Things To Do in Portland This Fall 2022

 

If you’re looking for the perfect fall getaway, Portland is your place. A gentle changing of the seasons – crisp, golden mornings and a stunning shift in scenery – Portland is a unique experience for locals and tourists alike. From pumpkin picking to rock climbing, seasonal train rides, and more, we’ve rounded up the best things to do in Portland this fall.

 

Watch Portland Fall Foliage in Forest Park

Fall in Portland is a burst of color with native trees like the bigleaf maple, red alder, Oregon white oak, and western larch painting the state. Early October invites you to truly see the changing of the seasons as the leaves are just starting to turn. If you’re looking for a true burst of color, grab your day pack and head out on the trails! The best hikes near Portland have stunning views of foliage in peak bloom!

However, the easiest way to enjoy the fall foliage in Portland is to simply wander around any urban park or city streets! Forest Park is the way to go if you want to get away from the city and commune with nature. Take a stroll with family or friends and bask in the gorgeous views of endless golden trees.

Fall foliage in Forest Park is spectacular, offering over 5,000 acres of varied and evolving forest ecosystem, home to hundreds of species of flowers and shrubs, including trillium and sword fern.

There are endless trails to enjoy, including the Wildwood Trail, a 30-mile path connecting the city’s northwest corner with the Audubon Society Sanctuary, Pittock Mansion, and Washington Park. But don’t worry, there’s no need to do the whole thing! The trail can be accessed just northwest of the Washington Park MAX station and offers plenty of loop options for a hike that fits what you’re looking for.

 

Get festive at the Hood River Harvest Fest

Your Fall in Portland getaway isn’t complete without the annual Hood River Harvest Fest. The festival offers a chance to taste local produce as well as homemade artisanal treats such as pies, jams, smoked salmon, and chocolate-covered cherries. This festival is also great for buying holiday gifts from numerous local artists. It’s not just a great excuse to get out and enjoy the fall air –  it’s also an opportunity for you to learn more about the region’s history and unique agricultural traditions.

The festival takes place over three days in early October each year. You’ll want to plan in advance as hotels fill up quickly during this time of year. Bundle up and grab your tickets here to enjoy the Hood River Harvest Fest.

 

Explore Willamette Valley Wine Country

If you’d rather trade in your pumpkin-spiced latte for a glass of Pinot Noir, visiting the Willamette Valley Wine Country should be on your list of things to do in Portland. One of the world’s premier Pinot Noir–producing areas, the Willamette Valley is home to more than 700 wineries and vineyards. 

The Valley boasts a vast collection of vibrant events for all ages. From live music amidst the backdrop of the springtime bloom to traditional holiday gatherings in winter, there’s always something to enjoy in the thriving region. Perhaps the best part of wine tasting in the Willamette Valley is that the fun doesn’t have to stop when you leave! Thanks to the Oregon Wines Fly Free program offered by the Oregon Wine Board, Travel Oregon, and Alaska Airlines, you can carry as many bottles of the state’s finest wines as your luggage allowance can. 

If wine isn’t your thing, the Valley is also home to many breweries and microbreweries that serve craft beer year-round. The Willamette Valley has something for everyone!

 

Visit a Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins! It’s time for the annual pumpkin-picking fun all around the greater Portland area. Local farms set up hayrides, corn mazes, pumpkin cannons – yes, cannons that shoot out pumpkins! – for a full day of family fun. Grab a fresh apple cider and weave your way through rows and rows of pumpkins in different shapes and sizes until you choose the one that’s right for you!

We do recommend bringing along an extra pair of gloves and a scarf to get bundled up in. Fall temperatures vary, and the crisp air can get quite chilly!

Here’s a list of the Portland places you can look for pumpkin patches.

 

Stroll the Portland Parks

While summer might have you exploring waterfalls near Portland, autumn is the perfect time for a stroll through the exceptionally stunning urban parks of Portland. Washington Park is a lovely, lush urban park in Portland’s downtown area. The park is known for its voluminous trees, many of which are from different parts of the world, and turn stunning shades of red and orange during the fall season. 

The Japanese Garden tucked away in Washington Park bursts into color every year. Japanese maples and other fall show-offs were planted to expertly frame certain areas. Ponds, waterfalls, and statues are all highlighted in stunning fashion.

A note for families with young tots: as many areas are accessible only by stairs, it might be easiest to leave the stroller at home! Little ones can stay snug in a carrier, and older kids can take the lead, picking the next turn on the bountiful park paths! Afterward, stop in the teahouse for a meal or a mochi ice cream treat. 

 

Get Spooked at Haunted Houses 

Portland is home to some of the best haunted houses in the Northwest. Haunted-house hopping is arguably one of the best things to do in Portland this fall.  Enjoy a thrilling evening out with friends and family. You’ll be frightened by these haunts’ Hollywood-level sets, animatronics, and makeup effects. And if you’re looking for fun Halloween activities beyond haunted houses, don’t worry—the City of Roses has plenty for you to enjoy this October! Here are all the haunted houses in Portland and nearby cities, including Gresham, Beaverton, and Canby. 

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Autumn is a great time to visit Portland. The weather is crisp and friendly, the air smells like apples, and the leaves start flashing off their most stunning colors. Ponderosa Inn welcomes you with a hot cup of coffee no matter how you’d like to spend your fall in Portland. Located in Gresham, a charming, quaint suburb bordering the Columbia River, we are near Portland Parks, pumpkin patches, and coffee shops for your autumn activities. 

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