Exploring Portland’s Top Attractions: Parks, Mansions, and Rose Gardens

The Best Places to See in Portland, Oregon

In the spring of 1981, as Tony Demicoli was opening Luis’ La Bamba club, Portland’s rock scene needed a unifying entity that went beyond stylistic boundaries. Already, venues such as the Earth and Sacks had begun to shutter due to neighborhood noise and vandalism complaints.

The Cahills offer half a dozen performing artists the opportunity to stay at Beckett’s Castle, which is actually more like a large cottage than a castle. The retreat includes time in nature, including the rocks and rose garden.

Overlook Park

Climb the stairs and you’ll be rewarded with a great vantage point of the Fremont Bridge and the city skyline looming in the distance. On a clear day, you can also see Mt. Hood and Mt. Saint Helens. And if you’re in the mood for even more beautiful views, check out Washington Park, which is home to the largest rose garden in America and offers stunning panoramas of downtown Portland.

The Overlook neighborhood positions you close to shopping, dining and entertainment, too. Stock up on organic fruits and veggies at New Seasons Market, or grab a quick bite to eat at Fire on the Mountain. You can catch a Blazers game or concert at Moda Center or Mississippi Studios, both less than two miles away from Overlook Park Apartments. And when you get back home, you’ll appreciate the convenience of modern one- and two-bedroom apartments with floor-to-ceiling windows, handsome wood-style flooring and a host of other designer finishes.

Washington Park

With a zoo, forestry museum, arboretum, rose garden, amphitheater and public art, Washington Park is nature amplified. A stroll through its hedge-lined lawns, manicured gardens and mounded hedges offers an escape from the city’s bustle.

Across the park, visitors find quiet at Portland Japanese Garden’s Sand and Stone Garden, where meticulously raked, fine white gravel contrasts with boulders and moss. Or they can savor a matcha mochi or chicken fried rice at the Umami Café within the zoo’s Cascade Grill without paying admission.

Parking in the park is limited on busy weekends and during the summer months. The free shuttle from the Portland International Rose Garden and Oregon Health & Science University’s Marquam Hill campus is available to reduce traffic congestion and parking conflicts. Visit Explore Washington Park for information on parking, transit and shuttles. Help prevent vehicle prowls by removing valuables from your parked car. Also, lock your vehicle and close windows whenever you are not in the vehicle.

Pittock Mansion

The Pittock Mansion is one of the most beautiful homes in Portland, Oregon. It is located in the West Hills and is surrounded by Forest Park. It was built in 1914 as a home for Henry and Georgiana Pittock, who were the publishers of The Oregonian newspaper. Today the house is a museum and is open to visitors. It is a beautiful place to visit and learn about the history of Portland.

It is also a great place to take a hike. There are many trails around the house, including the Wildwood Trail and the Lower Macleay Trail. The views from the hill are incredible. You can see the city of Portland and five Cascade Mountains on a clear day.

The building was once known as the Witch’s Castle due to its alleged supernatural occurrences. Jessica was able to find enough documentation to show that the structure was significant and worthy of being included in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Rose Garden

The Rose Garden is a beautiful sight to see, with roses blooming from late May through October. The garden was first established in 1917 as a safe haven for hybrid roses that were being sent to Portland from Europe during World War I. Today, it is the oldest public rose test garden in the United States.

It is a popular spot for weddings and photo shoots. It also features a beautiful fountain and an amphitheater that is perfect for outdoor performances. The garden is free to visit, but parking is limited. Light rail, bus, and walking are the best ways to get there.

There is a rich history behind the castle, including an age-old tale of murder and hauntings. The story begins with Danford Balch, who claimed a large portion of forest land in what is now Forest Park. His eldest daughter, Anna, fell in love with Mortimer Stump, an employee on his farm. Balch refused to approve their marriage, and he threatened to kill Stump if they eloped.

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