Portland: A Guide from a Small Town Southerner

Oh, Portland. In one week I had several life experiences, which included feeling 50 degree weather in August, the most beautiful panoramic views, watching a guy hand out "brownies" on the street, and smelling some of the worst and best smells ever. I got to see "the coast" (not to be confused with "the beach"), a giant waterfall, and we even got to meet our case worker (#journeytojudah)! I ate some delicious food, drank incredible coffee, and relaxed. What a wonderful trip it truly was! 

I could go through our trip day-by-day, but I assume you'd probably tire of this phrase repeated: "Slept until 9:00. Ate donuts. Watched TV. Went to coffee shop." Instead, I'll just tell you the places we ate and what we did.


  • Voodoo Doughnuts // link : Jason walked to Voodoo Donuts our first morning in Portland. They were good, but I'm not a big donut person - so we didn't go back. I tried the Captain Crunch and something else with Rice Krispies on it. Jason tried the Maple Bacon and something with blueberries in it.
  • Muu-Muu's // link : Monday morning I headed off in search of a pedicure and while I was finishing up I searched for restaurants nearby. I found Muu-Muu's, which was just a block away from where I was. I got the chicken and brie sandwich with fries and it was delightful!
  • Sizzle Pie // link : Yummy pizza by the slice right across from Powell's.
  • Papa Haydn // link : This place was kind of upscale, but really delicious. It was in the heart of NW 23rd St., which we deemed as "the place we'd live" if we ever lived in Portland. I'm sure that's pretty common, but it really was awesome. If you're a Birmingham person, think 5 points feel + Highland homes + 2nd Ave. N coffee and restaurants + Summit stores. If you're a Nashville person, think 12 South area. Anyway, Papa Haydn was great - I got ravioli and Jason got a sandwich. Their desserts looked incredible too and it seemed like a lot of people came in just for dessert.
  • Montage // link : This restaurant is known for their Mac N Cheese. Being a good ole southern girl, I was skeptical - but it did not disappoint. I got the Buffalo Chicken Mac N Cheese and loved every bite! 
  • 21st Street Bar and Grill // link : Birmingham folks, think J. Clyde. Like for real, it's just like J. Clyde with the outside seating! Great food. We missed Happy Hour by about 5 minutes, but they seem to have great Happy Hour deals!
  • Salt & Straw // link : Homemade and adventurous ice cream on NW 23rd. Arrive ready and willing to wait - you won't be disappointed!
  • Food Carts // link : Portland has some of the most creative and yummy food carts! At any time you can find over 500 food carts throughout the city. Jason and I both ate at food carts each day for lunch. 


Since Jason was in class basically all day (8:30-4:30), I did a lot of exploring on my own. Honestly, I got a little bit lonely but I didn't mind the alone time :)

  • Pedicure at Mimosa's // link
  • Coffee at Public Domain // link
  • Coffee at Barista // link
  • Scenic Drive to Multnomah Falls // link
  • "Noon Tunes" in Pioneer Square // link
  • Walked the Pearl District // link
  • Get lost in Powell's City of Books // link 
  • Walk the Waterfront Trail // link
  • Drive to the coast (Seaside, OR) // link 
  • Visit Washington Park // link

If you ever find yourself with the opportunity to go to Portland, Oregon, definitely say, YES! It's quite an interesting place and I thoroughly enjoyed myself! 

Posted on August 17, 2015 and filed under Travel, Pacific Northwest.