An Insider's View-Portland for the Do-It-Yourselfer
(blog originally from dirtcheappdx.com and we encourage you to go there when it comes back online)
(Pricing is out-of-date. You should add about 25-45%. Other info on this page may be out-of-date! Also, many of the secondary links are broken.)
VI. The Suburbs
Mission: pool useful information for tourists and locals alike while minimizing personal economic damage in the process.
Links to bus lines will connect you to route maps
Washington Park Zoo - Not uniquely Portland unless you want to see the Asian Elephants or do the Zoobomb
NW 21st and 23rd Avenues - Shoppers only
Saturday Market - Shoppers only
Rose Festival - A pay-to-enter beer and ride festival
Powell’s Books - If your particularly fond of massive amounts of books on 3 or 4 different floors, go there. Otherwise skip it.
Chinese Garden - Juries still out on this one; it's nice but just one square block.
Convention Center - No reason to go unless you find an event/exhibit.
Aerial Tram - View is nice toward the East...
OMSI and Rail Museum - Rail museum is somewhat uniquely Portland but OMSI? They do have a submarine though.
River Waterfront - Just do a driveby unless you have extra time or need some exercise.
World-famous Voodoo Donuts - It's Just Doughnuts!
hike (or bike) to the crater of Mt Tabor (an extinct volcano)
No this isn't about coping with depression, by the way.
If 5 months of gray skies starts to get to you, I hear that coffee helps. Also
I've heard there are some special light bulbs that emit light at the same
frequency as the sun so if you stare at it for a couple minutes it fills the
void. I've never tried it myself though.
Extreme heat: Get your feet wet at a fountain:
Forecourt Fountain, Lovejoy Fountain and Salmon Street Springs are the best
fountains). You're still liable to get sunburned out there though. The
best thing to do is to go to Forest Park. I swear it's 20 degrees cooler in there. No shit. You can
feel it even when you're just at the entrance. It's shaded too (probably no
coincidence). The creeks have good feet-chilling water as well. When it gets
really hot I just sit in the park and wait for the sun to go down.
Extreme cold: First off, it never gets below 30 degree
Fahrenheit. So nobody's gonna freeze to death out there. But it's a wet
cold so it isn't the best. The obvious answer is to stay home, right? Learn
a new language,
start a blog.
If you don't want to stay home but you don't want to spend money your best
bet is the Multnomah
County Central Library or
Powells Books. If
you're willing to spend a couple bucks on a coffee there are plenty places
in town that are perfect for hibernating with some written media for 5 hours
(see coffee culture). In Chuck Palahniuk's classic, Fugitives and
Refugees: A Walk In Portland, Oregon, he suggests checking out eviction
court at the Multnomah County Courthouse Room 120. "For anyone who thinks
the tradition of oral storytelling is dead, this is a must-see. ... Eviction
Court meets Monday through Friday at 9:00 AM, and all the dirty laundry is
loudly thrown around. It is the professional wrestling of the courthouse." I
highly recommend that book, by the way.
I once met a guy who said that when he used to be homeless he would ride the MAX back and forth all day because it was warm. Just a thought.
Never-ending gray: First the lack of shadows really starts to piss me off. Next it's the dull color that all the buildings assume. But believe it or not, if its not too wet, the forest is quite possibly the best place to be when it's painfully gray. There's something about the way the muted blue light filters through leafless temperate rainforest and bounces off dozens of shades of green that is surprisingly wonderful. It's particularly lush during that time of year too when the moss starts to get temple-of-doom thick. See Natural/Pseudo-Natural Parks.
Absolutely perfect: People watching! When the weather has been bad for months and there is a sudden burst of sun Portlanders go ape-shit! Citizens flock to the streets in a dazed stupor, overwhelmed by everyday beauty. Pioneer Square and the Waterfront/Esplanade trail loop are the best for dense people watching. Go on a bike ride! Have a picnic! Don't spend money at a food establishment unless you can get outside seating.
- Geographical Overview - Cars - Public Transit - Bicycles - Taxis - Walking - Leaving -
Portland's geography is pretty straight forward. The city is divided up into five sectors (some people say quadrants, but there are 5... I don't want to say burroughs): SW, NW, NE, SE, and N. The Willamette River divides east and west, and Burnside St divides north and south (North Portland being on the east side). This town is very legible, meaning that it is easy to tell where you are based on certain characteristics each area has, and a few other things. This isn't just something that the addresses follow, it is common way to explain location. "I live in southeast," is a typical explanation. It is also fairly common knowledge that the east side is significantly cheaper than the west side. Note: business districts are described later.
- Southwest - Northwest - Southeast - Northeast - North Portland -
Inner-southwest is downtown. It is surrounded by huge suburban hills to the west and south, the "West Hills," which is the richest part of town for sure. Windy streets and culdesacs cut out of forest, basically. Lots of good parks in all that forest though: Washington Park, Terwilliger Park, George Himes Park, Willamette Park, Marquam Nature Park, Council Crest Park (all traversed by the Marquam Trail). Also check out Multnomah Village.
Northwest is the smallest sector, since the river cuts away half of it, but this doesn't stop it from being busy. Inner-NW neighborhoods that wrap around downtown are pretty popular with consumers: Old Town, Pearl District and Northwest District. The West Hills creep into NW for a little bit, but almost immediately give way to Forest Park, a 5000 acre mass of forest. Most of the area along the river in northwest is industrial ("port"-land).
Just over the river from downtown, inner-SE is part of the Central Eastside Industrial District, mostly warehousing that supports downtown businesses. But once past that, the sprawl of old single family homes is a mix of young people and commercial strips built off of old streetcar lines. Hawthorne and Belmont are the most successful commercial centers, but Clinton and E 28th serve as hip nodes too. Going farther south, Sellwood and Westmoreland are commercial districts dependant on Reed College. Many neighborhoods in SE have an unusually high 18-35 age distribution, and the houses sport the necessary front porches and bad paint jobs. Lots of good vegetation too. A place worth being. Also noteworthy is the Ladds Addition neighborhoods strange street pattern and rose gardens, Laurelhurst Park, and Mt Tabor Park, an extinct volcano. However, outer south east (east of 82nd, lets say) is prime meth territory ("felony flats").
Northeast Portland has gone through some very serious changes in the past 10 years. At one time, a good percentage of the sector was busy with gang activity and murder. Today, it is still recovering in many ways. Although NE has not seen the successful gentrification that SE has, it is fairly inevitable. NE Alberta St has been it's biggest success story (or biggest tragedy, depending on who you talk to). As the young-and-poor crowd is gradually pushed out of inner SE, N and NE neighborhoods have grown. Nudged between the mansions of Irvington and the office towers of the super-ugly Lloyd District, NE Broadway is packed with expensive restaurants. Riding through Sandy Blvd, the Hollywood District is one of the few remaining "working class" commercial strips in town, and the Roseway District has more Vietnamese food and Vietnamese jewelers than you'll ever need. Don't forget the airport!
5. north Portland
North Portland is considered by many to be the least desirable place in Portland to live. Eco-feminists would argue otherwise. History hasn't been kind to NoPo, but the new MAX line is supposed to change things. I think North Portland has some good things going for it. The Cathedral Park neighborhood opposite of the St. Johns Bridge has a hidden commercial center on Lombard St and the coolest park in town: Cathedral Park. Check out Peninsula Park's rose garden too. The bluff in the Overlook neighborhood has a park with great views of the West Hills and the industrial districts along the river. Mississippi St is in very early stages of gentrification but growing quickly.
Portland's public transportation system is very logical and easy to use. Everything described on this page is accessible by public transit (bus directions follow every description). Tri-Met (as in tri-country-metropolitan-area) covers all transit service in Multnomah, Clackamas and Washington Counties (the city and most of the suburbs). Across the state border, Clark County, WA is serviced by C-Tran.
- Buses - Light Rail - Fares - Bikes on Transit -
The bus system runs in a "radial pattern" (meaning most buses travel out from downtown) with several cross-town buses filling the gaps in between. Although Tri-Met runs half a dozen "transit centers" (where several lines connect) within the city, the downtown Bus Mall is definitely the most significant transfer point. The bus mall is composed of two streets: SW 5th and 6th Ave (running south and north, respectively) where over forty bus lines are organized into a system of stops based on the general direction of the route (N, NE, SE, SW, W, S).
The MAX (metropolitan area express) light-rail runs about 40 miles of track thru east-west suburbs, downtown, airport, and North Portland. After crawling through downtown and the Lloyd District at street grade, the MAX spends most of it's time speeding alongside freeways, only to stop at park-and-rides and transit centers. It's functional for moving commuters, but most trips within Portland would be more suitable on a bus (w/ the exception of the yellow line in North Portland).
(link: MAX route and timetables)
The Portland Streetcar runs on the street with traffic as a circulator between Portland State University, downtown, the Pearl District, and the Northwest District. The 2.4 mile route was built primarily to attract inner-city development and suburbanite disposable income, however it does connect most of the food and attractions in and around downtown quite conveniently.
(link: Portland Streetcar route and time tables)
All buses and trains in Portland are run by Tri-Met, so fares and transfers apply the same to all. The downtown area as well as parts of Old Town, the Pearl, and the Lloyd District fall within fareless square, where all buses and trains are free (70% of the Portland Streetcar route is within fareless square, as well as MAX stations between SW 10th and Lloyd Center, not to mention the entire bus mall). After that, all buses and trains run on a 3 zone system where you pay for the number of zones you intend to pass through (2-zone $1.65, all-zone $1.95). Almost the entire city of Portland is within the first two zones (except the airport and the neighborhoods east of I-205).
4. Bike Accomodations
All Streetcars, MAX trains, and buses are bike accommodating. And it's free! No passes needed. The way to do it is best described by Tri-Met on their own site: http://trimet.org/bikes/
Note: Bike rides have been moved to Tours.
- Street Hierarchy - Bridges - Ladds Addition - Paths - Rentals -
1. Street Hierarchy
The Portland Department of Transportation established three basic types of streets from a cyclist's perspective on their bike map (linked below): off street paths, bike lanes (usually on major streets), and "bicycle boulevards." Bicycle boulevards are small neighborhood streets with low traffic that run parallel to traffic arteries. Traffic calming techniques slow auto traffic to the speed of a bike, and stop sign changes give bikes the right of way. So biking across town can be extremely pleasant when you take the path of least resistance. For example, Hawthorne BLVD has 4 lanes of dense traffic and no bike lane, but SE Lincoln St and SE Salmon St run parallel on either side. Anyways, if you're going to bike in Portland, I would highly recommend becoming familiar with such streets (listed as "Shared Roadway- on lower traffic street").
The map is also important for knowing where not to bike.
(link: Portland Bike/Walk Map)
Ten bridges span the Willamette River in Portland, eight of them downtown. It's worth noting which ones to use since they make such important connections and have the potential to be extremely dangerous. (image: map and images of bridges)
Bad: The Fremont and Marquam bridges are freeways so they're off limits by default. The Morrison and Ross Island bridges feature freeway on/off ramps and extremely minimal sidewalks so they pose a serious threat. The Burnside Bridge is okay (has a bike path next to the small sidewalk) but motorists are rather aggressive on Burnside and the immediate neighborhoods on either side of the bridge are seedy.
Good: The Hawthorne Bridge (connecting downtown to inner SE) is extremely bike friendly. Well engineered bike paths at both ends make the entrance easy and the bridge has 12-foot-wide sidewalks that bicyclists and pedestrians share. The same goes for the Broadway Bridge (connecting the Pearl District and inner N/NE) that also has a bike signal on the western exit. The Steel Bridge (connecting Old Town and the Lloyd District) would be a tough one with it's long steep entrance, but a walkway was added to the lower deck (where the freight trains run) that connects Waterfront Park to the Eastbank Esplanade. The brand new Tillicum Bridge bans autos, so is perfect.
There's a lot of locally owned bike repair shops around.
I've had excellent experiences at Northwest Bicycles (916 NW 21st Ave at NW Kearney).
I've heard good things about North Portland Bike Works too (N Mississippi and N Shaver,).
I've never tried Missing Link Mobile Bicycle Repair,
who will drive to wherever you are w/ their "customized fully equipped van",
but it sounds pretty cool (503.740.3539,
For retail, Bike Gallery is has the biggest selection at stores downtown and on Sandy blvd, but labor is not cheap (link)
From : firstname.lastname@example.org
"So this place called seven corners bike shop is the shit. The owner, big dude, hooks it up and is super stoked to talk shop and give discounts to bike commuters. The bike shop is on division and 21st and the owner's name is Cory.Ę helluva guy!"
note: take the 4-Division bus to 21st.
I don't know, there's a lot of places I haven't been. Any good or bad stories?? mailto: email@example.com
Because buses don't run late. This is true. Portland has no night-owl bus service and the last MAX train usually leaves downtown at 12:30 or 1AM. Some buses leave downtown at 1:30AM, like the 15-NW 23rd and the 20-Burnside/Stark, but that isn't good enough. AND because friends don't let friends drive drunk.
2. However, Portland isn't a really taxi oriented city- meaning it
will be tough to find one driving down the street. Some taxi cab companies:
Yellow Cab - (503) 227-1234
Radio Cab (503) 227-1212
And of course there's Uber or Lyft.
It is safe to say that Portland is a very walkable city. The average downtown block is about a third of that in New York. Rule of thumb- 20 blocks = 1 mile. It's not too hilly. You can usually determine distances pretty easily because of the number system (numbering out from the river). There aren't many dangerous neighborhoods you cannot walk through. I like walking here.
Walking on Burnside St really sucks. Although it's definitely skid row around 3rd, the real problem is that it's the major traffic artery for Portland and the sidewalk is very narrow and there is no on-street parking or trees that provide a barrier between you and thousands of cars. Also avoid running into St Francis Park (around SE 11th and Washington) and Old Town is a little iffy after 1AM.
The best way to get there is to catch the MAX Red-Line. It's about a 35 minute ride from downtown, it's pretty smooth, it's pretty cheap ($2.50). And dependable. You can catch the Red Line at any MAX station between Beaverton Transit Center and Gateway Transit Center. The train lets you off about 100 feet from baggage claim- pretty self explanatory. If you're driving: I-205 North will take you there. From downtown Portland: I-405 North, stay in left lane while going over Fremont Bridge (white one), take I-5 South, stay in right lane, I-84 East, I-205 North.
(bus: MAX Red Line)
2. train station - bus station
Located just north of downtown on the Bus Mall. They are both on 6th Ave- bus station at NW Glisan St, train station across the street at NW Irving St. By bus: catch one of many "Union Station" buses on SW 6th Ave. A bunch of buses terminate at Union Station (14, 31, 32, 33, 35, 38, 43, 44, etc).
3. By Car
To get to Tacoma, Seattle, or Vancouver, CA, get on I-5 North. For Salem, Eugene, or California, get of I- 5 South. To the coast: take US 30 to Astoria, US 26 to Cannon Beach. I-84 East to eastern Oregon (what the heck are you doing in eastern Oregon?).
(link: Mile by Mile: Oregon Road Trip)
- Under $5 - Under $8 - Grocery stores - Open Late - Coffee Culture -
1. Food Carts
"Food carts" are food generating trucks that are stationed in & around downtown Portland for the purpose of providing quick, cheap meals for the work force. Not to mention frugal tourists like you. Note: Currently I am only posting the downtown locations, though they are spread throughout the city. I'm not going to bother posting bus directions because they're all within walking distance.
WHERE ARE THEY
Downtown surface parking lots:
b. WHICH ONES DO I GO TO
Indian food carts are a reoccurring theme in Portland (at least 6 of 'em). My favorite is Bombay Chaat House at SW 12th and Yamhill (link: map). For one they are open till 7PM Mon-Sat (most close at 6 or even 3PM and only weekdays). Also, they have covered seats (rare) and the price is right. The massive vegetarian lunch special is $6.50 (w/ naan), but I highly recommend the Navratan Korma.
No Fish Go Fish - They also have a restaurant at SE 40th and Hawthorne, but the cart downtown at SW 5th and Yamhill has excellent lunch specials: amazing soups and these "fish sandwiches" (fish stuffed w/ feta and spinach and that sort of stuff). Open weekdays 11-3. CLOSED
some crepe place (forget the name) at SW 9th and Yamhill (link: map). Good for pizza-type crepes w/ all kinds of shit in 'em or basic desserts. Most stuff is around $4-5, open till 8PM Mon-Fri.
more comin', lots of surveying to do...
c. YEAH, BUT WHERE DO I TAKE
THE FOOD TO EAT IT?
O'bryant Square (SW 9th and Washington, map)
ii. PSU (if raining)
Little known to the student body, the Urban Studies building in the Urban Plaza (SW 6th and Mill, map) has a 4th floor covered terrace with tables and chairs. Those three things make it the BEST place to take your food when it's rainy. Take the elevator up to the 4th floor and walk over the skybridge.
The third floor covered skybridge between Smith Memorial Center and Neuberger Hall has seats, tables, and view. SW Broadway at Montgomery (map).
Worst comes to worst, go into the cafeteria near the surface level entrance to the Smith Memorial Center. (same location as above)
2. Mexican food
Mexican food that isn't dirt cheap? Not my kind of Mexican food. Avoid any place in Portland that wants more than $5 for a burrito.
Ole Ole - Prices has jumped a little since Cha Cha Cha bought 'em. Still, huge burritos and chimichangas all fall under the $6 mark. On the edge of PSU campus at SW 6th and Jackson and 22nd & E. Burnside. (map: Ole Ole)
El Grillo - Closed
La Serenita - a little farther away and a little more popular (... a little more crowded). NE Alberta and 28th. Quesdillas are $1.25.
(map: La Serenita)
(bus: 9-Broadway to 27th and Alberta)
Catalina's - I admit, I haven't gone yet. Supposedly they have $2.50 chimichangas.
Cheerful Tortoise- OK, the
place is a dump. It's a bar (21+) w/ early morning alcohol specials. But
I'll get to the point: Breakfast #3: Your choice of one sausage patty,
two slices of bacon or ham, two eggs, hash browns & toast, $5.79.
Free turkey dinner Thanksgiving and Christmas. SW 6th and College, on Portland State's campus
by the southern tip of downtown.
(bus: it's on the bus mall. You could walk from anywhere downtown, but if you want, take the 1, 8, 9, 12, 17, 19, 40, 43, 44, 45, 55)
"...At Legacy-Good Samaritan Hospital: The Legacy-Good Samaritan Hospital
cafe, is located in the hospital, through the main entrance on 22nd between
Lovejoy and Northrup. Lots of tables with space to spread out and study! A
best kept secret of NW Portland: decent, inexpensive food. Open daily from
6:30am to 7:30pm. Cheap food, different specials everyday, and it's often
really really good. I ate there everyday when I stayed in the hostel over
(map: Legacy Good Sam Hospital)
"You can eat dirt cheap at any of the taquerias that dot the east side.
Taqueria Uruapan is the one that comes to mind. Even cheaper are the
Vietnamese bakeries, whose names I can't remember. There's one on 52nd and
Foster, and one on Powell and 80th. You can get bbq pork sandwiches for
$2.50 and these little pork dumplings. Yum."
(bus: 14-Hawthorne to SE 52nd and Foster, 9-Powell to SE Powell and 80th; Taqueria Uruapan is at SE 82nd and Reedway, 2 blocks south of Foster, take the 14-Hawthorne)
Diners - Bi-Ways Cafe - oh my god. Open 7-3, closed Monday. NW Glisan between 12th and 13th. Portland Streetcar, 17-NW 21st Ave. - Fat City Cafe- Huge portions, good price, cool krew. At SW Capitol Highway and 35th (map) in Multnomah Village. (bus: 44-Capitol Highway or 45-Garden Home to SW Troy and 35th, walk 1 block south to Capitol) || Thai - Thai Orchid - SW Barbur Blvd.. $7 lunch specials (heavy). (map: Thai Orchid) || Indian - Swagat - NW 21st and Lovejoy. Best in town for sure. $8 lunch buffet ) (Map: Swagat) 17-NW 21st Ave, Portland Streetcar, 77-Broadway/Halsey. || Sandwiches - Kens Artisan Bakery- Excellent sandwiches, soups and desserts in the $3-7 range. Better than Pearl Bakery's get up for sure. NW 21st and Flanders (map). Take the 17-NW 21st to 21st and Glisan, or the 15-NW 23rd to 23rd and Flanders, or take the 20-Burnside to W Burnside and 21st. || Mediterranean - Nicholas' Restaurant- Hot DAMN! The Central Eastside's finest. Huge sandwiches in the $5 range, kababs and other good stuff around $7-8. They bring the pita out still steaming. Popular: avoid waiting in line (Grand Ave is an ugly 4-lane monster). At SE Grand and Pine (map) between Burnside and Belmont/Morrison. (bus: 6-MLK, 15-Belmont, 20-Burnside) - La Villa- A good reason to never wait in Nicholas' line. Excellent Kafta sandwich ($5) and a $7 weekday all-you-can-eat-lunch-buffet (11:30-2:00). SE 7th and Morrison (map) (bus: 6-MLK, 15-Belmont) || Italian - Pastini - NE 15th and Broadway & NW 23rd and Quimby. Avoid the dinner crowd. Lots of good stuff under $8. NE location: 9-Broadway, 8-NE 15th, 77-Broadway/Halsey, NW location: 77-Broadway/Halsey, 15-NW 23rd. || Japanese - Saburo's - Yeah, sushi probably won't come up under $8, but it's really good and huge portions. The wait is typically 30 minutes so I'd just get there before they open at 5PM, or you can put down your name and play shuffleboard around the corner. In Westmoreland at 1667 SE Bybee St, just east of Milwaukie. (map) (bus: 19-Woodstock to SE Milwaukie and Bybee or 70-12thAve to SE 17th and Bybee)
I used to have a list of big box grocery stores around town. I recently decided to redo it and include the entire heirarchy of grocery stores, but then I found that the alt.portland grocery section has everything I could have thought of and more. However, alt.portland forgot to include the Portland Farmers Market which, although closed for half the year, offer some great food.
"...Fred Meyers is not only expensive but their staff are often downright rude. If you want cheap groceries, you have to go to WinCo. There is a WinCo on 82 Ave in SE Portland and one in Tigard. Be prepared - must WinCo stores do not take debt cards; cash or check only. But, their stuff is so CHEAP - if a gallon of milk cost $3 at Fred Meyers then it is a $1.60 at WinCo. Plus, they have a huge section with barrels of pasta, flour, cereal, trail mix, etc. where everything costs $1 or so a pound. As a college student, I find that if I shop at WinCo, I can eat real food. If I go to Fred Meyers, all I can afford to eat is oddles and noodles..."
Authors note: the Every Day Extreme Discounts store (map) is by for our favorite. Pros: Big box store with really extreme discounts (70% off+), good quality produce (& organic) and more. Cons: Food is 'out-of-date' or close to it. Non-expiring staples (coffee etc.) is 50%+ discounted. Produce is not necessarily 'out of date', some is some isn't. Hit & miss for availability of items.
GrubNow.com has a great
Late Night section that covers all-ages and 21+ joints)
I'll level with you. This city sleeps. There are more 24 hour businesses than some cities, less than most. Anyways, here is what you got. (keep in mind that if you're of age, your options are larger)
1. the Roxy
24 hour diner in downtown. Located on SW Stark St (gay district) at 11th. Stay clear of the 3AM rush when the place is packed beyond belief with drunks (bars close at 2:30). It can be a little rough: drunk people, the staff has an attitude problem, really loud bad music. Regardless, it is practically the only place downtown, so you'll probably have to go there. 1 pancake- $2.25. Pot of coffee- $1.25. Important: closes at 3AM Monday morning (or Sunday night, if that is easier to understand) and opens 8AM Tuesday.
(bus: 20-Burnside/Stark, Portland Streetcar)
2. La Casita
Mexican food. Big ass burritos for $6. Mighty fine lemonade. A little pricey for the quality, but that's what you get at 2 AM. Open: Tues-Wed- 11AM-1AM, and Thurs-Sun 24 hr. Closed Mondays. Recently moved to SW 5th & Harrison.
(map: La Casita)
Half of the menu is Italian, the other half is Southern. Liquor served, yet it is all ages. Open till 4AM Fri-Sat, 2AM otherwise. Too hip. Tables that would usually seat 2 people are lined up really long and you will be seated next to people you don't know. Absolutely amazing macaroni and cheese (all kinds too) from 5 to 9 bucks. SE 3rd and Morrison, in a warehouse district just across the river from downtown under the Morrison Bridge. Kind of hard to find. Once you get over the river you have to zig zag back under the bridge (be careful not to drive on the train tracks).
(link: Le Bistro Montage)
(map: Le Bistro Montage)
(bus: 15-Belmont, 6-MLK)
Mexican food cart downtown at 3rd and Stark St. Open till 3AM Fri-Sat. About $4. No seats tho'.
5. Voodoo Doughnuts
(hours have gotten inconsistent, see link below) Stumptown coffee. Doughnuts. A popular after-drinking spot ('cause it's by Old Town). Downtown at SW 3rd and Burnside. (map: Voodoo Donuts) (link: voodoodoughnut.com)
I had heard that coffee was "big" in the northwest before I moved here. So what? It's popular all over the world. Apparently, the difference here (as far as I can tell) is social coffee shops. A handful of 'cool' coffee shops operate like popular bars. People drive across town to get to the coolest one. I guess you can make friends easily at them. Part of the NW's charm, perhaps? Well, I can't stand these places, so... I'm going to list some popular "social" coffee shops and connect you to reviews from Citysearch.com that are hopefully less biased. But I'm warning you, these are real "scene" places. (perhaps this should be under entertainment instead of food)
"In "Coffee Culture", I think that the thing that makes Portland stand out are
the coffeehouses, what you call "social" coffee shops. I think you might have
a bad impression of them based on the ones you've been to. I wouldn't call the
Pied Cow a coffeehouse, because it's not that comfortable, and you get a bill.
The great coffeehouses in Portland are places like the Portland Coffeehouse on
Broadway and Alder, or Tiny's on Hawthorne and 12th, or either Papaccino's, or
the good Stumptown (the one on Division). These are the places where you can
go and sit by yourself on a comfy couch, sit for three hours, and not get
kicked out. Plus at Stumptown you can get two cups of coffee for a buck. Of
course, there are plenty of bad trendy coffee "houses" in Portland that might
have skewed your judgment, like the Stumptown downtown and any Starbucks or
Coffee People. "
--Along the lines of these legit coffeehouses described: Three Friends Coffeehouse at SE 12th and Ash; the Hof at SW 19th and Jefferson; Village Coffee at SW 35th and Capitol; Star E Rose at NE 24th and Alberta; Anna Bananas at NW 21st and Northrup.
-cheap entertainment is tough-
This is true. Almost everything costs a load of money. However, if you can enjoy things without necessarily buying them you broaden your options quite a bit.
This section constitutes a very large part of this page.
This is because parks are free (read: dirt cheap) and Portland has lots. Of
course, this is a small picking of the larger pool: these are the parks that I
have found to be worth my time. Although the landscaped parks are spread out
pretty evenly, the nature parks tend to concentrate on undeveloped land in the
Tualatin Mountains (the formation that includes the West Hills and Forest
Park), the east Portland buttes (a half dozen or so extinct volcanic vents
from Mt Hood ['cinder cones'] that pop up all over the outer eastside), and
along the Willamette and Columbia Rivers.
(ref: Parks Links)
- Forest Park - Mt Tabor Park - Marquam Nature Park - Washington Park - Rocky Butte Park - Oaks Bottom Park - George Himes Park - Powell Butte Nature Park - Smith and Bybee Lakes - Kelly Point Park - South Park Blocks - Cathedral Park - Laurelhurst Park - Waterfront Park - Mocks Crest Park - Peninsula Park - Sellwood Riverfront Park - Terwilliger Park - Council Crest Park - Willamette Park - Pioneer Courthouse Square - Ira Keller Fountain - \
a. Forest Park
Apparently, Forest Park is the largest forested city park in the USA (or something like that). 5000+ acres of untouched forest starts a half mile west of downtown. The 30+ mile Wildwood Trail is the spine of the trail system; Lief Erickson Drive is an 11 mile (unpaved) road closed to cars and open to bikes, pedestrians, and equestrians (starts at the dead end of NW Thurman St.). Firelanes 1, 3, 10 and 15 are also open to bikes [and closed to cars :) ]. This park is connected to Washington Park (see below) and many trails, including the Wildwood, go into Washington Park. The only entrance supported by transit is that of the Lower Macleay Trail. To get there, take the 15-NW 23rd Ave, 17-NW 21st Ave, or 77-Broadway/Halsey west to NW 27th and Vaughn. Walk 1 block south and 3 blocks west to NW 30th and Upshur. The entrance has a map and a bathroom. Note: do not get stuck in Forest Park at night- this is where several transients sleep (supposedly) and there are no lights whatsoever. (image: Forest Park) (image: aerial)
(link: Maps of Forest Park) (link: Wildwood Trail) (link: National Geographic: 97210)
b. Mt. Tabor Park
Mt. Tabor is an extinct volcanic vent for Mt Hood (or the Columbia Gorge, I can't remember...). It offers some badass views of se pdx, downtown and the West Hills. Especially at night. But it has some good hiking trails too. And a paved road that winds to the top has been closed to cars so it's popular w/ cyclists and there's a soapbox derby every August. The top of the park is flat (top of a volcano, right?) with grass and picnic benches and even better views (if you can grab the right bench). Enter the park on SE Salmon St at 60th Ave: Salmon quickly winds up to the popular view point and a couple trails start on the left side.
(map: SE 60th @ Salmon St)
(map: Mt Tabor (pdf))
(bus: 15-Belmont, 71-60th/122nd Ave)
(image: Mt Tabor view 1, Mt Tabor view 2)
(link: US Geological Survey: Mt Tabor Cinder Cone)
(link: Mt Tabor photos @ Portland Ground)
c. Marquam Nature Park
One of the most lush forests in the city and it's less than a mile from downtown. If there was something more I could say about it (i.e. - describe the ecosystem) I would, but you'll just have to see for yourself. 500 ft elevation change (if you take the steepest trails). The Marquam Trail connects Marquam Nature Park to Terwilliger Park and Willamette Park to the east and Council Crest Park and Washington Park to the west. Enter the park on SW Sam Jackson Rd a few hundred feet west of Terwilliger Blvd (just past the water towers) at the Marquam Park Shelter (a trailhead w/ maps and such).
(bus: 8-OHSU to SW Terilliger Blvd and Sam Jackson Rd [first stop on Terwilliger], above directions)
(map: Marquam Park Shelter)
(map: trail map comin' soon)
(link: Portland Park & Rec- 40-Mile Loop: Marquam Trail)
d. Washington Park
Washington Park is Portland's 'showcase' park. Sort of like Golden Gate Park. Museums, zoo, pay-to-enter gardens, touristy stuff. Washington Park is in the SW Portland's West Hills, just west of downtown. Driving? I have no idea. You can walk in thru the Kings Hill neighborhood west of downtown (walk up to the front entrance via SW Main at 22nd).
(bus: MAX Blue and Red Lines to Washington Park station, 63-Washington Park runs between downtown and the MAX station, stopping at most (if not all) Washington Park attractions on the way)
Inside Washington Park is:
i. Hoyt Arboretum
Big open space, lots of trails, large collections of trees from all over. Vietnam memorial too. It starts at the Washington Park MAX Station.
(image: photo) (link: Hoyt Arboretum) (link: Trails of Hoyt Arboretum pdf)
ii. International Rose Test Garden
A large rose garden that is sort of touristy but worth a look. The "famous" views of downtown are mostly covered by trees. (image: photo). On the 63 bus.
(link: Rose Garden photos)
iii. Pittock Mansion
e. Rocky Butte
Rocky Butte is the next farthest East Portland Butte after Mt Tabor. Less popular than Mt Tabor but cooler in many ways. The sides are steeper so there are less trails, but the top has a view: 360 degree panorama with little tree interference. Mt Tabor and southeast Portland to the south; Mt Hood, freeways, farther east buttes, outer northeast Portland to the east; Mt St Helens, I-205 bridge, Columbia River, Government Island, PDX (airport), and Washington state to the north; northeast Portland, downtown, West Hills to the west. Yup. You have to walk up steep-and-long NE Rocky Butte Rd, but the bike ride back down is most rewarding. Enter NE Rocky Butte Rd by NE 92nd and Fremont Drive. From NE Fremont Street and 82nd (map): east on Fremont St, slight right onto Fremont Dr (a few blocks after 82nd), at 92nd (map) go up NE Rocky Butte Rd.
(map: NE 92nd and Rocky Butte Rd)
(bus: 33-Fremont and 72-82nd Ave to Fremont and 82nd; MAX Blue and Red Lines to 82nd Ave station, but be sure to go north on 82nd first 'cause if you try and head east on Halsey you hit some sidewalk-less overpasses)
(link: US Geological Survey: Rocky Butte)
(image: North, East)
f. Oaks Bottom Park
On the westside of the river by Ross Island, bisected by the Springwater bike trail, has beach access and lots o' trails. Enter at the south entrance off at SE 7th and Sellwood (in Sellwood), or on the Springwater Trail.
(link: PP&R page)
g. George Himes Park
A conveniently located park of trails connecting Terwilliger Park to Willamette Park, George Himes Park's short distance from transportation corridors is it's blessing and it's damnation. Translation: it's very bus accessible, but then you have to listen to nearby traffic arteries. I'm giving it a bad rap. After all, if I didn't like it I wouldn't bother typing this. Lots of moss (no complaints). The Barbur Blvd overpass is actually kind of cool. Enter the park at SW Terwilliger and Capitol (map).
(bus: 44-Capitol Highway, 45-Garden Home, 54-Beaverton/Hillsdale Highway, or 56-Scholls Ferry Rd to SW Terwilliger and Capitol Highway)
h. Powell Butte Nature Park
One of several extinct volcanoes on the eastside, 570 acre Powell Butte is far away (I'm not sure if it's in Portland or Gresham) but it has some good contrasts. The eastern half is relatively barren (due to [I'm guessing] the powerful winds that outer eastsiders experience from the Columbia Gorge) which makes for some great views of Mt Hood and a handful of other hills. The western half is good ol' Pacific Northwest forest. Sorry kids, no downtown views (wouldn't be all that impressive anyways being that you're 8 miles out). A heavy sunrise facing east perhaps? I wouldn't know, I don't have time to be at 162nd at the crack of dawn. 9 miles of trails reaching an elevation of 630 feet (even a wheelchair accessible one). From SE Powell Blvd, walk south up windy 162nd Ave for a few hundred feet to the main entrance (maps, bathrooms, parking).
(map: SE 162 @ Powell)
(link: Powell Butte Nature Park Trail Map pdf)
(link: Friends of Powell Butte)
(link: US Geological Survey- Powell Butte Cinder Cone)
(bus: 9-Powell -only every other bus goes east of 97th so check the schedule-)
i. Smith and Bybee Lakes
Really cool. Two big lakes w/ trees and views and everything. "Comprising almost 2000 acres, makes up one of the nation's largest urban freshwater wetlands" so they say. Lots of birds screaming and dragon flys fighting (or mating?). Bus access isn't great. I'd recommend getting there on the Marine Drive bike path from the Expo Center MAX station.
(link: this site has links and maps and everything)
(bus: Yellow Line to Expo Center)
j. Kelly Point Park
Not to be confused w/ Kelly Butte on the outer eastside. This park is at the very tip of the North Portland peninsula, where the Columbia River, Columbia Slough, Willamette River and Willamette Slough meet. Beaches have great views of the freight traffic on the rivers and Sauvie Island. Thick canopy lines the paved and unpaved paths. More or less inaccessible by bus. But you could bike there from St Johns (Yellow Line "to Expo Center", get off at Lombard TC, 75-39th/Lombard westbound to St Johns). Or you could take the Marine Drive bike path from Expo Center station)
a. South Park Blocks
Downtown Portland has two stretches of park blocks. One is the "north park blocks" that are between Park Ave and NW 8th Ave north of Burnside, and the other is the "south park blocks" between Park Ave and SW 9th Ave south of Salmon St. The North Park Blocks are usually full of transients and scuz since the immediate neighborhood is full of shelters and drunk tanks. Therefore, I recommend hanging out at the South Park Blocks. They cut through downtown from Salmon St to Hall St. Full of trees and pedestrians. Even though it is in the middle of downtown it's very very relaxing. A good walk. My favorite park in Portland. South of Market St, the South Park Blocks are the exact middle of Portland State University campus, which is often full of people and the occasional shitty band. Just walk there.
(image: South Park Blocks 1, 2) (map: map)
b. Cathedral Park
Probably the most stunningly beautiful park in Portland. It's located way out in North Portland (image: map) in the St. Johns neighborhood. Under the east side of the super-gothic St. Johns Bridge (image: St. Johns Bridge), an unexpected park is full of the usual trees and grass, but the really cool thing is the bridge and it's supports (Forest Park in the background). Way the hell out there, but well worth it. Take the Yellow Line to Lombard TC and transfer to 75-39th/Lombard westbound to downtown St Johns. From the main bus stop, work your way to the underside of the bridge.
These photos will convince you. (image: Cathedral Park, Cathedral Park 2, Cathedral Park 3, map)
c. Laurelhurst Park
Laurelhurst Park attracts lots of people (and dogs) from affluent Laurelhurst and surrounding neighborhoods. Although it's only a few square blocks, it's Olmstedian landscaping features a small lake and some serious canopy. It's location and size make it a relatively effortless escape when compared to most of the other parks mentioned. The two main entrances are at SE 31st and Ankeny (map) and SE 38th and Oak (map).
(image: Laurelhurst Park 1, Laurelhurst Park 2, Laurelhurst Park 3)
(bus: 15-Belmont, 20-Burnside/Stark, 75-39th Ave)
e. Mocks Crest Park
Little known to the public, this small park in North Portland's Overlook neighborhood offers sweeping views of industrial districts (Union Pacific Railyards, Swan Island, and the Northwest Industrial District), bridges (Fremont Bridge, St Johns Bridge, and Railroad Bridge), West Hills neighborhoods (Hillside, Kings Hill, Washington Park, Council Crest, and Marquam Hill), downtown, the Willamette River, and miles of Forest Park. Mocks Crest Park isn't on most maps and isn't mentioned by the parks and recreation dept, so this is insider knowledge. And it's panoramic for sure. The view at night of all those lights is also serious (I imagine the sunset would be good since you're facing southwest).
Mocks Crest Park is at the dead end of N Skidmore Terrace.
(map: Mocks Crest Park)
(image: Mocks Crest Park 1, Mocks Crest Park 2, Mocks Crest Park 3)
(bus: Yellow Line to N Prescott station, walk 1 block south to Skidmore, west on Skidmore until the T at Overlook Terrace where Skidmore St joggs over to Skidmore Terrace)
f. Peninsula Park
Twenty years ago it was a place to murder someone, but 21st century Peninsula Park is just a place to hang out. It's a square-block-concave-radial-rose-garden. And there's a fountain in the middle. N Albina St and Ainsworth St.
(map: Peninsula Park)
(image: Peninsula Park 1, Peninsula Park 2)
(bus: 4-Fessenden to N Albina and Ainsworth, 40-Mocks Crest to N Albina and Portland)
g. Sellwood Riverfront Park
At the southern tip of the city limits on the east bank of the Willamette River, Sellwood Riverfront Park offers good views and a decent escape from everything urban (except all the people). On the short stretch of beach, one has a great view of the Sellwood Bridge, the hills of forest on the westside, and the river. A landscaped area behind the beach is popular w/ dog owners and many nearby trails also entertain. The popular Springwater Corridor bike path runs right through the park as well. To get to the park, walk west on SE Tacoma St until you're under the bridge.
(map: Sellwood Riverfront Park)
(image: One, Two, Three)
h. Terwilliger Park
The hike up Marquam Hill from downtown on SW Terwilliger Blvd is about 90 minutes to the southern terminus at SW Capitol Highway. This "park" of a street is surrounded by a few blocks of natural vegetation and a wide paved sidewalk on the side is wheelchair accessible and well lit. Short trails occasionally meander off and back onto the sidewalk. The views are excellent too. Drops you off at the back entrance to George Himes Park at Terwilliger and Capitol, so coordinating both parks into your day is smart. The Marquam Trail also passes thru Terwilliger Park, but the connection to Marquam Nature Park isn't as easy as some maps would let on (you have to hike through fast, windy, sidewalk-less streets for over a mile).
Note: in many ways this isn't even a park. But it's in this section because it's a good walk (which is usually what the natural/pseudo-natural parks are all about) and it connects to other parks.
(map: SW Terwilliger Blvd)
(bus: 8-Jackson Park runs up Terwilliger from downtown to the massive OHSU hospital complex. It's a good way to get there from downtown, but it doesn't run down the entire length of the park. Pick up the 44-Capitol Highway, 45-Garden Home, 54-Beaverton/Hillsdale Highway, or 56-Scholls Ferry Rd at the southern tip at Capitol Highway (map)
i. Council Crest Park
The landscaping isn't that amazing, but locals know: it's the view. At 1040' above sea level, most of downtown is too short to be seen. But you can see clear out to the east Portland volcanoes, the airport, Columbia River, southern Washington state, etc. Lots of SW Portland too from the west side of the park. Enter the park on a short trail at SW Talbot and Fairmount. A particularly nice way to get there is on trails (1.7 miles) from Marquam Nature Park (follow signs to "Council Crest").
(bus: service isn't great, so plan ahead- 51-Vista to SW Patton and Talbot/Humphrey (the street changes names at Patton), and walk south on Talbot a couple blocks to Fairmount)
(map: SW Talbot and Fairmount)
(image: Council Crest Park 1, *2, *3)
j. Willamette Park
Functionally, this park is very similar to Waterfront Park: grass and benches with a big view of the river. But instead of bridges, freeways, and warehouses, you can see Ross Island, Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge and the Springwater Trail (nature instead of infrastructure, basically). The park is pretty dead usually, which is nice. The Willamette Green Trail (bike path) runs through the park and continues through Butterfly Park (collection of trails that winds through trees close to the water) and Marine Powers Park (trail that runs south of the Sellwood Bridge along the water with lots of beach access). Enter Willamette Park at SW Nebraska just east of Macadam.
(map: SW Nebraska and Macadam)
(image: Willamette Park 1, Willamette Park 2, Marine Powers Park 1, Marine Powers Park 2)
(bus: 35-Macadam and 40-Tacoma to SW Nebraska and Macadam, 43-Taylors Ferry to SW Nebraska and Virginia)
3. Public Squares/Fountains
- keep in mind that none of the fountains are running in the winter since they would freeze -
a. Ira Keller Fountain
A series of small fountains that you can actually sit in (like a hot tub) come together to make a waterfall-ish effect over a sort of wading pool that is partially covered in concrete so you can walk around without getting wet. Really good when it is hot out because you can roll your pants up and walk around in the water. When it is this hot, it turns into something of a municipal pool, with kids splashing all over the place. This would sound annoying, but I think the Ira Keller Fountain is most beautiful when it's really in use. There is also a lot of steps to sit on, so don't think that this is only for those who want to get wet. Really incredible use of public space. Strongly recommended.
(image: Ira Keller Fountain 1, Ira Keller Fountain 2, Ira Keller Fountain 3)
(map: SW 3rd and Clay)
(bus: inside fareless square, 2 blocks from bus mall)
b. Pioneer Courthouse Square
The 'square is often referred to as "Portland's Living room" (EYES ROLL). Def: the public square in the center of the retail district of downtown. So it serves that sort of purpose: people hanging out, the occasional bullshit festival or promotion of downtown commerce. Circles of hacky-sack. People playing chess. A big stinking Starbucks. Between SW Morrison St, SW Yamhill St, SW 6th Ave, and SW Broadway. The MAX stops on both sides, on the bus mall in fareless square.
(image: Pioneer Courthouse Square 1)
(image: Pioneer Courthouse Square 2)
"Tour" as in suggested itinerary for exploring Portland.
Portland's public staircases often offer good views of the city or at least unique perspectives of the neighborhood. Grossly underused and underappreciated, these mossy right-of-ways come from a time when developers were sensitive to the pedestrian experience. Furthermore, they're just plain sexy. Wear shoes with decent traction since steps can be mossy (or even muddy in parks). Most staircases run right between private houses and yards so try to be respectful and not holler obscenities- but they are public right-of-ways and don't let anybody tell you otherwise!
As with the rest of the website, pictures open in new windows but I'm going to offer an alternative page to each stairwalk that is complete with photos in the page in case you want to print it with the pictures for reference. But be warned: they have LOTS of photos so it might spoil it for you. I highly recommend looking at the map I made too.
a. Washington Park/Arlington Heights/Kings Hill Stairwalk
Start: W Burnside and NW 24th Place (map)
View text with pictures inserted: here
Time: 45 minutes not including extra time to smell the Rose Garden's roses or have a picnic
A: Starting at 24th place, cross
Burnside to a non-descript entrance to Washington Park (image:
1). Take the small staircase on the right. Follow this
combination of paths and staircases for a while (image:
2). When you reach the painted white pole (image:
3) go right and continue up the staircase. Be careful
when passing the big tree: many steps have been displaced by its roots.
Just before you cross the first paved road (actually about a dozen steps
before) turn right on an unpaved trail (image:
4). Follow this path past a small staircase on your left and an
abandoned building. The trail will finally spit you out on SW Wright
Av at SW Tichner Dr.
B: Turn right on SW Tichner and enter one of Portland priciest neighborhoods: Arlington Heights. Continue down Tichner for a few blocks until you see the sign for SW Parkside Drive and turn left. Follow the short staircase (image: 5) up to uber-skinny Parkside Drive. A couple hundred feet later when Parkside Drive ends at a T with Parkside Lane, stay to the left. Follow the street for 300 or 400 feet, the next staircase will be on your left. Be careful: this one is easy to miss (image: 6). At the bottom of the stairs a path will take you to SW Marconi (no sign). Turn left at Marconi and follow the street for a couple hundred yards to the staircase entrance to the International Rose Test Garden (image: 7).
C: This staircase will take you to Portland's most famous park. On top of the obvious roses (if they're in bloom) it's an excellent spot for people watching (image: 8). The garden has a bathroom and a water fountain (maps there will direct you). Exit the park at its northeastern corner (you entered at its northwestern) on a paved path (image: 9). Follow the path until it ends at a sidewalk on the right (image: 10). Continue on the sidewalk for a few hundred yards, cross at the crosswalk by the water fountain (image: 11). Past the water fountain, turn right on a paved road (closed to cars) and pass the swing set to the big obelisk (image: 12).
D: This is the official front entrance to the park. There are water fountains and several picnic tables. Go down the stairs in front of the obelisk and turn left at SW Lewis and Clark Drive. A hundred feet down the road there is a very small path on your right that will take you to SW Cedar (image: 13). Be careful not to miss that path! On SW Cedar make an almost immediate left. The road dead-ends soon thereafter at my favorite staircase in Portland (image: 14). Continue down SW Cactus, turn left at SW Green and the next thing you know you're at the awful 23rd and W Burnside intersection you more or less started at. I wouldn't recommend buying the food at the adjacent Zupans grocery store but they have bathrooms and some good samples.
b. Northwest/Hillside Stairwalk
c. Marquam Hill/Portland Heights Stairwalk
d. Linnton Stairwalk
2. Bike Rides
I honestly believe that Portland is the best city in the United States for bicycling. I'm not the only one either.
a. Waterfront Park/Eastbank Esplanade
Waterfront Park runs along the west side of the Willamette River downtown from the Hawthorne Bridge to the Steel Bridge. It's closed to cars, but also very popular with pedestrians and the sight-seeing bunch that aren't watching for bikes so be careful. The Eastbank Esplanade is a wide path that runs along the same stretch as Waterfront Park but on the east side of the river. Although it runs a little too close to the interstate at times, many sections are actually floating on the water and the views of downtown and the bridges are a plus. To connect between the two, pass over the lower deck on the Steel Bridge without changing elevation at all.
(map: Waterfront Park and Eastbank Esplanade)
(image: Waterfront Park, Eastbank Esplanade 1, Eastbank Esplanade 2)
(link: parks: Tom McCall Waterfront Park)
(bus: any bus/MAX that goes downtown)
b. Springwater Trail
The Springwater Trail is an extremely popular path that runs from the east end of the Hawthorne Bridge south along the river to the Sellwood neighborhood before cutting east along Johnson Creek out to Gresham (about 21 miles total). A gap between the north-south segment and the east-west segment exists between the Sellwood Bridge and 32nd and Berkeley that's best explained on this map.
The first stretch along the river offers great views of the Willamette River and Ross Island and connects to the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge and Sellwood Riverfront Park. The Johnson Creek watershed is rich with vegetation and Salmon restoration has been underway for several years now. The Johnson Creek alignment of the trail connects to Tideman Johnson Nature Park, Beggars-Tick Wildlife Refuge, Powell Butte Nature Park, Leach Botanical Garden, Mt Scott Park etc. (good views of Mt Hood too). The path is wide and changes elevation very little.
(map: Springwater Trail)
(link: Springwater Trail)
(image: Springwater 1, 2)
(bus: 4-Division, 6-MLK, 10-Harold, 14-Hawthorne, and 33-McLoughlin all connect to the northern terminus at the east end of the Hawthorne Bridge; 40-Tacoma connects to the trail at Sellwood Riverfront Park and at Tacoma St; and the 75-Lombard/39th intersects at SE 45th, 71-60th/122nd intersects at SE 72nd and SE 122nd)
c. Willamette Greenway trail
From: Gregg Everhart (PKGREGG@ci.portland.or.us)
Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 11:38 AM
"Willamette Greenway Trail is on west bank of Willamette River. It is paved, open to both bikes and pedestrians. It has been constructed one property at a time so there are some dangerous right angle turns, constrictions and interim sections. Expect more trail traffic on weekends and during commute hours. Some sections use bikelanes, sidewalks, and shared low traffic roads. Not as good as Springwater or Marine Drive for a family-style bike ride but we do get kids just learning to ride and seniors."
Yeah, it's pretty cool. Goes thru Willamette Park, Butterfly Park. You have to ride thru an ugly industrial area on SW Moody St for a mile or so south of the Ross Island Bridge (south of Waterfront Park).
(map: Willamette Greenway trail)
(bus: 35-Macadam, 40-Tacoma, 43-Taylors Ferry)
d. Marine Drive
There are portions in North and Northeast Portland but they don't connect (bike map lists the connection as rough). I've only tried the NoPo one so thats all I can talk about.
Marine Drive runs along the south side of the Columbia River on the absolute edge of Oregon. Be sure and take the Marine Drive path to Smith and Bybee Lakes, and way up to Kelly Point Park. Both parks have lots of paved trails. If you take the Yellow Line to the Expo Center stop, it's about 6-7 miles one way to Kelly Point.
I know that the Northeast part of the trail goes from the airport and I-205 to NE 33rd. You can take the Red Line to Parkrose/Sumner Transit Center and ride the I-205 bike path up to Marine Dr.
(map (PDF): North Portland segment)
(map (PDF): Northeast segment)
(transit: MAX, can hold a lot of bikes- good for groups)
e. Ladds Addition
It's such a popular place for bicyclists, I thought I'd mention it before getting into the actual paths. After riding across the Hawthorne Bridge to the east side, head down Hawthorne Blvd to about 12th and make a slight-right onto Ladd Ave into Ladds Addition. This is a small neighborhood in inner South-East Portland. Its streets were layed out by famous landscape architects in the 1920s into a kaleidoscope shape with diagonal streets, a circular park in the center surrounded by 4 small rose gardens. (image: Aerial Photo) Head down Ladd Ave to the center park (Ladds Circle). On the other side of the small park is a good coffee shop (Palio) and a small grocery. Lock your bike up, grab some coffee and walk (or bike) around the remaining 4 rose gardens (which can be surprisingly hard to find even though they are 2 blocks away). Lots of trees, lots of roundabouts so the motorists drive slow. It'll make you want to move here.
(map: Ladds Addition)
(bus: 4-Division, 10-Harold, 14-Hawthorne, 70-12th Ave)
I don't know how this thing started exactly. Many "bike Oregon" type of books list the ride from downtown up into Washington Park as one for "experienced" riders only because it's so steep. On the other hand, if you take your bike on the MAX to Washington Park station, and take the elevator 250 feet up you don't have to do any work at all. So a bunch of these ruffians get drunk and stoned and ride homemade bikes very fast through the park at midnight. It's become a popular thing, talked about in the papers, etc. Surprisingly fun, tho.
Take the MAX blue or red lines west from downtown to Washington Park station. From the surface, turn right (its the only street there), ride a few hundred yards (past the Vietnam Memorial Garden), cut through a parking lot on your right and head down SW Kingston. The entire route is pretty self explanitory (ie-downhill). 'Hits the Rose Gardens and goes thru Kings Hill before winding back downtown.
(link: some sort of description)
g. I'll write up the rest as I try them, but the weather is currently
terrible, so don't hold your breath.
Leif Erikson Drive (in
Mocks Crest/St Johns
Columbia Gorge Historic Highway
Mt Tabor path thing
Sauvie Island Loop (link: SauvieIsland.org)
h. There's also a lot of good trails (so I've heard anyway) in the
suburbs of Vancouver, WA (link:
Vancouver WA: Parks and Recreation: Parks and Trails: Trails) and Lake
Oswego, OR (link:
Parks and Recreation: Pathways).
Take C-Tran line 105 to downtown Vancouver, and take Tri-Met line 35-Macadam or 78-Beaverton/Lake Oswego to downtown Lake Oswego.
1. Cheap theaters
a. Avalon Theater
$1.25 (standard), $3.00 (starred attraction). Usually bad movies, but that comes with the territory (cheap movies that is). The Avalon has a nickel arcade also: Wunderland. It's on SE Belmont St at SE 37th, accessible 2 buses: 15-Belmont, and 75-39th/Lombard
b. 5th Ave Cinemas
$4 (general), $3 (student- you are always a student), (Free for PSU student- sorry, gotta have ID). Located on Portland State University campus, and run by PSU students- they run two movies on Fridays and Saturdays. It's hard to find their listings- check out the Willamette Weekly, Mercury, or go here. Located on SW Harrison St between SW 5th and SW 6th Avenues. On the busmall in Fareless Square.
c. Hollywood Theater
NE 42nd & Sandy, $4
d. Cinema 21
e. Northwest Film Guild
a. American Advertising Museum
http://www.admuseum.org/museum/mainmenu.htm- $4 MORE INFO
b. Oregon History Museum
I wouldn't bother unless you have some particular interest in Portland, but if you do there is lots of good stuff. There is an ongoing exhibit on old movie theaters in Portland, 19th century birds eye views, lots of old photos, old news footage, etc. The non-Portland history in the museum is pretty tiresome. $6 general, $3 students. Located on the South Park Blocks. 1200 SW Park Avenue (at Madison St). I'd recommend walking, but if you want to take a bus, look at the buses that go to the South Park Blocks. (website: Oregon Historical Society)
First Thursday of each month is the day where most downtown and Pearl
District galleries are open. On the last Thursday of the month, a string of
galleries on NE Alberta St open up. I am less knowledgeable than I could be
on the subject, so I'll just pass on some links:
Willamette Week - Visual Arts - a good site with samples and directions for westside galleries and other visual arts listings.
Portland Mercury - Visual Arts - a little less broad, more suggestive.
alt.portland - art - some more links
Powell's is the biggest independent book store in North America. Or the biggest book store in the United States. Or something like that. It's different every time I hear it. Anyways, it's huge. The beauty of Powells is that you can grab a book, take it to their coffee room on the first floor, and read the book for free (regardless of whether or not you buy the damn coffee). I have read entire books over the course of weeks by hanging out at Powells. I often go to the "Pearl Room" (on the 3rd floor), which is also the art room, and look at free eye candy for hours. The architecture section is heavy. I highly recommend stopping by Powells- this is one of the few places that an article about Portland in an airplane magazine will tell you about what is actually worthwhile. An entire square block between W Burnside, NW 10th, NW 11th, and NW Couch St. The main entrance is at NW 10th and Burnside. Public transit: 20-Burnside, Portland Streetcar. (image: Powells Books) (website: http://www.powells.com/)
b. Reading Frenzy and Counter Media
Although there is no coffee shop, basically the same idea as above. Eye candy. Browsing for free. which one? specializes in foreign comics and weird smut magazines, and which one? specializes in independent comics and less-popular magazines. SW Oak St between 9th and 10th Ave. Public transit: 20-Burnside to 10th and West Burnside and walk one block south-west on Oak St, Portland Streetcar to SW 10th and SW Stark and walk one block north to Oak St OR to SW 11th and Alder and walk one block east to 10th and three blocks north to Oak St *depending on direction*. If you cross Burnside St when you are finished at Powells, turn left and pass the shitty pizza place on your right can't miss 'em. Side note: a cool store behind one of the small book stores is "Billy Galaxy" (on W Burnside, between 9th and 10th) that has really old toys, lot of Japanese shit.
a. Ground Kontrol
A retro-arcade, meaning that all the games are pre-1988 (about). A lot of good old games that you have forgot about are here: Pole Position, Hamburger Time, Joust, Missle Commando, dozens others. Even if you were born in the 80s like me, and you don't remember any of that shit, it is still really neat to try all these prehistoric games. All games are a quarter. They also sell a bunch of overpriced Atari equipment and serves as an indie record store on the side, but that isn't cheap. What is cheap: is the games. A little to hip but... definitely worth seeing. As cheap as it gets without being free. 11AM-10PM everyday except Friday and Saturday they close at midnight. On NW Couch St between NW 5th and 6th ave's. Public transit: on the bus mall in old town, take 1, 4, 8, 9, 10, 14, 17, 20, 31, 32, 33, 35, 40, 43, 44, 45, 54. Walkable from almost anywhere downtown. (website: http://www.groundkontrol.com/)
Bad ass nickel arcade (connected to the Avalon theater) that has all kinds of stuff: new crazy games from Japan (like those dancing ones), air hockey, even those ball throwing games. It costs $2.25 to get in, all games are between 10 and 20 cents. If you leave, you can't get back in w/o paying again. A lot of fun- plan on hanging out for an hour or two and blowing a good $5+ on these games.
c. PSU's arcade
Not a particularly interesting arcade, but it's cheap and if you're in the neighborhood and you're in the mood... Go to the Smith Memorial Center between SW Broadway, SW Park, SW Montgomery, and SW Harrison. On the busmall in fareless square. Go to the basement.
3. Good Views
a. Pioneer Courthouse
You can go inside and view the original interior & climb to the cupola to enjoy a splendid view of the city. In the old days it was from this cupola that the customs inspectors spotted ships heading in and out of Portland.
b. Mark O Hatfield Federal Courthouse
This is a pretty new, pretty big building in downtown Portland. Make sure you have no weapons or drugs on you, be prepared to show ID at the door... then take the elevator up to the 9th floor and walk out onto the terrace. Really good views and some ridiculous art. You can also take the elevator up to the 16th floor and just look out the window for a very different angle. Downtown at SW 3rd and SW Main St. Public transit: A couple of blocks from the bus mall in fareless square. If you want to get closer, catch the 4, 10, 14, or 33 from 5th Ave (north of Salmon St) and get off at 4th and Madison and walk accross the park. (image: Mark O Hatfield Federal Courthouse)
c. Ecotrust Building
This is an old rail building that was revitalized (including adding a 3rd floor) by an environmental group. A free tour of the building is pretty interesting (the floor of the second floor is recycled car tires, for example). From 9AM-5PM on week days, you can walk up to the 3rd floor terrace on stairs from the outside. Great views of downtown, the Pearl District, and the Fremont Bridge. NW 10th and NW Johnson. Public transit: Portland Streetcar to NW 10th and Johnson.
(image: Ecotrust Building)
(link: Architecture Week - "Historic Warehouse Grows Green")
I'm working on this shit. These links have more than I could ever tell you anyway:
BarFly Magazine's bar search page is great. You can search bars by quadrant (ie- SW, NW, SE, NE/N) and by characteristics (ie- dive, hipsters, patio, karoake, etc).
Oregon Brewers Guild: Microbreweries in Portland, Oregon- DID YOU KNOW that Portland is microbrewery capitol of USA?
alt.portland: beer beer beer- reviews of individual craftbrews, brewpubs, taverns, and bars.
From : Chris Greatorex
"The Widmer Gasthaus has $2 pints every Friday and Saturday night starting at 10:30pm. Not everything on draught is $2, but most of their stuff gets the cheap treatment. They shut down the grill about 10:00, so the food is limited to cold sandwiches. But the beer is good, and it's about 2 blocks away from the nearest MAX stop. http://www.widmer.com/gasthaus/index.html"
note: nearest MAX stop is N Albina/Mississippi on the yellow line
Our Picks for Cheap Beer: (prices are current for 2017)
Acropolis (Lg micro pitchers for $11 all day/night; 65 Beers to choose from). Got wine too.
Sassy's - Sassy's has the absolute best happy hour in Portland, with nearly thirty beers on tap (and even more available in bottles) for only $2.50/pint til 6:45pm everyday.
That gentlemen's strip-club place on NW Couch and 2nd which I can't remember the name of. $2 bottles til 10pm and Friday night Steak & Lobster for $10.
Rock Bottom Brewery has cheap pints starting at 10pm on weekend nights, 8pm on weekdays.
CC Slaughters gay club Wednesday Nights are $2 mixed drinks (Go to the side bar where Jonathan pours 'em strong!). I think it's like after 9pm or something like that.
Last-but-not-least is Silverado's gay club. If you hit it right on the weekday nights, their beers are dirt cheap, like $1 Pabst or $2 Heineken!
In light of the fact that this page is viewed by locals and tourists alike, I've added every noticeable business district I can. However, if you're only gonna be in town for a couple days you might not want to stub your toe trying to hit every one. SO- I've arranged the following areas in order of [what I perceive to be] descending popularity.
Also, might I note, I haven't included any 'mall' type of commerce (like Lloyd Center, Clackamas Town Center, 82nd Ave, Washington Square) because they're despicable.
Downtown - Hawthorne - the Pearl - Northwest (NW 21st/NW 23rd) - Alberta - Old Town - Belmont - Clinton - Multnomah Village - Sellwood/Westmoreland - NE Broadway - E 28th - Sandy BLVD (Hollywood and Roseway Districts)
Well no shit. For one neighborhood, downtown Portland has more going for itself than any other neighborhood (as it should). Inside fareless square. Take the MAX to Pioneer Square, grab food at the food carts on 9th or on 5th and eat your food at Ira Keller Fountain, drink beer at Tugboat (SW Broadway and Ankeny), Donkey Kong at Ground Kontrol, relax in the South Park Blocks, check out the views from the 9th floor terrace at the Mark O Hatfield Courthouse or in the cupola at the old courthouse at Pioneer Courthouse Square, walk along Waterfront Park, stop by some book stores by Burnside, drool on some old cool toys at Billy Galaxy (Burnside and 9th).
SE Hawthorne BLVD is Portland's powerhouse linear
commercial street. Bars and pubs of varying chic-ness, movie theaters, cheap
and expensive food, tattoo parlors, laundromats, vintage clothing and
furniture, antiques, record stores, futons, grocery stores, knickknacks (ie
bullshit), book stores, coffee shops, head shops, salons. The most popular
part is between 32nd and 39th. This is where the knickknacks concentrate, but
Powells also has a location around the way, the Baghdad Theater is a rockin'
pub-theater, and the
Hawthorne Hostel is somewhere in the early 30s. From 12th to 22nd, it's a
little more mellow: mostly restaurants and bars and less jerk-off businesses
like in the 30s. On the other side of 39th to about 47th, the rents are
cheaper (I'm guessing) which leads to head shops, taverns, and antique stores
that defy darwinism.
Firstly, if I were you, I'd check out ABCDEFGHIJKL (largest used magazine retail in the US, at 33rd), Imbibe (get the omlet w/ brie during the Sunday brunch) at 22nd, get coffee at Tiny's (at 12th) and play shuffleboard at the Watering Trough (between 48th and 49th). Second, I think that people should start referring to Hawthorne as "the boulevard," so you should use it occasionally.
(map: Hawthorne Blvd)
(bus: 14-Hawthorne, 70-12th Ave, 75-39th/Lombard)
(link: Hawthorne photos @ Portland Ground)
Every city has to have at least one hopelessly gentrified
warehouse district. The Pearl District has gone through all the stages and is
now packed with bad galleries, hi-rise apartment buildings, expensive and
inexpensive food, and the
Streetcar. I'm giving it a bad rap. Buy a sandwich at Pearl Bakery (NW 9th
and Couch), enjoy the view from the
Ecotrust Building, eat some killer breakfast at Bi-Ways Cafe (NW Glisan between 12th and 13th).
(map: Pearl District)
(bus: 17-NW 21st , Portland Streetcar)
(link: Pearl District photos @ Portland Ground)
The NW District, or "Nob Hill," as the business owners like to call it (in direct reference to San Francisco's Nob Hill. let's not even get into that shit...) is a mostly residential neighborhood that has 2 strong commercial streets: NW 23rd and NW 21st.
NW 23rd (sometimes called "trendy-third") is full of shops that sell stupid shit that you don't need to buy (candles, wrapping paper, braclets, incense), a couple of restaurants that aren't worth the wait, and a lot of Starbucks to hang out at. 23rd is a place to be seen, a place where people cruise. In front of the main Starbucks, loads of assholes park their motorcycles and hang out in front of them with lattes in hand strutting their stuff. Suburban housewives put their sunglasses above their forehead as they shop at Kitchen Kaboodle. I often find myself taking the bus to 23rd and then immediately walking away from it, and that is about all I can take. If you don't want a headache and you don't want to spend a lot of money don't go to 23rd.
21st is a little different. More restaurants and bars and less shopping. The drunk suburbanite factor can get a little serious on a weekend, but not half as serious as 23rd. Coffee Time is a popular late night coffee shop at Irving St (but you couldn't pay me to go in there). You'd be better off in the basement, back room, front porch, or patio at Anna Bananas though. Taj Mahal's Indian lunch buffet is $8 and damn fine (at Lovejoy). Get a half sandwich and cup of soup at Kens Artisan Bakery at Flanders.
On the whole, the commercial streets don't have a lot
that interests me (and therefore, you). The neighborhood is architecturally
rich though (especially varied east of 23rd, see link below). Try Couch Park
(between NW Glisan, Hoyt, 19th and 20th) out for size, take a walk on the
Lower Macleay Trail in
Forest Park (entrance at 29th and Upshur), sleep cheap at the
NW District Hostel (18th and Everett). Upper Thurman and Vaughn Streets
(west of 23rd) have made a small start: get a sandwich at Food Front Co-op (at
23rd place and Thurman) and rock the chimichanga + margarita at Acapulco's
Gold (Vaughn at 25th).
(link: Northwest District Photos)
(bus: 17-NW 21st Ave, 15-NW 23rd Ave, 77-Broadway/Halsey, Portland Streetcar)
Add equal parts eyesores and slick business, mix
thoroughly. By "eyesore" I mean boarded up buildings, empty parcels overgrown
with weeds. By "slick business" I mean vegetarian restaurants, vintage
clothing outlets and coffeeshops. Hot with the artists too (cheap rent), and
lots of galleries. On the last Thursday of each month all the galleries open
at night ("last Thursdays," like downtown/Pearl's "first Thursdays"). La
Serenita is a very popular and very cheap Mexican Restaurant (at 28th). Vita
Cafe has more street credibility than any other veggie restaurant in town (at
31st). Good food (mostly vegetarian) and not-so-bad-coffee at Star E Rose (at
24th). Bumpin' at varying levels between 10th and 30th.
(bus: the 72-82nd/Killingsworth runs up and down Alberta but it doesn't go downtown or anywhere else that you might actually catch it. Take the 8-NE 15th Ave to Alberta and 15th, the 9-Broadway to Alberta and 27th, or the 10-NE 33rd Ave to 33rd and Alberta.)
(map: Alberta St)
(link: Alberta photos @ Portland Ground)
Sometimes called Chinatown by those who forget that there aren't any Chinese people there (although a half dozen Chinese restaurants concentrate by the silly Chinese gate thingy at 4th and W Burnside), Old Town is a neighborhood of stark contrasts. It sports a huge concentration of social services and, as a result, is one of the only (if not the only) neighborhoods in PDX that is sketchy after dark. At the same time, loads of popular bars and clubs take advantage of the cheap rents just blocks from downtown and many buildings have been converted into $1k/sq.ft. lofts. If you go drinking there, you can have everything from chic clubs w/ expensive lighting to some depressing dives with alcoholic rates (like 7AM specials). To each their own.
Backspace, at NW 5th and Davis, is a "hangout." There's a gallery in the back, four or five vintage arcade games, pool, espresso, couches, and a bunch of computers to play RPGs and first person shooters against other people (rather expensive)- which is billed as their main attraction. I think they also have wireless internet. Open till midnight usually, but 4AM Fri/Sat. Voodoo Doughnut (just south of Burnside on SW 3rd) is open from 10PM to 10AM, making it another important late night stop (link: voodoodoughnut.com). Darcelle's nightclub (NW 3rd and Everett) hosts Portland's premiere burlesque drag queen show and holds down a half century tradition of electing an empress every year (hosted by Darcelle's in Washington Park every August).
History lesson: 19th century tunnels under Old Town connected the bustling port to warehouses so goods could be transported directly from a ship to a warehouse. With the presence of numerous dives, drunk men were often "Shanghaied" (i.e. kidnapped and sold to ship captains for slave labor) by falling through trap doors, having the shit beat out of them, and then being transported to the ship via the tunnel. Between the 1890s and the end of WWI, Portland had a reputation for being the scariest place on the west coast for a sailor and the shanghai capitol of the world. You can tour the tunnels with some paranormal investigative unit (who apparently takes this shit seriously) on Halloween (link: Portland Underground FAQ).
Technically Old Town is bordered by W Burnside, the North
Park Blocks, and the Willamette River. However, many of the buildings and
businesses a few blocks south of Burnside and east of 4th have a notably
similar aesthetic. (bus: The northern terminus for the
Bus Mall is in Old Town (NW 5th/6th), so all buses going over the Steel
Bridge (1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 33, 40, 77) as well as all buses bound for Union
Station (14, 31, 32, 35, 44) pass thru)
(image: Old Town)
(map: Old Town)
SE Belmont St has a dense strip of stuff between 33rd and
35th. The second run
Avalon Theater and adjoining
Wunderland nickel arcade are at 35th. Laughing Planet has kinda pricey
vegan burritos. Pied Cow is a popular coffee night spot w/ a
garden-patio-thing. Damn close to
SE Clinton St at 26th is an old streetcar stop developed
into an uber-hipster intersection. The Clinton Theater isn't that cheap ($6, I
think), but it does the whole Rocky Horror Picture Show in drag thing. Dot's
Cafe is the best place on the eastside to get that shitty punk-rock-service (a
black clad diner w/ a bar). Noho's has some damn fine Hawaiian food. I think
there are a couple independent record shops and vintage clothing stores too.
(map: Clinton St)
(bus: 4-Division, 10-Harold)
SW Capitol Highway from 36th to 32nd is the only noteworthy commercial area (outside of downtown) in mostly suburban southwest Portland. This oddly shaped street would probably be described as having a "quaint small town feel" by a real estate agency. Luckily you've got me to sort through the bullshit for you. A lot of antique stores that don't deserve to survive, coffee, restaurants. One nice thing about Multnomah Village is that the businesses are actually "neighborhood oriented" in the true sense of the phrase. As their popularity increases, many business districts have developed a touristy aesthetic that's bland and cold. However, locals seem to outnumber the rest of us down there and it reflects on the attitude (from a service perspective) and the types of businesses you see (lots of burger/steak/pizza/burrito options, zero pho/curry/falafel options).
OK, enough on the ambiance. Fat City Cafe is one
of the top 2 or 3 diners in town (instead of asking if you want an english
muffin or toast with your breakfast, it's hash browns or pancakes).
Village Coffee has a lot of magazines. Bring your dog to the picnic tables in
front of the Lucky Labrador and have a pint w/ other K-9s (and their owners).
(map: Multnomah Village)
(bus: 44-Capitol Highway, 45-Garden Home)
East 28th Ave (from NE Flanders to SE Ankeny) is an extremley
young and small main street. But it's restaurants are being hyped like crazy
so I thought I'd mention it. After surveying the area, I found that the
businesses are about 1/3 wine joints, 1/3 gelato joints, and the rest are
salons and Chinese restaurants. I can't imagine this niche market lasting the
next wave of gentrification, but I guess we'll just wait and see.
(map: E 28th)
(bus: 20-Burnside/Stark, 19-Glisan)
Although I made a specific point of leaving "auto-oriented"
streets out of the picture I happen to really like NE Sandy and, consequently,
I'm the boss, so... In the Central Eastside, it's mostly auto
dealerships and shit like that but stop by Sandy Hut at 14th for free
shuffleboard and cheap brew. The Hollywood District (39th-47th) was apparently
downtown's biggest competitor way back. [don't eat Chinese food in the
Hollywood District] The Hollywood Theater (at 41st) is art-house enough to
have a newsletter (link).
Farther up in Rose City Park (47th-60th) is where the food really starts.
Violet Cafe's breakfast is no joke (at 52nd), Du's Grill is absolutely the
best teriyaki shack in town (at 54th), Chaba Thai is seriousness (at 58th).
The Roseway District (60s) has a bunch of Vietnamese Restaurants but I have
yet to find one that really kicks my ass.
It's pretty much fast-food and Laundromats after that but if you're feeling really cool, venture out to the code-breaking residential motels and trailer parks at 122nd and beyond, known city-wide for their sex offenders and meth labs. Also avoid the 12th-11th-Burnside-Sandy intersection (regardless of travel mode), one of the most complicated in Portland.
(map of Sandy)
1. Hostelling International- NW District
In the Northwest district, it's probably closer to a lot of the things you'll be seeing. Closer to the bus mall too (important!). (Dorm is $16 a night, private room is $40-50 a night. Located at 1818 NW Glisan St (at NW 18th Ave). The hostel's website has directions on it. NW District Hostel.
2. Hostelling International- SE Hawthorne
Right on Hawthorne Blvd, amid the heavy consumption, this hostel in at the center of the eastside business world. Same prices as above. Located at 3031 SE Hawthorne Blvd (between SE 30th and SE 31st). The website has directions and other info. Hawthorne Neighborhood Hostel.
3. McMenamins: White Eagle
From : Jeff Mendon
Sent : Tuesday, January 24, 2006 7:33 PM
"dirt cheap lodging? how about mcmenamins white eagle hotel? 900 n. russell (map). $30 bucks a night for a bunk room and free cover to their nightly shows. very clean and great atmosphere. better than any crappy $60 hotel. right on the MAX line too."
According to the website: Room rates are the same for single or double occupancy. Guests must be age 21 and over. Their hotel rooms are located directly above the saloon. With its nightly live music tradition, this is not for the light sleeper nor the early riser – be prepared to "rock into the night!" Hotel guests get free admission to the show.
1. Downtown Value Inn
Summer Rates: 1 person 1 bed- $55, 1-2 person 2 bed- $59. Winter Rates: 1 person 1 bed- $40, 1-2 person 2 bed $45. Located at 415 SW Montgomery St (at SW 4th Ave). Close to PSU, on the bus mall, in fareless square. http://www.downtownvalueinn.com/
2. should be pretty damn cheap, not sure of price though...
Fourth Avenue Motel
1889 SW 4th and Hall, (503) 226-7646
(link: citysearch review)
2401 SW 4th and Barbur (just south of 405 freeway), (503) 226-1121
(link: citysearch review)
Downtown Value Inn
415 SW Montgomery and 4th, (503) 226-4751
(link: citysearch review)
Sixth Ave Motel
2221 SW 6th and Barbur (just south of 405 freeway), (503) 226-2979
(link: citysearch review)
Oregon City is the first town in Oregon. Although it's
historic downtown retains some of it's original character, the city itself has
become another suburb of Portland. Still, go to downtown Oregon City. Take the
Municipal Elevator (visable from anywhere in downtown Oregon City) up to the
top to look at the crusty old skyline, huge paper mills, Willamete River, and
surrounding forest from an elevated view. Then, walk along the promenade until
you can see all of the paper mills. From the elevator (still on top), walk
away from the downtown to 7th St (the other main street) where you'll find
Super Torta (damn cheap, damn fine burritos) and a couple of antique stores.
Take Oregon Highway 99-E south. This highway (McLoughlin Blvd) runs through
downtown Oregon City. Or take the
to 7th St and Main St. The 33 comes more often, but the 35 has a more scenic
(image: Oregon City 1, Oregon City 2)
(link: Oregon City photos @ Portland Ground)
Aside from Oregon City, Portland suburbs are pretty bad. These are the few things worth doing if you have a car and the time: -- Uwajimiya, (directions) , Beaverton, is a really huge Asian market. Bus: 54- Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway. -- Tryon Creek State Park in Lake Oswego is pretty tough. Take the 35-Macadam to downtown LO, walk north on State Street (highway 43) for less than half a mile when Terwilliger Blvd branches off to the left. On Terwilliger you're a block or so from the park. It's a great place to bicycle to as well. Ride down SW Terwilliger Blvd about 5 miles from downtown Portland. A 3 mile bike path runs more-or-less parallel to Terwilliger at the end of the trip to downtown Lake Oswego. (link: Oregon State Parks: Tryon Creek). George Rogers Park in Lake Oswego and Mary S. Young Park in West Linn both have some of the only natural space left on the river.
standard 911 on any phone for emergency
Portland Police non-emergency 503-823-3333
B. Internet Access
heaven- sw 10th and stark. (hours?)
seattle's best- sw 6th and mill (PSU Urban Center)
kinkos- sw 2nd and alder, nw 23rd and lovejoy, ne 7th and weidler
Multnomah County: http://www.multcolib.org/mcl-hrs.html
From : Todd Lisonbee
Sent : Wednesday, November 2, 2005 9:47 AM
"The Washington County Library System has a cultural pass that you can check out so that you can visit any of the following places for free: Portland Art Museum, Japanese Garden, Oregon Garden, Pittock Mansion, Chinese Classical Garden, Forest Discovery Center, and others...
If you are in Multnomah it might be inconvenient to go all the way to Washington county to get the pass but with the Art Museum, for example, this pass could save you $30 for two people.
Library cards are currently free for residents of Washington, Multnomah, Clackamas or Hood River counties in Oregon; and Clark, Klickitat and Skamania counties in Washington. You need to reserve the pass about one week in advance because they are limited (although this applies more to the weekends). Also, each pass is good for two people and is for one specific location.
Have a nice day, -Todd Lisonbee" (what a guy!)
Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital & Medical Center
1015 NW 22nd Avenue
Legacy Emanuel Hospital & Health Center
2801 N. Gantenbein Avenue
Providence Portland Medical Center
4805 NE Glisan Street
E. Post offices
University Station, 1505 SW 6th Avenue (at Clay St), Portland, OR 97201
Week Days 07:00AM-06:00PM
Pioneer Station, 520 SW Morrison (at 5th), Portland, OR 97204
Week Days 08:00AM-05:00PM
Portland Main Office Retail, 715 NW Hoyt St (at Broadway), Portland, OR 97208
Week Days 07:00AM-06:30PM
Forest Park Station, 1706 NW 24th Ave (at Savier St), Portland, OR 97210
Week Days 08:30AM-05:00PM
East Portland Station, 1020 SE 7th Ave (at Yamhill), Portland, OR 97214
Week Days 08:30AM-05:00PM
Brooklyn Station, 1410 SE Powell (at 14th), Portland, OR 97242
Week Days 09:00AM-05:00PM
F. Currency Exchange
Travelex America Inc
7000 NE Airport Way # 2161
G. Gay/Lesbian Resources
PDX Gay and Lesbian Yellow Pages
Northwest Neighborhood Laundry
NW 26th and Thurman
NE 27th and Glisan
SE 28th and Belmont and SE 20th and Division
Springtime Cleaners & Laundry
SE 29th and Hawthorne ('heard you can play pool)
A. Other Guides
alt.portland.guide- this excellent guide has expanded to include daily blog entries on Portland. A must-
portland.cityseach.com- reviews of just about EVERY restaurant or business you might use in town, but not exactly trustworthy.
BootsNAll Guide- some good info but beware: hasn't been updated in years and occasionally incorrect (Fort Stevens Park, for example, is 2 hrs, not 20 min from Portland)
The Artist's Guide to North Portland- don't let the name turn you off. Lots of good stuff about a chunk of town I'm relativley oblivious to.
Vegetarian Travel Guide- Portland
Portland Ground- a Portland based photoblog with beautiful photos organized by neighborhood.
Portland Parks and Recreation
Oregon State Parks
Washington State Parks
US Geological Survey - Portland Volcanoes and Mountains
Vancouver, WA Parks and Rec
Lake Oswego Parks and Rec
Tualatin Hills Park and Rec District
* more popular publication
Business Journal Of Portland
El Hispanic News
Portland Chinese Times
Portland Radio Guide
Urban Adventure League
Old Portland Postcards
Oregon Historical Society
Portland, Oregon In 3D
Oregon Brewers Guild- Microbreweries in Portland
NW FILM CENTER
S H I F T to bikes!= calendar
Aerial Photographs- Northwest
portland radio authority
The Portland Radio Guide - pdxradio.com
t e a m . m i d n i g h t
F. Transportation links
Office of Transportation: Getting Around
Bicycle Transportation Alliance
Shift To Bikes
Portland International Airport
Portland Inline Skate Association
dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap dirt cheap portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland portland guide guide guide guide guide guide guide guide guide guide guide guide