Oregon/Washington Travel Guide

My boyfriend Justin and I just got back from a wonderful trip to Vancouver and Portland a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to share with you some of the places we visited. 

This was my second time visiting since one of my best friends moved there and it was only for a short amount of time. She lives in downtown Vancouver which is only about 10 miles from Portland so you get the best of both world. 

Especially since there is no tax in Oregon, that makes it a plus for sure! Portland reminds me of San Francisco a little bit, and then downtown Vancouver is very relaxing and beautiful. You get to see beautiful views of Mount Hood and Mount Shasta as well as take in the nice and cool weather. I put together a small travel guide of ten places we went while we were on our trip. Hope you enjoy!

1. Sizzle Pie – 926 W. Burnside St. Portland, Oregon 97214
We randomly discovered this gem while walking to the book store. We were hungry and decided to stop in for a slice of pizza. The outside decor is also what really brought us in. This local chain of hip pizzerias is known for their creative pies featuring gourmet toppings, thin crust, vegan dishes, many beers, and loud music.

2. Multanomah Falls – Portland, Oregon
Before our trip I was browsing the internet looking for places to hike to with some pretty views and this is the first place that popped up. It’s a two-tiered waterfall (which happens to be the tallest in Oregon) on the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge, located East of Troutdale, between Corbett and Dodson, along the Historic Columbia River Highway. Benson Bridge recognizes as a centerpiece of history built in 1914, and is probably the most photographed piece of architecture in Oregon.

3. Powell’s City of Books – 1005 W. Burnside Street Portland, Oregon 97209
My best friend Heather and her husband Chris absolutely love books so they decided to show us this historic bookstore. It was so big that, lets just say it’s the department stores of all bookstores and probably the biggest one I’ve ever been into. It was a little overwhelming with the amount of people and tourists but it was a great site to experience.  It’s the largest independent chain of bookstores in the world, and when you visit the flagship store in Portland, you for sure need a map to navigate through the multi-level building which takes up an entire city block.

4. Voodoo Doughnut – 22 SW 3rd Avenue Portland, Oregon 97204
These world famous doughnut shops are based in Portland are are known for their unusual doughnuts, eclectic decor, and iconic pink boxes featuring the company logo and illustrations of voodoo priests. I first saw one of their doughnut shops featured on the Food Network channel and have always wanted to visit ever since. Don’t get me wrong there is nothing better than a hot glazed Krispy Kreme doughnut right off the press, but Voodoo’s maple bacon bar might just beat that.

5. Guardian Games – 345 SE Taylor Street Portland, Oregon 97214
I never knew gaming stores like this even existed. One word: NERD. When you walk into the doors of Guardian Games it is a whole new world, that is literally what it feels like. It’s a large gaming store that offers a variety of tabletop, board, video, and role-playing games.They even have tables set up in the middle and back part of the store for you to play there without even leaving. Any “game” you’d ever want is probably located in this store.

6. Black Rock Coffee Bar – 7710 NE 5th Avenue Ste 122 Vancouver, Washington
This quaint coffee shop is not only cute, but has some of the best tasting coffee I’ve ever had. I love their blended drinks (caramel blondie) and I tasted their Fall pumpkin spice latte and yes, it is much better than Starbucks.. shocking right?!

7. Angelina’s Pizzeria & Cafe – 300 S. Roosevelt Drive Suite 8 Seaside, Oregon 97138
This gem is a well kept secret, that serves some pretty amazing pizza. The location is right near the beach so you can still get a wiff of that nice sea salt air while you munch on some NY style pies.They serves other Italian dishes such as calzones, with gourmet toppings. YUM!

8. Clackamas Shopping Mall – 12000 SE 82nd Avenue Happy Valley, Oregon 97086
Although this mall has a Happy Valley mailing address, this two-level mall is located in the Clackamas area and has about 185 stores and services. If you’re looking to visit a mall close to the Portland area, this is forsure the one you want to stop at. There is also a Dave and Buster’s right next door so you can get some dinner and play games after a long day of shopping.

9. Nike Factory Outlet Store – 1111 N. Roosevelt Drive Suite 400 Seaside, Oregon 97138
The closest Nike outlet to my house is about 45 minutes away (in Tulare) and it is literally not even worth going to. You could buy a pair of Nike shoes from Kohls and a pair of Nike yoga pants at Nordstrom Rack cheaper than what you could purchase them for at the Tulare Nike Outlet.

10. Bridge of the Gods
This is a steel truss bridge that spans the Columbia River between Cascade Locks, Oregon and Washington State near North Bonneville. It’s only about 40 miles east of Portland. The Pacific Crest Trail crosses this bridge and has also been featured in the movie Wild starring Reese Witherspoon, I really wanted to visit this bridge after seeing it in the film. The pictures made it seem like it was beautiful and peaceful, and it was just that, and so much more in person.

These ten places listed above were just some of the few that we visited that were a little more popular. We also drive through the cute town of Astoria and spent some good quality time in downtown Vancouver as well as hung out by the Columbia River and walked along the trail. If you’ve never been to the city of Portland or even Vancouver, you should add it to your bucket list, because it is a really beautiful sight to see as well as an affordable place to vacation.

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