Buzzing with a bright nightlife scene and teeming with both street art and formal art galleries, any Portland-bound art lover needs to check out Northeast Portland. Of course, visiting this exciting neighborhood comes with a healthy dose of shopping and fine restaurants to boot.
Northeast Portland is known and loved for its lively spirit and community feel. With live entertainment venues like Alberta Rose Theatre and the Moda Center, you’ll never run out of activities to fill your days in Northeast Portland, even after the sun goes down.
Feeling overwhelmed trying to get your Oregon itinerary in order? Let us take the reins. Discover what to see & do and where to eat, drink & stay with this complete Northeast Portland guide!
What to see & do in Northeast Portland
Alberta Arts District
If you’re looking for somewhere to spend a lazy afternoon in Northeast Portland, The Alberta Arts District is the perfect place to start. This 13-block stretch of Alberta Street is a hotspot for street art, with vibrant paintings of bold colors gracing nearly every storefront.
Take a guided street art tour or walk from mural to mural at your leisure, stopping to take photos and maybe even grab a bite to eat. The Alberta Arts District is known for its selection of global restaurants and even some street food vendors. You’ll be sure to find something to satiate your hunger in this quirky neighborhood.
Passing through on the last Thursday of the month? The Alberta Arts District transforms into one large artisan market, with street performers and all. Limited to pedestrian traffic only, this festive celebration of the arts will take hours to explore and is worth planning your Portland itinerary around.
Alberta Rose Theatre
Embrace your inner high school drama kid at the Alberta Rose Theatre. This Spanish courtyard-style theatre, once exclusively a motion picture house, is now one of the top tourist destinations in Portland for play lovers.
If live plays aren’t your jam, there are still plenty of performances to love at the Alberta Rose Theatre. Be sure to check the current goings-on on their events calendar; you can likely score tickets to acoustic concerts, indie movie screenings, and even the odd stand-up comedy tour.
(Plus, the venue serves the infamous handpies from the Pacific Pie Company; many foodies agree that these are worth the trip alone!)
Looking for a nice escape in the middle of the city? Grant Park is a buzzing little playground in the pines, situated at the center of the neighborhood where author Nancy Cleary wrote her famous children’s books. In fact, there are multiple statues of her book’s main characters throughout the park.
In addition to its newly built children’s playscape, Grant Park has several sports fields and a track for travelers seeking a safe space for their morning jog. There’s also an outdoor pool and a splash pad, perfect for cooling off on hot summer days.
Whether you’re in the mood for some window shopping on a rainy day or you’re ready for a no-holds-barred shopping spree, the Lloyd Center is the destination for you. Located in the Lloyd District, this mall has over 65 different stores and food outlets to discover. From big brand names to smaller local boutiques, you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir to bring home here.
Fun fact: The Lloyd Center is also home to the first ice rink in America located inside a shopping mall. You won’t want to miss out on the opportunity to lace up your skates and experience this little slice of Portland history.
Traveling during the holiday season? We can’t think of a better way to get in the festive spirit than with some ice skating, hot cocoa, and a healthy dose of holiday shipping!
Go cheer on the home team at the Moda Center. Open since 1995, this entertainment hub has become a hallmark of the Portland experience, both for tourists and the local community. As the home stadium for both the WHL Winterhawks and the NBA Trailblazers, this popular Portland attraction promises plenty of fanfare and Portland pride.
Occasionally, the Moda Center is even home to traveling rodeos, circuses, Disney on Ice, and other quirky productions oozing nostalgia. If music is more up your alley, you may also want to visit the Theater of the Clouds, the in-house destination for concerts.
Need a quiet moment to reset after a busy week of travel? Take a stroll through the upper gardens at The Grotto. This Catholic sanctuary is home to over 62 acres of botanical gardens, with contemplative statues and peaceful reflection ponds scattered throughout.
The botanical gardens showcase the finest blooms from early spring to late summer, which, for most travelers, is the best time of the year to visit Portland for weather. Even outside the blooms, The Grotto is a popular destination year-round.
Come autumn, the gardens come alive with brilliant fall colors and are transformed again for the months of November and December with a spectacular display of Christmas lights.
Where to eat & drink
If you’re a fan of Spanish tapas, you’re going to want to check out Urdaneta, serving up traditional and experimental dishes with a Basque influence. From grilled octopus to patatas bravas, there’s sure to be something on this menu for everyone. (Oh, and they have over 30 different wines in their cellar, so the perfect pour is a guarantee!)
Turn up the heat at OX Restaurant, Northeast Portland’s award-winning Argentinian Grill. This is the place to be if you’re looking for a good steak, and don’t forget to order their housemade Chorizo for the perfect accompaniment.
OX Restaurant also has an extensive veggie menu, so plant-based eaters won’t need to settle for meager side dishes. Oh, no: Despite the steakhouse vibes at OX, vegetables are the star of the show around here, with several dazzling veggie-forward main dishes.
Looking for the best Thai food in Portland? Check out Hat Yai. From Pad Thai to curry and roti combos- these dishes pack a big punch of flavor.
Named after a city nestled on the border of Thailand and Malaysia, Hat Yai offers a taste of brilliant regional cuisine known for having a hint of Malay flair.
Looking for a sophisticated dinner in a laid-back atmosphere? Wilder Bar & Cafe is a great option for those seeking an unfussy fine dining atmosphere. Start your evening off with a craft cocktail and their infamous garlic and Za’atar bread, then move on to something more substantial like the signature Wilder fried chicken or braised pork belly.
Hale Pale, the house of the volcano goddess, is the classic tiki bar reinvented. (Think mood lighting and incredible island-inspired small plates.)
Even the cocktail menu at Hale Pale has received a revamp. Be sure to order a volcano bowl, which comes in a flaming punchbowl and decked out with orchids. Just don’t tackle this one alone: It’s portioned for sipping with three to six friends—unless you want to lose your land legs.
Keys Lounge is the trendiest cocktail lounge in the area, with cozy booths, historic architecture, and an entire wall of records to set the mood. (Yep, that’s right, only good ol’ fashioned spinning vinyl play between these four walls!)
Looking for the perfect parking for your martini? Why not order a plate of dirty olives marinated with gin, juniper, and lemon and served with grilled pita? Yum!
Keys Lounge also has a rotating selection of seasoned popcorn and curly fries on the snacks menu if you want something a little more substantial to compliment your happy hour bevy.
Where to stay
As it’s located just across the river from Old Town/Chinatown and Downtown Portland, Northeast Portland is a great alternative to the city center areas. Most of the official accommodations options lie with the Lloyd District around the convention center. You’ll also find a handful of vacation rentals scattered throughout the district.
For an even mix of trendy little luxuries and hotel standard amenities, choose the pet-friendly Courtyard Portland Downtown / Convention Center. A sneak-peak into their guest suites will showcase accent wallpaper with Portland city maps AND flatscreen TVs with all your favorite streaming services, including Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu.
Of course, you won’t want to stay in your room all evening; this top-rated Portland hotel has several other great places to hang out. In addition to an outdoor patio with a fire pit for cozy nighttime get-togethers, BLVD, the hotel dining lounge, is open for all three meals of the day, serving American cuisine crafted from only the best local ingredients.
Located directly across from the Portland Streetcar, the Hotel Eastlund – Best Western Premier Collection offers guests a chance to combine mid-level luxury and convenience. Undoubtedly, one of the most enticing reasons to stay at Hotel Eastlund is its rooftop restaurant, offering some incredible views of Portland’s skyline.
There’s also a bakery in the hotel lobby in case you want to start your day with a fresh loaf and a steaming cup of coffee. Imagine the scent of baking bread wafting up to your room in the morning…Yum!
If you want a hotel that has your every need at heart, you can’t go wrong with the Crowne Plaza Hotel Portland-Downtown Convention Center, an IHG Hotel. Amenities like complimentary transport to and from the airport, a restaurant, an indoor pool, and a fitness center are all available to ensure you have a lovely stay—without needing to outsource basic things like a workout or transportation.
One of the most popular places to stay in Portland, OR, the hotel also offers numerous accessibility options to ensure a comfortable stay for every guest. From visual alarm systems, knock lights, and vibrating pillows for the hearing impaired to physically accessible rooms with wheel-chair level peepholes and ramps to all main amenities, the Crowne Plaza surely has thought of everything.