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Navigating the US: Getting Around in Portland, Oregon

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Navigating the US Getting Around in Portland Oregon city Mt Hood

Find the main ways to travel in and out of Portland, Oregon
Photo: R0Ng via CC

Portland is the largest city in Oregon, famous for also being one of the greenest in the world. If you love the outdoors, bicycles, beer, coffee, and tolerable weather all-year ’round, this is the place to be.

Recommended Modes of Transportation in Portland, Oregon

The best way to get around in Portland is by bicycle or public transportation. There are numerous dedicated bike streets and most major roadways have striped bike lanes. Getting around using public transportation means getting on the MAX light rail. There are four different lines that each run every 15 minutes to get you close to anywhere you might want to go.

Major Highways and Roadways to Know

Despite being a green city, you can still get around by car quite easily in Portland. Interstate 5 and I-405 circle around downtown and I-84 can get you to and from the airport. When going east-west, you’ll want to look for US Route 26.

Alternative Ways of Seeing the City

Portland is a great city to walk around in. Intersections are designed with pedestrians in mind, which—when combined with the great mass transit system that helps reduce overall traffic—makes you feel safe when getting around by foot.

Navigating the US Getting Around in Portland Oregon city riverfront

Learn the best ways to explore Portland, Oregon
Photo: Ben Amstutz via CC

Best Places to Park

Portland features over 9,700 metered parking spaces and two types of parking meters: a solar-powered SmartMeter pay station and a single-space coin-operated meter. The best places to park long-term are at any of the six SmartPark garages located downtown, which provide nearly 4,000 public spaces between them. Some hotels even offer special packages with free overnight parking.

Airports and Car Rentals

One of the best ways to get into Portland is via the Portland International Airport, located just nine miles northeast of downtown. You can get your rental cars there or simply get into the city by taxi or MAX light rail.

Hotels and Attractions

Portland is full of hotels to suit varying budgets. The highest concentration of hotels is downtown, alongside restaurants, museums, shopping, and other entertainment. Lloyd District hotels are closer to the convention center area while airport hotels offer easy access to the Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood, golfing, shopping, and dining. You can even find garden cabins, rock ’n roll hotels, and hotels that pamper pets!