Fresh mountain air. Snowflakes softly mounding on long-needled pines. The clarity of the central Cascade Range silhouetted against a blue winter sky. You can’t overlook the majesty of Central Oregon’s landscape. It’s what draws visitors from around the world to enjoy the region’s endless opportunities for outdoor adventures.
There’s something else that makes Central Oregon special: the people who call it home. Supporting local merchants, makers, brewers, artists, designers, craftspeople and guides is one of the best ways to keep this part of the state so unique. Central Oregon’s many independent businesses make it easy to gift a little high-desert cheer to everyone on your shopping list.
Shopping Districts in Central Oregon
Bend’s riverside Old Mill District is wonderfully walkable, with dozens of shops selling everything from big-name tech toys to works by local artists. Every Friday through Sunday between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the area will transform into SantaLand, featuring a parade, photo opps with Santa Claus and a gift donation drive for needy families. Downtown Bend is another hot spot for indie shops, including local clothing and jewelry designers, galleries, vintage stores, and bars and restaurants; for those on your list who are hard to shop for—or who love to shop themselves—pick up a Downtown Dollar Gift Cards can be redeemed at a number of local businesses. Head to Sunriver Resort for shopping at The Village, plus the annual Traditions: light show, sleigh rides, holiday dinners, gingerbread decorating and more. You’re sure to happen upon unique finds in Redmond, which also hosts a Holiday Village Market and Starlight parade.
Sisters’ compact historic downtown offers dozens of shops and a frontier vibe. The Prineville Charm Trail connects almost 30 local businesses in downtown Prineville. Visit them all and collect a unique charm from each.
Home Gifts in Central Oregon
Central Oregon is chock-full of unique home goods. Pick up a new or refurbished vintage clock at Beacham’s Clock Company in Sisters. They’ve been keeping the fine art of horology (the study and measurement of time) alive since 1965. Have an adventurous musician on your list? Bend’s Outdoor Ukulele makes take-anywhere ukuleles, banjoleles and guitars from durable materials for worry-free strumming on the go. From cuddly blankets to air-cleaning plants and bright planters, the new Merryweather Shop and the Fig Leaf Plant Shop, both at The Box Factory in Bend, offer thoughtfully curated selections of home goods. Or stop into The Workhorse, where you can shop the handmade goods of local artists—and even catch them working at the same time.
Art lovers will adore a piece from Rimrock Art Gallery in Prineville, which exhibits original works from established artists from the Western states and beyond. Pick up anything on your budding star baker’s wish list at kitchen-supply store Kara’s Kitchenware in Bend. And don’t forget the family pup. Bendy Dog in downtown Bend offers playful canine toys, bedding, art and much more, including a large selection of locally made products. For the reader in your life, consider gifting a subscription to Bend Magazine for the latest in events, activities and travel inspiration around the high desert (use the discount code TRAVELOREGON for 50% off).
Clothes and Design in Central Oregon
Visit Painted Hills Custom Leather in Prineville for one-of-a-kind leather bags, belts, wallets and apparel. J. Paige also makes one-of-a-kind leather bags, with all the design, cutting and sewing done in-house. Baldwin’s Custom Hat and Boot Co. in Sisters crafts outfit-making hats, footwear and other leather goods with authentic Western style. Plus, they’re made to order, so you’ll never have to worry about whether they’ll fit.
In Bend, Revolvr Menswear offers quality, Western-inspired denim, clothing and accessories with a masculine angle, while Cowgirl Cash curates a vintage and locally made collection of sassy boots, dresses, jewelry and hats. And if this holiday season has you planning a proposal, Saxon’s Fine Jewelers in Bend has plenty of sparkle to choose from.
Food and Drink in Central Oregon
Liven up a loved one’s kitchen rut with a whole or partial grass-fed beef, pork or lamb share from DD Ranch in Terrebonne. Stock your loved ones’ pantry with jerky or expertly cut meats from Sisters Meat and Smokehouse or load up on an Oregon favorite at Salmon King Fisheries, where you can find fresh fillets, canned fish and wind-dried Salmon. Central Oregon Locavore’s annual Holiday Gift Faire offers delectable treats from more than 100 Central Oregon farms, ranchers, crafters and artisans, including house-roasted coffee from Bohemian Roastery or Sisters Coffee Company, high-desert honey from Broadus Bees and decadent truffles from Lidia’s Chocolates.
Central Oregon is also one of the state’s craft-brewing epicenters. In Bend pick up a special bottle from The Ale Apothecary, which makes barrel-aged beers using local ingredients. Or give a piece of Oregon’s brewery history with a growler and merch from the original Deschutes Brewery Bend Public House. Cocktail aficionados will appreciate a bottle of award-winning bourbon from Oregon Spirit Distillers in Bend, or marionberry-infused vodka from Sisters’ Wild Roots. Wine lovers may join a wine club at Maragas Winery in Culver, Faith, Hope and Charity Vineyards in Terrebonne or Evoke Winery, which hosts a tasting room in Bend. Gift your loved one a meal out with a gift card from one of their favorite restaurants in Central Oregon, like Zydeco Kitchen & Cocktails in downtown Bend, The Cottonwood Cafe in Sisters or Brickhouse steakhouse in Redmond.
Need some help deciding what treats to gift? Consider a Local Food Gift Box curated by the High Desert Food & Farm Alliance, full of locally grown, raised and crafted non-perishable items by alliance partners in Central Oregon. Choose from Classic, Deluxe, Beverage, Sunday Morning Samplers and a Cook’s Dream box, or the option to Build Your Own.
Experiences in Central Oregon
Oregon has a long love affair with the outdoors, and Central Oregon has plenty of outdoor experiences that make for a great gift. If your loved ones have discovered a new love of hiking, fishing or rafting, gift them a guided fly-fishing adventure from Madras-based River Borne Outfitters, Native-owned Little Creek Outfitters in Madras or Bend-based River Runner Outfitters. What could be more exciting than a gift card for an off-road dune-buggy ride across the high desert with Bend-based Outriders NW Tours, or one of the many year-round guided excursions offered by Wanderlust Tours? How about an outdoor enthusiast’s subscription box full of snacks, gear and gadgets from Cairn, based in Bend? For wintry fun, Central Oregon Adventures offers guided snowmobile and off-road excursions to some of the region’s historic ghost towns. For those always on the slopes, consider a custom ski or snowboard from Santiam Snolab. Or do you know someone nostalgic for a bygone era? How about merch from the last Blockbuster in the world, in Bend?
Outdoor adventures aren’t the only experiences to be had in Central Oregon. For the thespians in your life, consider a gift certificate or tickets for performances at the Central Oregon Symphony and the Cascades Theatrical Company.
Hotels in Central Oregon
With its ample outdoor adventures and unique high desert charm, Central Oregon is a great getaway for anyone on your list. For those in need of serious pampering, gift a stay at Brasada Ranch, a luxury golf hotel and spa at the gateway to the Ochoco National Forest; Tetherow, a plush resort near downtown Bend with a golf course, pool and three on-site restaurants; or the romantic Pine Ridge Inn in Bend and FivePine Lodge in Sisters. The hip Suttle Lodge offers instant access to the eponymous Suttle Lake and the Deschutes National Forest, plus craft cocktails and seasonally inspired dining. For a casual vibe, check out McMenamins Old St. Francis School, rent cabins at Cold Springs Resort or check out the new Campfire Hotel in Bend, with its hip retro-style rooms around an outdoor firepit in the central courtyard. In addition to enjoying wellness features and rooftop dining, your stay at SPC Redmond Hotel also makes an impact. Families can plan a future reunion at the StoneRidge Townhomes at Sunriver, Black Butte Ranch or one of the hundreds of Central Oregon vacation homes on Vacasa. Find great hotel deals in Oregon at Expedia and Visit Central Oregon.