Three years ago we visited Portland, OR, making it the first time we made our way to the Pacific Northwest. As soon as we got back home we already knew that we wanted to make another visit as soon as possible. Last year we made stops in Seattle and Vancouver, and just like when we returned from Portland, we knew we would be visiting the region again. When we started planning a trip earlier this year, we wanted to make a road trip out of it. Our week in the Pacific Northwest began in Portland, OR and ended in Seattle, WA. Along our way we made stops in Cannon Beach, OR and Olympic National Park. I was able to take quite a bit of pictures, so I'll highlight the trip over the course of two blog entries. This first entry will cover our time at Cannon Beach and the Portland area, while the second entry will cover our time in Olympic National Park and the Seattle area. Photos and a list of places we visited after the jump!
We had an early start to our trip, which ended up being a good thing. Our flight landed in Portland around 10:30 am, which gave us plenty of time to pick up our rental car then drive out to Cannon Beach and arrive at a really good time. By the time we had arrived in Cannon Beach it was only around 1:20 in the afternoon. The first thing we did was get some lunch at Crepe Neptune. Super fast and super delicious crepes that are made fresh in front of you. There isn't sitting room inside the restaurant, but there are plenty of seating options just outside the restaurant. The weather was perfect so we enjoyed eating our lunch on the main street of Cannon Beach. Courtney went with the Fort Stevens and I chose the Cape Blanco. For a sweet crepe, we chose to split the Cape Falcon. Crepe Neptune was one of our favorite stops on the entire trip. After a quick bite we walked along the beach for an hour or so and then made our wake back up the coast to Ecola State Park. The drive to Ecola State Park is literally about ten minutes from the center of town. We went on a brief hike to the overlook and then made our way back. When we made our way back into town we checked into the Hallmark Resort & Spa, which has direct beach access and is just a few minute walk to Haystack Rock. After taking a little break we went out to grab some dinner at Pizza a' Fetta. This is one of my favorite pizza places that we've been to...and we've been to quite a few. They're a great place if you have gluten sensitivity. We ordered a gluten free pie to share and I thought the crust was pretty good. It didn't beat the regular slices that I ordered for myself, but still pretty good. The best part of the night was after dinner. We picked up a fire camp kit from the hotel that included everything we needed to build and start a fire as well as make s'mores. We enjoyed the rest of the evening with a bottle of wine listening to the ocean waves.
The next morning we woke up to take a stroll along the beach. I really love the mornings along the Pacific Coast, especially the fog that comes off the water. After the walk we decided to eat breakfast at a local diner before heading back into Portland. Once we got back into Portland we made our way over to Cathedral Park to relax before we checked into our Airbnb. After we checked into our Airbnb, we went back out to explore the Alberta neighborhood. We made a quick stop at one of our favorite bakeries, Back to Eden, which specializes in vegan and gluten free pastries. I had a pretty good gluten free cinnamon roll, and Courtney had some pretty amazing donuts. We explored the area a little longer before gong back and chilling out for a bit. We then went out for dinner at one of our favorite restaurants, Pok-Pok. If you're ever in Portland and want some great shareable Thai food, Pok-Pok is definitely worth checking out. If you do go, I recommend the trying the Heat Ray cocktail.
We had a full itinerary for the following day. We woke up early to head out to Multnomah Falls in hopes that we might beat some of the crowds. Even with a little head start there was still a pretty good amount of tourists there. The drive from Portland to the falls was about 40 minutes. The crowds were even worse by the time we had left. After spending some time there and getting a bite to eat, we headed back into Portland. Once we got back into Portland we hit up Upper Left Roasters for some caffeine. After our coffee break we decided to rent a couple of bikes from Cycle Portland. We spent an hour riding along the waterfront and downtown. We were lucky with the weather the entire time we were in Portland. Highs in the upper seventies and lower eighties with sunshine. After our bike ride, we went over to Hawthorne Street to explore the neighborhood. First stop was Blue Star Donuts because up to this point in the trip, we hadn't had enough sugar. Unfortunately for Courtney, they don't offer any gluten free options, but we did stumble across a cupcake shop called Toadstool Cupcakes, which had plenty of gluten free options. Don't think that because I had just bought donuts didn't mean that I wasn't going to buy a cupcake because vacation. We went back to our house to decompress before dinner that night. Since it was my birthday I got to pick what type of food to eat and of course, it had to be Sushi. Courtney found this amazing place, Bamboo Sushi, which had fresh sushi and great cocktails. For dessert we stopped off at Salt & Straw for some amazing ice cream. The only thing I can say about this place is that it was so good we went back a second time.
Our last day in Portland was a pretty laid back one, which was needed after getting off to a fast start the first couple of days. We slept in and had brunch at a great little market and cafe called Milk Glass Mrkt. We really lucked out with this place. It was on our list of places to try and it ended up being a five minute walk from our Airbnb. After brunch we strolled around the Pearl District for a while. Once we finished up there we stopped off at Ristretto Roasters for some coffee. The location we stopped off at was inside Schoolhouse Electric, a really great lighting and furniture store based out of Portland. After our daily coffee break we explored Washington Park for a bit then hit up the Sapphire Hotel for a casual dinner.
We had a ton of fun on the first half of this trip. We actually did quite a bit, but at the same time we never felt rushed or stressed about what we had to do next. We've been home for a almost a couple of weeks now and we already want to go back. I think the heat we're experiencing in Austin right now is only making the desire to go back stronger. The next blog entry will highlight our time around the Seattle area. More pics from the first half of the trip below.