Travel Bug — Portland


Check out part 1 of this trip — Seattle!

Portland is pretty fantastic. Some people don’t like to hear this, but Portland is definitely the Milwaukee of the West. No doubt, man. I loved it. We stayed in a beautiful loft, ate fun food, and didn’t do much else. Not gonna lie, we may have watched a few episodes of Portlandia while we were there. You have to, it’s just too hilarious!



Portland Loft

Where We Stayed
Airbnb loft in the Pearl District

Full Airbnb review to come.

Day 1

mt st helens 3mt st helens 2mt st helens

Where We Ate

Los Gorditos — A quick mexican dinner after we finally made it to town. Decent veggie options.

What We Did

Our first day in Portland was spent mostly in the car on our way to Portland. We stopped at the Washington State Capital Building because Bryce is an adorable nerd. But the highlight of the day was Mount St. Helens.

Mt. St. Helens — We did some crazy mountain driving in our little rented VW Golf (nicknamed Heinrich). Then we did a teensy bit of climbing up to an observation area and beyond. I’m just so in awe of this planet. Its beauty and power is incredible and Mt. St. Helens is the epitome of that. It’s incredible how the landscape was affected after its eruption in 1980. The photo above is a tree that was blown over in the blast.


Day 2

food truck 1 food truck 2 natural selection 2 natural selection rose garden 3rose gardenjapanese garden 2

Where We Ate

Food Trucks (The Dump Truck & a Waffle Truck) — The food truck scene in Portland is crazy amazing. We went back to The Dump Truck multiple times because it was just so good. They offer a variety of dumplings and rocked my world. We also tried out a waffle truck and had ours served with belgian chocolate syrup that I couldn’t get enough of.

Natural Selection — A high-end vegetarian restaurant, Natural Selection is itty bitty, reservation only, and offers price-fixed meals or a la carte items. We decided to go big and booked the chef’s table which included an extra course with dinner. We also opted to have wine pairings with dinner which were gigantic. All of the courses were gigantic as well and I was so full and tipsy I couldn’t take anymore. But it was AMAZING. So delicious, incredible service, amazing experience.

What We Did

International Rose Test Garden — This is the most delightful smelling place in the world, I’m convinced of it. I felt like I was wandering around in the Secret Garden. It was a beautiful, sunny day. My pale Wisconsin legs blinded everyone around me, but I was happy as could be.

Portland Japanese Garden — Just a hop, skip, and jump away from the rose garden, this place is so incredibly beautiful. I would give anything to get the place to myself for some meditation time. If you visit, please take the time to enjoy each space in the garden. I sat for a while and watched as the tourists raced through the garden with their cameras. It made me sad that the garden wasn’t being used for its intended purpose. Enjoy it!


Day 3

brunchboxamnesia brewery

Where We Ate

Brunch Box — The home of greasy hangover food, I was surprised to find that Brunch Box serves amazing vegetarian burgers alongside their huge, indulgent regular burgers. The buns of our burgers were grilled cheese sandwiches. Insanity.

What We Did

Amnesia Brewery — Our friend’s friend owns this place so we stopped in for a visit and a beer tasting. It was nice, quiet, and fun.


Day 4

cannon beach 2 cannon beach 3 cannon beachDeschutes BreweryvoodooVoodoo Donut

Where We Ate

Voodoo Doughnuts — Voodoo is a famous tourist trap. Normally we aren’t tourist trap people, but we had to give it a try. It was a huge line outside of a glitter painted building in a bizarre neighborhood. The doughnuts were insanely sweet and Portland natives made fun of our infamous pink box on the way back to our rented place. I’m glad we did it so I can say we did, but we didn’t even finish the doughnuts. I’ll be the first to say it, Voodoo Doughnuts is NOT a must see.

Deschutes Brewery & Restaurant — This was our last dinner in town and it was a nice one. Bryce ordered a beer flight and our dinners were quite rich, but very yummy.

What We Did

Powell’s — This stop was actually the next day right before we headed to the airport. What a fun bookstore! We both picked up a couple of books for plane reading, but we spent a lot of time exploring the store before grabbing our books.

Cannon Beach — This was probably the best part of our trip. I’ve never seen anything like it. We almost ran out of gas on our way there and the panic that ensued was still worth it. If you do nothing else when in Oregon, visit this beach.


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