19 Most Beautiful Places to Visit in Oregon

Written by Jan Meeuwesen
Updated on
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Oregon, also known as the Beaver State, has some of the most beautiful and spectacular sights and places to visit! Just browse through these awesome pictures I found and be amazed by it’s beauty.

1. Boardman State Park

Boardman State Park, OregonSource: Manuela Durson / shutterstock
Boardman State Park

Boardman State Park is a great starting point for anyone who wants to start exploring the natural beauty of Oregon. The park – which is named after the first Oregon Parks superintendent, Samuel H Boardman – is close to both Route 101 and the city of Brookings. The park boasts a few secluded small beaches, some sand dunes and stunning scenery that will take your breath away. There are 27 miles of Oregon Coast Trail to enjoy in Boardman State Park too and most of these are easy beginner hikes.

2. Tulip field in Woodburn

Tulip field in Woodburn, OregonSource: kan_khampanya / shutterstock
Tulip Field In Woodburn, Oregon

Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm dates back some 65 years ago and is a must-see for anyone visiting Oregon for the first time. Since 1985, the family that owns the farm has been opening the fields for people to enjoy every Easter weekend, and now the farm is open from the end of March to the first week in May. With 40 acres of beautiful fields to explore, Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm is a brilliant day out for all the family.

3. Mount Hood

Mount Hood, OregonSource: OLOS / shutterstock
Mount Hood, Oregon

Mount Hood is Oregon’s highest point, but the peak is so much more than that. The mountain, which was called Wy’east by the Multnomah tribe, is often described as the crown jewel of the Columbia River Gorge. Mount Hood, one of the seven wonders of Oregon, is home to a wide range of hiking trails, while there is also skiing, snowboarding and climbing available. The foothills of Mount Hood are well worth exploring as well, as they boast farms, wildflowers and orchards, while there are many lodges to stay in nearby too. Thrillseekers can even enjoy extreme sports such as sailing, windsurfing, hang-gliding and parasailing in the imposing shadow of Mount Hood.

4. Tumalo Falls

Tumalo FallsSource: Victoria Ditkovsky / shutterstock
Tumalo Falls

Tumalo Falls can be found in the Cascade Range west of Bend, within the boundaries of the Deschutes National Forest. The best way to see the waterfall is to follow the Tumalo Falls Trail, which leads to a viewing platform boasting an incredible place to experience Tumalo Falls. There is also a nearby picnic area which is an ideal spot to stop for some food and a rest. Take care to look out for wildlife around the falls, as visitors to the falls have spotted animals such as hawks, deer and squirrels in the area.

5. Snow Lakes Trail

Sky Lakes Wilderness, OregonSource: relax_gap / shutterstock
Sky Lakes Wilderness, Oregon

The Snow Lakes Trail is one of the more challenging hikes available in Oregon, but the views on offer in this part of the state are well worth the effort. Snow Lake is by far the most visited lake in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, with visitors flocking to enjoy the sights of Roosevelt Peak and Chair Peak. Keep in mind that there is a risk of avalanches in the area if snow has been falling during the winter months. There are great views all the way up the Snow Lakes Trail, but it is highly recommended to push on to the end as they get even better the further along the trail you go.

6. The Haystack Rocks

The Haystack RocksSource: tusharkoley / shutterstock
The Haystack Rocks

The Haystack Rocks are one of Oregon’s most incredible natural phenomenons. Located at Cannon Beach in Clatsop County, the rocks are accessible by foot at low tide and are a highly popular tourist destination throughout the year. The area is rich with wildlife too, with animals such as puffins and terns calling the rocks their home. Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach also features smaller rocks known as The Needles and there are various rocks to explore throughout the state, including one in Tillamook County near Portland.

7. Toketee Falls

Toketee Falls, OregonSource: Wollertz / shutterstock
Toketee Falls

Toketee Falls is arguably Oregon’s best known waterfall and is perhaps even more famous than the aforementioned Tumalo Falls. Toketee – which is a Chinook word that means graceful – can be found close to Highway 138 near Toketee Lake. The hike to the best viewpoint of the falls is just a third of a mile and due to the way the water falls, Toketee Falls is a truly spectacular sight at any time of the year.

8. Opal Creek

Opal Creek, OregonSource: Bob Pool / shutterstock
Opal Creek

Visiting Opal Creek is a must for anyone who enjoys exploring rugged and wild forest. Named after the wife of an early Forest Service ranger, Roy Elliot, Opal Creek is home to eight hiking trails, which take in sights such as five lakes and no fewer than 50 waterfalls. The 20,746-acre site is best visited between April and October and those who want to experience the wilderness up close and personal can even camp overnight at the site too.

9. Japanese Garden in Portland

Japanese Garden, PortlandSource: Paula Cobleigh / shutterstock
Japanese Garden, Portland

Run by the Japanese Garden Society of Oregon, the Portland Japanese Garden is one of the state’s most memorable experiences. The garden, which can be found in the West Hills of Portland, is made up of five sub-gardens. The largest of these is the Strolling Pond Garden, which features a 100-year-old five-tiered pagoda lantern and a handmade moon bridge. Elsewhere in the Portland Japanese Garden is an authentic tea house that was built in Japan.

10. Oneonta Narrows

Oneonta NarrowsSource: Mr. James Kelley / shutterstock
Oneonta Narrows

Oneonta Narrows is another of Oregon’s famously stunning waterfalls. Located at the Columbia River at River Mile 138, the falls are just half a mile up Oneonta Creek. The best way for visitors to reach Oneonta Narrows is by taking the Historic Columbia River Highway, which also takes in must-see sights such as the Benson State Recreation Area, Multnomah Falls, John B Yeon State Park and Ainsworth State Park.

11. St. Johns Bridge

St. Johns Bridge, PortlandSource: Josemaria Toscano / shutterstock
St. Johns Bridge, Portland

The St. Johns Bridge is regarded as one of the most iconic sights in the city of Portland. The steel suspension bridge, which spans the Willamette River, is the tallest bridge in Portland and the northernmost crossing of the river. Nearby Cathedral Park, which is located underneath the bridge, has been named after the Gothic style of the St. Johns Bridge. An annual summer jazz festival is held on the park’s small outdoor stage every summer.

12. Alvord Desert

Alvord DesertSource: Sara Winter / shutterstock
Alvord Desert

Alvord Desert is perhaps the most magical place in Oregon, with the area home to incredibly rare light shows – known as The Happening as they are so far unexplained – that some photographers have been fortunate enough to witness. The desert itself is flat enough to drive across during the driest periods, while the area is also known for being where Kitty O’Neil set an unofficial women’s world land speed in 1976. Visitors to the desert have also been known to spot wild horses at springs, drinking in water at the eastern edge of the desert. Be sure to check out Mark Metternich’s site for more beautiful photo’s!

13. Thor’s Well

Thor’s WellSource: Lijuan Guo / shutterstock
Thor’s Well

Thor’s Well, sometimes known as the drainpipe of the Pacific, is a strange natural phenomenon that appears to be draining water out of the sea. Right at the edge of the Oregon coast, Thor’s Well is best seen at high tide or in stormy weather when the rock provides superb photo opportunities. Visitors to Thor’s Well should also check out the nearby Cape Perpetua Visitor Center, which boasts spectacular ocean views and the chance to spot migrating gray whales.

14. Umpqua Hot Springs

Umpqua Hot SpringsSource: Joshua Rainey Photography / shutterstock
Umpqua Hot Springs

Accessible all year round, Umpqua Hot Springs – which is also sometimes known as Toketee Hot Springs – features three gorgeous hot pools located in breathtaking scenery above the North Umpqua River. The view of Surprise Falls from the relaxing pools is simply unforgettable and the springs are found by taking the Umpqua Hot Springs Trail, which is a very short hike. Take note that clothing is optional at Umpqua Hot Springs, which gets very busy at weekends but can be quiet during the day in midweek.

15. Misery Ridge Hiking trail

Misery Ridge Hiking TrailSource: Patrick Tr / shutterstock
Misery Ridge Hiking Trail

The Misery Ridge Hiking trail is one of the most popular hikes in Oregon, with walkers flocking to the area to take on the steady climb and take in the spectacular scenery. Rock climbing is one of the best leisure activities in this central part of Oregon and the site gets very busy with climbers at the weekends. Perhaps the best hike within the Misery Ridge area is round the east side of Misery Ridge, which provides great views of the rock formation known as Monkey Face – as soon as you see it, you will immediately know why it has been given that name. The Misery Ridge Hiking trail also takes visitors to Smith Rock, which is another of the seven wonders of Oregon.

16. Sweet Creek Trail

Sweet Creek Trail, OregonSource: JPL Designs / shutterstock
Sweet Creek Trail

The Sweet Creek Trail is an easy 2.2-mile trip that takes in around a dozen beautiful waterfalls. April and May are perhaps the best time to visit the trail, as this is when various woodland wildflowers burst into full bloom. Look out for the pink fawn lilies, which are particularly rare. The trail is found only a few miles inland from Florence, at the mouth of the Siuslaw River.

17. Wallowa Mountains

Wallowa Mountains, OregonSource: Robert Crum / shutterstock
Wallowa Mountains

Found in the Columbia Plateau in northeastern Oregon, the Wallowa Mountains boast perhaps the most varied and beautiful sights in the whole state. Another of the seven wonders of Oregon, the Wallowas are perhaps best experienced by riding a horse to the summit, but there is also the option of taking a gondola for a spectacular trip from Wallowa Lake Village all the way up to the peak of Mount Howard. Nearby towns Joseph and Enterprise are worth exploring too, with handcrafted beer and chocolate available to buy as a memento of an unforgettable trip.

18. Yaquina Head Light and Cliffs

Yaquina Head Light and CliffsSource: haveseen / shutterstock
Yaquina Head Light And Cliffs

The tallest lighthouse in the state, Yaquina Head Light used to be known as Cape Foulweather Lighthouse and can be found close to the mouth of the Yaquina River, near the city of Newport. The lighthouse is famous for its appearance in the 2002 film The Ring, when it stood in as the Moesko Island Lighthouse. Tours of the lighthouse are available and visitors should also take time to take a walk along the cliffs at Yaquina Head, although the weather here can be unpredictable – hence the extremely honest former name of the lighthouse.

19. Cape Meares

Cape Meares, OregonSource: Kyle Kephart / shutterstock
Cape Meares

Cape Meares is highly popular with tourists who are travelling along the Three Capes Scenic route. Cape Meares itself, which is close to the city of Tillamook, is named after British explorer John Meares. The cape, a headland located over 200 feet above the ocean, is a great place to visit for wildlife enthusiasts, as it is home to nesting common murres. Cape Meares State Scenic Viewpoint is also a fine place to spot bald eagles – the national bird of the United States. Tours of an 1890s lighthouse are also available at Cape Meares and are highly recommended.

19 Most Beautiful Places to Visit in Oregon:

  • Boardman State Park
  • Tulip field in Woodburn
  • Mount Hood
  • Tumalo Falls
  • Snow Lakes Trail
  • The Haystack Rocks
  • Toketee Falls
  • Opal Creek
  • Japanese Garden in Portland
  • Oneonta Narrows
  • St. Johns Bridge
  • Alvord Desert
  • Thor’s Well
  • Umpqua Hot Springs
  • Misery Ridge Hiking trail
  • Sweet Creek Trail
  • Wallowa Mountains
  • Yaquina Head Light and Cliffs
  • Cape Meares