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“historically accurate portland underground tour”

Portland Walking Tours
Ranked #10 of 104 Tours in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Portland Walking Tours’ fun and award-winning events explore the excitement, history, food, architecture, neighborhoods, bridges, parks, fountains, artwork, and just plain weird places in Portland Oregon. Tours include the award-winning “Best of Portland,” showcasing what makes Portland such a fabulous place to live and visit (daily, 10 AM and 2 PM); our scandalous “Underground Portland,” aka "the worst of Portland," revealing both the physical and metaphorical subterranean story of Portland's sordid past; the eerie “Beyond Bizarre”, a hands-on exploration of Portland's paranormal, using real ghost-hunting equipment as seen on shows like "Ghost Adventurer" (TM) and "Paranormal State" (TM); our delicious “Epicurean Excursion” walking tour, a tasty immersion into Portland's amazing culinary "slow food" scene; our indulgent “Chocolate Decadence Tour," exploring and sampling chocolate in its many solid and liquid forms, from bean to bar and everything in between; "Roses Gone Wild!", which dishes the dirt on Portland's famous International Rose Test Gardens; and "Flavor Street," where you taste the best of Portland's incredible food cart scene - and skip the rest.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
Portland, Oregon, United States
Level Contributor
419 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“historically accurate portland underground tour”
Reviewed July 22, 2013

elizabeth was a fine tour guide for the underground tour of portland @ 1100 yesterday 7-21-13. the info stated only 25% was underground, so most of it was historical and informative. she based her info on the oregon historical society, and it touched on exclusion laws, internment camps, prohibition, and bordellos. excellent delivery. the underground portions was neat.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Teresa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gary C, Manager at Portland Walking Tours, responded to this review, July 23, 2013
Dear Teresa,

Thanks for the positive review! We are glad you found the seedy, greedy history of Portland as interesting as we do. It's not all about the physical underground, and the cultural and criminal underground is pretty fascinating!

We'd just like to add that we rely not only on the Oregon Historical Society, but also a myriad of other well-researched published sources, including contemporary news accounts, biographies, and histories, and in fact we keep a well-stocked library in our office for our Resident Experts to use to continue to expand their knowledge of Portland's seedy, greedy past.

Thanks again!
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Dublin, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“I think the later show might be better...”
Reviewed July 21, 2013

I booked this tour due to its really high rating on Tripadvisor. I was really disappointed. I'll preface this by saying I don't really believe in ghost, I was just wanting to hear some interesting stories about Portland's history and see some historical sites.

The tour operator was nice and actually had a few good stories, but the whole experience was geared towards "ghost hunting" and the other people in the group had seen a few too many episodes of "ghost hunters". I won't get into details, but I just felt the people weren't there to have a good time but were really looking to see a ghost. I think if we had gone to the "Adults Only" tour later in the evening it would have been a more mature group and the experience would have been better.

One highlight was we got to try VooDoo Doughnuts. So at least they saved us the 1-3 hours of standing in line for a few donuts.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Jeff M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gary C, Manager at Portland Walking Tours, responded to this review, July 23, 2013
Dear Jeff M,

Thank you for your detailed review. We're sorry the tour did not meet your expectations. It appears you may have selected the wrong tour to go on. Our "Beyond Bizarre" tour is specifically described as a ghost-hunting tour on our website, in our brochures, and in every other venue, as well as a fun two-hour exposure to Portland's weird, wild and wacky side. Both our 7 PM and 10 PM "Adults Only" tour share this focus, although you are right in pointing out it would have a more mature style of presentation.

Perhaps the tour you would have preferred is our Underground Portland tour, which focuses on the seedy, greedy not-so-good side of Portland's history. Of course, there's no donuts on that tour, so it's all a matter of trade-offs.

We hope you'll try that tour. If so, please let us know if that's more your style.

Thanks again for the review. Every bit of feedback helps us keep improving.
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Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
79 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Two Tours of Portland”
Reviewed July 18, 2013

Although I live in Portland, I thought this would be fun to do with out-of-town visitors. We took two tours: Best of Portland and Epicurean Portland. I learned so much more about my adopted hometown. The tours are fun and the tour guides are very knowledgeable and personable. I highly, highly recommend them for anybody visiting Portland, and maybe if you aren't just visiting! We had a great time.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank keelx2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gary C, Manager at Portland Walking Tours, responded to this review, July 19, 2013
Dear Keelx2,

Thank you for the five-star review! We really appreciate the kind words, especially from an experienced, knowledgeable traveler as yourself. It's fun to be a tourist in your own town, isn't it?

We're glad you echoed a sentiment we have a hard time convincing locals of: that even locals are surprised at how much they learn about Portland on these walking tours. It's especially fun to eat your way through on the Epicurean Excursion!

Thanks again. Come back soon.
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Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Portland Underground Tour- Amazing”
Reviewed July 17, 2013

Having traveled to Portland once a year for the last 7 years decided to do something touristy. We heard about the history of the Portland Shanghai underground and thought will give it a go. The tour leader was fantastic and showed a lot of History of PDX (Portland) and also the underground tour at the end. It was very interesting indeed. Have decided to do a tour each year and I would highly recommend them!

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank hankoboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gary C, Manager at Portland Walking Tours, responded to this review, July 19, 2013
Dear Hankoboy,

"Amazing" is a great word... we love it! Thank you for describing our Underground Portland tour in such glowing terms.

Just want to clarify that the tour's official name, for those doing an on-line search, is "Underground Portland Walking Tour." And that while we do tell the true stories about "Shanghaiing" in Portland, the tour has a much wider scope than that, focusing on Portland's seedy, greedy, dirty, and no-good past of ALL sorts... almost all of which was Underground in one form or another, be it physically underground, criminally underground, socially, politically or... other.

Thanks again for the great review!
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Level Contributor
39 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Food truck tour too pricey for what you get”
Reviewed July 16, 2013 via mobile

I visited Portland on business and had heard all about the huge food truck scene. The other tour in town, Forktown tours, was already booked, so we choose this one. I initially couldn't get two tickets, but called the office and they made room for us. The guide's name was Joe and he was friendly enough and, thankfully, had a loud voice since he didn't use a microphone and we were walking through the noisy downtown area. He gave us some background info on the food trucks and lead us to maybe 9 trucks. Some trucks only gave us a bite of sausage or salmon, while others gave us a whole taco, falafel, or half a waffle. While we did find new foods that we bought again later, we both felt that for the $59 price tag, more carts should have been visited. We had done the Seattle Pikes Place Market food tour a couple of days before and paid only $39 and received more food plus earpieces to hear the tour guide. If you've never done a food tour, you might be disappointed by this one, but if you just want to try a few food trucks and are a light eater, you may be happy.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Punkin2605
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gary C, Manager at Portland Walking Tours, responded to this review, July 19, 2013
Dear Punkin2605,

Thank you for your review. We're very concerned, right off, about the price you quoted for this tour. Our price is $49, not $59 as you mentioned (that is the price for our higher-end Epicurean Excursion). Could you please check your records on that?

I hope that would change your mind regarding the price-value for this tour. Even so, we're sorry you didn't think you got as much value out of the tour as most people, who usually tell us the food is both amazing and plentiful. If it's not enough to visit nine trucks, most of which provided substantial samples as you say, and to show you new trucks you loved enough to return to, we'll just have to find ways to raise the bar even further.

Thanks again for the feedback. It helps us continue to improve our tours, which we strive to do every day.
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