Things to Do in Downtown Portland

Things to Do in Downtown Portland
Photo Credit walking image by astoria from

The downtown area of Portland, Oregon, is a virtual playground for active folks looking for a fun time. Offering a variety of activities, downtown Portland caters to those looking to enrich themselves through both culture, food and physical activity.

Jet Boat Rides

Land lovers and water enthusiasts alike are able to cruise on the water in a high-speed jet boat. Take a tour of Portland's bridges on the Williamette River, travel to the historic Astoria area or view the Columbia River Gorge national scenic area all while aboard a comfortable jet boat. Rides are offered from June to September and guests must be at least 40 inches tall.

Portland Art Museum

Downtown Portland visitors can take in a cultural experience by visiting the Portland Art Museum. Featuring six stories of modern art and special exhibitions, this historical site is the oldest museum in the Northwest. Guests can tour the museum's outdoor sculpture court, along with the building's historical interiors. Located in the heart of Portland's downtown cultural district, the Portland Art Museum is internationally renown for its art experiences.

Walking Tours

Combine exercise and sight-seeing by taking a walking tour. A variety of different tours are offered that focus on different areas of interest. For instance, walking tours of downtown Portland offer guests up close and personal views of the city's architecture, bridges and fountains. Tour guides will offer insights and facts about the city, including the inside story of the city's 11 bridges. Guests can learn about the city's skateboard lane, weather machine, bronze drinking fountains and the actual penny that was flipped to determine the city's name.

Pioneer Courtyard Square

Known as Portland's living room, Pioneer Courtyard Square is an outdoor venue that features music and cultural festivals. Over 26,000 people pass by the square each day making it Portland's most visited site. The square is easily accessed by the city's transportation system and is within walking distance of many of Portland's attractions. Interested guests can check the Pioneer Courtyard Square calendar for the venue's upcoming events, which typically feature bands, flower festivals and a farmer's market.

Dining Boat

For a special meal experience, dine on the water aboard a dining boat. Guests have access to a full-service bar, live entertainment and fresh cuisine when dining on this ship. Dining boats typically offer daily lunch and dinner cruises and allows guests to see exciting views of Portland's water and sky lines.


Article reviewed by JPC Last updated on: Dec 7, 2010

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