Columbia River Gorge
The Columbia River Gorge, located just a short drive (20 miles) from Portland, is the highly popular and iconic canyon system along the Columbia River. This entire area stretches from the Sandy River mouth to the Deschutes River, a massive 292,500 acres of prime postcard-perfect views.
Crown Point is the ultimate viewing point here to many, the best spot to see the rushing Columbia River nestled nicely in the gorge. Not only will you be able to take in the sweeping river and canyon views, but you will also have several opportunities to hike or drive along the river and see the Multnomah, Horsetail, Ponytail, and Bridal Veil Line Falls. That being said, be sure to wear comfortable hiking shoes and bring your camera, you aren’t going to want to miss a single step, or photo opp, along the way.
If you travel along the entire river you will see 40 full miles of diverse local wildlife, scenery, and, believe it or not, wine! That’s right, with every biome type here from rainforest to desert, sea-level to alpine meadows, there are ample opportunities to make really great, and diverse, wines. Head to the town of Hood River to hit a few wineries, take part in some of the best boardsailing outside of Hawaii, and sample local ice cream. Another great spot to try is Rowena Crest, the town with some of the absolute best views, and the oldest bookstore in the state (The Dalles). It will be very easy to see why this landmark has been named a National Scenic Area, the absolute largest in America, as well as 1 of the 7 Wonders of Oregon (1986)!