5 Best Places to Enjoy Nature in Portland, OR

Enjoying nature is a large part of the lifestyle in Portland. Residents don’t let a few raindrops keep them from enjoying the great outdoors. The climate is more relaxed than other areas of the Northwest mostly in part to the city’s location in the Willamette Valley near the Columbia River.

Check out these five places to enjoy nature when you move to Portland.

1. Waterfront Park

Located between SW Harrison Street and NE Glisan Street in downtown Portland, Waterfront Park is a favorite spot to visit for those working downtown as well as those wanting a spectacular view of the Willamette River. The area features a beautiful walkway that sits on the western river bank and connects to many other sidewalks around the city.

The park features many memorials as well as plenty of green space for the many concerts and events that take place in the park each year. Visitors will enjoy the beautiful cherry blossoms in the spring as well as views of many area bridges located in downtown Portland.

2. Washington Park

Initially formed in 1871, Washington Park consisted of 40 acres located west of Portland. The park sits in a roughly forested area that was once hard to get to from the heart of downtown. Currently, there are plenty of ways to gain access to the park with multiple public transportation options. Washington Park has also grown to include over 410 acres of space with over 15 miles of hiking trails.

Other key features of the park include The Oregon Zoo, World Forestry Center, Portland Children’s Museum, Hoyt Arboretum, International Rose Test Garden, and the Portland Japanese Garden.

3. Walker Stadium

Home of the Portland Pickles, a minor league baseball team, Walker Stadium is on 92nd Avenue within Lents Park. The area features an excellent opportunity for both young and old alike to come out to the ballpark to catch a game. Walker Stadium is a smaller stadium that is just right for the Portland crowd now although there are talks of Major League Baseball coming to the City of Roses soon.

Beautiful evergreen trees surround the area and offer excellent conditions to get out and enjoy nature as long as the game isn’t rained out by the often soggy weather of the city.

4. Forest Park

Located on the back side of the Pittock Mansion Estate, Forest Park is one of the most extensive urban forests in the country. 5,200 acres of land canvas the area with more than 80 miles of trails available to those looking to spend some quality time outdoors while still being within city limits.

Forest Park offers many native trees and plant species that provide educational opportunities to all those who visit the area. There are guided hikes and events throughout the park as well as plenty of time to see nature at its finest.

5. Multnomah Falls

Although not technically within the city limits, Multnomah Falls is one of the most popular outdoor spots in the area. Just a quick drive East through the Columbia River Gorge will land you at this beautiful and historical waterfall. Over 2.5 million visitors come to see the falls each year making this Oregon’s #1 visited natural attraction. You can view the falls from the base area, but many visitors choose to make the short hike up the bridge that gives a closer view of the magnificent water. A challenging hiking trail is also available that takes visitors to the top of the falls at around 600 feet high. Enjoy the beauty of the falls from the base area or lace up those hiking boots to enjoy a hard but rewarding climb to the top.

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