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6 Popular Historical Places To Visit Near Portland (Oregon)

6 Popular Historical Places To Visit Near Portland (Oregon)

Portland might seem to be a city of scenic beauty, but this beauty is also imparted by the long past related to it and its citizens.

This city in the state of Oregon, USA, is packed with several interesting places of historical significance.


In this article, you will get to know about the following historical sites near Portland, Oregon,

  1. The Old Church
  2. Skidmore Fountain
  3. Old town Chinatown
  4. The Park Blocks
  5. Simon Benson House
  6. Japanese American Historical Plaza

Let’s see each of these places in detail.

1. The Old Church

Location11th Avenue, Portland Oregon
Constructed in1882

The calvary presbyterian church, also known as the old church, was built in 1882. It’s a carpenter Gothic church and was designed by Warren Heywood Williams.

It’s a lovely work of art with interiors containing colorful stained glass. The beauty is reflected when the sunlight passes through the glasses and makes the inside sparkle with colors.

The hand-sculpted fir pews, umbrella racks, vaulted ceilings, and of course, the Corinthian columns of that era are prominently displayed.


The church is a non-profit. Recently, a bar, stage marquee, and state-of-the-art light and sound systems have been installed.

They even host free weekly lunchtime every Wednesday. The concerts are performed by talented local as well as touring artists.

It’s an absolute pleasure to be in those shows as you can get the flavor of Portland in the music and amidst the locals. And yes, wedding ceremonies are also performed here.

2. Skidmore Fountain

LocationW Burnside St and Ankeny, Portland, Oregon.
Constructed in1888

The historic fountain was put in this place in 1888 in memory of a wealthy druggist in Portland, Stephen G. Skidmore. The style of the fountain resembles the one in Versailles.

Skidmore fountain is quite a charming place to be at. It’s also a point where street performers show their knacks and entertain the spectators and passers-byes.

Numerous events, including Plunderathon, zombie walk, activist gathering, and SantaCon, are held near this site. It serves as a point of gathering different people from different neighborhoods.

3. Old-Town Chinatown

Old-Town Chinatown, Portland
LocationOld Town, Portland, Oregon.

This is the original Chinatown in Portland. Most of the past buildings and sites have remained in this neighborhood and are listed on the National register of historic places.

You might also find cast iron buildings standing erect since the mid-19th century.


The past is laid beneath the streets, and if I speak about the Shanghai tunnel, from the surface, the tunnel connected hotels and shops to the waterfront, but coming to what the legend has, there is a much more horrifying past.

Now the old-town Chinatown is quite an exciting spot with popular bars, restaurants, and nightclubs, along with the atmosphere of the past. You can take the Shanghai tunnel tour as well.

4. The Park Blocks

Portland, OR
LocationDowntown Portland, Oregon.
Constructed in1852

The Park blocks, south park block, and north park block were dedicated in 1852 by Daniel H. Lownsdale. It’s a magnificent area holding the Peter Stott center, Lincoln Hall, Portland Art Museum, Branford Price Millar Library, and Ladd carriage home.

Currently, portions of the park are used in summer commencement ceremonies for state university students. With that, there’s a place for the farmers market, where local food booths are set up, and several people visit here during weekends.

It’s a beautiful park to visit with family, friends, and other loved ones and enjoy a good day after a hectic schedule. There is a children’s playground, bocce ball games, and basketball courts in case you want to have fun with some activity.

5. Simon Benson House

Location1803 SW Park Avenue, Portland.
Constructed in19th century CE

The house was constructed in the 19th century by Simon Benson.

Benson was an innovator, philanthropist, and a great businessman who gifted the bronze drinking fountain to the city.

The house was structured in a wooden frame with a Queen-Anne-style design. It was the residence of the Benson family until they moved in 1913.


The house was later turned into an apartment and moved to its current location. This house is now the home of the Port State University Association and the university’s visitor’s center.

6. Japanese American Historical Plaza

LocationNW Naito Pkwy, Portland, Oregon

This plaza is situated where Portland Japan-town once existed. The place and the 13 stones show the past of the Japanese who were once in Oregon.

The Japanese American Historical Plaza depicts the experiences and challenges the Japanese immigrants faced during WW II through poems engraved on the stones.

Surrounding the site, 100 cherry trees are in full bloom during March and April. If you visit the place during the springtime, you can enjoy the charm of the cherry trees.

Guided tours are also provided, in case you want one. This might help you explore and understand the history of this place much better.

These are some famous historical places to visit near Portland, Oregon.

If you are from this beautiful city or planning to visit, include the mentioned places in your travel map.

Well, I am sure you won’t regret looking at and exploring the charming sites holding stories from earlier days.

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