12 Amazing Weekend Getaways from Portland, Oregon

Portland serves as an ideal jumping off point for adventures all around the Pacifc Northwest. There is truly something for everyone whether you’re longing for a relaxing weekend at the beach, itching to hit the slopes, or yearning to immerse yourself in the culture and character of a new city.

The hard truth is that there’s simply too many incredible weekend trips from Portland to choose from, and there’s no way I’ll even get close to letting you in on all there is. I’ve done my best to showcase only the cream of the crop, so read up, and get out there and start exploring!

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The Best Weekend Getaways From Portland, Oregon: 12 Incredible Weekend Trips

Whether you’re looking for mountains, lakes, and some of the best hiking in Oregon, or you’re looking to explore some of Oregon’s best cities, towns, and foodie destinations, these weekend trips will be right up your alley. 

Mt. Hood

Distance from Portland: 73 miles / 1 hour 30 minutes

How to get there: US-26 east out of Portland

The perfect mountain, sitting due east of Portland and only a 90 minute drive from the city. Mt. Hood is an easy weekend trip for families since you can head out right after school on Friday and still have time for dinner at your destination.

You can plan on skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding in the winter, or hiking, swimming, and mountain biking in the summer. With plenty of options for camping or lodging for any budget, it’s hard to beat Mt. Hood for a trouble-free weekend away.

What to Do at Mt. Hood

First, visit Trillium Lake for a picture-perfect Mt. Hood reflection! A trip to Trillium Lake makes for the ideal Oregon summer day. Start with the lovely loop hike around the lake, then go for a swim and have a picnic by the banks of the mountain waters. Camping is available too, but spots fill up fast so book early.

There is a ton to do at Mt. Hood, but you’re absolutely going to want to tackle at least one of the best hikes at Mt. Hood over the course of your weekend getaway. 

Timberline Trail to Zigzag Canyon – This short-ish (4.5 miles) hike allows you to start at the historic Timberline Lodge and get sweeping alpine views of the mountain’s south side. Very popular, but very worth it.

Ramona Falls – You feel like you’re in a fairy tale when you hike up to Ramona Falls, with its ribbons of water cascading down 120 feet. This 7 mile loop hike gives great views of the mountain and even has some backpacking options.

Mcneil Point – This is a tough 10+ mile hike, but well worth the views, the alpine scenery, and the very cool historic stone shelter you’ll find at the top. You’ll earn your post-hike beer and then some.

Tom, Dick, and Harry Mountain – A great 7 mile hike that gives you exceptional views of the mountain and the lovely Zigzag valley. The trail starts at Mirror Lake (which is always busy even during the week, so get there early for a spot), but you may get so distracted by the beauty of the lake that you’ll forget to do the hike!

Where to Stay Near Mt. Hood

Camping Near Mt Hood

Trillium Lake or Lost Lake Resort are both great options for well-maintained camping sites that offer recreation on the campgrounds, and are just a short drive to all of Mt. Hood’s attractions.

Lost Lake is on the north side of the mountain and features a lodge, cabins, and boat rentals if you’re looking for a more inclusive place to stay. 

Timberline Lodge
The historic Timberline Lodge at Mt. Hood

The iconic Timberline Lodge should be on everyone’s bucket list. It’s especially nice in the winter as you get to walk right out to the slopes for a day of skiing, then back into the lodge for a hot toddy by the huge communal fireplace.

Cozy Cabins in the Woods

If you’re looking to get into the alpine spirit, but aren’t up for camping (or you’re visiting in the winter), a rustic cabin in the woods is the perfect place to stay at the foot of Hood.

Niksen House: A lovely Scandinavian style cabin on Mt. Hood, and just a five minute walk to the Sandy River. This cozy cabin has two bedrooms and is surrounded by woods.

Little House On The Mountain – The perfect little cabin for a romantic weekend on the mountain. This custom built cabin sits on five acres of secluded forest land, but is still a quick drive into town.

Mt Hood View Tiny House – This tiny home is slightly further from the mountain than the other options, but still close enough for quick drives to all your outdoor recreation. However, once you get here you’ll be blown away by your views and feel a million miles from home.


Distance from Portland: 166 miles / 3 hour 20 minutes

How to get there: US-26 east to US-97 south

Bend is a favorite weekend getaway from Portland any time of year, but especially during the winter. Offering ample snow adventures, it also sees more sunny days per year in its high desert locale than we get in the overcast Willamette Valley.

It’s a growing, thriving city with tons of shopping, dining, and nightlife, plus phenomenal outdoor adventures!

What to Do in Bend

The Green Lakes Trail

Breweries! It wouldn’t be an Oregon trip without a quick (or leisurely) brewery tour! Bend now has 22 local breweries so you’ll have to pick and choose, but my favorites are 10 Barrel (I prefer their new eastside pub), Crux (some of the best beer in the state with an expansive outdoor patio), and Boneyard (a little ways from downtown, but worth it for their beer and delicious food – try their RPM pretzel from the local Sparrow Bakery). 

Go for a Hike in Deschutes National Forest – The Green Lakes Trail is an incredible 9 mile out and back that takes you past a waterfall, and then a trek along Falls Creek to reach three stunning lakes at the end. Or, you can explore Sparks Lake, right next to the trailhead for Green Lakes. It’s an ideal spot for families, and you can take an easy 2.5 mile loop hike to see the area.

Smith Rock State Park – Rock climbers from around the world travel to Bend just to climb Smith Rock. It’s kind of a big deal. That said, you don’t have to be a climber to enjoy this spectacular volcanic basalt rock formation. The park also offers beginners climbs, mountain biking paths, camping, and a popular 3.7 mile loop hike lovingly called Misery Ridge.

Tumalo Falls – A very popular 7 mile loop hike that takes you to a breathtaking 97 foot waterfall. A great summer hike!

“Monkey Face” at Smith Rock State Park

Where to Stay in Bend

Here are a few places to stay in Bend to add to your list.

Camping: Tumalo State Park – At only about 4 miles from Bend, this is a great option for people who want the city and the mountains! The campground sits on the Deschutes River and offers tent spots as well as yurts. 

Loge Bend – No, we didn’t misspell lodge, LOGE stands for “Live Outside, Go Explore.” This unique spot offers bunk rooms, family rooms, or live-work spaces. Onsite is a cafe and bar, gear and bike rentals, and even free outdoor concerts in the summer!

Oxford Hotel – A boutique hotel right in downtown Bend for those looking for a more luxurious or romantic stay. Just a few blocks from the waterfront, and even closer is the heavenly Bonta Gelato

Mount Rainier National Park

Distance from Portland: 156 miles / 3 hours

How to get there: I-5N → US-12E → WA-7N → WA-706

Mount Rainier is usually thought of more as a weekend trip from Seattle, but it’s totally doable from Portland too! There are three main sections of Rainier and the closest to Portland is called Paradise (sounds nice, right?). Rainier is the highest volcanic peak in the whole country, and basically anywhere you go around it you’ll be immersed in stunning wilderness.

Want to plan an amazing trip to Mount Rainier? We have a whole collection of Mount Rainier National Park guides to help you plan your trip. We’ve got guides to the best hikes, the best things to do and see, and how to spend a perfect day at Mount Rainier.

What to Do at Mount Rainier

Hike the Skyline Trail – A very popular 6 mile loop trail that has some of the most breathtaking scenery you’ve ever laid eyes on, including an imposing view of Rainier. The trail is on the tougher side of moderate and is best in summer, but can also be done as a snowshoe hike. This is one of the best hikes in Washington State, if not THE best hike. 

Reflection Lakes – These lakes sit right below Rainier and serve as a mirror to its south face. Because of this and their accessibility, they make a great spot for photographers both novice and experienced. If you’re short on time you can drive to the lake to take in the spectacular sunset, or add on a 3.5 mile hike up to the 176 foot Narada Falls.

Chasing waterfalls! If you’re a waterfall junkie (PS: don’t miss our guide to Oregon waterfalls!), you’ve come to the right place. The park boasts over 150 waterfalls, and though you’ll probably never be able to see them all, these three should quench your thirst: Comet is one of the park’s most popular falls standing at 462 feet and is a relatively short 1.5 mile hike to get to. Alternatively, you can take an easy walk to the picturesque Myrtle Falls with the mountain perfectly poised behind it (note you’ll also see Myrtle Falls if you do the Skyline trail hike). Christine Falls is equally beautiful and is great for those who need a drive-up spot.

Where to Stay at Mount Rainier

Here are some places to stay near Paradise at Mount Rainier (the south side of the Mountain, which is the most accessible part from Portland).

Camping: Cougar Rock is conveniently located near the Paradise area, but it fills up fast so don’t go without a reservation (bonus – the Comet Falls trailhead is only a mile from the campground!). The Ohanapecosh campground is also popular and close to all the action. It sits in an old growth forest by the river of the same name – book early!

Paradise Inn – Built in 1916 and deemed one of the “greatest lodges in the west,” the Paradise is spendy, but you can’t beat the location! A great home base for day hikes right outside your front door, and the quaint rooms still have the 1916 vibe going (it’s worth noting that part of that vibe is that none of the rooms have tv or wifi – you’ll either love this or hate this.)

Another good option is to book an Airbnb in Ashford or Packwood, the two closest towns you can get to outside the park that still make accessibility fairly easy.

Fillmore’s Landing @ Mt. Rainier – This stylish, updated cabin in the woods features a cedar hot tub, full kitchen, and two plush queen beds. A chill, tranquil space to soak in the beauty of the area.

Cozy River Cabin at Mt. Rainier – An A-frame with big floor to ceiling windows to bring the outside in, two loft bedrooms, and a cozy living room. Sitting right on the Cowlitz River, you’ll enjoy the lulling sound of rushing water and unobstructed mountain views.

Millard’s Cabin @ Mt. Rainier – Hike, Ski, Soak – This small cabin has a cedar hot tub, charming living room around a wood stove, and though small, can sleep up to 8 people with its included bunkhouse. Perfect for a group who doesn’t mind close quarters, or a romantic getaway for two.


Distance from Portland: 110 miles / 1 hour 45 minutes (considerably longer if you hit traffic)

How to get there: I-5 south

Situated on the Willamette River and home to the University of Oregon, “Track Town, USA” is known for its arts and culture, nature trails, breweries, and campus life. It’s one of the easiest weekend trips from Portland to explore by foot or bike if you don’t mind a few hippies here and there.

What to Do in Eugene

Saturday Farmer’s Market – Who doesn’t love a farmers market? With the fertile Willamette Valley and numerous wineries in the area, you’re sure to find some delectable goodies or handcrafted trinkets here from the over 200 local artisans.

Mural Project – Eugene is very flat which makes it very walkable and bikeable, and a great way to see the town is to tour the city’s numerous murals (download a map on the linked site). This particular program aims to fund 20 new murals by 2021, and they are all gorgeous (my favorite is Sidney Waerts’ on the side of the Well Balanced building).

Explore 5th Street Public Market – A Eugene staple, and popular with locals and tourists alike, the 5th Street Market is an upscale open-air shopping center with tons of dining options. Centrally located so you can pop off to other adventures nearby.

Hike the popular Spencer’s Butte just outside of town for killer views of the valley. It’s only a couple miles round trip and a great way to start your day! If you want to go car-free, bike or walk the lovely Willamette River Trail that runs for 12 miles and takes you all the way into the town of Springfield if you’re feeling ambitious.

Where to Stay in Eugene

Graduate Hotel – Nearby the Saturday Market and 5th Street Market, the rooms are affordable and funky with a great 70’s collegiate vibe. In the morning, walk two blocks south to get a delectable breakfast at Off the Waffle, and do yourself a favor and try their chocolate milk.

Inn at the Fifth – Located at the 5th Street Market, this modern, upscale hotel is a little pricier but will put you right in the center of the city.

Seattle, Washington

Distance from Portland: 175 miles / 3 hours (be mindful of traffic – it can be a bear driving north on the 5 through Tacoma and Seattle. You’ve been warned!) 

How to get there: I-5 north, though a fun alternative is to take Amtrak Cascades and go car-free!

Portland’s big sister up north, Seattle is a great option to shake things up. I’ve always thought if San Francisco and Portland had a baby it would be Seattle.

It has a decidedly bigger city feel than Portland, and its vibrant arts, music, and culture scene will keep your dance card full. Every time I go to Seattle I’m left with a new list of things I want to do or see on my next visit. It’s one of the best weekend getaways from Portland, Oregon by far.

Heading to Seattle? We have the perfect guide – written by Matt, who grew up in the Seattle area – to help you plan the perfect weekend in Seattle. Plus, a guide to the best places to stay in Seattle to help you find the best area for your travel style, budget, and taste.

What to Do in Seattle

Visit Pike Place Market – Even if you’ve been there before, you’ve just got to go. It’s a rule. Watch the fish being hurled through the air, pick up some local goods, eat some great food (like at Piroshky Piroshky!), then amble up north through Belltown to the Olympic Sculpture Park.

Explore Seattle Center – My favorite thing to do in Seattle as a kid (who am I kidding – as an adult too) was to ride the monorail up to the Seattle Center. There’s so much to do there! You must visit the stunning indoor/outdoor Chihuly Gardens & Glass museum, or MoPop, the museum of pop culture (even if you don’t go in you can stand outside and marvel at the architecture). The Pacific Science Center has engaging, hands-on exhibits that are great for families, and who can forget the good old Space Needle? It costs a pretty penny to go up to the top, but I think you get a better (free) view of the city from nearby Kerry Park.

Explore Capitol Hill, Seattle’s counter-culture hub. A great spot for shopping (some great thrift stores!), dining, and entertainment. A funky, friendly, accepting neighborhood for everyone. After you’re done, take a stroll through the beautiful 44 acres of Volunteer Park.  

Hike out to West Point Lighthouse in Discovery Park, Seattle’s huge green space overlooking the Sound with miles of trails. If it’s not too overcast, you’ll also get killer views of Mount Rainier and Baker.

Ballard Farmers Market on Sunday mornings (operating year round!) is the place to be for the freshest local goods and produce. After you’re done, you just might be interested in popping over to the Ballard Locks and watching salmon wend their way through the fish ladder, or see boats get lifted through the locks.

Where to Stay in Seattle

CitizenM – A centrally located hotel that’s a nice budget option if you’re looking to save a little dough, but still want to be in the city. The rooms have a minimal, modern design and are on the small side, but you’ll be so busy exploring Seattle, you won’t even notice. Note from Matt and Alysha: we’ve stayed in three different CitizenM hotels now – including the Seattle location – and we’re head-over-heels in love with them. Highly, highly recommend for couples!

Moxy Hotel – A clean, sleek midrange hotel in South Lake Union. The hotel is a great mix of contemporary design without losing its PNW roots (including the Kurt Cobain throw pillows in the lobby). 

State Hotel or Inn at the Market – These upscale hotels are a block away from one another and are right next to Pikes Market and the Sound. A great choice for a romantic weekend if you want to spend a few extra bucks, and you can’t beat the location. You’ll also be a couple blocks away from the iconic Pink Door restaurant, a must for any Seattle trip.

This Airbnb in Capitol Hill – Great for a single traveler or a couple, this small, cozy apartment is right in the middle of the Hill and steps away from shopping, dining, and drinks. It also has a rooftop patio with a view!

Psst! We have an entire, super detailed guide dedicated to helping you decide where to stay in Seattle!

Hood River

Distance from Portland: 65 miles / 1 hour 

How to get there: I-84 east

If you live in the Portland area, you’ve no doubt spent a day in Hood River, which is also one of our picks for the best day trips from Portland. It also makes for an easy and enjoyable weekend trip since it’s only a hour from the city.

Hood River is known for its outdoor recreation, the active lifestyle of its residents, and is fast becoming somewhat of a foodie mecca. The best way to experience the city is to jump in and try some new activities!

What to Do in Hood River

Here are a few of the best things to do in Hood River, Oregon.

Hiking the Columbia River Gorge – As you drive to Hood River along the 84 (or 14 on the Washington side) you’ll pass dozens of trailheads that take you into the gorgeous (sorry) CRG, many of which we’ve already highlighted on this site. The most popular is probably Dog Mountain for its unrivaled views, abundant wildflowers, and guaranteed workout at a calf-burning 7 miles. A shorter option is McCall Point Hike 20 minutes east of Hood River where you’ll get great views at only 3.5 miles. 

Take a Kiteboarding lesson – The Gorge is known for its wind, and while this can be a nuisance to those on dry land, it makes for some world class windsurfing and kiteboarding. Though the conditions on the Columbia are akin to a black diamond for expert windsurfers, there’s an area called “The Hook,” which is an enclosed lagoon perfect for beginners. There are a number of outfitters in the area that can hook you up (sorry again), but we recommend Cascade Kiteboarding or Gorge Kite

Go paddle-boarding or kayaking – SUP (stand up paddleboards) are all the rage now, and you can try your hand at them in The Hook. Stop by Big Winds or Gorge Paddling Center for rentals and helpful staff to answer all your newbie questions. 

Raft the White Salmon River – Only 20 minutes north of Hood River in Washington is the White Salmon river. A perfect way to spend your day before heading back for delicious food and beer. Check out Zollers or Wet Planet Whitewater for a day on the river shooting rapids.

Drive the Fruit Loop – A 35 mile driving or biking loop to explore the region’s numerous farms, wineries, and cider houses. Don’t miss Hood River Lavender Farm and Draper Girls Country Farm, especially during cherry season!

Where to Stay in Hood River

Hood River Hotel – Though its rooms feature modern amenities, they still preserve the classic vintage vibe of this historic 1912 hotel. They also have a bunkhouse option that sleeps ten people if you’re traveling with a crew on a budget. And lucky you that it’s right next door to the fabulous Celilo restaurant!

Society Hotel in Bingen – Also on the Washington side just across the river sits the impossible trendy and hip Society Hotel. Featuring lovely communal spaces and a tranquil spa.

Adventure Lodge – The Adventure Lodge is a great value with clean, well appointed rooms, and as a bonus you’re only a block away from Kickstand Coffee. To make your travels easier, the lodge also offers shuttle service to many of the area’s outdoor recreation.

White Salmon Surf Shack – Just across the river on the Washington side, this cute surf shack is perfect for a couple with its clean, minimalist aesthetic, hot tub, and location just a few blocks up from Everybody’s Brewing.

Former Railroad Building Turned Downtown Loft – This newly remodeled, chic loft is great for two couples and will put you right in the heart of Hood River (and just a block away from my favorite local brewery, Double Mountain). Relax late at night on your rooftop terrace.

Even MORE Weekend Trips from Portland

A quick and dirty guide to six other equally fabulous options. I tell you, there’s just too much good stuff to do near Portland!


Sisters is a small town located northwest of Bend, and about 2 hours and 45 minutes from Portland.

So named because it sits right under the Three Sisters mountain chain in the Cascades, this is one of those small towns that you randomly drive through and do a double take because everything is so darn cute and charming, and you just have to pull over and check it out. 

If you’re into mountain adventures and a small-town artsy vibe, Sisters is a great spot for a weekend trip!

There are plenty of options for camping like the Creekside Campground or Cold Springs Campground, or if you’d prefer a roof over your head you can stay at the upscale and serene Five Pine Lodge, or Black Butte Ranch (you could honestly spend the whole weekend here with their spa, horseback riding, hiking, golfing, swimming, and more!). 

Don’t leave town without grabbing some marionberry coffee cake or a loaf of sourdough at local favorite, Sisters Bakery.


Falling into the same geez-how-charming-and-quaint category as Sisters, is McMinnville. Though close enough to Portland for an easy day trip (just under an hour), McMinnville and its surrounding area can make for the perfect, easy romantic weekend trip from Portland. 

If you like the idea of strolling down a historic main street, sipping wine at local vineyards, and going antique hunting, look no further than McMinnville. 

You can easily spend an entire afternoon wandering in and out of shops on Third Street, including the sprawling McMinnville Antiques Mall. After shopping, make your way over to Elizabeth Chambers for wine tasting in the heart of town, or go on a mini road trip just south of the city to explore more of the region’s award winning wineries like Johan Vineyards or Left Coast Cellars

If you’re looking for a unique place to stay, check out this Half-Pint Farmhouse in Downtown McMinnville featuring a huge master bedroom with private balcony, or stay in the swanky Atticus Hotel and you’ll be less than a block away from the best breakfast in town at Morning Thunder Cafe


As the first American settlement west of the Rockies, Astoria is chock full of PNW history and is a great weekend destination for couples or families with a ton of parks, beaches, and sightseeing.

The nice thing about spending a whole weekend in Astoria is you’ll have time to explore up and down the coast and can pop over to Washington to visit Cape Disappointment, a 2,000 acre park steeped in Native American and Lewis and Clark history. 

Climbing the Astoria Column is a must for sweeping views of the coast and the Columbia River, as is visiting the 1906 wreck of a sailing vessel, the Peter Iredale. Round out your day with a local brew from Buoy Beer Co, or splurge on a romantic meal at the Silver Salmon Grille

The hip and pet-friendly Norblad Hotel is a great option for budget travelers, or maybe you want to go all out and stay at the luxurious Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa.

Read More: What to Do in Astoria: Where to Eat, Stay, and Play in Oregon’s NW Corner


Definitely one of the long weekend trips from Portland, it takes a little over four hours to drive to Ashland, but it’s a straight shot down the 5, so hit cruise control and queue up your favorite podcasts. 

Ashland’s claim to fame is its world renowned Shakespeare Festival that runs pretty much year round (stopping only in December and January). If you like Shakespeare (or even just live theatre since they showcase more than just the Bard – Cabaret anyone?), put Ashland on your bucket list. But, even the theater isn’t your thing, you can still have an incredible weekend in this charming Southern Oregon town. 

Stroll through the gorgeous downtown Lithia Park and try some of the lithia “health” water pumped in from Lithia springs, then hit up the shops and cafes around the plaza. Stop by the local favorite Martolli’s for a slice of pizza, or splurge on the best steak you’ve ever had at Smithfields

Stay in the reportedly haunted Ashland Springs Hotel in the heart of the city, or if you’re travelling solo (or on a budget), opt for the actually pretty nice Ashland Hostel, a favorite of PCT through hikers. 

Olympic National Park

Sigh. My heart longs for the Olympics. 

From Portland, you can make it to the southernmost point of the Olympics in about three hours, but to really experience it, you’ll want to tack on a bit more time for your drive (and if you can swing it, a 4-day weekend. Trust me – you won’t want to leave). 

The worst part about visiting Olympic National Park is that you have to choose what part of it you want to see, and there’s SO MUCH. The Olympics are known for the diversity of its ecosystems from the Hoh Rain Forest (one of the largest temperate rainforests in the U.S.), to the wild 73 mile long coastline, to the alpines with their glacier capped summits. 

Some of the more popular hikes in the area are Hurricane Hill for alpine views and wildflowers, Hole in the Wall on the rugged and wild Rialto beach, or the Staircase loop (located in the southeast section of the park making it a nice choice coming from Portland). 

Preferably you’ll want to camp or backpack to fully experience what the Olympics have to offer, though there are some lodging options within the park. 

Want to plan a perfect trip to Olympic National Park? We’ve got you covered with our Olympic National Park travel guides. Discover the best hikes in Olympic National Park, find the perfect place to stay in Olympic National Park, and learn everything you need to know to plan your adventure in our super-detailed Olympic National Park itinerary.

Vashon Island

Three hours north of Portland, and just southwest of Seattle, sits Vashon Island. Because you’ll have to take a ferry to get there (which is a novelty to those of us who don’t live in the land of Puget Sound), the island that might otherwise be overrun with visitors is generally pretty calm. 

So if you’re looking for a slower paced, relaxing weekend, you might look into Vashon Island, home to lots of small family farms, wineries, art galleries, and more than a few hippies. Start your day with the locals at Burton Coffee Stand to get a feel for island life, then head uptown for a surprisingly good selection of pubs and restaurants. Two standouts are Vashon Brewing and Bramble House

Take in the idyllic scenery by hiking around Maury Island Marine Park (love this loop!), or head out to the Point Robinson Lighthouse for lovely walking trails and some killer views of Rainier across the Sound. 

To stay, check out the Lodges on Vashon, minimal and contemporary suites that ooze peace and tranquility. For a cozy, romantic stay right on the water, it’s tough to beat this Treasured Waterfront Apartment on Vashon Island.


If you’re planning a trip to the Pacific Northwest, we’ve got you covered with all sorts of super detailed travel guides to our favorite places in Washington and Oregon.

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