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Portland – An Afterthought?

On the West Coast trail of swashbuckling backpackers, Portland often seems to be an afterthought. Intrepid travelers swing by, sometimes on a bus a hostel Seattle WA provides, or up from San Francisco. It seems to be a good stopping point, but isn’t usually the end all, be all destination for these travelers. Is it because Portland isn’t as large as our West Coast brethren or is it due to the fact we don’t do enough to court in their business?

There are plenty of internationally educated residents of Portland, so it seems surprising that an area of this size only has a few Portland hostels. Unfortunately, most of them seem only half filled (usually by American travelers). All the hostels Seattle has to offer appear constantly booked. I wonder if this is, in part, due to the lack of other cheap accommodation offerings in Seattle?

Regardless, I believe Portland, and the state, should to do more to entice travelers both home and abroad. A recent study showed that Oregon’s top attraction are the Woodburn Company Stores. It beat out Crater Lake, Multnomah Falls and all other state parks. It’s sad that shopping draws more travelers than our natural beauty. With all the things this area as to offer, I wish we would do more to tell other people about it.

I know there are people that want Portland to stay a secluded little secret, and I certainly don’t want to see the area grow to the size of other large cities. However, I would like for travelers to return to wherever they came from and say, you know what, I found the most beautiful place in the world – and you’ll never guess where it is.