Birthday Weekend in Portland, Oregon

My birthday weekend lasted from Thursday until Monday.  It was filled with the things I love most: my husband, my best friends, travel, (lots of) food, fitness and nature. Exactly how I want to ring in another year!

On Thursday evening, we celebrated with my best friend’s at Luna’s Modern Mexican. Unfortunately, my meal was not as good as the first time. Regardless, it was still yummy and a nice evening with my best friends. We somehow stayed for 3 hours just talking. After a full work day Friday, I came home and doubled checked what I had packed before we headed to the airport. I love living 5 minutes from Ontario International Airport. It took us 20 mins to take an Uber, arrive at the airport and walk through security. Does it get any better when traveling? I think not. With a loaded Ipad, playlist and snacks, I was ready for the flight. After 2 hours of the easiest flight I have taken, we landed in Portland. We traveled to our hotel just before midnight. We crashed quickly, ready for our eventful Saturday / my birthday.

      

Saturday started nice and early with Voodoo Donuts. Thankfully, the line was fairly short. When we drove by later that day, the line was wrapped around the building. We each got one donut we wanted and took the recommendation of the cashier for the other 2. Our two favorites were the Raspberry Cheesecake and the Voodoo Man. The thing I loved about the donuts was the cake portion of the donuts. They did not taste fried or greasy like I am used to which made them so tasty! We then drove out to Eagle Creek Trail for our 12 mile round trip hike to Tunnel Falls.

  

I could write a post alone about our hike on Eagle Creek Trail. It was beautiful, serene, entertaining, unique and hands down the best hike I have ever done. Over 6 miles to the Tunnel Falls, although challenging was worth the trek. Although there were some narrow pathways, the trek was definitely doable for people of all ages and athletic level. Many people hike up to Punchbowl Falls (2 miles up) before heading back down. We crossed numerous bridges and falls along the way. The waterfalls were just captivating. Pictures do not do justice to the power of these scenes in nature. I swear I said “I have never seen so many greenery” and “this place is just beautiful” every 1/2 mile. We even saw deer along the way back.

       

We were amazed how many photo worthy spots we hit along our 6 miles to Tunnel Falls. However, nothing could beat the majestic sight that was the Tunnel Falls. Having seen pictures of Tunnel Falls on Pinterest years ago, I always knew I would make my way to the spot sometime in my life. The pics do not capture the awe that is the waterfall. It is beautiful, powerful and grand. You can hike under the waterfall and continue hiking but the Tunnel Falls is the final destination for most. I was so overwhelmed by the size of the waterfall and enjoyed every minute of it. Leaving to hike back was hard because I could have stayed all day!

  

We hiked the almost 7 miles back much faster. We headed back to the city to take the Portland Aerial Tram before closing (5pm). Although the tram is a commuter tram for those working at the hospital, it provides a perfect above city view. Although the local fires made a haze across the city, it was still awesome to get a bird’s eye view for a few bucks. We grabbed some drinks at the hospital before heading back down the tram. At this point having definitely worked up an appetite, we headed to the well-known Salt & Straw Ice Cream. When we walked up the line was out the door, wrapped around the building. I really hoped the ice cream was worth another wait in line.

    

After a 25 minute wait, we were greeted by an employee who said we could try any and all flavors before we decided. We tried a few but the second I tried the sea salt with caramel ribbons (of course are we surprised here) I knew I had it have it. It was the perfect hint of salty and sweet. I also got a scoop of Almond Brittle with Salted Ganache which was delicious but could not compete with the sea salt with caramel. We enjoyed the ice cream on a bench right in the middle of the bustling area, just enjoying the city. A couple stopped us and asked if the ice cream was worth the wait. We both responded with a resounding “Yes.”

I have come to realize the husband and I are all about packing in as much as possible into trips. Our first 10 hours in Oregon were a busy one. The balance of the trip was equally as packed, fun and eventful. Check back tomorrow for the balance of our Saturday in Portland, Oregon.

Tell me: Do you visit a travel destination’s hot spots for food? Or do you go to the off the beaten path stops?

One thought on “Birthday Weekend in Portland, Oregon

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