This 24.5-mile (39.5 kilometer) trail leads you through the city. Starting at the World Forestry Center, the trail strings together some of Portland's best nature attractions, Hoyt Arboretum, the Audubon Society and Forest Park. The terrain depends on what portion of the trail you tackle, from the very hilly area of Washington Park to the more gradual ten northern-most miles of the trail. Maps are available at the trail head. For outdoor lovers, a hike along these trail comes most recommended, as you are sure to capture scenic vistas along with occasional encounters of exotic plants and birds.
An oasis of greenery in the scenic environs of Northwest Portland, this municipal park's topography is defined by the slopes and opaque old-growth forests that are sustained by the Tualatin Mountains. A large establishment as far as urban parks go, these protected lands are spread over 5,100 acres (2,064 hectares) that are dotted with relatively-even pathways and trails for hiking and bicycling, which make virtually every nook and corner of the park easily-accessible. A landscape of diverse and complex ecosystems, these forests are home to the hairy woodpecker, Pacific jumping mouse, orange-crowned warbler, northern pygmy-owl among many others. A paradise for plant lovers, the park grounds are bejeweled with exotic Hooker's fairy bells, evergreen violets and English ivy.
Portland is called the "Rose City" for a reason. These public gardens were established in 1917 and set above the cityscape of Downtown Portland. They are the oldest official public rose gardens in the United States and the only place in North America that can officially issue recognized awards for hybrid roses grown around the world. The best time of the year for viewing is during the summer, when the fragrant blooms begin to appear and continue until frost.
Resembling a community garden you would find in Suzhou, Portland's sister city, Lan Su Chinese Garden is a beautiful green space near the bank of the Willamette River. The garden is complete with winding pathways, gorgeous plants, a lovely tea-house and a gift store. You can take a tour to get insider knowledge of the garden and try to come during one of their many interesting events, including exhibitions and lectures. This place is a must-visit for its unique beauty. You can even hire this garden for private events such as weddings and receptions.
The Oregon Zoo houses animals from all parts of the world. Spread over 64 acres of land, there's always something to see. Here one can observe animals in their natural habitats, including elephants, bears, penguins and monkeys. Hop aboard the train for a zoo tour or rent a special stroller wagon for the kids. After a busy day of animal watching, enjoy a waffle ice cream cone from the snack bar, dine at the on site cafe or enjoy a picnic lunch on the lawn.
Portland Japanese Garden includes waterfalls, koi filled ponds, a wisteria arbor and even a tea-house that was built in Japan with ancient construction techniques. It features five unique gardens. The Strolling Pond contains the five-tiered stone pagoda lantern given to Portland in 1963 by Sapporo, Portland's sister city in Japan. Many events are observed in the gardens, including Children's Day, the Tanabata Star Festival and the Obon Spirit Festival. Garden curators also offer classes in Japanese culture and gardening techniques.
Housed in the Alpenrose Dairy property, the Alpenrose Velodrome is one of the most popular sports venues in Portland. This cycling track was constructed in 1967 and was initially designed for the National Cycling Championship in the 1960s. The track has been host to several national and international sporting events and sees cyclers from all over the world. Besides, it is one of the steepest track in the United States and is inclined at around 42 to 43 degrees which makes it more challenging. You can be a member of OBRA if you wish to use these challenging tracks for practicing your skills. Alpenrose Velodrome is popular venue for a plethora of events and can seat more than 500 people.
One of the oldest working dairies in the Oregon, this spot is a fun tour for families. There is a lot to see including cows, old cars, a pond with ducks and a museum with old toys and machines, some of which date back to the 1800s. Pony rides and games for kids are offered from June through August. A 15-minute drive from Portland, it is an interesting look at one of the area's biggest industries of yesterday. There is no admission fee.
With just about everything you could want or need in a park, this 90-acre (36.42 hectares) Portland gem aims to please. Located in the wooded, hilly Multnomah Village area, Gabriel Park has a long list of amenities: hiking trails, nature area, baseball/softball and soccer fields, tennis and basketball courts, picnic tables and facilities, a playground, rest rooms, and a community garden. Besides, there's plenty of space to just lie back and stare at the sky.
The lush green and surrounding woods make this park look like a golf course without the golf. Located in the West Hills, Albert Kelly Park is a nice open space enhanced by mountain views and unencumbered by concrete or other man-made things. Nature is in its full glory here. You will find all kinds of lush, Northwest plants and tree life—maples, birches, cedars and more. There is a playground, a soccer field and space for picnics.
Set amid a scenic location of sloping, forested hills, Washington Park has a number of notable attractions, including the International Rose Test Garden, Hoyt Arboretum, Japanese Gardens and the Oregon Zoo. Plenty of different spots across the park offer sun, shade, and shelter from the rain, and views of the city. A brimming hive of activities like tennis, hiking and archery, this park is a brilliant, sprawling carpet of eternal and abundant natural beauty. A range of winding trails slice through acres of wild forests at this park, while motley jubilant fountains, plazas and memorials accentuate it further. An evocative canvas of vibrant wilderness, this sprawling park is a breathtaking nexus of nature, botany and recreation, being rather unsurprisingly, one of Portland's most beautiful symbols.