Despite the 3 hour drive from Seattle, Portland seemed like a really exciting place to visit for a day trip, not to mention that Oregon has no sales tax. From what I've heard about it, its a city full of culture and unique places to visit and explore. Already looking up different places to visit, my friend and I had an itinerary the day before of the different places that we wanted to visit.
The first place we visited (after completing our shopping trip) was the Japanese Garden in Washington Park. Driving in, we were introduced to the beautiful modern architecure of the ticket and administrative buildings. Although not a traditional japanese design, it seemed to fit into the park design extremely well, creating a different type of aesthetic that I fell hopelessly in love with. It was refreshing to see a new take on how the buildings of a japenese garden could look.
As we went inside, there were many different trails and paths that we went down - the garden was huge. We came across a very large koi pond with at least a hundred giant koi. As we were watching them calmly swim up and down the pond, someone came up and hit the dock with a stick. All the koi suddenly swam towards her, and she started to throw food into the pond. It was interesting to see the group of koi all fighting for food - I've only really seen them be tranquil in the water.
Afterwards, we drove into downtown where we wanted to visit a donut shop called Voodoo donuts. It was supposed to be extremely famous. When we got there, we found that the line was almost 30 minutes long, and snaked out of the store and into the streets. However, already a few feet from the door we knew that the wait was worth it - the smell of the donuts wafted out from the door and made our mouths salivate.
The donuts were crazy, and so was the price. But oh well, it was for an experience. There were so many different donuts, all sorts of crazy ideas. It was really fun and interesting to see the creativity that can go into such a simple dessert.
Afterwards, we walked a block to Stumptown Coffee Roasters. The aesthetic was beautiful - it wasn't crowded at all and the focus was on the drinks that were being made. They had really amazing baristas who helped us choose beans to buy. The coffee was also great.
By this time we were exhausted, and so we started to drive back just before sunset. It was actually really great, since it was golden hour as we were driving through what seemed to be a road in the middle of the forest.