Fun things to do in Oregon
Tourist Attractions

13 Cool and Unusual Things to Do in Oregon

Not sure what to do on your next vacation? Check out this list of the top 13 activities in Oregon, USA that you won’t want to miss! From strolling around and exploring parks, all the way up through sightseeing tours and historical landmarks – we’ve got something for everyone. Get ready for an unforgettable experience!

The Best Thing To Do in Oregon

Fun things to do in Oregon
Fun things to do in Oregon

Oregon Zoo

  • Address: 4001 SW Canyon Rd, Portland, OR 97221, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.5 (19085)
  • Phone: +1 503-226-1561
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
    Tuesday: Closed
    Wednesday: Closed
    Thursday: Closed
    Friday: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
    Saturday: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
    Sunday: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM

5 Replies to 13 Cool and Unusual Things to Do in Oregon

  1. Went on the first of January and they still had some snow from the week before but all the pathways were very well cleaned and salted. Couldn’t see some of the animals because of the cold I guess (it was a 27° kind of day). Some staff giving out some good information here and there like in the polar bear place. Cute Christmas lights all around and enough coffee and food shops. Some fun places for kids all ages to play around too. Totally wheelchair and stroller accessible.

  2. We explored the zoo today and had a lovely time! Two adults, two teenagers and a toddler found the zoo to be very engaging and the setting is beautiful to boot.

    We arrived around 9:30 and didn’t experience any wait time and the crowds were pretty minimal. It took us about 3 hours to see just about everything, including riding the train and the carousel, which aren’t included in the ticket price. I don’t know if I can pinpoint a favorite part because there were so many awesome exhibits, truly a phenomenal zoo!

  3. Wife and I had a great time at the Oregon zoo. It was amazing to see the Polar bears. The zoo keeper calling them so that the public could see. They have a great structure in the zoo. Nice food (must try the elephant ears), great washrooms, lots of places ti site and take some rest. You can see the animals are well cared for. The gift shop is also a great stop, with lots of sustainable gifts. Staff is very polite and helpful.

  4. The layout of this zoo is just beautiful! It took just under 3 hours for me to walk throughout the zoo. I visited from BC and it was cool to see polar bears and elephants in person. The enclosure for the elephants is amazing and it was interesting to read up on the history of elephants at the Oregon zoo. There were quite a few animal displays empty at this time of year which was disappointing but overall still a good activity for all ages.

  5. I felt this zoo is underrated and should be more famous. The setting is beautifully done and each animal is given a lot of space to move around unlike the typical zoos. Probably this was the reason, every animal in here was actively moving around rather than lethargically lying in a corner. This makes it a fun experience for adults and kids alike. There were also some unusual exhibits like – Vultures feeding on a whole deer carcass which you can view at your own discretion, a beaver who has an underwater home inside a tunnel, weaver birds busy weaving pretty nests, playful otters, a mountain goat and much more. It’s divided into ecosystems like African savanna, Polar passage, Primate forest, Great Northwest etc. There are other interactive experiences at different times and also a zoo train for five bucks. We went two hours before closing and had to rush through everything to complete on time. Ample amount of paid parking available.

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Top 13 Things To Do Oregon, USA

Fun things to do in Oregon
Fun things to do in Oregon

Washington Park

  • Address: 4033 SW Canyon Rd, Portland, OR 97221, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (13578)
  • Phone: +1 503-319-0999
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Tuesday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Wednesday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Thursday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Friday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Saturday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
    Sunday: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
  • Reviews:
    We visited the Japanese Garden, and it’s beautiful! The waterfalls, the landscaping, and the trees are so amazing!
    Parking fee was $4 for 2 hours. Entrance fee was $18 for adult, not bad at all.

    From the parking lot, you have to hike maybe about one fourth of a mile to get on the top of the of hill to the garden.

    Lots of friendly employees to show directions and answer questions.

    As you enter into the garden, you’ll notice a lot of rocks and mini waterfalls. And, a lot of stair!

    Food is not allowed in the garden. Stepping on the moss is not allowed either. They really take care the garden beautifully.
    One of the most beautiful place to visit in Portland Oregon!!

    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Elvira Evans (9 months ago)
    Lovely park on a hill overlooking Portland. Especially enjoyable are the gardens available on the grounds. The International Rose Test Garden is free to go in and wander and features an amazing assortment of different varieties of roses. The Japanese gardens are ticketed ($20 for adults at the ticket booth currently), but are well done and worth a visit if you enjoy Japanese gardens. Plenty of good spots for kids to run around as well, including an amphitheater area. The park is roughly a 30-45 minute walk from downtown Portland (45 minutes from the riverfront, less the closer in you are), but the hill could be a bit of a challenge for some.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By James Koontz (3 months ago)
    Absolutely-loved-it. Fantastic. Green all around, great for the lungs and circadian rhythm. Not hard, but might not take little kids who aren’t used to a little hike. (Think tree trunks and mud, small hilly areas.) Really liked my time there, think we hiked about an hour. (We walked down from the gardens, through the rose garden, to the right past the playground and on a trail up around the back of the garden.)
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Stevie Lynn Smith (10 months ago)
    Whether you are looking for a leisurely day in the Portland area, or garden inspiration, Washington Park with its International Test Rose Garden is one of the most beautiful parks I have enjoyed. Nestled into the hillsides, and across the way from the Portland Japanese Gardens, this is a lovely way to enjoy the beauty of Portland’s roses, especially during Rose Festival season. Parking can be challenging, as Washington Park parking also includes parking for the Japanese gardens. Early in the morning or later in the afternoon, or show a little patience and you’ll find a parking spot.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Darla Suit (7 months ago)
    Wonderful experience walking through the gardens. Roses everywhere, not even in full bloom yet! Wife and I spent 3 hours then found the free tour at 1pm. Worth another hour for certain. Tour wad great. Already want to visit again.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Gary Shatraw (7 months ago)

Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area

  • Address: Oregon 97031, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (12974)
  • Phone: +1 541-308-1700
  • Website: Link
  • Reviews:
    The Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area is one of the most spectacular and underrated areas in the United States. The scenic gorge is home to many spectacular waterfalls, the most spectacular and popular being Multnomah Falls right along I-84, not to be missed. You may need a permit for the waterfall corridor, the most popular area in the park. We recommend stopping at the other waterfalls and taking the trails to get away from other visitors, especially above Horsetail Falls and the other waterfalls. Other areas that our worth a visit in the park is the Old Historic Highway (first dedicated scenic highway every built in the United States) and Vista House.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Jacation Adventure (6 months ago)
    Beautiful area. Lots of recreational opportunities along the gorge with nice small towns along the way. I have been through here many times over the years. We where fishing in the Columbia River and that is where the pics are from.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Steve Langdon (4 months ago)
    The scenic area is paid to enter. Tickets are sold in time-course. The number of tickets for each hour is limited. If you go during a busy time, buying the $2 ticket in advance is recommended. The road is two-way but narrow. And the parking lots at the fall places are very tight. You may have to park on the road side. Be cautious.
    ✭✭✭✭ By Xuechen Zhu (5 months ago)
    This is a must see part of Oregon. We drove into the gorge on Historic Hwy 30 (Google maps wanted us to take the freeway but we were told Historic 30 was the more scenic route). The drive itself was beautiful. We stopped at three waterfalls along the way and hiked their trails. It was a great day!
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Anne Gundry (a year ago)
    Always love visiting here! We’ll be working at night paving a new road surface. I get to experience this beauty daily now. Road construction is beginning on I84, lasting until mid November 2022. Please observe the posted 55mph speed limit. Be aware and slow down and move over. Help keep us safe!
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Lucas Martinez (7 months ago)

Crater Lake National Park

  • Address: Oregon, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.9 (12448)

Silver Falls State Park

  • Address: 20024 Silver Falls Hwy SE, Sublimity, OR 97385, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (8219)

Haystack Rock

  • Address: US-101, Cannon Beach, OR 97110, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (7796)

Smith Rock State Park

  • Address: Terrebonne, OR 97760, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.9 (5693)

Oregon Coast Aquarium

  • Address: 2820 SE Ferry Slip Rd, Newport, OR 97365, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.3 (3048)

Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area Siuslaw National Forest

  • Address: 855 US-101, Reedsport, OR 97467, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (2650)

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

  • Address: 32651 OR-19, Mitchell, OR 97750, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (1208)

Prehistoric Gardens

  • Address: 36848 US-101, Port Orford, OR 97465, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.5 (1192)

Dee Wright Observatory

  • Address: McKenzie Hwy, Blue River, OR 97413, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.9 (1047)

Oregon Park

  • Address: 145 Old Hamilton Rd, Marietta, GA 30064, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (437)

That’s it for our list of the best things to do in Oregon! If you have any arguments or additional information, please leave a comment. We love to hear from our readers too!

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