Getting on/off a motorcoach; walking up to 2 miles; mostly paved trails and paths; standing about an hour in each garden.
At the hotel, the breakfast buffet offers a variety of choices such as eggs, breakfast meats, Belgian waffles, yogurt, cereal, oatmeal, pastries and breads, fresh fruit, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.
Portland is known as "the City of Roses" due to its lush gardens and has been called the “greenest” (i.e., most environmentally friendly) city in America. Our morning begins with a field trip to the International Rose Test Garden. We will learn about the oldest official, continuously operated, public rose test garden in the United States. Learn the story of how the gardens came to be during World War I when hybridists sent roses from around the world to Portland’s garden for testing and to keep the new hybrids safe from being destroyed by the bombing. The garden has grown to include more than 6,800 rose bushes representing 557 varieties. Next, we’ll take a trip through time and learn about Chinese culture, history and way of thinking at the Lan Su Chinese Garden. Our docent leads our examination of the garden’s living collections that present hundreds of native Chinese plant species and forms including more than 90 tree specimens, many rare and unusual shrubs and perennials, and signature collections that include Magnolia, Cymbidium, Camellia, Osmanthus, Rhododendron and bamboo — all within a one block area inside Portland's Chinatown. Their mission is to cultivate an oasis of tranquil beauty and harmony to inspire, engage, and educate the global community in the appreciation of a richly authentic Chinese culture.
At a popular restaurant in downtown Portland, order from a select menu with coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.
Moving on, a local expert will guide our exploration of the Columbia River Gorge, a designated National Scenic Area and spectacular geological wonder of outstanding natural beauty. We’ll learn how the Gorge was formed by the Missoula Floods, how the geology has impacted the surrounding culture and population. The Columbia River is the fourth largest in North America and the gorge (canyon) it carved over millennia stretches more than 80 miles through the Cascade mountain range towards the Pacific Ocean. Its striking waterfalls include breathtaking Multnomah Falls. At 611 feet or 630 feet — depending on how you measure — Multnomah Falls is one of the most majestic waterfalls in Oregon. It flows year round, fed by underground streams in addition to rainwater and seasonal snow melt. We will view the waterfall from below (possibility of feeling some spray depending on current conditions). Those who feel adventurous and vigorous may hike 1/5th of a mile up a steep, paved path to a scenic footbridge for a closer look.
At a restaurant overlooking the cascading Multnomah Falls, enjoy a plated meal with choice of entrée; coffee, tea, water included; other beverages available for purchase.
We’ll return to the hotel after a long and exciting day. The remainder of the evening is at leisure.