When we headed to Portland, Oregon we didn't know what to expect. The only thing we heard about was the good coffee and weirdness - "Keep Portland Weird, folks." So, we wondered...were there going to be hipsters everywhere? Were we going to like it? Was it safe? Was it clean? Would we eat something good enough to talk about later?
The verdict: We ABSOLUTELY fell in love with this sweet little/big town and would go as far to say, it's one of the best US cities we've ever visited. I say little/big town because, although Portland is large in size, the town's layout and friendliness gives a cozy, small town vibe. A west coast small town that is.
As soon as you hit the ground, you sense a change in the air, especially with the politeness. Oregonian's are probably the sweetest, most considerate group of people you'll ever meet. Not exaggerating. Countless times, complete strangers went WAY out of their way to assist us. Talk about weird!
While in Portland, we stayed at the
which is nestled on the river, conveniently next to the city center and although we did not use public transportation, (
we rented a car
) I hear it's fantastic. The rail did pass right by our hotel in the morning though, which was a tad bit noisy, but that's what you expect when staying downtown, right?
On our first day, we felt rather adventurous and wandered around trying to check the place out. The city is divided by a river, so when exploring, make sure to visit the part of town east of the river. Equally worth the time, and the bridges over are stunning - so you get a nice view on the way over.
Did I mention how much the locals value shopping small (??!) On every corner, you can spot an adorably decorated, thriving small business packed to the brim with locals. Local succulent shops, to paper stores, to Powell's amazing 3 block wide bookstore (
which will get her own post later
And if you know Gabriel and I, you know our biggest joy on vacation comes from 1) seeing awe inspiring nature or 2) having good food/coffee. Portland, my friend, had it all. The food was delicious. Seriously. We did not have a bad meal. Be prepared for everything to be farm fresh, organic and just plain tasty. Fine dining, ice cream, food trucks, bakeries, cafes and even world famous donut shops - they had it all and it's all so good. I will get into further detail later this week - after much time spent researching through Portland blogland, of course!
And I will leave you on this note, coffee...they have perfected it. We made it a point to visit almost every coffee house in town, and although we did find a favorite, they were all pretty darn great.
So, did I convince you yet? Are you ready to relocate to all this goodness? I thought so. It is certainly a small town I would pick up and move across the country for. Even though, of course, we would never, a girl can dream right? ;) #leftmyheartonthewestcoast #forthepast3years