Portland Area Tours

The Portland Oregon Visitors Association web site (www.portlandcvb.com) outlines many local places to go and things to see! A simpler approach may be to sign up for one of these tours. If you are interested, please download the Portland Area Tours form or find it in the back of the Meeting Circular.

Tour #1: Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve

DAY: Tuesday, August 5, 2008
TIME: 10:00 – 15:00
FEES: $60 per person (Includes, bus, guide on bus, guide at Jackson Bottom, box lunch/drink)

The preserve is a 725 acre wildlife sanctuary located within the city limits of Hillsboro, Oregon, about 20 miles west of Portland. The preserve is a tranquil sanctuary for both people and animals. The quiet open waters and Rolling Meadows of upland ash and fir woods are home to thousands of ducks, geese, deer, otter, beaver, herons, and eagles. The Bald Eagle Nest Exhibit, a display just opened in January 2007, is the first authentic Bald Eagle nest recovered from the wild. Learn how the nest was salvaged, who owns the nest and the challenges of moving the nest to its present site inside the Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve Building. The preserve is a premier resource center for information and services related to wetlands and aquatic education in the Pacific Northwest.

Minimum of 30 people.

Tour #2: North Coast/Cannon Beach/ Astoria Column

DAY: Tuesday, August 5, 2008 or Sunday, August 10, 2008
TIME: 08:00 – 17:00
FEES: $48 per person (Includes bus, guide, box lunch and all admissions)

Leaving the Portland Hilton Hotel, we will travel west toward the Pacific Ocean and the town of Cannon Beach. Cannon Beach is famous for Haystack Rock where you will spend 90 minutes bird watching, enjoy a special interpretive tour of the inter-tidal areas, and learn about the 16.5 million year-old stack. Bird watching scopes and guides will be provided. Not interested in bird watching? Cannon Beach is a great little town with a wide beach for walking, art galleries, and beach-type shops. A fun place to visit! Next we will travel to the nearby town of Seaside for box lunches on the beach or a stroll along the quaint promenade. Explore this classic beach town with its mix of shops, carousel, and an aquarium. We will continue on to Astoria, the oldest American settlement west of the Rockies. View the city and bay from Coxcomb Hill, climb the 123-ft. Astor Column if you desire, then finish with a trolley ride along the waterfront before we re-board our bus back to Portland.

Minimum of 45 people.

Tour #3: Portland Spirit Lunch Cruise

DAY: Thursday, August 7, 2008
TIME: 11:00 – 15:00 (Boarding at 11:30; ship departs at noon)
FEES: $65 per person (Includes bus, guide and 2 hour lunch cruise with dessert)

Enjoy a two-hour lunch cruise on the beautiful Willamette River aboard the Portland Spirit. We will travel up the Willamette River for a unique “river view” of the city. See beautiful houses along the waterfront and watch for Bald Eagles, Osprey, and Great Blue Herons along the way. Enjoy the scenery from one of three outdoor viewing decks. Or, if it is hot, stay inside and view the scenery from the Spirit’s eighty large viewing windows. A wonderful lunch with dessert will be served. Select from three entrées to be served at your table. All meals are prepared on board, featuring the finest Northwest cuisine. All entrée selections are served with salad, bread, and a beverage. A cash bar is available.

Minimum of 30 people.

Tour #4: Columbia River Gorge/ Bonneville Dam/Sternwheeler

DAY: Sunday, August 10, 2008
TIME: 08:00 – 17:00
FEES: $62 per person (Includes bus, guide, admission on Sternwheeler, box lunch/drink)

Our bus will leave Portland and head east traveling through the historic town of Troutdale on our way to the Historic Columbia River Highway. We will follow this scenic highway and your first glimpse of the Columbia River Gorge at Crown Point that is guaranteed to take your breath away! Stopping just long enough to take pictures at the Vista House located 733 feet above the river, we will continue to the Multnomah Falls and Lodge. The gorge scenery includes trees, flowers, many waterfalls and spectacular basaltic rock formations that are only about six or seven million years old! We will stop at Multnomah Falls, which at 620 feet in height, is the second highest year-round waterfall in the nation. The visitor’s center provides interpretive information on the unique geology of the gorge. From the falls, we will continue east to the Bonneville Lock and Dam. Bonneville Dam is a national historic landmark. Construction began in 1933; the lock and dam were dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on September 28, 1937. Operated by the Army Corps of Engineers, the visitor’s center is filled with displays on the history of the dam. Don’t miss the under-water viewing windows where you can see fish swimming up the fish ladders - and watch as staff count each fish! Continuing east, we will drive to the town of Cascade Locks and board the Sternwheeler Columbia Gorge for a two-hour trip on the Columbia River. The captain will narrate the history of the gorge, including old tales of how the Bridge of the Gods came to be, a little about Lewis and Clark – and the scenery is gorgeous! The boat will depart at 2:00 p.m. and re-docks at 4:00 p.m. Then we board our bus and head back to the city.

Minimum of 30 people.

Tour #5: Mount St. Helen’s National Monument

DAY: Tuesday, August 5th, 2008
TIME: 08:30 – 16:30.
FEES: $55 per person (Includes bus, guide, all fees, box lunch/drink)

Mt. St. Helen’s is North America’s only volcanic preserve. Visit Johnston Ridge Observatory, the closest visitor center to the mountain. Built like a bunker into the surrounding landscape, the center focuses the visitor’s attention on the smoldering crater some six miles away. You will have a tour and view the observatory. Next we travel to the Forest Learning Center, which was formed in an alliance with the Weyerhaeuser Company, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and the Washington State Department of Transportation. It offers information on the eruption, the effect on the environment, and Weyerhaeuser’s efforts to speed the recovery process.

Minimum of 30 people.

Tour #6: Garden Tour/Nob Hill

DAY: Saturday, August 9, 2008
TIME: 09:00 – 15:00
FEES: $50 per person (Includes bus, all guide fees, lunch on your own)

Start the day with a tour of the Classical Chinese Garden – an authentic Suzhou-style garden on a full city block in the heart of Portland’s Chinatown neighborhood. Painstakingly built by artisans from Portland’s Chinese sister city Suzhou, the garden is designed to slowly reveal its orchids, bamboo, and waterfalls as you wind through paths, stroll under archways, and look through windows. Around each bend is a carefully constructed picture-perfect arrangement of flowers, trees, rocks, and water. Next, we will go to the Japanese Gardens – recognized as one of the most authentic Japanese gardens outside of Japan. Situated on a hilltop above Portland’s Rose Test Gardens, the Japanese Garden offers visitors tranquility beauty and relaxation through five formal gardening styles including a pond garden, a natural setting garden, a sand and stone garden, a flat garden, and a traditional tea garden. Tour guides will interpret in the garden. By now you will be feeling relaxed and hungry, so we will have the bus drop you off on trendy and eclectic Nob Hill. One of the first settled areas of Portland, all the streets are in alphabetical order by street name. There are many restaurants for lunch on your own. Funky shops, vintage shops, antiques, and quaint shops abound! After an afternoon of shopping, load yourselves – and your packages – on the bus and head back to the hotel.

Minimum of 30 people.

Tour #7: Mount Hood Excursion Train

DAY: Tuesday, August 5, 2008
TIME: 08:00 – 16:00.
FEES: $61 per person (Includes bus, guide, 4 hour train trip, box lunch/drink)

Board the bus and travel east on I-84 to the town of Hood River. Along the way, you may see wind surfers enjoying the world-class windsurfing environment of the Columbia River Gorge. The scenery is spectacular as you travel along the Columbia River. At Hood River, we will disembark the bus and step aboard the Mt. Hood Excursion Train – a century-old railroad dating from the early 1900’s. The train is comprised of enclosed Pullman coaches, a Red caboose, and an open-air car. You will enjoy great views as you travel along the river, through forests, meadows, and fruit orchards on the 90-minute journey to the town of Parkdale. A live narration along the way includes local history and key points of interest. At Parkdale you can rest in the park or visit the town’s quaint shops. Then the train will turn around and take you back to Hood River where you will re-board the bus for the trip back to the hotel.

Minimum of 30 people.