Who knew Oregon was 1/2 desert and 1/2 lush mountainous land?! We recently traveled to the west coast for my brother-in-law’s wedding and decided to make a week long trip out of it. Here are a few of my favorite things we did and photos!
P.S. This was probably less than 10% of Oregon. There were so many other places we wanted to go but didn’t get the time.
The main purpose of our trip was to witness the marriage of my beautiful (now) sister-in-law and brother-in-law. A lot of the places we visited were based on their wedding events, which was completely fine with us because we were introduced to amazing sights.
- Smith Rock
The wedding place and a spectacular place to hike, bike, and sight see. I didn’t climb the Rock because a steep hike for a pregnant woman isn’t advised. Tim climbed and said it was one of the best climbs he’s ever done!
Check out all of the adorable shops on the main drag. It’s pricy in Bend, so budget well for shopping.
3. McMenamins Old St. Francis School
If you’re looking for great food and endless hings to do, McMenamin’s is a place you’ll want to visit. Every McMenamin’s in the state of Oregon is a restore piece of history. In Bend, it’s the old St. Francis private school and has been refurbished very tastefully. We didn’t get a chance to visit the Greek Pool, but I can assure you, the next time we visit Bend it will be at the top of our list.
4. Pilot Butte
Or, as my husband would like to say, “Pilot Butt”… You can drive to the top or hike to the top of this extinct volcano. On a clear day you’ll see the most spectacular mountain views. It won’t take a long time if you drive, but it’s worth it for the view.
Deschutes River cuts right through the center of Bend. The river has a spectacular flow coming from the melting snow caps in the summer, and is the main source of water for the surrounding areas. Crisp, cold water. It’s fantastic. Try some sun crisping, visiting any one of the many parks along the river, or some local and affordable water activities.
After visiting with family and wedding festivities in Bend, we traveled to Seaside to try and catch a sunset on the west coast. This has been a long time bucket list item of mine. Surprisingly – We caught an amazing sunset and I’ve got another checkmark on my bucket list (flying first class, travel by train cross country, and hopping on the next flight out, remain on the list – for now.).
I won’t go into specifics of Seaside, their season doesn’t technically start until mid-June so it was a quiet town while we were there. The Seaside Aquarium, shopping, and restaurants are great places to spend some time. My favorite part of the two days was going to the community sports area where they had an indoor, heated pool. During their open swim time, the large pool accommodated the older kids with a slide, rope, and the freedom to jump in as much as they wanted. The smaller and pleasantly warmer pool, accommodated parents with 4 feet deep water and a calm environment for smaller children.
Jack’s first pool experience was a success and we haven’t been able to keep him out of a pool since.
Finally, we ended up in Portland again. We arrived early enough to see the Portland Zoo. A great place to take the kids. Our favorite part of Portland were the food trucks! Visit 9th and Washington. There you’ll find over 15 different food trucks lined up for the lunch rush.
The city is one of the cleanest I’ve ever seen (with the exception of Horgen, Switzerland) and is known for it’s amazing restaurants. I’m fairly certain anywhere you go in Portland will be wonderful.