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“Interesting” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Columbia Gorge Discovery Center & Museum

Columbia Gorge Discovery Center & Museum
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$188.88*
and up
Private Tour: Columbia River Gorge Day Trip from Portland
Ranked #1 of 21 things to do in The Dalles
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The 48,200 sq. ft. facility won an American Institute of Architects Honor Award for its appealing design. The Center is situated on a 54-acre point of land adjacent to the Columbia River and the Historic Columbia River Highway. The site provides walking trails, a pond, and scenic overlooks. Its location in The Dalles, Oregon is an ecosystem transition zone, facilitating the interpretation of both the rain forest west of the Cascade Mountains and the arid region to the east. Live raptor education programs engage all ages in issues related to habitat preservation. The area includes one of the oldest continuously occupied areas in North America (over 11,000 years), immediate proximity to one of the largest rivers on the continent, and access to the Lewis and Clark and Oregon Trails. The multimedia, interactive museum inspires appreciation and stewardship of the natural and cultural treasures of the Gorge and Wasco County. Exhibits focus on the volcanic upheaval and raging floods that created the Gorge, the unique flora and fauna of the region, and eleven thousand years of cultural history. Collections include hundreds of American Indian baskets from throughout the Pacific Northwest, photo archives (partially available on-line), and local genealogical files available in the William G. Dick Library. In addition to touring the many fascinating exhibits, visitors can spend time viewing films in the theater located on site. If you plan to spend the day at the Discovery Center and Museum, you can relax during a lunch or coffee break at the Basalt Rock Cafe.
Montana City, Montana
Level Contributor
8 reviews
“Interesting”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2012

While traveling with my family and also an aunt who grew up in the area, we visited the discovery center. We each learned something we didn't know. My 6 year old son loved the mammoth and the interactive section. Would recommend seeing. They also have a great trail system there for walking along the river.

Visited May 2012
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Thank MTCityGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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284 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Level Contributor
21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Loved thisnplace”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2012

Bigger and better than I thought it would be. Excellent if you are into local history.

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
Thank Jazzganggirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Dalles
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Discovery Center”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 25, 2012

Lots of things for everybody to see and learn about. Has many different exhibits. Wasco County history library is here and you can find story of people who lived here. Very helpful. You can go in there free.

Helpful?
Thank Coleclan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
Level Contributor
87 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Nice facility, worth a visit fer sure.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 4, 2012

A wonderful building on a very pretty site, housing two museums for the price of one. We found the Columbia Gorge wing, with its exhibits on geology, ice age animals, aboriginal history, Lewis and Clark and early settlers quite interesting and well done for the most part. The audio presentations I found to be too loud, as the endlessly looping tape from the next exhibit over was distracting when you were trying to look at / read something else.

the Wasco County museum wing was less interesting to me personally, seeming to focus a little too much on one or two local industrial magnates from the past (benefactors perhaps?).

the gift shop was pretty dull..the grounds outside were nice, and had a short loop trail with some signs indicating local plant life. Overall, a good introduction to the natural and human history of the area, worth a visit if you are spending any time in the region.

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
Thank Reginald_Chung
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gresham, Oregon
Level Contributor
79 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“A must-see for local history,”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2012

Beautiful setting full of historical memmorabilia and also a great place to attend a wedding.

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Sding73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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