Oregon is as rich in scenery as it is in activities. You can explore its beautiful coastline, volcanic mountains, crystal-clear lakes and deserts that stretch as far as the eye can see. If you’re in search of world-class Pinot Gris, world-class food and craft beers, epic adventures in biking, kayaking, windsurfing or any other activity, look no further.
The Seven Wonders of Oregon
Oregon’s wide open spaces
The great thing about the great outdoors in Oregon is that you won’t have enough of a life to discover them all. Hike along the rugged coastline or through the Willamette National Forest. Camp in the desert near Steens Mountain or explore the snow-capped Wallowa Mountains (also known as ‘Little Switzerland’). Rent an RV from Cruise America and settle on the volcanic foothills of Mount Hood, in the beautiful Umpqua National Forest or by a mountain lake in the Deschutes National Forest. Oregon’s state parks offer beautiful picnic sites, yurts, tepees, rustic cottages and RV rentals on their websites.
In Oregon, gourmet artisans are at the forefront of trends and flavors. The state is home to craft breweries, micro-distilleries and 17 wineries, and offers sea salt, ice cream, cheese and other artisanal products. We’re not the only ones who enjoy the flavors of Oregon. The New York Times Magazine calls Oregon a “culinary utopia in constant expansion. Oregon’s chefs, restaurants and producers are featured in national and international publications, and it’s not uncommon to meet these culinary artisans in person. Don’t miss annual gastronomic events such as the Oregon Truffle Festival in January, the Oregon Cheese Festival in March and Feast Portland, an international culinary celebration in September.
Unlike most U.S. states, there is no tax on sales in Oregon, which will save you 5-10% on all your purchases. Find your favorite brands at retailers like Nordstrom, Macy’s, H&M and Apple, or visit “Made in Oregon” stores for exclusive Oregon products and gifts. Shop for brands such as Adidas, Coach, Nike and Gap at outlet stores in Troutdale, Woodburn, Seaside, Lincoln City, Bend and Phoenix. Find unique pieces in Portland’s Pearl District, Nob Hill and Hawthorne neighborhoods, as well as in Bend, Hood River and coastal Oregon.
The problem with golf in Oregon is that you have to choose from nearly 200 public courses. Practice your swing in the midst of spectacular sand dunes overlooking the Pacific Ocean, play in the heart of a sun-drenched wine country or take in the mountain scenery from one of the 30 courses in Central Oregon’s High Desert. Don’t miss the Bandon Dunes, voted Best Golf Course by Golf Digest and GOLF Magazine, and Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club, where Tiger Woods won the U.S. Amateur Championship three times in a row in his youth.
Native American Heritage
While Europeans settled in Oregon as recently as 200 years ago, Native Americans have inhabited the area for thousands of years. Learn about the history of Native Americans past and present in Oregon’s information centers and museums. Visit the Tamástslikt Cultural Institute in Pendleton to learn more about the Cayuse, Umatilla and Walla Walla Indian tribes. Exhibits and events there will introduce you to the traditional songs and dances, art, language, clothing, religion and cuisine of these tribes. The Confederate Tribes of Warm Springs share their heritage at the Museum at Warm Springs. The museum houses one of the finest national collections of Native American artifacts on the Plateau and provides an opportunity for tribal members to showcase their art, history and culture.