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Non-touristy adventures to be had in Portland

edited February 2011
First of all I would just like to express amazing I think this wonderful community of people is that exists on UrHo. It’s always a refreshing relief from a lot of the rather draining and stagnant information that exists on the interwebs.

Well, ever since I saw Katy and Ritchey play at the powerhouse museum in Brisbane, Australia, I've been following along to the going ons in PDX via UrHo. It has been lovely and inspiring reading Regarding since then and tapping in to a lot of interesting things here and there across the UrHo community and such.

Quite frankly, it's created this deep seated urge to visit Portland and engage in all the frivolous activity that I read about when procrastinating or getting lost in the interwebs. I’m mean, I’ve made it across the Pacific Ocean and to Kansas City, MO for the whole Student Athlete experience, yet this hasn’t really satiated my appetite for traveling. So I’ve been saving up to visit PDX for Spring Break this year and plan going about my business and having a wonderful time exploring a new city. It will be a refreshing break from the relentless overcast, wintery weather in KC. As fun as snowboarding is, I like my sunshine. They call Queensland ‘the sunshine state’ for a reason! Needless to say, I’m pretty excited to get over to the West coast.

Do you have any recommendations for fun and exciting places to go to see, eat, sleep, wander and dream? A friend in Sydney gave me an Urban Adventure League zine which is quite dandy and exciting to think about doing all the biking/walking trails in it. A day trip to the coast would be lovely because I haven’t seen the ocean for over a year now and that’s a bit saddening. Other than that, I wouldn’t have a clue what to fill a week with. I don’t plan on sitting around a hotel/hostel because that’s not really exciting at all (though it’s a respectable holiday for people who work relentlessly and holiday somewhere to relax).

Oh! Is there somewhere that has great bagels and coffee? A favorite combination of mine, though I’d be pretty stoked to just find a great cafe. Is there any little zine distribution shops? What about somewhere to hire a pushbike?


  • It's pretty much impossible to walk down the streets of PDX without stumbling over all the bagels and cups of coffee, not to mention the hazards posed from pushbikes whizzing by loaded with heaps of zines. (Actually, I'm only pretending to know what a pushbike is.)

    Basically, it sounds like PDX will treat you right. Just come. There are probably 200 pleasant cafes, too many to list really.

    By the way, do you ever cross paths with my old friend Everett True in Brisbane? He can be a bit much, but he's almost always had the right idea about music, at least so far as I could tell. Kind of a favorite old stump in the forest kind of a thing.
  • edited February 2011
    A lot of coffee shops serve Kettleman's Bagels, which some people will tell you are the best in Portland.

    But Kornblatts are really the best. Take it from me, a Philadelphia Jew.

    I cannot speak to their coffee, though.
  • It's pretty overcast and rainy here until May or so. Portland is quite a rainy place. I wouldn't expect nice weather anytime during March. That being said, it's been a pretty sunny week. Hopefully you'll get lucky! If you want sun, California's probably a better bet :)

    More on other things later.
  • You were pretty spot on there with assumptions about pushbikes DrJ, just another name for a bicycle.
    Blind wandering through cities is a favorite past-time. Sydney always had something wonderful to offer around every street corner, rain or shine.
  • edited February 2011

    image .

    Still into it.
  • (I just finished up 600 Flavour Spot buttons) mmmm Dutch Tacos.
  • Is that a fake or real meat?
  • They have fake meat -- veggie/vegan sausage
    That meat looks like Canadian bacon to me. or ham.
  • Ahh. It looks like a waffle with ham...
    Also... what is the difference between Canadian bacon and any other bacon? Do they infuse it with maple syrup? (I've heard maple syrup is good on bacon)

    Does anyone have preferences with hostels in PDX?
  • Canadian bacon is a trick. It's ham. It's not bacon. Another tricky move by our sneaky neighbors to the north.
  • Most Canadian bacon in the U.S. is a ham-product. But real Canadian bacon is back bacon (from the back of a pig instead of the belly).
  • i think some of the "touristy" things to do in portland are actually pretty nice.

    -visit the gorge / hike along a waterfall
    -ride the aerial tram
    -washington park rose garden
    - portland art museum
    - mt hood / timberline lodge
    - the beach / haystack rock

    what are other touristy things here? this isn't all that touristy of a town it seems to me.
  • edited February 2011
    japanese & chinese gardens
    zoo/arboretum/children's museum
    goonies sites in Astoria
  • edited December 2011
  • I feel like I go to Portland enough to no longer be considered a tourist, but I ride the tram every time I'm in town.
  • Burnside Skatepark
    Courier Coffee
    Coava Coffee
    Holocene dance party
    The Grotto
    Kettleman's (3 locations) has good bagels and they serve Stumptown, which is pretty good coffee
    24 hr church of elvis
    The carts at 14th and Hawthorne at 2am on a Friday night
  • I have never ridden the tram!

    This too shall pass.
  • The Bluffs
    St. Johns
    Skyline Cafe
    Pittock Mansion
  • i too, have never ridden the street cars. is the old joke that its faster to walk true?
  • They do seem kind of pointless unless you're going from the South waterfront all the way up to somewhere in the NW.
  • I used to take the streetcar from my home on NW Glisan to my job on SW Broadway. It was slightly faster than walking, except when the train was late. I never took it for any other reason.
  • Clyde's Steakhouse
  • has anybody said that gross famous seafood restaurant yet? Jake's or whatever? Jake's Fish Grotto? Everybody's parents love it there
  • also straight up The Grotto, that weird christian nun retreat with the crazy view, what the hell is that place and why have I been there???
  • Bunk Sandwich is legit (for the carnivores).
  • I love the 4 T trail (Trail, Tram, Trolley, Train)!
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