flavel Mansion and shopping in downtown Astoria. Go out to Pier 39, the views are really pretty from this side of town, the Rogue Public Ale House is a great new place for a bite to eat. Have fun on your travels! :)

Portland, Oregon
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4. Re: 1st trip to Portland

gogogirl...check your personal messages.

oregon city
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5. Re: 1st trip to Portland

Pittock Mansion, Japanese Gardens, & zoo are all in the same area, perhaps you could do a full day of visiting here. You probably won't have time, but also the nearby Arboretum is interesting-you could do a drive through if you dont have time to explore the trails.

Would definetly spend a day at the beach and a day in the gorge.

You can see Mt Hood from Portland-if its not cloudy :) if you do go to Mt hood make sure to stop at Timberline Lodge.

Might be interested in the Hawthorne District for shopping- its the bohemian area.

Longview, Washington
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6. Re: 1st trip to Portland

Also up by the zoo and Japanese Gardens is the World Forestry Center. We took our grandchildren (12 and 14) there in April. They thought it was great fun!

We rarely stay in Portland, but I can recommend the Oxford Suites Portland/Gladstone (we were there about a year ago--stayed in Portland for a wedding). Nice accomodations just off the freeway along the Clackamas River near Oregon City.

You might also consider OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry). Another of by grandkids favorities--lots of hands on stuff.

Buenos Aires...
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7. Re: 1st trip to Portland

lol, chicogirl, you do such a good job advising people, no one would consider beating you black and blue..

Portland, Oregon
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8. Re: 1st trip to Portland

Thanks Scarlett, but I have noticed that Mt Hood and Timberline lodge are pretty much sacred locations around here...so I went out on a limb.

I forgot to mention...I think Mt St Helen's is pretty special...instead of a pretty mountain with a ski resort you get to see the power of nature. Even if you just drive in far enough to the first visitor center you will find that it's extremely well done, interesting and informational without being boring.

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9. Re: 1st trip to Portland

chico--Well, I won't beat you til you are black and blue...but can I disagree?

I am one that does love the Mt. Hood/Gorge area, so that is my vote:)

But yes, Mt. St. Helens is amazing too. I heard on the news the other day that Johnston Ridge Observatory opened for the season. This is a must see!

Portland, Oregon
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10. Re: 1st trip to Portland

I'm not bashing Mt Hood, I'm just saying that if I had a short period of time for sightseeing I would choose other things first.

I loved the World Forestry Center as did my husband and 15 yr old daughter....go figure. My husband especially liked the exhibit where you get to sit in the seat of the logging thingy (help me Phirl) and virtually cut down trees...fortunately there were not any families waiting a turn....

We went there in order to see the Ansell Adams Exhibit they had but really enjoyed the rest of the museum.