Are you looking to visit Oregon? In case you haven’t heard, Oregon is this magical U.S. State with a ton of surprising landscapes and is home to the city of Portland and legalized marijuana. Oregon travel is special because the state is so diverse, friendly, and magical. If you are one of the lucky visitors jetting off to this gem of the Pacific Northwest, there are a few things you need to know before traveling to Oregon.
10 Things To Know Before Traveling To Oregon
#1: Traveling to Oregon isn’t that expensive
Our round trip flights from Florida to Oregon rang in at about $300 a piece and would have been cheaper if we acted faster. There is a common misconception that the Pacific Northwest is super expensive to get to but this simply isn’t true. Many major US Airlines, including budget airlines, fly into Portland and make Oregon travel budget friendly right from the start. If you are hoping to travel in Oregon at a certain time of year, try to make your flight dates flexible if possible to save the most amount of money on flights.
#2: The Columbia River Gorge is actually really close to Portland
Before we left, the GPS said it would take about an hour to drive from Portland to the Columbia River Gorge. We were pleasantly surprised that we hit the first sight in under 30 minutes! The drive is super easy to make and goes by quickly. Waterfalls, hikes, and beautiful drives are all within a very close proximity to the city. If you only have a few days in Portland, make sure to take a day trip to the Columbia River Gorge! Luckily, travel in Oregon is quite enjoyable because many great stops are all close to each other! If you are hoping to go to Oregon and see all of the best nature, make sure to rent a car so you can explore.
#3: The people in Oregon are extremely nice
We were honestly shocked at how absolutely lovely the people of Oregon were. If you are planning to visit Oregon, rest assured you will meet some of the nicest people you will ever meet! They were always cheerful, would stop in the middle of the road to let us cross the street even though they totally had the right of way, they would drive respectfully, hold the doors, make small talk, and more! If there is one thing you need to know before traveling to Oregon, it is that the people will make it their priority to be kind and helpful! Traveling to Oregon is a fantastic experience and the citizens certainly do their part to make you feel welcome.
#4. The cost of living is higher making it a little more pricey to visit Oregon
Depending on where you are from, the cost of living in Oregon may be higher than what you are used to. When compared to products in Florida, goods in Oregon were about $2-$3 more expensive on average. Gas was sixty cents more per gallon and food at chain restaurants cost a bit more too. That being said, if you are hoping to visit Oregon and already live in a place where the cost of living is higher than Oregon, you will enjoy a price cut! Don’t worry, although the cost of living may be more expensive, it won’t make a huge impact on the price of your trip. The higher [or lower!] cost of living is one of those things to know about Oregon that most people don’t consider so you will be one step ahead of most when planning your Oregon travel!
#5. You can find almost every type of landscape imaginable when you travel Oregon
No, we are completely serious! Whether you are into coastal waters, towering mountains, the arid desert, rock formations, lava fields, urban environments, hot springs, waterfalls, lush forests and more, Oregon truly has it all! When you travel to Oregon, you are sure to find a surprising landscape around every corner and that makes for a fun trip! The best part about Oregon travel? Many of these landscapes are within an hour of each other so you don’t have to spend all day driving in the car.
#6. Legal marijuana in Oregon really isn’t that big of a deal
One of the Oregon laws to know is that marijuana is indeed legal in the state. Many people are iffy about the legalization of pot, but the state of Oregon isn’t in complete disarray and everything is totally fine! Don’t let this small Oregon law about marijuana stop you from traveling to Oregon. While there are smoke shops around, the only difference is that you are going to smell weed and not cigarettes if someone else is smoking. We visit Oregon quite a lot and neither of us smoke anything and this Oregon law really didn’t bother us at all! Just travel around Oregon like you would any other state!
#7. Plastic bags are banned in some Oregon cities
There is a city-wide ban on plastic bags in Portland and other major cities in the state of Oregon. When traveling to Oregon, keep this in mind and pack a small reusable bag. Even giant stores such as Walmart only give out paper bags and most have no handles making it very difficult to carry multiple items when you visit Oregon. We love that the use of plastic is reduced, but come prepared so you aren’t stuck carrying a zillion paper bags or no bags at all! This is another one of the Oregon laws to know before planning your trip. Preparedness is key and will make your travel in Oregon much more enjoyable.
#8. Healthy foods are readily available when traveling in Oregon
The people of Oregon love their clean eating and healthy foods are really accessible when you are traveling in Oregon. Instead of making a trip out of the way to visit Whole Foods or a local grocery store, healthy options abound at chain stores such as Walmart, Safeway, and Fred Myers. Walmart tailors their offerings to the shoppers in each store demographic so it makes sense that they offer a ton of fresh and healthy food options in Oregon. If you are a vegan or vegetarian or just someone who likes to eat clean, make sure to visit Oregon for the ultimate foodie experience!
#9. Never approach Elk when you visit Oregon
It is important to never ever approach Elk when you visit Oregon. Elk are often spotted in the mountains and near the coast of Oregon. They are huge animals with beautiful antlers, and they often stand their ground when approached by humans. They do not run away like your everyday deer will, but that doesn’t make them safe. If you see Elk on the side of the road, it is totally fine to pull over for a picture, but avoid getting out of your car and never try to pet or feed these wild animals. The wild animals are one of the best parts about Oregon travel but you must respect them and never try to approach or feed them. This keeps the animals in Oregon wild and you safe.
#10. Natural beauty is always close by when you travel to Oregon
In Oregon, nature is never far away. Oregon cities are filled with beautiful parks or cool architecture like covered bridges and are located close to epic landscapes. If you want to get out of your surrounding area and see other parts of the state, you won’t have to drive more than two hours maximum at a time before you come across more breathtaking scenery. Mount Hood is only an hour and a half from Portland. The Mckenzie River can be visited in under two hours from Eugene. Bend to the Painted Hills? One hour! When traveling to Oregon, realize that with a little driving, you can easily transport yourself between a ton of different natural environments in a relatively short amount of time.
Oregon is a state that shouldn’t be missed! Between the landscapes, prices, culture, and more, traveling to Oregon should land at the top of your bucket list. If you are hoping to visit Oregon, make sure to take these tips into consideration so you have a safe and fun time in one of the best states out there!
Have you visited Oregon or is it on your bucket list? What sites are on your bucket list? Let us know in the comments!
Pin this post: