I recently took a spontaneous trip out to Portland because well, I just thought “why not?” I had never been and it is just a short two hour plane ride from Vegas. I also used my credit card points and didn’t pay a single dollar for the flights! (will be writing a post soon about what credit cards are the best for travel rewards!)
Anyway, I had a really great time in Portland, even though it was a very short trip. I had about two days there and definitely made the most out of it!
First, I suggest staying in or around downtown Portland. There’s so much to see and do there that you can easily walk around… which can save a lot on transportation costs. Although the tram system there is AMAZING!… and also very cheap!
I stayed at the Hoxton Portland which is located in Old Town/Chinatown. From the airport, I took the tram, which only cost $2.50 and about a 30 minute ride to Chinatown. From the Chinatown stop, it was less than a 10 minute walk to my hotel.
Once I got to my hotel and checked in, it was about noon. I walked around and found a cute pho place… it definitely hit the spot with the gloomy, rainy weather. After I ate lunch, I made my way to the famous Portland White Stag Sign. Located right in downtown, across the street from the Japanese American Historical Plaza. Also, from the Japanese American Historical Plaza, you can look over onto the Willamette River… beautiful views!
Then, OF COURSE, I made my way over to Voodoo Doughnuts. I’ve heard and seen so much of this doughnut shop on different travel and food shows. I wanted to see what the hype was about. And, yes, to my surprise… the doughnuts were REALLY good. The specialty ones are a little pricey but definitely worth trying one or two, or three. 😉 I had the guava colada and the vicious hibiscus. Yummm. Voodoo Doughnuts is only about a 5 minute walk from The Hoxton!
Right across the street from Voodoo Doughnuts is the infamous ‘Keep Portland Weird Sign’. A photo is a must here.
You HAVE to check out Powell’s Book Store when visiting Portland. I didn’t expect it to be so big! They have every and any genre of book you could think of! I probably spent about an hour or so there. I wanted to buy a ton of books… but I stopped myself and left with just one.😬
There’s also a lot of cool, random art all around Portland. I saw this one on my way to Powell’s.
Pearl District is a cool area with a ton of shops and restaurants. I had to stop by Deschutes Brewery and sample some of their beers. Get the tasting trays… you get to try 6 different beers. I really liked the Da Shootz! Pilsner.
For dinner, I went to Zapapizza. Really good pizza! And it was only a 2 minute walk from my hotel. It was raining so I didn’t want to walk too far… glad I found this spot.
The main reason I wanted to go to Portland was to see the Multnomah Falls! The easiest and cheapest way to get there is to first take the tram to the Gateway Transit Center, from there you can take a shuttle to the falls. It is only $10 roundtrip! You can see the times here:
I spent almost 2 hours at the falls. It is COLD, so be prepared. (I went in January) It was also raining when I went but it was totally worth being cold and wet. This waterfall is one of the most amazing ones I have seen… and I have seen a lot of waterfalls. You can also hike up the mountains with designated trails. I hiked a little up but it got really cold. I definitely wasn’t dressed properly. So, if you want to hike all the way up, make sure you’re layered up and warm.
Once I made my way back to Portland, it was raining heavily… I decided to grab lunch at Pioneer Place, a huge mall downtown. I got some lunch at Bridge City Cafe, they have really good soups and sandwiches. There’s so many shops that sell unique and quirky souvenirs… you can easily spend a few hours just wandering about.
So, I LOVE coffee. You could probably say I’m addicted. So, of course, I had to check out Stumptown Coffee Roasters. I really liked the decor inside and the vibe was really cool. You can definitely feel that hipster vibe.
I would’ve loved to stay an extra day… but even with a short amount of time, I think I really got a feel of what Portland is about. Portland is a little ‘weird’ but very lovely.😉♥️