Portland, Oregon Nature & adventure

Our most recommended Portland, Oregon Nature & adventure

From Portland: Columbia Gorge Waterfalls Tour

1. From Portland: Columbia Gorge Waterfalls Tour

Discover the scenic beauty of the Columbia River Gorge on a small group tour with an expert guide in a luxury passenger van. Explore Columbia River National Scenic Area stopping at several picturesque waterfalls typical of the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Depart from downtown Portland and drive towards Troutdale, known as the Gateway to the Gorge. Enjoy the journey along the Historic Columbia River Highway, the first planned scenic roadway in the United States. Arrive at Crown Point Vista House, an overlook that sits high above the Columbia River. From there, continue along the historic highway deep into the Columbia River National Scenic Area. Arrive at the first waterfall of the day, the dramatic Latourell Falls, which plunges 249 feet over a massive wall of columnar basalt.  Proceed next to the grand Multnomah Falls, which plummets to the ground from 620 feet in two major steps. Explore the Multnomah Falls Historic Lodge and stand on the easily accessible viewing platform that offers a full view of the Benson Bridge and cascading falls beyond. Next, visit the Bonneville Fish Hatchery and take a short walking tour of an impressive hatchery and sturgeon viewing center. You will also meet the local celebrity: “Herman” the sturgeon. Afterward, relax on the journey back to Portland via the Columbia River scenic route.

Portland: Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Afternoon Tour

2. Portland: Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Afternoon Tour

Explore the beauty of these unique canyon walls and rock formations, encountering breathtaking waterfalls and awe-inspiring visas that make the Columbia River National Scenic Area one of the Seven Wonders of Oregon. Your enthusiastic guides will introduce you to the most amazing places in the gorge, while providing a comprehensive narrative of this spectacular landscape and its transformative history. Your adventure will take place along the Historic Columbia River National Scenic Byway, where some of the locations you may stop include the Portland Women’s Forum, the Crown Point Vista House, Latourell Falls, Multnomah Falls, and Shepperd’s Dell.

Portland: Mount Hood Wine and Waterfalls Full-Day Tour

3. Portland: Mount Hood Wine and Waterfalls Full-Day Tour

Enjoy a full-day tour of the beautiful landscapes of the wine-growing regions near Portland. Discover breathtaking sights like the Columbia Gorge and Multnomah Falls. Enjoy a mouth-watering lunch and a winetasting experience at a local winery.  Be picked at your accommodation in Portland and relax in comfort aboard a Mercedes Sprinter van as you travel through the verdant landscape of the Willamette Valley which is known for its hazelnuts, berries, evergreen trees, and Pinot Noir wine. Ride into the foothills of the western Cascades and ascend to the tree line on Mount Hood, the highest peak in Oregon. Spend an hour at the historic Timberline Lodge, built by local artisans during the Great Depression.  Explore the interpretive displays, go hiking, or play in the snow, before heading thorugh the Hood River Valley to a picturesque winery. Eat a farm-to-table lunch while enjoying a wine tasting at a boutique vineyard with a view of Mount Hood.  Learn about wine production in the region and visit 1 other winery in the Columbia Gorge or Columbia Valley areas. Travel through the Columbia Gorge and admire the towering basalt cliffs, before stopping for half and hour at Multnomah Falls. Have time to walk up to the Benson Bridge, visit the interpretive center, or peruse the gift shop. Afterward, head back to Portland to be dropped off at your hotel.

Portland: Columbia River Gorge 3-Hour Small Group Tour

4. Portland: Columbia River Gorge 3-Hour Small Group Tour

Enjoy a half-day guided tour to discover the breathtaking landscape of the western Columbia Gorge. After pickup at your accommodation, travel down Waterfall Alley, known for having the highest density of hanging waterfalls in the world during the winter and spring. Stop at a viewpoint where you'll get a spectacular vista of the western Gorge, with the Vista House in the foreground.  You'll have 15 minutes to spend inside the Vista House, the fanciest rest stop in the world. It was built in 1918, and provides interpretive displays and sublime views. Be careful⁠⁠—sometimes the wind gusts to 160 km/h (100 mph). Stop and do a short and easy hike at a cathedral waterfall. You'll feel as if you're in a fairy tale as you walk through rainforest and discover a magnificent rock formation harboring an elegant waterfall and fluorescent-yellow lichen. As you walk through the rainforest, your guide will highlight some of the plants and animals you'll see along the way. As you drive the Historic Columbia River Highway Scenic Byway, inspired by the Axenstrasse in the Swiss Alps, admire the towering basalt cliffs as you make additional waterfall stops. Explore the tallest waterfall in Oregon during a 30-minute stop at Multnomah Falls, where you can walk up to the Benson Bridge, visit the interpretive center, or peruse the gift shop. Afterwards, you’ll head back to Portland to be dropped off at your hotel.

Portland: Mt. Hood Day Tour

5. Portland: Mt. Hood Day Tour

Your 8.5-hour trip begins early with a hotel pickup from downtown Portland. Embark on an exhilarating morning drive through the Columbia River Gorge. Catch spectacular views of the Cascade Mountains that flank the river and glimpse a waterfall or two. Along the forested highway, visit Oregon’s famous waterfall Multnomah Falls. Join your guide and fellow visitors on Benson Bridge and snap a picture of the 611-foot-tall cascade of water as it crashes below. Next, continue to Hood River, a picturesque valley town renowned as a prime destination for wind sports. Watch kiteboarders and windsurfers skate across the water as you learn about Hood River’s rich environmental and cultural history.Then take some free time for lunch, shopping or wine-tasting (if whimsy strikes you!). Then visit Rowena Crest which has spectacular views of the Columbia River Gorge. The final stop on your guided tour is the glorious Mount Hood, Oregon’s tallest peak at 11,249 feet (3,429 meters) and Timberline Lodge. Take a mountain walk or a self-guided visit through the renovated lodge that was once the setting for the classic film The Shining. Your day concludes back in Portland by early evening.

Bend: Half-Day Cascade Lakes Kayak Tour

6. Bend: Half-Day Cascade Lakes Kayak Tour

Experience a tandem kayak lake tour and enjoy the best mountainous views in Central Oregon. Meet your local guide in the heart of Bend, Oregon. Along with the rest of your group, make your way out of town and up into the Cascade mountain lakes where your kayaking adventure begins. Receive a lesson on kayaking safety measures before climbing into your tandem sit-on-top kayak.  Navigate your way through little-known caves, bays, and wetlands with the help of your naturalist guide. Keep a look out for the otters, mink, osprey and eagles that inhabit this area, and bring a camera for the best mountain views in Central Oregon. After around 2 hours of paddling and admiring your surroundings, you'll have time for a quick dip in the lakes to cool off. Prior to leaving, take in the views of mountains Three Sisters, Broken Top, and Paulina Peak. You’ll then head back to your kayaking starting point and be driven back to Bend.

From Portland: Northern Oregon Coast Day Trip

7. From Portland: Northern Oregon Coast Day Trip

Walk the beaches and an old growth forest along the Oregon Coast, and discover technological relics as you drive the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway with a small group led by an interpretive guide. This day trip is a customized tour along a rugged section of Oregon's northern coast. You’ll travel northwest of Portland, as your guide takes you through the farmland of Tualatin Valley, a sub-valley of Willamette, one of the richest valleys in the world, known for its hazelnuts, berries, Christmas trees, and Pinot Noir.  You'll have the option of making history-related stops near the town of Tillamook or spending time in Cannon Beach to check out Haystack Rock, boutique shops, restaurants, cafes, and art galleries.

Portland: Columbia Gorge and Bigfoot Jetboat Adventure

8. Portland: Columbia Gorge and Bigfoot Jetboat Adventure

Discover the landmarks for which the Northwest is famous, while listening to live and recorded narration about the history of the Columbia Gorge and Bigfoot's presence in the Northwest. Depending on what type of passenger you are on this sightseeing tour, the sights themselves aren't necessarily the main attraction. Sure, the Bigfoot Explorer buzzes you past the Gorge's greatest hits, like Multnomah Falls, and Beacon Rock, but the objective isn't just to admire the landscape. It's to hunt for the elusive man-ape along a corridor that's historically been rife with sightings. This fun and informative, fully-narrated cruise will have you at the edge of your seat as you learn about Portland, the Columbia Gorge, and most importantly, Bigfoot.

From Portland: Multnomah Falls & Columbia River Gorge Tour

9. From Portland: Multnomah Falls & Columbia River Gorge Tour

Escape the hustle and bustle of central Portland for the morning on a half-day coach tour of the Columbia River Gorge. Experience the natural beauty of the Rose City’s most scenic area. Follow the route of the Lewis and Clark expedition, more than 200 years after the famous explorers. View the gorge from Vista House at Crown Point, and marvel at the world famous Multnomah Falls. Depart Portland at 08:30 AM, enjoying the downtown sights as you leave the city via one of its many bridges. Once out of the metropolitan area, drive the historic Columbia River Highway, enjoying panoramic views hundreds of feet above the river at Crown Point. Descend through the famous highway loops to pristine Latourell Falls. Continue past Wahkeena Falls to Oregon’s most famous natural attraction — Multnomah Falls and Lodge. See the Oneonta Gorge and Horsetail Falls. Return to Portland along the river level route of the Lewis and Clark expedition, taking in panoramic views of Beacon Rock, Cape Horn, and Rooster Rock along the way.

Bend: Half-Day Brews & Views Canoe Tour on the Cascade Lakes

10. Bend: Half-Day Brews & Views Canoe Tour on the Cascade Lakes

Take in the stunning views of the Cascades Lakes while sampling some of Oregon’s most celebrated artisanal beverages. After getting all geared up, you’ll head off towards the lake with your naturalist guide and get to paddling through the pristine mountain waters. Gaze out across the crystal-clear lake, situated on the foot of snow-capped peaks. All the while, taste delicious local craft beers while learning about their production. Your guide will highlight the hidden spots on these beautiful lakes that might not initially meet the eye. You will spend over 2 hours on the water exploring areas accessible exclusively by boat, including fingers, coves, bays, and wetlands created by ancient volcanic activity and erosion. You can even pop into the lake for a dip if you get too toasty. After your excursion, you’ll be transferred back to the meeting point in Bend, having soaked up some of Oregon’s foremost natural beauty.

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Frequently asked questions about Portland, Oregon

What top attractions are a must-see in Portland, Oregon?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Portland, Oregon?

The best day trips and excursions from Portland, Oregon are:

Multnomah Falls

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Other Sightseeing Options in Portland, Oregon

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What people are saying about Portland, Oregon

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 267 reviews

Our guide I think his name was Michael was very informative and knew a lot about the history of the local area. He kept the tour very interesting and was helpful answering questions I had . He even dropped us off at our Hotel instead of the pick up point . I really appreciated that so we didn’t have to do the 20 minute walk back .

This tour is a must see. The MULTNOMAH FALLS is absolutely stunning. The whole tour was perfect. Out tour guide was excellent and very knowledgeable with this History of the area. We took the half day tour and at 67, was able to keep up which I was worried about but did it. Highly recommended!!❤️❤️

it was a very packed day with lots of fun experiences! I really liked the stops we made, and the weather was perfect. our guide, Damon, was also very nice and extremely knowledgeable.

Enjoyable trip in a comfortable van to 4 waterfalls with interesting knowledge from the guide at each stop. Well worth the cost.

It was great and Gunner was an excellent guide. Very knowledge and communicated very well.