Post Overview: A Helpful Itinerary for 1 Day in Portland, Oregon
One of my friends recently reached out and asked for advice on how to spend only one day in Portland, Oregon.
One day in Portland?! Girlfriend has her work cut out for her! But I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge and dove head first into this impossible task.
I’m a lifelong Portland local and even I had a hard time summarizing the best things to do in Portland in 1 day, but after a few days of brainstorming among my Portland friends, we came up with a list I can stand behind.
I’m not one for small talk, so without further ado, let’s talk about the best way to spend one day in Portland, from a local’s perspective.
Note for you, dear reader: If anything in this post doesn’t make sense or if you have any questions let me know in the comments below. I want your one day in Portland to be enjoyable and I’m here to help make that happen, so don’t hesitate to reach out. I love hearing from you!
Is 1 day in Portland enough time?
The honest answer is no, but it’s better than nothing and we’ll take what we can get.
The itinerary below will ensure that you see the top Portland attractions during your 1 day in Portland. My hope is that this experience will entice you to return for a longer visit so that you can enjoy all the great things Portland has to offer.
Spending 1 day in Portland will give you a great introduction to the city, but it’s not enough time to absorb everything, so go easy on yourself because you’ll see a lot of things but you won’t see everything.
Portland is large, the city is comprised of six quadrants: North, Northeast, Northwest, South, Southeast and Southwest and this Portland itinerary will cover the most popular areas.
P.S. If your plans change and you have more than one day to spend in Portland, you might find it helpful to read: How to Spend 3 Unforgettable Days in Portland.
Who am I and why should you trust me?
Don’t worry, I don’t offend easily and this is a fair question. I’m a lifelong Portland local. I grew up in the City of Roses and spent most of my weekends exploring the city and surrounding areas. Portland saw me through all of my major life moments, from high school and college to my first real job (at the City of Portland!) to my venture into entrepreneurship (mercy).
I’ve celebrated milestones in various Portland restaurants and bars. I’ve seen the city fall into a slumber during COVID and slowly rise again – and through it all, I’ve loved every minute of my time here.
I’m also an avid reader and have done my fair share of learning about Portland’s history. I’ll be sharing some of the most fascinating facts and lessons below.
How to Spend 1 day in Portland,Oregon
To make the most efficient use of your one day in Portland we will need to focus on a few key areas. But first things, first: coffee. Thankfully Portland has plenty of options.
Start your day in Portland right (best coffee in Portland)
Ah yes, the thing Portland is most famous for – great coffee. And we live up to that reputation! It’s hard to go wrong in this department, but I’d recommend visiting one of these cafes during your one day in Portland:
Stumptown Coffee at the Ace Hotel: We can’t talk about the best coffee in Portland without mentioning the original, Stumptown Coffee. Still considered the most iconic coffee shop in Portland, this gem has spread to several locations across the country. Swing by to see why locals maintain a steadfast devotion to Stumptown regardless of all the new cafes that have cropped up over the years.
Spella Cafe: Originally started as a food cart before finding a more permanent home in a tiny hole-in-the-wall, Spella Cafe will transport you to Italy instantly. So if you like old-school cafes with charming European, this is the spot for you. Spella Caffe has mastered the craft of coffee. The cappuccinos are airy and light and we’ve never had a bitter taste from the properly-roasted beans. Local’s Tip: Their affogato (ice cream with espresso) is the best in Portland.
Good Coffee: What’s in a name? A lot, apparently. Good Coffee serves some of the best coffee in Portland. Clear standouts are foamy drinks, like the excellent cappuccinos and high quality lattes. But don’t make the mistake of assuming you need cream for these perfectly roasted beans, everything is done to perfection here.
Coava Coffee Roasters: Coava roasts its own beans, which are so well known that many Portland cafes choose to use them exclusively. Specializing in pour-overs and espresso, rather than latte art, this is the place to go if you want a great cup of coffee with a focus on the beans. The baristas are some of the friendliest I’ve come across and take great pride in sharing their knowledge of the day’s beans.
Never Coffee: A tiny but light-filled charming Portland cafe, Never Coffee has become Instagram-famous thanks to the colorful decor and great coffee. Served in cheery and vibrant ceramic mugs, the flavored lattes at Never Coffee are the crowd favorites. Perfectly executed, these creative concoctions feature seasonal flavors like yuzu, fennel and shishito peppers.
Visit Portland’s most beloved park, Washington Park
Washington Park is often considered the crown jewel of Portland’s robust park system and it’s not hard to see why. Located on the border of the NW neighborhood, this breathtaking park spans 400 acres and houses six important cultural institutions — the International Rose Test Garden, the Portland Japanese Garden, the Oregon Zoo, Hoyt Arboretum, Portland Children’s Museum and the World Forestry Center.
The Portland Rose Garden
Portland is often referred to as the City of Roses because the local climate creates the perfect conditions for growing roses and nowhere is this more evident than at the exceptional Portland International Rose Test Garden (better known as the Portland Rose Garden), which is located within Washington Park.
Portland’s beloved rose garden is both the largest rose garden in America and the oldest. Home to an impressive 650+ varieties of roses and more than 10,000+ bushes, it’s easily one of the best free things to do during your 1 day in Portland.
The history of the rose garden is equally fascinating. Originally started in 1915 by Jesse Currey, (an Oregon Journal editor and rose hobbyist), the rose garden was created in an effort to preserve roses susceptible to eradication during World War I.
Location: 400 SW Kingston Ave, Portland, OR 97205
Walk over to the Portland Japanese Garden
Opened in 1967, the perfectly-curated Portland Japanese Garden provides a calming escape from the hustle and bustle of city living.
So if you find yourself overwhelmed by concrete, head this way. The Portland Japanese Garden is regarded as one of the most authentic Japanese gardens in America, which is reason alone to visit during your 1 day in Portland. I can’t recommend this experience enough, especially if you’re visiting during the fall months when the garden comes alive with exceptional fall color. Make sure to swing by the cozy Umami Cafe for matcha or tea for a little break, you won’t be disappointed.
Image courtesy of the Portland Japanese Garden
Grab brunch at Screen Door (the NW location)
The secret has been out for a while now: Screen Door has some of the best brunch in Portland, and the long lines prove it. Offering incredible southern dishes, Screen Door has perfectly executed fried chicken and waffles and folks wait for hours for the fare.
Insider Tip: Don’t make the mistake of skipping the biscuits and grits if you like savory brunch or the french toast if you have a sweet tooth.
Get lost at Powell’s Books
Located within the Pearl District and spanning an entire city block, Powell’s Books is the largest independent bookstore in the world. Reason alone to visit during your one day in Portland!
Home to more than one million new and used books, the store covers 4 floors. If that sounds overwhelming, grab a map before embarking on the adventure. Arrive early or be prepared for crowds, Powell’s is one of the most visited places in Portland.
Local’s Tip: Pop into the Gold Room during your visit to see the rarest books in the store. The most expensive book at Powell’s is an 1814 copy of the Lewis & Clark Journal which includes Captain Lewis’ map. The price? $350,000.
Explore the Pearl District
Portland’s trendy Pearl District is best described as industrial chic. Towering high rises (with rent prices to match, mind you) have cropped up around beautiful red-brick buildings — two worlds blending together seamlessly.
This Portland neighborhood is popular among locals thanks to the plethora of independent boutiques, modern cafes, cozy bars and charming galleries. Originally home to factories and loading docks, the Pearl has recently reinvented itself and is eager to show off.
The warehouses have since been converted into airy light-filled condos and the cobblestone streets of yesterday lead the neighborhood into the future. Today the beloved Pearl District serves as a testament to the power of breathing new life into a (once) neglected area, to everyone’s benefit.
Explore NW Portland
Hop under the interstate and you’ll find yourself in the charming NW Portland neighborhood.
NW Portland is a pretty tree-lined residential neighborhood peppered with smalls shops and great restaurants. This is the neighborhood I’ve lived in the longest because of it’s charm, walk-ability and access to everything I need (grocery stores, entertainment and parks).
The best way to explore NW Portland is to wander through the neighborhood on foot. Stroll down 23rd Avenue and check out the shops that line this popular shopping street, often called “trendy third.”
Also, you might notice that a lot of the streets in NW Portland seem familiar and there’s a reason for it. The creator of The Simpsons, Matt Groening, grew up near NW Portland and named a handful of Simpsons characters after Portland streets.
Swing by Breakside Brewery
It’s no secret that Portland is one of the best beer cities in the country and you’ll want to visit some of the big names during your 1 day in Portland. From a local’s perspective, no brewery shines brighter than Breakside Brewery — largely thanks to the plethora of awards and accolades bestowed upon it.
The prestigious awards span the gamut and there’s simply too many to list, but the Gold Medal at the Great American Beer Festival is worth mention. Expect long lines, this brewery is popular among both locals and tourists.
Pop over for a sweet treat at Salt & Straw
Salt & Straw has amassed a cult-like following since opening in 2011 and the steadfast devotion is justified — they churn out the best ice cream in Portland. Locally sourced seasonal ingredients take center stage and the innovative (albeit unusual) seasonal flavors warrant a sample or two.
Local’s Tip: Don’t skip the honey-lavender flavor, it’s the best.
If you have an insatiable sweet tooth (raises hand*) make a beeline toward Papa Haydn. The triple chocolate cake and carrot cake are dream worthy.
I wouldn’t necessary recommend visiting Papa Haydn for food, but the desserts are worth inclusion on any decent Portland itinerary. I come here whenever I have cause for celebration and treat myself to a birthday cake from here every year without fail.
One Day in Portland Itinerary, three options for the afternoon:
Option A: Take a hike in Forest Park
Portlanders take outdoor recreation seriously and nowhere is this more evident than the busy trailheads at Forest Park. Covering more than 5,200 acres, Forest Park is one of the largest urban forests in the country. With more than 70+ miles of trails, you’re bound to find a trail you love.
Tour Pittock Mansion
Spanning an impressive 16,000 square feet and sitting pretty within the confines of Forest Park, Pittock Mansion is a stunning French-Renaissance mansion that dates back to 1914. This iconic Portland attraction boasts 46 elaborate rooms and was built so well that the even the original elevator is operational to this day.
Visitors can tour the home, an experience I recommend because you can see the original furniture from the time period and learn more about the lives of the family that lived here.
The Christmas season is especially remarkable because the mansion is decorated in the most elaborate manner with tons of Christmas trees.
If you’re pressed for time and decide not to tour the mansion, at least make sure to head to the overlook behind the mansion for unparalleled views of downtown Portland. Catching sunset from here is a must during your three days in Portland!
Afterwards hike to the Witch’s Castle
The Witch’s Castle is arguably the most popular short hikes in Forest Park, you can easily reach it from Pittock Mansion.
You might be asking yourself what can be so haunting about an abandoned structure in the middle of a forest?
Well, it’s an age-old tale of murder and haunt surrounds the Witch’s Castle and makes a visit to this structure all the more interesting. The gist is this: an angry father murdered his daughter’s husband because they got married without his consent (intrigued? You can read more here).
Ask any Portlander and they will tell you that hiking to the Witch’s Castle is a rite of passage. It feels as much a part of the city as the the Keep Portland Weird motto, which is why you simply can’t miss it during your 1 day in Portland.
Further Reading: Visiting the Witch’s Castle in Portland, Oregon
Option B: Explore Downtown Portland
Portland’s downtown core a vibrant community with interesting restaurants, great local shopping options, home to Pioneer Courthouse Square — lovingly referred to as Portland’s living room.
Spend some time aimlessly wandering the streets during your long weekend in Portland. Don’t forget to pop into the small shops you pass along the way, I especially enjoy MadeHere store — they have the cutest earrings!
Stroll Tom McCall Waterfront Park
Tom McCall Waterfront Park is named after Oregon’s revered governor. The park swells with locals during lunch hour and it’s inevitable that you’ll be dodging bikers, walkers, skateboarders and young couples walking hand-in-hand.
Try to time your visit to the waterfront with the spring season because this is the best spot in Portland for cherry blossoms. The 100 Akebono cherry trees that line the waterfront were gifted by the Japanese Grain Importers Association in 1990.
Local’s Tip: Sit on a bench for a few minutes and watch the world go by while enjoying lunch from the nearby Pine Street Market. I love the pizza stall and used to come here once a week when I worked downtown.
Snap a photo with the Keep Portland Weird mural
Omitting a visit to the Keep Portland Weird sign would be inexcusable in a proper Portland itinerary!
Is it kind of cheesy? Sure but don’t skip it unless you’re lactose intolerant. The reason is simple, if you don’t take an obligatory photo with the Keep Portland Weird mural then nobody will believe you ever spent a day in Portland. So route yourself to this mural and let the magic happen.
The Keep Portland Weird sign has become synonymous with the city’s lifestyle and even feels like a call to action for some folks. You’ll see the slogan on bumper stickers, t-shirts, posters, you name it.
Apparently the motto was originally borrowed from Austin, Texas (how one “borrows” a motto is beyond be, but I digress). It was brought to Portland in 2003 by Music Millennium owner terry Currier with the intention of supporting local businesses.
Location: 22 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR 97204
See the second largest copper statue in America
Sitting pretty at nearly 35 feet, the Portlandia Statue is the second largest copper statue in America — second only to the Statue of Liberty in New York City. It’s located in the heart of downtown Portland.
You might ask yourself why such an iconic statue is not better known. Well, the sculptor guards the rights to the statue strictly and doesn’t allow photos of it to be used for commercial purposes, and threatens lawsuits when his request is not met.
However, the statue may look familiar to Portlandia fans because the show received permission to use the statue after hefty negotiations and an agreement not to use it in a “disparaging way.”
Further Reading: 20 Interesting Facts About Portland (You Might Not Know)
Image courtesy of Oregon Live
Option C: Explore Mississippi Avenue
If you’re more interested in exploring the city during your one day in Portland then head to Mississippi Avenue rather than Forest Park.
Mississippi Avenue is a lively corridor located within the Boise neighborhood, a colorful residential neighborhood chock full of interesting shops and great restaurants.
The business in this area clearly cater to the whims of millennials. You’ll find beautiful plant nurseries, music venues, food cart pods, fantastic breweries (some of the best in Portland) and plenty of great clothing stores.
Here’s some great things to do in the area:
Catch a show at Mississippi Studios
Check the roster at Mississippi Studios and try to grab tickets for a show. Catching a live performance should be high on your list during your 1 day in Portland and Mississippi Studios is sure to fit the bill.
Food Option A: ¿Por Qué No? Taqueria
¿Por Qué No? Taqueria serves up the best tacos and guacamole in Portland, and the long lines prove it. Their margaritas also hit the spot, so if you’re craving great Mexican food during your one day in Portland, look no further. Swing by during Happy Hour (Monday-Friday from 2:30-5pm) for $1 off sangria, margaritas and cocktails, or visit on Taco Tuesday when the taco menu is 10% off.
Food Option B: Lovely’s Fifty-fifty
Dangerously delicious wood-fired pizza served alongside homemade ice cream. This beloved Portland restaurant was welcome with open arms when they first opened and it’s hard to imagine Mississippi without it. The secret to their award-winning pizzas? The sourdough starter.
Visit Stormbreaker Brewing
Stormbreaker is a crowd-favorite among local Portlanders for their hoppy IPAs, memorable ciders and great outdoor seating. Founded in 2013, this beloved Portland brewery now boasts two lively locations but I’m partial to the Mississippi location. Enjoy a cold glass of cider or an IPA with traditional pub fare (the nachos are worth mention).
One Day in Portland Itinerary, two options for the evening:
Option A: Head over to the Alberta Arts District
From delicious food, tons of charming boutiques and some of the best murals the city has to offer, exploring the Alberta Arts District during your 1 day in Portland is non-negotiable.
Have dinner at Bollywood Theater
A super hip Indian restaurant with delicious fare. We visited with a group of friends for a birthday celebration and tried about 15 small plates – all were big hits! Plus, the atmosphere is great, especially for groups.
Enjoy a brew at Great Notion Brewery
Great Notion was born when three neighbors, drawn together by a common passion for home-brewing, decided to pursue their passion full time. The result? One of the best breweries in Portland.
Experimentation and creativity is the name of the game at Great Notion and the City of Roses is better for it. Try the renowned fruit beers, sours and hazy IPAs to see what all the fuss is about.
Have a nightcap in the detention room of a converted school
Only in Portland, right?
Swing by the Kennedy School to see what happens when you convert a school into a hang out spot for the neighborhood (the detention room was converted into a bar).
Old classrooms were reconstructed into hotel rooms, the detention room is now a bar and the Boiler Room a restaurant. Oh, what’s more, the gymnasium was converted to a cozy movie theater that plays re-runs.
Alberta’s most popular event: Last Thursday
If you’re visiting Alberta Arts District during the summer months, makes sure to check out the Last Thursday Art Walk where local vendors, artists, performers and musicians share their craft along Northeast Alberta Street.
Option B: Explore the Hawthorn District instead
The Hawthorne District spans 43 blocks and exudes an easy-going artsy vibe. The quirkiness and laid back nature of this area is irresistible to Portlanders. If you’re looking to shed some light on why people love living in Portland, I recommend exploring this area.
Wander down Belmont Street
The crown jewel of the Hawthorne District is Belmont Street, where you’ll find a high concentration of interesting shops, phenomenal restaurants, quaint cafes, vintage clothing stores and lively bars.
Food Cart Hop!
My favorite thing about Portland’s robust food scene is the lack of pretension. Turns out you can have a great meal without a white table cloth, who knew!
Pop over to the famous food cart pods off of Hawthorne (called the Hawthorne Asylum Pod) during your 1 day in Portland.
Food trucks aren’t just for tourists. Most of my coworkers rush over during the busy lunch hour, so you’ll be acting more like a local than a tourist with this activity.
1 Day Portland Itinerary: Day Trip Options
If you’d like to venture beyond the city of Portland during your one day, you might find the following day trips enjoyable.
Further Reading: 10 Adventurous Day Trips from Portland
The Columbia Gorge
In terms of best day trips from Portland, it doesn’t get better than a visit to the Columbia Gorge.
Portland is known for spectacular scenery and unparalleled access to nature, so why not take a day trip to the breathtaking Columbia Gorge and see what all the fuss is about.
The Columbia Gorge is a study in contrast. From alpine meadows and jaw-dropping waterfalls to desert landscapes and tepid rain forests, there’s something for everyone.
The best way to explore the Columbia Gorge is by car and trail. Take the Historic Columbia River Highway, known as the “King of Roads” was the first scenic highway in America to be designated as a National Historic Landmark.
Less than a one-hour drive from the city, the Columbia River Gorge makes for a great day trip from Portland, so add this to your 1 day in Portland itinerary.
Did you know: The Columbia River Gorge is the largest National Scenic Area in the country.
Plunging a staggering 620 feet, Multnomah Falls is the tallest waterfall in Oregon. Nestled into the pristine Columbia River Gorge, an area with an abundance of waterfalls, mountains and numerous striking vistas for public enjoyment, you will find one of the most visited sights in Oregon.
Tip: The parking lot fills up very quickly so make sure to come early. Also, don’t miss hiking to the overview bridge, it’s well worth the small effort.
Hood River, Oregon
We can’t talk about the best day trips from Portland without mentioning the quaint town of Hood River, Oregon. This charming town is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts and relaxers all the same.
In many ways, taking trip to Hood River feels like escaping to the South of France. The greenery, the calm valleys and the blushing fruit trees have a way of transporting you back to simpler times.
If you’re looking to escape the bustle of city living, you need not look further than a day trip to Hood River.
This past summer, I spent most of my weekends trying new wineries in Hood River (Read: 18 Best Wineries in the Columbia River Gorge).
Take a road trip to the Oregon Coast
Nothing screams Pacific Northwest like the striking Oregon coastline. A scenic 1.5-hour drive from Portland will lead you directly to the salty sea. If you’re pressed for time, make Cannon Beach your top priority.
My childhood is freckled with memories of summer at the Oregon coast, so I’m definitely biased. It took my husband a few visits to fall under the coast’s spell, but as soon as he discovered crabbing and clamming – he was hooked!
Cannon Beach is the most popular beach on the Oregon Coast, you may have seen photos of Haystack Rock before (it’s very famous). As such, this is a perfect day trip from Portland.
Further Reading: 12+ Charming Oregon Coast Towns You Can’t Help But Love
Go on a winery tour in the Willamette Valley
Everyone knows that Oregon is an outdoor enthusiasts dream. The drastic (and diverse) natural landscapes can keep anyone entertained for years with miles of hiking trails and sweeping vistas.
But what’s the point in hiking without a proper reward afterwards? Well, Oregon has you covered in that department as well — in fact, Oregon is the 4th most wine producing state in the country.
And of all the notable wine regions in Oregon, perhaps none is more famous than Willamette Valley because it is home to 500+ wineries.
Sitting at the same latitude as France’s notable wine regions, Willamette Valley is known for producing knock-out award-winning Pinot Noirs that can hold their own in worldwide competitions.
Sipping a chilled glass of Chardonnay in the summer (or robust glass of award winning red in fall) is a perfect way to properly cap your 1 day in Portland.
Create your own one day in Portland itinerary (mix & match)
If you don’t like to be restricted to itineraries (more power to you!), feel free to substitute some of the places mentioned above with those mentioned below and add them into your own personalized one day Portland itinerary.
If you’d like to know about the best brunch options in Portland, here’s a list of my favorites below. You can’t go wrong with any of these options during your one day in Portland!
Tusk: Tusk was named restaurant of the year by Food & Wine magazine in 2017. The creative Mediterranean menu is described as “locally sourced, aggressively seasonal” and the proof is in the pudding. The dishes are sensational and the bright and cheery decor can lift the spirit of any winter-weary Portland native. Bring your friends, you’ll want to sample everything.
Mother’s Bistro: Mother’s Bistro is a Portland institution that has been around since 2000. Feating delights like Challah French Toast and salmon hash, it’s one of the most beloved restaurants in the city.
Serving traditional American fare with a unique twist – every month they feature recipes from a “Mother of the Month.” The Mother of the Month sets the menu based on her unique cultural fare and childhood meals. Making for an ever-changing brunch experience!
Further Reading: 30+ Portland Brunch Spots Worth the (Inevitable) Wait
Best breweries in Portland
Ecliptic Brewing: Started by brewing icon behind some of the most well-known beers in the state, including Mirror Pond Pale Ale, success was all but guaranteed at this highly anticipated Portland brewery.
The menu highlights local and seasonal ingredients and is re-imagined every six weeks. You can expect to find everything from cult-following brews (like the Starburst IPA, Capella Porter and Carina Peach Sour Ale) to creative experimental brews dependent on the season.
Migration Brewing: Founded in 2018, as a passion project of four friends, Migration Brewing is a staple in the Portland community. They’ve successfully created an inviting space for guests to linger over excellent brews and delicious pub fare. The IPAs are a crowd-favorite, but we’re partial to the hearty pilsner. Regardless of what you order, you won’t be disappointed, but seriously – don’t skip the food!
Cascade Brewing: Opened in 1998, Cascade Brewing is one of the oldest breweries in Portland, but it wasn’t until 2006 that it started to set itself apart by specializing in barrel-aged sours. With more than 20 beers on tap, you’ll be hard pressed to find a more extensive (and exciting) list of bright sours in one place. Cascade Brewing has won numerous awards and is considered one of the original masters of sour brews in the nation.
Upright Brewing: Locals consider Upright Brewing to be one of the most underrated breweries in Portland, but the secret is definitely out. Specializing in farmhouse ales and traditional Old World styles, this is a great brewery for sours, ales and good vibes. The venue exudes a relaxed speakeasy vibe and the staff are always welcoming and attentive.
Culmination Brewing: Culmination Brewing is on everyone’s lips for a reason, this brewery churns out some of the most innovative and perfectly executed brews in Portland.
Opened in 2015, Culmination has focused on creating a relaxed and welcoming space for the community by way of great beers. You’ll find a robust tap list of 20 beers, ranging from traditional brews like IPAs, ambers and stouts to more innovative sours and barrel-aged beers. You’re bound to find something impressive here.
Further Reading: 15 Epic Portland Breweries Worth Knowing About
Best time to visit Portland for 1 day
By and large, Portland tends to have mild weather year round. The one season I would avoid is winter because the colder temperatures make exploring less enjoyable (although there’s plenty of cozy coffee shops to take cover in!).
To that end, the best time to visit Portland is between May and October. The weather is comfortable (even during summer because there’s practically no humidity) and chance of rainfall is minimal.
If you can, try to time your visit with the vibrant spring season so that you can experience the cherry blossoms in full bloom or the breathtaking fall season when the city is ablaze with deep shades of orange, red and yellow.
Personally, my favorite seasons in Portland are fall (September/October) and spring (April/May).
Portland Itinerary Tips: Getting around Portland in one day
Biking is the number one way to get around Portland. In fact, Portland is rated the most bike-able city in America year after year. So grab a BIKETOWN bike to explore town.
Driving in the city is fairly easy (especially if you’re comfortable driving in cities) and parking is reasonable at $2/hour in the downtown metered area.
For longer stays, the City of Portland has 5 parking garages that charge the same rates as on-street parking ($2/hour or $13-$16 all day).
Public Transportation is easy to use and fairly inexpensive ($2.50 for two hours/$5 all day). In addition to the bus, Portland offers the MAX and Portland Streetcar.
Uber/Lyft/Taxi are operational in Portland and (based on personal experience) reasonably priced.
When driving in Portland, it’s important to know that pedestrians ALWAYS have the right of way — even if sidewalks are unmarked.
Great (fancy) restaurants to add to your Portland Itinerary
Jaqueline: Delicious seafood curated into beautiful and creative dishes. Get the tasting menu here, it runs $60 per person for 8 courses. In the world of tasting menus, it’s not a bad deal. I came here twice in one month after discovering it.
Ava Genes: Fresh, farm to table Italian-inspired cuisine. The chef, Joshua McFadden authored a James Beard Award winning cookbook titled Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables. A book I cannot recommend enough, especially the mushroom recipes.
Le Pigeon: French-inspired cuisine serving delightful dishes at communal tables. Reservations required and often book out weeks, sometimes months, in advance.
Coquine: Casual cafe by day and farm to table American cuisine by night. Make sure to cap your meal with their famous chocolate chip cookie.
Where to stay during your 1 day in Portland
I suggest staying in the downtown core during your long weekend in Portland because it’s well connected by public transportation. There’s plenty of hotels in the area, plus you’ll be close to great restaurants, bars and entertainment.
My two top centrally-located hotel recommendations in the downtown area are:
The Nines Hotel: Swanky special occasion hotel a stone’s throw from Pioneer Square. Whenever celebrities or athletes come to town, this is where they stay.
Hotel Woodlark: New to the scene but makes quite an appearance. The lobby of this cute boutique hotel is home to Good Coffee, making it easy to start your day right.
But honestly, it’s hard to go wrong with any of the charming Portland neighborhoods.
One Day in Portland (Post Summary)
I hope you found this guide to 1 day Portland itinerary helpful, don’t hesitate to reach out with questions!
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