Know Before You Go
Downtown Portland is well served by TriMet, the city’s public light rail, Portland Streetcar and bus system.
Portland’s compact, walkable downtown offers easy access to great food, green spaces, cultural offerings, tax-free shopping and seemingly endless things to do. Browse the Rose City’s most diverse mix of retail brands, see a show and grab a bite at a food cart or fine restaurant — all conveniently located in downtown Portland.
Where to Stay in Downtown
Nestled within the bustle of business and shopping districts, the Ace Hotel is a bohemian chic place to stay with a Stumptown Coffee inside the lobby and European-style tavern Clyde Common to feed the weary traveller. For historic charm, try McMenamins Crystal Hotel, around the corner from their iconic music venue (with a bouncing floor) the Crystal Ballroom with a saltwater soaking pool in the basement, bar and cafe, these quaint guest rooms offer the best place to rest in the middle of it all.
Where to Eat and Drink in Downtown
Coffee connoisseurs select from a hand-written menu of single-origin, house-roasted beans at Courier Coffee Bar. Once you’ve made your choice, baristas grind the beans right in front of you to prepare a perfect pour-over into a steaming mason jar. Never short on local-roasted coffee, for award-wining single origin coffee visit the green wall at Coava Coffee for an urban escape after wondering the city center.
Flying Elephants, a Portland-local chain across from Director Park, offers deli fare from a fresh salad or sandwich with classic pastries to sate the sweet tooth. Nearby, another perfect no-fuss lunch in central city is Pastini Pastaria, serving pasta dishes with a contemporary take on Italian bistro dining. For a modern and romantic experience head to Q Restaurant & Bar with electric menus featuring dishes inspired by Pacific Northwest cuisine. Skip lunch and head right to the sweets at Ruby Jewel Ice Cream offering decadent handcrafted flavors, ice cream sandwiches and a vintage soda fountain.
As the evening winds down, relax into a leather armchair at Multnomah Whiskey Library, where expert staff offers recommendations from amongst 1,500 available spirits. Count on a line to get in; downstairs, The Green Room serves as a sophisticated (and thirst-quenching) waiting area.
Downtown Portland boasts a wide array of shopping options, from major national and international retailers to locally owned boutiques and specialty shops.
From food carts to fine dining, you’re always just steps away from great food in downtown.
Walk to a wide range of entertainment in downtown including theaters, museums and parks that play host to festivals and farmers' markets.
Things to Do in Downtown
Museums, parks, sports arenas, shopping and theaters; these attractions in downtown Portland are enough to keep any traveler busy for days. Known as Portland’s living room, Pioneer Courthouse Square is a gathering space where most days you can people enjoying their lunch breaks, or taking a beat. From food carts to art installations and performance the Square is a must see.
Walk along the South Park Blocks, a green strip spanning 12 city-blocks ending at the campus of Portland State University, to discover public art, the Portland Art Museum, Oregon Historical Society, and seasonally, the Portland Farmers Market at PSU, in the heart of Downtown’s cultural hub. For sports fans, look no further than Providence Park, the home fields of professional soccer teams Portland Thorns and Portland Timbers.
Downtown Shopping Highlights
Parisian-style shopping at Union Way provides only-in-Portland shopping. This sleek arcade houses iconic local brands like Danner and Bridge & Burn, the latter of which you can show Pacific Northwest pride by shopping for T-shirts emblazoned with slogans like “The Upper Left Coast,” “Pacific Wonderland” and “Rivers & Lakes”. Also find trendy denim boutique Self Edge and if you need sweet and savory dining options after all of that shopping try Boxer Ramen and Wailua Shave Ice. Nearby boutiques Frances May, Pinkham Millinery, Tender Loving Empire feature local designers and artisans, while Woonwinkel offers a curated selection of housewares and jewelry from local and international artists.
Step into WILDFANG, a bastion of tomboy fashion, beloved by celebrities like Janelle Monae and Kristen Stewart for its feminist T-shirts and gender-binary-breaking collection of blazers, bow ties and button-ups.
Take a moment to stroll through Pioneer Courthouse Square — affectionately known as Portland’s living room — on your way to the central city’s premier shopping center, Pioneer Place which boasts more than 75 stores, including H&M, Apple and J. Crew. (Did we mention that all shopping in Oregon is tax-free?)
Evoking Paris’ intimate passageways and Scandinavian architecture, this shop-filled alley connects downtown Portland’s West End with the Pearl District.
Downtown Portland's home for big-brand shopping houses the major brands that fashionistas crave, along with an expansive food court and a movie theater.
Open every Saturday from March–December, Portland Saturday Market is the largest arts-and-crafts fair in the U.S.
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