Posts tagged: portland

Weird & Wonderful Portland: Our Favorite Local Experiences

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By , August 27, 2015 8:35 am

There’s no excuse for having a boring trip to the Pacific Northwest when Portland is on your itinerary. Epitomized by the television show, Portlandia, this Oregon city is known for its bikes, beer, nature, local quirky shops, and eco-friendly vibe. No matter what time of year you visit, there’s always some type of unique event, show, or exhibition going on around town too.

Whether you live in the area or are visiting for the first time, check out some of our favorite local experiences to acquaint yourself with the city. These FunSherpa experiences also make great birthday gifts!

Waterfall Walking Tour

There are an astounding number of waterfalls in the Portland area, which provide wonderful hiking destinations and photo opportunities. Take a waterfall walking tour around the easily-accessible Horsetail Falls and the more secluded Ponytail Falls. This is an easy route that is about two miles long and gives you a taste of forests and natural beauty of Oregon. This experience lasts about 3-4 hours and runs on Monday mornings.

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Columbia River Gorge Tour

To take your hiking skills to the next level, consider taking a Columbia River Gorge waterfall tour! This national park has several beautiful waterfalls, the most famous being the enormous Multnomah Falls. Your tour begins at the Columbia River Highway National Scenic Byway and also passes by Latourell Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and Bonneville Dam. This experience runs daily at 9 am and 2 pm.

Portland City Bike Tour 

People in Portland love their bikes, and there really is no better way to see the city than on two wheels. Some of the sights that you’ll see on a Portland city bike tour include Pioneer Square, the rose garden, Washington Park, Twilliger Viewpoints, and maybe even a stop at Voodoo Donuts! This tour lasts about 3.5 hours and really gives you a sense of what the city is all about.

Pub Bike Tour

Portland is into craft beer in a big way, and the city has more breweries per capita than any other city in America! On a pub bike tour, you’ll get to sample some of the city’s best beers while learning about the brewing process and local breweries. The three breweries on this route are near each other and each have something unique to offer. This experience operates year-around and lasts about two hours.

Oregon 3 Day Coastal Tour

But to really experience the great state of Oregon, you’ll need to venture outside the city limits and explore the beautiful Oregon coastline. Our Oregon 3 Day Coastal Tour takes you on a wine tasting, to an aviation museum, outlet shopping, culinary school, and much more. You’ll get to spend time in the quaint coastal cities, like Newport, Lincoln City, and Depot Bay, while soaking up the beautiful ocean scenery.

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Photo credit: Alyssa L. Ochs

Fishing Lessons

Another great way to take advantage of Portland’s coastal location is by taking fishing lessons from a pro. On an 8-hour guided fishing lesson trip, you’ll learn how to set your rod, choose baits and lures, and try different spots in the river to find fish. Your experienced and friendly guide will capture photos of your fishing experience and even gut your catch and bag it for transport home!

Beyond the Weird Stereotypes: This is the Real Portland

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By , November 20, 2013 6:45 pm

The city of Portland has developed a long-running reputation for its progressive politics, environmental activists, starving artists, bike enthusiasts, and vegan diners. These liberal and artsy stereotypes were further solidified with the release of the Independent Film Channel’s 2011 satirical sketch comedy series, “Portlandia.”

Whether you’ve been a loyal local for years or if you’re a total Portland newbie, there’s always something new to see and do around town. Now’s the time to shake your preconceived notions about the city and organized tour groups. At FunSherpa, we’re connected to all the hottest tours to help you discover Portland for the first time and continue rediscovering everything you love about the city. Here are a few of the Portland tours that we’re excited about right now:

Bike Tours

Bikes are a huge part of Portland’s culture, so it should come as no surprise that biking is one of the best ways to experience the city. Hit the highlights of the city and you breeze past historic Old Town, the Waterfront Esplanade, Green Park Block, the Pearl District, and more. Most bike tours last a couple hours and ride along exquisitely-maintained bike paths with scenic skyline vistas.

portland bike

Food Tours

Portland is a foodie’s paradise! Sample the city’s finest food and drinks, as you take a leisurely 8 to 10 block stroll around the city. Food tours generally last 3 ½ to 4 hours, and include samples of everything from martinis to chocolate truffles and olive oil. Get the insider’s scoop about local events, cultural traditions, and historical anecdotes from your tour guide along the way.

Underground Tours

Uncover the mystery and scandal for yourself inside Portland’s Shanghai Tunnels. Portland Underground tours take you below the streets to walk the unique network of passages that once aided slave trade, prohibition liquor trades, and illegal labor schemes. These 1 ½ hour tours are run by the experienced cascade Geographical Society and provide a unique glimpse into Portland’s dark and checkered history.

Waterfall Tours

Head over to the Horsetail Falls trail head to experience some of Portland’s most scenic natural beauty. Waterfall tours are usually scheduled for 3-4 hours on Monday mornings, and they follow an easy two-mile round-trip hike. You’ll begin your adventure inside the lush, green forest and make your way to the secluded Ponytail Falls, where you can walk behind the waterfall and feel the refreshing mist on your skin.

ponytail falls

If you have a little more time, interest, and cash on hand, you should definitely check out our 7-day Porltand Tour Experience as well. Venture outside the city limits and come face-to-face with the Cascade Mountains, Mt. Hood, Multnomah Falls, the Columbia River Gorge, and the Lewis and Clark National Scenic Area. You won’t just veer off the beaten path, you’ll uncover everything you never knew you didn’t know about the Pacific Northwest! So open your mind, try something new, and experience what Portland is truly all about.

Photo credit: Paul Ottaviano, Terry Chay via Flickr

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