There were so many things I enjoyed about my visit to Portland earlier this summer… The laid-back, easy feel of the city along with the great, inexpensive food options lured me in hook, line, and sinker. After 5 days, I wasn’t ready to leave, and I resolved to return to Portland. Hopefully, again and again.
The one thing that I still think about after having returned home was an amazing walk I took, twice. Some might call it a hike, but it’s not particularly strenuous.
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First, we took the MAX train to the Zoo in Washington Park and from there followed the signs to the Hoyt Arboretum. As you embark on the path through the woods, away from the Arboretum, it is truly possible to feel a million miles away from the city, surrounded only by old growth Douglas Fir trees and moss covered stones. The temperature drops in the midst the trees and with it went any residual stress I was still carrying around.
As you can see above, about half of the walk is through the park, past the Japanese Garden and the International Rose Test Garden, but the other half is through the restaurants and boutiques of northwest Portland.
The best thing about this walk is how you spill out into the thick of the city after walking for an hour or so alone in the trees. The views are beautiful as you walk out through the park. I was so enthralled that I only took the one picture above. If you look closely, you can see the outline of the city in the center background.
After working up an appetite, we shuffled through the streets of northwest Portland, ate lunch, and eventually made our way to Stumptown Coffee Roasters, a Portland institution, in the ACE Hotel for a cold brew iced coffee. It seemed a highly appropriate way to end our afternoon wandering and to caffeinate before seeking out the rest of what Portland has to offer.
Here’s a link to the walking directions, if you’d like to retrace my steps yourself.
Bookmark for Future Use: Best U.S. Hiking Cities, Easy Urban Escapes by National Geographic – “With wild hikes within an hour, these 15 cities have some of the best outdoor access in urban America—and the only prerequisite for exploring is a pair of sneakers. Plus, find out where to eat and drink like a local afterward.” Including Portland, SF, NYC, Chicago, and eleven others…