Clean, green, bike friendly Eugene, where two wheels rule
Nestled in the Willamette Valley, Eugene is clean and very, very green. While Portland is often quoted as the US' most bike-friendly city, Eugene is a close contender. With miles and miles of innovative bike paths, cycle programmes, cycling clubs, biking communities and events, two wheels is the way to go. There are countless places to see on a bicycle without having to drive, making this a very unusual American experience.
The Willamette River divides Eugene and Springfield, with superb bicycle trails along its banks.
Eugene offers something for every taste including the Cascades Raptor Center, The University of Oregon Museum of Natural and Cultural History, Oregon Air and Space Museum and, of course, oodles of stunning natural landscapes to explore.
Take in a performance at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts
Climb Mount Pisgah
Treat the little 'uns to the Science Factory Children's Museum and Planetarium
The stunning, wild Oregon Coast is a windy wonderland and it's only an hour by road from Eugene, making it one of the locals' favourite day trips.
A Multi-State Escape From £1799.00 (inc flights and hotels)
Start your trip in Washington and soak up the iconic music scene of Seattle, then head to Oregon’s Portland with its funky urban vibes. Embrace the old-town charm of California’s capital city, Sacramento, and treat your taste buds to the wonderful wines of Napa Valley.
Discover cool local pubs and breweries including Ninkasi, Oakshire, the Bier Stei and 16 Tons. Eugene won an award as the No 1 US city for hippies in 2013, and man, it's a happy place. Hit the Saturday Market, a little tie-dye heaven, speak your mind in Free Speech Plaza and try these three on for size.
Visit in July for the Oregon County Fair, a huge 3 day affair attracting upwards of 40,000 people
The Bach Festival, Asian Celebration, Eugene Celebration, Kaleidoscope Festival, Cascadia Music Festival, Eugene Ballet and Symphony
Visit famous Voodoo Donuts just for fun, where you can buy 'adult' shaped donuts and chow down on some seriously sweet treats
This is Oregon so there's no sales tax. Which means you get more punch for your pound, more bang for your buck.
Oregon might be wild and windy but it's perfect for growing grapes. There are more than a dozen wineries to visit in the area, where you can sample a bunch of excellent local tipples.
Eugene has some absolutely gorgeous Victorian mansion-like homes to marvel at, many in the sweetly-named 'Friendly Street' area. The Whiteaker neighbourhood has more, a steadily-gentrifying place that was once crime-ridden and run down. Many of its gloriously frilly 1800s and early 1900s houses have been beautifully restored, making for a fascinating walk into the beating heart of this friendly town. The vivid old-school 5th Street Market is a popular spot to shop for more or less everything, complete with places to eat and drink. It's close to Eugene's historic district, the site of the Eugene Saturday Market and the town's Japanese American Art Memorial.
Visit Eugene in spring for the rhododendrons, which love the local climate. You'll be knocked out by the massive splashes of colour they make, lush and exotic. The town's Hendricks Park contains an entire garden of them, 80 acres of lovely greenery with hiking trails plus lots of fascinating local plants and trees. Alton Baker Park is the city's biggest, where paved paths take you out of the park and onto beautiful riverside trails. And a fairytale house awaits you, a stately Victorian landmark perched on the slopes of Skinner Butte. It's the extremely pretty and colourful Shelton-McMurphey-Johnson House, built in 1888. Don't miss it!
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