Choose Your Own Winter Adventure
An Oregon Wintercation in the Willamette Valley
What’s your speed of winter adventure? Whether you’re looking for outdoor fun, fine wine and cuisine or a relaxing retreat, the Willamette Valley’s got you covered this season.
For the adventurer
The Molalla River Recreation Corridor offers plenty of adventure year-round. Ride a horse or mountain bike on Molalla River’s shared-use trail system. Trek to the top of Marys Peak in Corvallis, the highest point in the Coast Range and a Scenic Botanical Area, for awe-inspiring views of the Pacific Ocean and the Cascade Mountains. Head to Willamette Pass to climb to some of the state’s best ski runs via Oregon’s fastest chairlift. Hold on tight as you sled down the snow tubing hills.
For the family
The whole family will enjoy miniature golf, go karts, a rock wall, laser tag and arcade at the Family Fun Center & Bullwinkle’s Restaurant in Wilsonville. McMinnville is home to the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum and the Wings & Waves Waterpark, where education becomes fun for kids and kids at heart. Salem’s Riverfront Park is home to A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village, a hands-on children’s museum promoting fun, exercise and learning through interactive exhibits in the sciences, arts and humanities.
For the foodie
Treat your taste buds to Eugene’s Fifth Street Public Market, home to some of the Pacific Northwest’s finest restaurants and cooking stores. Eat fresh, local cuisine at Sybaris in downtown Albany, and don’t miss the city’s monthly Nosh Tour, which brings visitors backstage with their favorite culinary masters. In Dayton, visit the Joel Palmer House, where world-renowned chef Jack Czarnecki showcases wild mushrooms.
For the culture seeker
Embrace the traditions of Oregon’s capital city. Salem highlights Oregon’s heritage at the State Capitol and the Willamette Heritage Center at The Mill, a five-acre campus home to fourteen historic structures that take visitors back to the early settlement of western Oregon. The Majestic Theatre in Corvallis opened its doors as a vaudeville house in 1913. Today, it serves as a creative laboratory and performance venue for musicians and live theatre performers.
For the relaxer
See the largest collection of covered bridges west of the Mississippi on the 30-mile Cottage Grove Covered Bridge Tour Route, connecting seven covered bridges. Shop for antiques in Aurora, Oregon’s first National Historic District, with more than 25 antique and specialty shops. Take a leisurely drive on the Over the River and Through the Woods Scenic Byway near Albany, a picturesque tour route winding around streams and friendly farm towns.
About the Author: Emily Forsha
Emily Forsha is Travel Oregon’s content editor and a runner, hiker and biker of many Oregon trails. When she’s not road tripping around the state with her husband and two little boys, this proud native Oregonian is cooking up new recipes in her kitchen, sampling the latest craft brews and cheering on her beloved Oregon Ducks.
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