At these local monuments, museums and landmarks, you can explore Portland’s pioneer origins and Native history, as well as exceptional collections of art, crafts and more. Read on for our top picks of museums, historical offerings and things to do in and around Portland.
Portland Art Museum
The Portland Art Museum is central to the city's cultural district, housing a large and wide-ranging collection of artworks.
High in the West Hills, the Pittock Mansion offers picture-perfect views of the city as well as a revealing insights into Portland's history.
Oregon Historical Society
The Oregon Historical Society collection includes thousands of historic artifacts (including the “Portland Penny"), permanent and rotating exhibits and an extensive research library.
Center for Native American Art
The Portland Art Museum's Center for Contemporary Native Art showcases the work of modern-day Native American artists.
Oregon Rail Heritage Center
The free museum features three vintage steam locomotives, including the one that pulled the U.S. Bicentennial Freedom Train in 1976.
The Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education
Explore the rich history and ongoing resiliency of Oregon’s diverse Jewish community with interactive exhibits and experiences for all ages at OJMCHE.
Portland’s Shanghai Tunnels
In the late 1850s, a lonely logger might get more than he bargained for at his local tavern. See Portland's historic underbelly on a Shanghai Tunnel tour.
The Portland area's only national historic site is centered around a complete replica of Fort Vancouver, a fur-trading camp founded in 1825.
Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI)
With a planetarium, a giant-screen theater, a retired navy submarine, traveling exhibits and “After Dark” events, OMSI has lures for all ages.
Portland Children’s Museum
Dreaming of a family-friendly afternoon full of hands-on learning? Head to the Portland Children’s Museum, in attraction-packed Washington Park.
Portland’s Weirdest Museums
From the world’s oldest (fake) museum to the only gallery focused on vintage vacuum cleaners, these attractions keep Portland weird.
“Portland has gotten a lot of attention in recent years for its thriving arts scene, but few people know about the organization that originally put the city on the art-world map: Portland Center for the Visual Arts (PCVA). PCVA was an artist-run contemporary art organization that brought innovative artists and performers from around the country…
“Flax was once touted as a cash crop in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, but for various reasons the plant never lived up to its potential. It wasn’t for lack of trying though — in the 1930s, Portland Public Schools produced a series of hand-tinted glass lantern slides depicting scenes from the flax industry, from planting to…
“Reading may be falling out of fashion in these times of increasingly short attention spans, but books were once a big business, and publishers employed gifted artists to promote their newest titles. The Art of Reading presents gems from the golden age of poster advertising, with color lithographs from some of the most famous names…