Having a bunch of blogger friends is the best. They’re like a combination of the hive mind, Yelp, google and a travel agent, except with really awesome photo skills. When I need recommendations on where to eat or what to do in Portland, Oregon, I ask my Portland bloggers buds first; ditto where to stay at the coast, or what to cook for an upcoming BBQ. So when I wanted to collect a bunch of must-do family and kids activities in Portland, I knew who to ask.
I posed this question in a handful of Portland bloggers groups I belong to:
When friends and their family visit Portland from out of town, where do you send them?
Lucky for me (and you!) they sent a bunch of responses. Read on for insider tips, recommendations and curated travel plans for the best Portland family-friendly spots and kids activities!
The best family + kids activities in Portland
Portland, Oregon is known for being a great family travel destination—for good reason! The City of Roses has tons of great kid activities and family-friendly restaurants, breweries and (ahem) cupcake destinations.
Add all these places to your list when you’re planning your family trip to Portland! Hope to see you there!
Where to play in Portland
- Westmoreland Park. “Westmoreland Park has great walking trails, ducks and geese to visit and a play area that has a sand/water area and a climbing area. There are also tons of great fields to run through.” –Lindsay Ingalls, of the family lifestyle blog Naturally Family (see her whole blog post on Westmoreland Park here)
- Silver Falls State Park (in Silverton, less than an hour and a half from Portland, Oregon). “There are 10 waterfalls there, so regardless of your hiking level, you’re bound to catch some great sights. You can drive your car right up to your campsite, and there are heated restrooms so it’s a comfortable camping experience for everyone.” –Waz Wu, of her eponymous veggie food blog
- Sauvie Island. “We’re huge fans of Sauvie Island. We go berry picking there sometimes weekly. It’s just gorgeous and peaceful out there and my kids love being on the farms and loading up on berries. Our favorite farm is Bella Organic.” -Mary Cressler, of the wine, food and travel blog Vindulge
- Witch’s Castle in Forest Park. “Hey, do you want to go on a super-easy hike to a mysterious, probably haunted, definitely creepy stone witch’s house hidden in the forest? If you do, Portland’s Forest Park has you covered,” says Renee Butcher of the lifestyle blog A Good Hearted Woman. (Read her post, which includes a mini-history lesson and advice for hitting the trail with your kids, here)
- Cooper Mountain Nature Park and Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge, which are just west of Portland. “Neither is ever crowded, and they have easy trails for kids of all ages (and grandparents too!) and great animal & plant learning opps for the kiddos.” –Marlynn Schotland, of the food, lifestyle and travel blog Urban Bliss Life. (Read her full post about these family friendly hikes here!)
Family-friendly places to eat & drink in Portland
- Hopworks Urban Brewery. “Among microbreweries, I have found HUB to be one of the most family-friendly, i.e. with actual kids-only play areas, not just kids menus or high chairs, which most breweries that serve food have.” -Peter Korchnak, of the travel blog Where Is Your Toothbrush (see his run-down post of Portland breweries here)
- 10 Barrel Brewing Company. “They actually decent-tasting kids meals that are served in frisbees (we have a small collection now!). They also have more larger sized tables than other breweries. The doors open up during hot days so kids don’t feel stifled inside (but the space is already bigger than others).” –Marlynn of Urban Bliss Life
- Kyra’s Bake Shop. “We go to Kyra’s Bake Shop in Lake Oswego for lunch after hiking Tryon Creek Natural Area. Kyra has won Cupcake Wars four times. The bake shop has gluten free, dairy free and vegan options.” -Tiffany Petit, of the motherhood and gluten-free living blog Short Sweet Mom.
- Tidbit Food Farm & Gardens. “I am embarrassed to say how often we head to this food cart pod. I love the layout of this food pod, all the vegan food options and the location. Tip: If you can’t find a seat grab your food to go and head one block down to the park.” –Lindsay Ingalls, of the healthy living blog Running With Tongs. (read her full post on Tidbit here)
- Ponzi Wines in Sherwood, about 40 minutes from Portland. “Most wineries are family friendly but one of my faves with kids is Ponzi Vineyards. They have bocce ball courts, and there are always lots of young families with babies and toddlers when we go here. They must be closely supervised (i.e. don’t be THAT jerk parent) but there’s room for them to roam outside, and Ponzi prices are more family friendly to parental wallets than other Oregon wineries right now.” –Marlynn of Urban Bliss Life
So if you’ll excuse me, the family and I are heading out to some of these amazing family-friendly restaurants and kids activities in Portland. See you there!
Where do you send out-of-town visitors for family-friendly restaurants, tourist spots and kids activities in Portland, Oregon?