So a while back now, I had the opportunity to visit Portland, which is the largest city of the state of Oregon. It’s probably not somewhere I would have planned to go, so I jumped at the chance to spend some time there.
There are basically a few important things to know about Portland: the countryside around the city is stunning; there are a significant number of homeless people in the city; the food is absolutely awesome; and it rains, quite a lot.
I’ll start off by saying, don’t let the disadvantaged aspects of Portland put you off visiting. I never felt unsafe walking around on my own, and for the most part a polite ‘no, sorry’ is more than acceptable. Additionally, there are also parts of the city where homelessness is less of an issue, so there’s always that option.
I stayed at The Hoxton, which is a small chain of hotels originating in London. The style is a mix of minimalism, ‘masculine’, and cosy, which surprisingly works really well! There was a small restaurant, a coffee shop, and plenty of space for remote working. The room was fairly small but comfortable, and had a bathroom to die for. I’d recommend for single travellers and couples especially.
The location was great for walking to pretty much everywhere I wanted to go, the most important place being Powell’s, which is a giant bookstore. Obviously. However, we were also about 2 blocks away from a Voodoo Doughnuts, and within easy walking distance of so many restaurants, bars, and of course Pioneer Place for shopping.
The other huge benefit of Portland is the scenery just minutes outside of the city. It truly is like stepping into a different world. For those who have ever seen the Twilight movies, it is basically that: abundant greenery, stunning mountains and cliffs, waterfalls, and of course the rivers. We rented a car for a day, and basically just drove around taking pictures, enjoying the views, and visiting a few of the more famous spots, including Multnomah Falls.
I really enjoyed my visit to Portland – it offers two completely different experiences in one trip, which worked really well. Both the city and the surrounding countryside are really easy to explore, although I would recommend hiring a car for a day or two to really make the most of visiting all of the beautiful sites outside of the city – plus, this meant a stop at the outlets and of course IHOP 😊 I would definitely go back, if only just to spend more time in Powell’s!