easy to get around on foot or by public transportation here, and drivers are known for
obeying our pedestrian right-of-way, making
it safe and relatively stress-free to walk the
Portland’s downtown city blocks are an
eclectic collection of both older, grittier institutions like the Portland Outdoor Store in
Old Town and high-end, shinier options, like
the two-story REI in The Pearl.
For those who want easy access to nature,
Forest Park lies just west of downtown.
You’ll forget you’re in a city once you enter
one of the country’s largest urban forest
reserves, covering over 5,000 acres. Hikers,
joggers, bikers, and dogs enjoy 70 miles of
recreational trails, weaving through douglas
fir, western hemlock, and western red cedar.
Most of the forest is second growth, but
you’ll still find a few patches of old growth
The sprawl of houses in the hills is considered the Northwest Heights, where you’ll find
some of Portland’s most expensive properties. The sweeping views of downtown and
Mt. Hood in the distance, as well as its proximity to Forest Park, make this a premium
spot for those who can afford it.
Victorian facades and boutique stores dominate Nob Hill, also known as the Alphabet
District, where sophisticated come to play.
The narrow streets are filled with storefronts,
from the uniquely Portland Moreland House
which displays an impressive selection of
gifts and collectibles for the dachshund lover
in your life, to well-known chains like Pottery
Barn and Urban Outfitters.
The Portland Streetcar connects Nob Hill
to the Pearl District for a 4. 8 mile shopping
loop that will leave you in need of a lift. You
wouldn’t want to walk with all those bags!
There’s plenty of variety within this part of
town, where downtown meets miles of trees,
shoppers quickly shift to hikers, and the grittier sections of downtown quickly meet some
of the trendiest streets in Portland. For those
looking for variety, activity, and plenty of
style, Northwest might be the place for you.
The downtown energy is turned down a
notch in Southwest Portland, where you’ll
find more high rise buildings and college-aged residents, hailing from Portland State
University. Due to the higher concentration of residential buildings and lower
concentration of nightlife, the Southwest
is generally quieter — although you’ll still
find plenty to do.
The concentration of high rises along the
Southwest Waterfront make it look like a
second downtown, and the Willamette River
glistens with light from those tall buildings
at night. It’s a beautiful area that’s been the
focus of urban renewal since condos started
popping up around the 2006 housing bubble.
Tilikum Crossing, a pedestrian, cyclist, and
public transportation only bridge, connects