Know Before You Go
This section was produced in collaboration with The Asian Reporter, a community newspaper featuring international and Pacific Northwest news and events with an Asian focus.
Japanese American Historical Plaza and Friendship Circle
Thirteen stone markers commemorate the history of the Issei (first generation Japanese) and their descendants in the Japanese American Historical Plaza. One hundred ornamental cherry trees link the plaza to the Friendship Circle, where you’ll find a “singing” sculpture created to celebrate Portland’s 30-year Sister City relationship with Sapporo, Japan. Guided tours are offered by Japanese American Museum of Oregon.
Japanese American Museum of Oregon
The Japanese American Museum of Oregon preserves and shares the culture and history of Japanese Americans in the Pacific Northwest through exhibits, talks and community events. The museum’s location, in an area referred to today as “Old Town Chinatown,” was home to more than 100 Japanese businesses prior to the spring of 1942.
Nichiren Buddhist Temple of Portland
The Nichiren Buddhist Temple of Portland is a community center that hosts annual events, including a New Year’s celebration, an event for Buddha’s birthday, and festivals for spring and Obon. Visitors welcome.
Oregon Buddhist Temple
One of the oldest religious centers for the Japanese community, the Oregon Buddhist Temple is especially noteworthy for its beautiful sanctuary altar. The temple hosts special events to celebrate the new year, the birth of Buddha and also Obon. Visitors are welcome.
Oregon Historical Society
The Oregon Historical Society maintains substantial photo collections, news clippings and family history materials on Japanese Americans in Oregon. Collections include letters, diaries and objects from the internment.
Portland's Japanese American community offers engaging activities all year long.
Thousands gather every August in Southeast Portland to celebrate the Jade District’s diverse immigrant community at the Jade International Night Market.
Portland's Asian communities celebrate the Lunar New Year with traditional dances, lantern ceremonies and stunning performances.
Portland Art Museum
The Portland Art Museum has six galleries dedicated to its extensive collection of Asian art. The Japanese galleries include many prints, paintings and decorative arts from the Edo and Meiji periods in addition to contemporary art. Open Tuesday through Sunday.
Portland Japanese Garden
Acclaimed as the most authentic Japanese Garden outside of Japan, this is an ideal retreat for meditation and contemplation. Covering nearly 12 acres, the Portland Japanese Garden features eight different gardens, replete with exquisite plants, carefully placed stones and relaxing pools.
Asian-American drum ensemble Portland Taiko performs throughout the year at festivals, parks and many other venues. Taiko is an energetic fusion of traditional Japanese drumming, rhythm, movement and storytelling.
Japan-America Society of Oregon
A private, non-profit, membership organization, the Japan-America Society of Oregon is dedicated to promoting business, education and cultural exchange and enhancing mutual understanding between the people of Japan, Oregon and Southwest Washington.
The Portland-Japan Connection
Many of the best Portland goods and restaurants are popping up in a surprising place: Japan. (And vice versa!)
Japanese American Community
Japanese Americans have been a vital part of Portland's history for generations.
Japanese American History
Japanese Americans have been a critical part of Portland's past and present.
Portland Japanese Garden
A haven of meticulously maintained, tranquil beauty, proclaimed one of the most authentic Japanese gardens outside of Japan, the Portland Japanese Garden offers meandering streams, intimate walkways and an unsurpassed view of Mount Hood.
Ota Tofu: America’s Oldest Tofu House Calls Portland Home
This local family-run shop has been making tofu by hand for over a century.
Portland Ramen Restaurants
The Portland ramen scene has exploded in recent years, spurred by the arrival of two authentic eateries straight from Tokyo.
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