Since it’s high tourist season in my home city, we’re calling this Pacific North West week here on Land of Marvels! We’ll be posting all about my home city of Portland as well as other great spots around the Pacific North West all week long!
The Pacific North West is a pretty beautiful place, no only in our cities but in the countrysides around Oregon and Washington as well. One of the best ways to take in all the Pacific NW beauty is to road trip around, to just jump in a car and head out somewhere beautiful! There are so many amazing road trips in this area, but if you’re looking to spend your Summer seeing this beautiful area, here are 5 of the best road trips in the Pacific NW!
Two of Oregon’s well known cities for their quirkiness, the trip from Portland to Bend is not only beautiful, it’s breathtaking. You’ll go from green lush forests to high desert and canyons. This 3-4 hour drive can be done a number of ways, my favorite goes past Smith Rock and up North before looping around Mt. Hood and coming into the lushness of Portland.
Perhaps one of the most beautiful, and underrated, coastlines in the world, the Oregon Coast is truly breathtaking at every turn. From cliffs to beaches to roaring seas, you’ll want to pull over again and again while making this drive. From Portland, head West to Cannon Beach, then continue down the coast highway to Bandon. It will be vistas and views like you’ve never seen before.
The San Juans are beautiful themselves but it’s the drive and ferry to get there that offers even more fantastic views and lovely scenery. Drive North fro Seattle then cut West and you’ll find yourself headed to Anacortes on the coast. From there, catch the ferry to any of the islands (the most popular to Friday Harbor) which will offer incredible sea views as you weave in and out of islands. Then drive around the island, taking in the views like orcas at the Lime Kiln lighthouse or the Lavender farm in the middle of the island. It’s scenic Pacific NW at its best.
Maybe not so much a scenic drive as this one is just fun. You’ll go through so many different landscapes, get to cross a border and spend time in two of the Pacific North West’s favorite cities. Vancouver BC is a whole different thing too since you’re officially in Canada. So if you’re in the mood for some “international” travel, this is the road trip for you.
For a landscape unlike any other in the region, drive East from Portland through the Columbia River Gorge. Here you’ll find breathtaking vistas over the river, waterfalls galore and incredible scenery. Then head North through Eastern Washington and you’ll find rolling hills, farmland for miles and something entirely different than you’d expect in the Pacific North West. Head toward Washington’s eastern wine country and spend a couple nights, reveling in all the area has to offer.