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2-Day Itinerary in Portland, OR

Explore the best things to do in Portland, OR in 2 days based on recommendations from local experts.

Day 1

#1

#1 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Must-see ? Free
Whether or not you're an avid reader, Powell's City of Books is worth checking out. It occupies a square city block and rises three stories high; in fact, this bookstore is so large that exploring it actually requires a map.
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Shopping Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Powell's City of Books
Whether or not you're an avid reader, Powell's City of Books is worth checking out. It occupies a square city block and rises three stories high; in fact, this bookstore is so large that exploring it actually requires a map.
... more

10 minutes by car

#4

#4 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Must-see ? Free
Many critics, travelers and locals agree that of all of Portland's parks (and they are numerous), Washington Park is perhaps the best. Home to such notable landscaping feats as the Portland Japanese Garden and the International Rose Test Garden, as well as the World Forestry Center, Hoyt Arboretum and several memorials dedicated to pivotal points in Oregon's history. 
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Parks and Gardens Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Washington Park
Many critics, travelers and locals agree that of all of Portland's parks (and they are numerous), Washington Park is perhaps the best. Home to such notable landscaping feats as the Portland Japanese Garden and the International Rose Test Garden, as well as the World Forestry Center, Hoyt Arboretum and several memorials dedicated to pivotal points in Oregon's history. 
... more

5-20 minute walk

#3

#3 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Must-see ? Free
Not until you visit these sprawling gardens will you fully understand the reasoning behind one of Portland's nicknames, the City of Roses. Established in 1917 by the American Rose Society, it began as a sanctuary for European grown hybrid roses during World War I and is now the oldest official continuously operated public rose test garden in the United States.
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Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
International Rose Test Garden
Not until you visit these sprawling gardens will you fully understand the reasoning behind one of Portland's nicknames, the City of Roses. Established in 1917 by the American Rose Society, it began as a sanctuary for European grown hybrid roses during World War I and is now the oldest official continuously operated public rose test garden in the United States.
... more

5-10 minute walk

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#2

#2 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Must-see ?
When the hustle and bustle of Portland start to get the best of you, you can seek out the Zen-like tranquility at the Japanese Garden within Washington Park.
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Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Portland Japanese Garden
When the hustle and bustle of Portland start to get the best of you, you can seek out the Zen-like tranquility at the Japanese Garden within Washington Park.
... more

5-10 minutes by car

#8

#8 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Recommended ?
The 16,000-square-foot Pittock Mansion is one of Portland's few historic attractions and definitely one of the most unique. Commissioned in 1912 by Henry Pittock – the owner of The Oregonian newspaper – and designed after the French Renaissance style, this 23-room mansion contains a Turkish smoking room, a library, a music room, and two sleeping porches, among other features.
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Historic Homes/Mansions Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Pittock Mansion
The 16,000-square-foot Pittock Mansion is one of Portland's few historic attractions and definitely one of the most unique. Commissioned in 1912 by Henry Pittock – the owner of The Oregonian newspaper – and designed after the French Renaissance style, this 23-room mansion contains a Turkish smoking room, a library, a music room, and two sleeping porches, among other features.
... more

15-20 minutes by car

#5

#5 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Recommended ? Free
If you're looking to spend some time outside but aren't willing to make the trek to Mount Hood, Forest Park is the place to go. With more than 5,000 acres, it's one of the largest urban parks in America.
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Hiking Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Forest Park
If you're looking to spend some time outside but aren't willing to make the trek to Mount Hood, Forest Park is the place to go. With more than 5,000 acres, it's one of the largest urban parks in America.
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Day 2

#6

#6 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Recommended ?
Occupying an entire city block, the Lan Su Chinese Garden is among some of the only authentic Chinese gardens in the country. Modeled after China's Ming dynasty gardens, the Lan Su Chinese Garden aims at being a place where people can escape the hustle of everyday life and connect with nature. In addition to featuring plants and trees native to China as well as an 8,000 square feet lake, the garden also hosts a variety of Chinese cultural events, ranging from tai chi to tea tastings.
... more
Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Lan Su Chinese Garden
Occupying an entire city block, the Lan Su Chinese Garden is among some of the only authentic Chinese gardens in the country. Modeled after China's Ming dynasty gardens, the Lan Su Chinese Garden aims at being a place where people can escape the hustle of everyday life and connect with nature. In addition to featuring plants and trees native to China as well as an 8,000 square feet lake, the garden also hosts a variety of Chinese cultural events, ranging from tai chi to tea tastings.
... more

10 minute walk

Local Pick: Must-see ? Free
Whether you're craving exotic foods or are in search of a unique souvenir, the Portland Saturday Market is the place to look. Running since 1974, the market is located on the northern side of Tom McCall Waterfront Park and features 252 booths of local art, clothing, toys and pet supplies manufactured from every material imaginable.
... more
Shopping Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Portland Saturday Market
Whether you're craving exotic foods or are in search of a unique souvenir, the Portland Saturday Market is the place to look. Running since 1974, the market is located on the northern side of Tom McCall Waterfront Park and features 252 booths of local art, clothing, toys and pet supplies manufactured from every material imaginable.
... more

5 minute walk

#11

#11 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: If Time Allows ? Free
Named for a former Oregonian governor, this 30-acre park stretches alongside the Willamette River in downtown Portland and provides some of the best views of the city's skyline. Because of its prime location, it hosts many of Portland's special events – including the ever-popular Oregon Brewers Festival and the Portland Rose Festival.
... more
Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
Tom McCall Waterfront Park
Named for a former Oregonian governor, this 30-acre park stretches alongside the Willamette River in downtown Portland and provides some of the best views of the city's skyline. Because of its prime location, it hosts many of Portland's special events – including the ever-popular Oregon Brewers Festival and the Portland Rose Festival.
... more

5-10 minutes by car or 15-25 minute walk

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#10

#10 in Portland, OR

Local Pick: Recommended ?
Whether you need to keep the kids entertained for a few hours or just need a way to spend a rainy day, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry is the place to go. This interactive museum (referred to by residents as the OMSI) makes learning fun with five halls and eight labs filled with hands-on exhibits devoted to physics, chemistry, paleontology, and more. Other interactive offerings include a science playground specifically designed for young children. Recent visitors said that the museum is fun and educational for all members of the family, though some do gripe about the price of admission. If you've got kids in tow, past visitors said you'll want to spend several hours here.
... more
Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
Whether you need to keep the kids entertained for a few hours or just need a way to spend a rainy day, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry is the place to go. This interactive museum (referred to by residents as the OMSI) makes learning fun with five halls and eight labs filled with hands-on exhibits devoted to physics, chemistry, paleontology, and more. Other interactive offerings include a science playground specifically designed for young children. Recent visitors said that the museum is fun and educational for all members of the family, though some do gripe about the price of admission. If you've got kids in tow, past visitors said you'll want to spend several hours here.
... more

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