For travelers seeking a scenic destination filled with culture and art, delicious eateries, look no further than Portland, Oregon! Van Rentals and personal vehicle rentals may be the way to go in this Pacific Northwestern hub famous for its hip, alternative culture and thriving art scene. This city has become a popular travel destination in recent years, particularly among millennials. When you take into account all of the natural wonders and sights to see, renting a van in Portland, OR is one of the best ways to explore the city and its surrounding areas, ensuring that you get from place to place with efficiency and ease while absorbing all of the natural beauty that the Pacific Northwest has to offer along the way.
GENERAL TRAVEL TIPS
Though Oregon’s weather is typically steady and pleasant throughout the year, May through September offers visitors ideal weather. Oregon is well known for its wet, rainy weather year round. However, Portland winters typically bring heavier rains and chilly weather, with average temperatures in the low thirties. The summer months bring beautiful sunny weather with temperatures as high as the eighties and nineties, which is conducive to the many outdoor activities that the Portland area has to offer. However, it's definitely good to be prepared for light showers any time. Renting a van in Portland, OR is an excellent way to camp in the great outdoors while ensuring that you will stay dry and cozy in any weather.
After obtaining a Portland Oregon van rental, be prepared to sample a number of Portland's unique, international gastronomy. From Spanish tapas bars to Southern comfort food, to authentic Peruvian cuisine, Portland has recently become known throughout the country for culinary innovation. Well-known for its thriving arts and culture scene, visitors are encouraged to take in a show and to visit renowned galleries of art or film.
SITES TO SEE
One of the most efficient and enjoyable ways to see the entire city of Portland is to ride the aerial tram. With a fairly short gondola ride, you can see all of the cosmopolitan downtown area, towering Mount Hood, the riverfront, and much more.
The remarkable Forest Park cannot be missed when renting a van in Portland, OR -- just a short distance from, this eight-mile, hilly park along the Willamette River is one of the largest urban forests in the country. Forest Park is wonderful place to hike and enjoy nature in the middle of the city, which is just a short rental van ride from restaurants, breweries, and other downtown attractions.
For a truly authentic Portland experience, visit the Hawthorne District. “Eclectic” is typically the first word that comes to mind for visitors of this quirky and offbeat neighborhood in southeastern Portland, which has become a hub for vintage shops and hip cafes.
In Portland, even the food is expressive of the city’s creative spirit. Choose from the classics, such as the Pacific Northwest’s famous oysters, fresh sushi, or premium-grade steak. If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, try something new and unexpected, such as an authentic Russian vodka bar and restaurant or a sampling of various Argentinian cuisine.
Division Street, home to some of the most acclaimed international and local cuisine in Portland, was a relatively lesser-known outside the city only a decade ago. Now, the area is just one example of the explosive expansion of the city. Division Street is home to a number of delicious destinations: Indian restaurants that show Bollywood films with dinner, unique bar foods featured on “Top Chef” and decadent homemade pies.
If you’re walking around Portland’s streets, take advantage of the city’s wildly diverse selection of food trucks. Ranging from Thai street food, Italian paninis, to “Viking soul food”, food trucks are known city-wide as a culinary delight that cannot be missed. In a Portland Oregon rental van, one can easily drive from truck to truck and try to sample them all!
ARTS AND CULTURE
A big reason for many travelers to visit Portland is for the thriving arts and culture scene. One could spend hours upon hours visiting art museums alone. The cinema is an incredibly important artistic medium to Portlanders; there is almost always one or two film festivals premiering in the city at any given time. Renting a van in Portland, OR is an ideal mode of transport for visiting museums and shows around the city.
Portland is a bustling grand stage for music with a lot of versatility. One can see music acts in Valentines, a tiny hard-to-find venue that probably couldn’t seat many more than 40 people, to the Zoo Amphitheater, an outdoor picnic on the grass vibe with Asian Elephants behind the audience. There’s Mississippi Studio, a revamped Baptist Church with amazing acoustics, to Holocene, a theme-based dance club made from former San Francisco Residences inspired by their nostalgia for the dance scene from home and the clubs they’d seen overseas in Berlin. All in all, Portland is an amazingly prodigious place for any music lover to enjoy.
ENJOY THE GREAT OUTDOORS
In part because of its perennial rains, Oregon is renowned for its nature. Sprawling miles of trees give the sensation that the entire state is a thick, green forest, which makes for a magical drive in Portland Oregon van rentals. While Portland is the largest city in the state, it pales in comparison to this stunning nature Oregon has to offer. Situated in some of the Pacific Northwest's most dazzling scenery, Portland is an ideal destination for hikers, rock climbers, or any lover of the outdoors.
One destination that literally can’t be missed on a trip to Portland is the astonishing Willamette Valley, as many of Oregon’s major cities are located within the valley itself. The Willamette Valley is as impressive in beauty and diversity as it is in size. At 150 miles long, this massive valley contains the roaring Willamette River, three different mountain ranges, and the historic Oregon Trail, the path that lead countless travelers through the Pacific Northwest in the 19th Century. Today, it is home to over 70 percent of Oregon’s population! Renting a van in Portland, OR is a fantastic way to see as much of this beautiful, sprawling valley as is physically possible.
After a day of exploring the various trails in the Cascade, Calapooya, and Oregon Coast Mountain Ranges and natural attractions in the Valley, such as the Grotto National Sanctuary, or the bicycling through farms and fields, travelers can spend some time relaxing with a well-deserved glass of wine at one of over 500 wineries in the valley, known as being “Oregon Wine Country”: rumored to have a winery about every three miles. Using a Portland Oregon van rental and a designated driver, a wonderful day for wine-lovers could be spent hopping to and from various vineyards for wine tasting.
At an imposing 11,250 feet, Mount Hood is Oregon’s highest peak. Using a Portland Oregon van rental, this quick ride 50 miles east of Portland on well-maintained mountain roads will find travelers at the foot of this prominent backdrop of the city’s skyline.
While the mountain is considered a dormant volcano, climbing the south side of the mountain is all the proof you need that it is very much alive. Active areas along the trail commonly release sulphuric gasses and steam as a reminder that Mount Hood is still kicking. Among the most popular mountaineering treks in the region, it is smart to plan ahead. While this feat can be accomplished in a single day, climbers who do this typically start the trek at between midnight and 2:00AM in order to reach the summit by sunrise -- both to take in the spectacular view of a sunrise from the top of Oregon, and to avoid dangerous rock fall when the ice melts in the morning sun. It should be noted that this climb does require some skill. It is not just a hike, but a mountaineering adventure.
The Volcano Land Nature tours are a great way to see the surrounding scenery of Portland. The Columbia River Gorge tour, in particular, is perfection incarnate. If you have any inkling of desire to explore the outdoors of Oregon, definitely consider a tour with Volcano Lands. The online booking process is flawless, and their guides are not only professional and punctual but optimistic and excited to be working in such a beautiful place. The tour is serene and educational in an easygoing way. There are beautiful waterfalls, edible plants in the forest, and even wonderful wildlife to watch. Lastly, they end the tour with tasty deli sandwiches overlooking the river before checking out a local hatchery. This is but one of many great tours they offer, including car, fishing, and helicopter tours! All in all, it’s a great value for such a beautiful experience.
Portland, Oregon is an utterly unique, wildly diverse city. From one of the most creative array of dining-out options in the country to some of the most unusual, counter culture art scenes you’ll experience, extraordinary outdoor adventures, Portland is a city that deserves to be explored as thoroughly as possible in whatever time is allotted. The best way to see it all, particularly for a larger group of travelers, is by renting a van in Portland, OR. One of the most versatile forms of group transportation, an Airport Rental Van can be used for shuttling from museum to restaurant to hiking trail and can even be used for camping in the great outdoors. For information on booking a Portland Oregon van rental, Contact Airport Rental Van by calling 877-826-4680, or visit the reservations page on the Airport Rental Van website and explore options for renting a van in Portland, OR or many locations all over the country.
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