Drive from Seattle to Portland, OR

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Aug 17th, 2009, 11:25 AM
  #1
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Drive from Seattle to Portland, OR

Planning a trip to Oregon May 2010. Will fly into Seattle, would like to see a bit of that city and drive and see the beautful highlights of Oregon and depart from Oregon. Will have 2 days of flights, coming and going from the East coast, but have 8 days left for sight seeing. Am 75 with aging knees so hiking is not an option. What are your suggestions for the driving route and the must sees?
Olive Oil
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Aug 17th, 2009, 03:42 PM
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You don't have to hike a centimeter in order to enjoy Mount Ranier NP, or Mount Saint Helens NVP. Don't miss the Columbia Gorge Loop or the Portland Rose Garden.
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Aug 17th, 2009, 03:46 PM
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When you say the highlights of Oregon do mean Portland or are you planning to travel around the state?
If Portland is your one stop in Oregon, I would concentrate on the Columbia River Gorge, maybe Mt. Hood area, the coast (I think you can take a lovely scenic train trip over and back for the day), and Mt Washington which is the beautiful large park in Portland (the Japanese garden is world famous).
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Aug 18th, 2009, 07:46 AM
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From Seattle to Portland is only 3 hours right down the freeway. So distance isn't an issue and you have lots of time. I love the coast, so if I had your 8 days, I'd probably head to the beach in both Washington, then Oregon. Oregon coast in particular is spectacular.
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Aug 18th, 2009, 08:18 AM
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I'm planning to see as much of thr beauty in Oregon, not staying long on Portland.
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Aug 18th, 2009, 09:04 AM
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Just to clarify a couple points.... It's Washington Park - which is also where the International Test Rose Garden is located - and there is no train service between Portland and the coast. Bus service is lousy too, for that matter.

So, I'd echo Paul's suggestion to visit St. Helens on the drive from Seattle, stay in Portland long enough to see the Gorge, gardens, and Powells Books, then head to the coast. If you're interested in Lewis & Clark history, Astoria would be a good place to start. Otherwise, Cannon Beach would be my choice. Spend a night or two there, then another two in Yachats on the central coast before returning to Portland for the flight home. (obvious option to see the Gorge and Portland sights at the end of the trip)

The coast and Gorge are Oregon's most popular visitor attractions. Third is Crater Lake, but as it's five hours south of Portland, I wouldn't suggest it unless you have a full week or more here.
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Aug 19th, 2009, 07:53 PM
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I have some of your similar problems (just had my 76th birthday). Have you considered taking a train from Seattle to Portland? It's a nice trip and a good alternative to I-5, which is (at best) a pain
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Aug 19th, 2009, 08:39 PM
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I-5 is really your only practical route from Seattle to Portland - it's a direct, easy 3 hour drive. There is no "back way" that makes any sense, unless you want to detour an extra 2-3 hours through Yakima, WA or Aberdeen, WA, without adding much scenery. I-5 is not a very pretty drive, but it's the only way that makes sense.

Portland has lots of natural beauty in the city itself such as the aforementioned Washington Park which includes the International Rose Test Garden. You'd be missing one of the highlights of the State of Oregon if you miss that garden (at least in summer/early fall), in my opinion.
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Aug 27th, 2009, 09:06 AM
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The rose garden in Portland was nice, but wasn't anywhere near as spectacular as the one at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, B.C. So, we really liked the Japanese Garden right next to the Portland Rose Garden, and spent an hour or two there, although it was a lot of walking. I saw a tram giving tours, so you may be able to take that through Washington Park.
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Jan 24th, 2010, 09:45 AM
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I am driving from Seattle to Portland in March. Can anyone recommend any good roadside attractions off of the 5? ANy natural sights or restaurants or shops?

We're willing to take detours of up to 30-45 minutes for some good sights!
Thanks!
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Jan 24th, 2010, 10:10 AM
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The main attractions are Mt. Rainier and Mt Saint Helens, and they are much more than a 45-minute detour.

Olympia, the capital, about one hour south of Seattle is a pleasant town with some good places to eat.

If you like funky old bars, McMenamin's Olympic Club in Centralia, which hasn't changed much since 1913, is worth a look: http://www.mcmenamins.com/index.php?loc=58&id=479
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Jan 27th, 2010, 12:01 AM
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It will be nice trip) You turn car at renral service or use seattle towncar?
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Jan 27th, 2010, 07:02 PM
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OO -- Still planning that trip? If you do, here's a tip: Car rentals starting at SEATAC airport have one of the highest tax and fee rates in the USA (I've only seen higher in Europe!. but Phoenix is a close second.) I suggest you rent a car for pick-up in DOWNTOWN Seattle (not taxed at airport rates). On a 2-week Hertz rental last July I saved $200 by doing this, even though I returned the car to the Seattle airport at the end of my stay. Reserve a hotel stay for your first night in downtown (pick a hotel within walking distance of your car rental company), and take a cab from the airport.
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Mar 2nd, 2010, 06:50 AM
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Don't mean to hijack the thread, but I have a quick question. Is it possible to visit Crater lake around mid or end of April? I read online that it is not recommended due to existing snow. Thanks in advance
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Mar 2nd, 2010, 08:03 AM
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> Is it possible to visit Crater lake around mid or end of April?

The fastest way to get the best info like that is to check out the URL for that Park -- www.nps.gov/crla

More specifically
www.nps.gov/crla/planyourvisit/hours.htm

For (literally) up to the minute info on what's open:

http://www.nps.gov/crla/planyourvisi...CP_JUMP_249758
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Mar 2nd, 2010, 08:26 AM
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TariT, You will find the best pie you will ever eat at a roadside restaurant at milepost 68. It used to be called "Spiffys." It might just say "Roadside Restaurant" on the sign now, not sure. It is on the southeast side of the exit. The fruit pies are to die for. Others may like the sweeter, frothier ones.
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Sep 15th, 2010, 07:30 AM
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we were also thinking of flying to Portland and Seattle. We want to leave Oct 1st and return on the 9th. Starting to think we should pick one or the other. We really didn't care which one we flew into. Could not tell if we needed to rent a car or wait until we decide to drive to the next city spend a few days there and fly out. Any suggestions on what to do?
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Sep 15th, 2010, 03:30 PM
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"Spiffy's" was still "Spiffy's" when I last went there in February of 2010. The pie is gigantic.


Islandgirl: This thread is ANCIENT...


(though I think you already have a new one up)
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