The weather has been pretty much perfect every weekend since I've been in Portland. Occasionally there's sporadic showers, but I'm seriously loving this climate! The air is crisp and cool which makes it so much nicer to spend the day walking outside in the spring and summer. I went back to Atlanta this past weekend for training and I was amazed at how muggy it already was! I can get use to having these kind of summers :)
Saturday's in Portland are great. Actually...pretty much every day on the weekend is great. If the sun is out everyone is either biking or hiking, shopping, brunching, and lets be honest, drinking! Portland is so fun and lively and if you're a people watcher like I am then you're in for a real treat lol. You see such a mix of people walking on the streets.
Last Saturday I took my camera and headed to downtown. My first stop was the Saturday Market. There's hundreds of tents selling clothing, jewelry, artwork, and nicknacks. I ended up buying these cute succulents that I've been wanting forever. They're so easy to keep alive and take care of! My favorite part of the Saturday market is the street performers. Some of these people are so talented. This one painter was making art from spray paint and I was shocked at how beautiful and precise they were turning out. There's so many food carts and beer stands around, so if you want awesome free entertainment take a seat in the square and soak it up! You'll also see some craziness which is always fun lol.
If you're ever visiting Portland, obviously you're going to go to Voodoo Donuts. It's a Portland craze and staple. However, avoid going on the weekend at ALL COSTS! I'm sorry I don't care how great a donut might be but there's no way I would stand in line for 2 hours. They have 3 locations, so if you have to go on a weekend, avoid the downtown location. I walked by Voodoo on my way to get coffee and there's a double line wrapped around the building!
My next stop was the famous Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Portlanders are snobs about a few things I've learned. Coffee, beer, wine, and food which I am all onboard with! You should never go to Starbucks if you're in Portland. There is so many great coffeeshops and Stumptown leads the pack. According to the New York Times, "Stumptown is the leader. They're cutting edge.", when referring to the "third wave" of coffee evangelists. I got the classic cappuccino and sat by myself in the shop and listened to throw-back 80's rap from the record player in the corner. So random. I'm not sure why they were playing that lol.
I finished my day off by browsing Powell's City of Books. This bookstore is the largest new and used bookstore in the world and it makes my heart happy. I've always loved roaming around the local Barnes and Noble back home...that doesn't have anything on this place. You could spend hours crusing through the aisles on 5 different stories! They provide a map and you'll definitely need it. My main goal for this visit to Powell's was to browse through the rare book collection. It has it's own little dark room on the fifth floor with cute little antique lamps. You feel like you're in the hogwarts library haha. The oldest book in this room is a print of The Jewish War by Flavius Josephus from the 1400's. You can purchase it for $12,000. So cool to see something that old and special.
I have a lot more exploring to do of Portland, but I feel like I'm off to a good start :)