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Perennially voted one of the nation’s most livable cities, Portland is an immensely walkable destination that combines big city sophistication, a small town sense of community, and a pervasive eco-chic vibe, all amidst a gorgeous natural setting. A perfect day begins with morning coffee at a bohemian café followed by a bike ride around town, an afternoon hiking on the outskirts of the city, and an evening full of live music and microbrewery bar crawls.

Things to do in Portland

First Thursday Art Walk

Treat yourself to an evening of cheese-noshing and wine-sipping as you gallery hop your way through Portland’s bustling downtown scene. Even if you’re not around on a first Thursday, fear not: there are plenty other art walks happening in other ’hoods on alternating weekends. Hours generally run from 6-9pm.

1st through 9th Aves., btwn Burnside and Clay Sts., OR, 503-295-4979, www.firstthursdayportland.com
Tags: art | things to do | culture | free

Fly and dine

JMI Limousine offers the ultimate couples package: a helicopter takes you to The Reserve Vineyards & Golf Club then to the five-star Portland City Grill, located on the 30th floor of the Unico/US Bancorp Tower; afterward, a limousine will drop you off anywhere in the city.

JMI Limousine, OR, 503-643-6404, www.jmilimousine.com/flyanddine.htm
Tags: smart splurge | things to do | culinary

International Rose Test Garden

Founded in 1917, this is the oldest official, continuously operated public rose test garden (where hybridists catalogue and raise new rose varieties) in the United States. Roses start blooming at the end of May.

Washington Park, OR, 503-227-7033, www.rosegardenstore.org
Tags: family | things to do | outdoors | gardens

Living Room Theaters

Indie cinema gets the royal treatment in the form of six state-of-the-art “living room” theaters that include high-def digital movie projection, private table seating, in-theater service, and a full bar. In addition to showing films, it also busts out occasional special-event programming like a live screening of the presidential debates.

341 SW Tenth Ave., OR, 971-222-2010, www.livingroomtheaters.com
Tags: things to do | bar

Portland Aerial Tram

The best views in Portland – you can see Mount Hood, Mount Saint Helens, Mount Adams, Mount Rainier (on a clear day), and everything in between.

South Waterfront Terminal, OR, www.portlandtram.org
Tags: family | views | things to do | outdoors

Portland Art Museum

Classic and contemporary works are housed in both the newly renovated Mark Building and historic Belluschi Building. Besides world-class exhibits, the site also features a 33,000-volume Art Study Center and Library.

1219 SW Park Ave., OR, 503-226-2811, www.portlandartmuseum.org
Tags: family | art | things to do | culture

Portland Farmers Market

What started as a community effort to bring a taste of the country to the big city has grown into a bona fide institution. Every Saturday from 8:30am-2pm in the spring and summer, and from 9:30am-2pm in the fall, urbanites gather at downtown’s South Park Blocks to sample the best that state farmers have to offer.

SW Harrison and SW Montgomery Sts., OR, 503-241-0032, www.portlandfarmersmarket.org
Tags: things to do | outdoors | culinary | free

Portland Walking Tours

Among the many fun tours offered is the Epicurean Excursion, in which you meet artisans and vendors in their bakeries, teahouses, breweries, and shops – all while exploring the Pearl District.

Meeting locations vary, OR, 503-774-4522, www.portlandwalkingtours.com
Tags: family | smart splurge | things to do | tour

The Grotto

Even non-religious visitors love this 62-acre Catholic Shrine and botanical garden. The lush woods surrounding the Sanctuary of Our Sorrowful Mother (its proper name) make for a perfect retreat.

Northeast Portland, OR, 503-254-7371, www.thegrotto.org
Tags: family | things to do | culture | gardens | free

The Pittock Mansion

Originally owned by one of the first families of Portland, this glorious mansion is loaded with eclectic architecture and antiques; visitors will find interesting exhibits and sensational views.

3229 NW Pittock Dr., OR, 503-823-3623, www.pittockmansion.com
Tags: family | things to do | culture | architecture | history

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