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About Portland, OR


About Portland - "The City of Roses"


To get a sense of what Portland, OR is all about, think coffee, bicycles, hiking, and environmentally friendliness.

Coffee is a lifestyle in Portland, with no shortage of cozy coffee shops all around town. There are literally over 2,500 coffee shops throughout the Portland metro area. That's one coffee shop for every 777 adults!

So what do people do with all of this caffeine? Bike and hike, of course! Portland was ranked as the #1 most bicycle-friendly city in the U.S. by Bicycling Magazine. There are over 180 miles of bike lanes throughout town, making it one of the preferred methods of transportation.

But there are a lot of other options to get around town if biking isn't your thing. Public transportation in Portland is quite convenient. It ranks well compared to other cities its size and is well-positioned for future growth.

While biking and public transportation are more efficient ways to get around town, there are many scenic hikes to take in outside of town. It doesn't take long to get to many of the countless hiking trails - many are within a 30-45 minute drive.

There are plenty of other outdoor options in Portland as well. For waterfalls, explore the Columbia River Gorge. For skiing, take to the slopes on Mount Hood mountain. Or head to the coast for some surfing.

Some might complain that it rains too much to take in these activities on a regular basis, but the truth is, it rains more in many other cities across the U.S. The state of Oregon doesn't even rank in the top 10 states for annual rainfall. Of course, it doesn't hurt to carry an umbrella with you just in case. And a rainy day always makes for a good excuse to do some shopping, where you can take advantage of the non-existent sales tax. Yep, that's right. There is no sales tax in Oregon, so feel free to pocket the extra savings, or splurge that much more.

Portland is divided into four quadrants. The Willamette River runs north/south through town, dividing it into east/west portions. There are 11 bridges that span the river, offering some spectacular views of the city skyline and landscape. Many are walkable and bikable. The north and south sections of the city are divided by Burnside St. Each quadrant of town has its own identity. The Northeast and Southwest quadrants are the most artsy, and the Southeast and Northwest quadrants are more known for the cute shopping boutiques and nightlife.

Alberta St. in the NE quadrant hosts an art fair on the last Thursday of each month where local artists offer up their works for sale in kiosks and booths. It's a good opportunity to shop, drink, and people watch.

Powell's City of Books is located on the west side of town. Occupying an entire city block, it's hard to miss, and one of the city gems. The bookstore holds over a million books in inventory and bills itself as the largest bookstore in the world!

Another thing that Portland is known for... Roses. The climate is perfect for growing roses in Portland, and the city culture reflects it. There's the annual Rose Festival, the International Rose Test Garden, "The Rose Garden" stadium, and even Portland's female professional soccer team is named the Thorns.

But the Portland climate is perfect for growing more than just roses. In the spring and summer, you can venture out of town to some of Willamette Valley's historic towns to find a varied selection of food and drinks at the various farmers markets, roadside stands, and wineries. And even in the winter, when it's not so great for growing things, you can binge on fresh Dungeness crab on the cheap since they're caught right off the coast.

Although the coast offers up more than just crab. With over 363 miles of Oregon coastline, you can take some amazing road trips to explore the rocky cliffs and wooded forests. Highway 101 is the most convenient path down the coast, and runs all the way to southern California.

Despite all the caffeine, you'll find life a little slower and more relaxed in Portland. People are more easy-going and less stressed. Maybe it's the result of the serene environment outside of the city that offers up so much to the people within it that creates this calm culture. And residents of Portland show their appreciation for all the natural wonders of Oregon by taking care of it. Portland is consistently ranked as one of the most environmentally green cities in the world due to its focus on recycling, energy efficiency, and renewable energy sources.


Photos of Portland:


Portland, OR
Portland, OR
Aerial
Aerial
City Center
City Center
Downtown
Downtown
City Lights
City Lights
Skyline
Skyline


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