Hood River

Travel Guide North America USA Western United States Oregon Hood River

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Introduction

Hood River is a small chill resort town located about 2 hours east of Portland. During the summer is is a major center for wind surfing, while during the winter it is more of a budget ski town. There are also great breweries located in the town and some amazing hiking in the area.

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Sights and Activities

Breathtaking views of the Columbia River Gorge, quaint old orchards with Mt. Hood as backdrop, acres of world-class wine-producing vineyards, waterfalls, local art galleries, and historical byways are just the beginning of what visitors will experience in Hood River.

Take a ride on the Mt. Hood Railroad through river valleys, orchard land, up to mountain vistas, and back while enjoying a gourmet meal. Come during the winter to see the snow-capped cascades in all their glory, or tour the Fruit-Loop if Fall colors are your fancy. Springtime boasts fruit blossomes noteworthy by some of the best photographers in the region. During the Summer a whole day can be sent sitting down at the Marina, marveling at the athletic abilities of Wind and Kite-Surfers in this wind-capital of the world. Hood River is truly beautiful every season of the year.

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Events and Festivals

Holidays

  • New Year’s Eve - The US celebrates the outgoing of the old year and incoming of the New Year quite dramatically. Every state boasts its own parties to ring in the New Year, but none is more extravagant than New York’s Time Square, which sees people overflowing into the neighboring restaurants, bars, parks, beaches, and neighborhoods.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day (officially Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. and sometimes referred to as MLK Day) is an American federal holiday marking the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around King's birthday, January 15. The holiday is similar to holidays set under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act. The earliest Monday for this holiday is January 15 and the latest is January 21. King was the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law.
  • St Patrick’s Day - March 17 celebrates the US’s large Irish population. Many cities around the country boast boisterous parades and Irish-themed parties, especially New York and Chicago, where the river is dyed green. Be wary of the drunkenness that dominates as this is definitely a party-day.
  • Memorial Day - Memorial Day is an important holiday throughout the United States, but not for crazy festivities. Parades commemorating wartime heroes are often held and the day is also the ‘unofficial’ start of summer. Most visitors follow the crowds to parks and beaches, which are capped off with informal BBQs.
  • Independence Day - Also known as the Fourth of July, Independence Day celebrates the US’s break from the British during the 18th century. Barbecues, street parties, beach trips, and weekend getaways are commonplace to appreciate freedom.
  • Labor Day is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It honors the American labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, laws, and well-being of the country. It is the Monday of the long weekend known as Labor Day Weekend. It is recognized as a federal holiday. Beginning in the late 19th century, as the trade union and labor movements grew, trade unionists proposed that a day be set aside to celebrate labor.
  • Halloween - Halloween is a fun holiday on October 31 for all generations to dress up in costumes and relive their youth. Children walk around the neighborhood trick-or-treating for candy, while adults attend parties. Other seasonal events include haunted houses, pumpkin farms and carving, and corn mazes.
  • Thanksgiving - On the fourth Thursday in November, Thanksgiving is held in almost every home in the US. Tourists will have a hard time finding anything to do as the country essentially shuts down in observation. A typical Thanksgiving meal consists of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie commemorating the original Pilgrim’s feast at Plymouth Rock.
  • Christmas - On December 25, Christians celebrate Christmas as the pinnacle of their calendar by attending church and opening gifts from Santa Claus. Almost everything shuts down to promote family togetherness. The northern regions hope to experience a “white Christmas,” with trees and festive lights blanketed by snow.

Sport

  • Super Bowl Sunday - the world’s most watched sporting event and one of the highest grossing TV days of the year, Superbowl Sunday is a spectacular extravaganza. Held the first Sunday in February, the Superbowl is the final playoff game between the NFL’s top two teams. The venue rotates every year around America, yet the local parties seem to remain. Pubs, bars and restaurants are great places to enjoy the Superbowl or locals throw their own parties with different variations of betting.
  • The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball (MLB) in North America, contested since 1903 between the American League (AL) champion team and the National League (NL) champion team. The winner of the World Series championship is determined through a best-of-seven playoff, and the winning team is awarded the Commissioner's Trophy. As the series is played during the fall season in North America, it is sometimes referred to as the Fall Classic.

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Getting There

Drive or take a bus from Portland. You can also take the train from Portland to Bingen, Washington just across the river. The drive from Portland through the Columbia River Gorge is outstanding, so if possible, rent a car.

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Getting Around

It's easy to walk around downtown Hood River, but you might want a car to check out some scenic areas nearby. There are shuttle and tour services offered by local businesses,

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Eat

  • Gorge in the Gorge - A resource guide for where and what to eat in the Columbia River Gorge.

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Drink

  • Double Mountain Brewery and Taproom is a great restaurant and brewery located a block away from the main strip. The beers are constantly changing and remember you can't take any 6 packs away unless you want to buy a jug. The brewery is located at 8 fourth street, phone: 541-939-0606.

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Sleep

  • The Hood River Hotel is located right in the heart of downtown Hood River. This is a very nice small hotel with great rooms either looking at the river or downtown The staff is extremely friendly and good deals can be found during the low season. The hotel also has a great restaurant and a nice spa/gym in the basement. It is located downtown at 102 Oak Street, Phone: 541-386-1900.
  • Best Western Hood River Inn, 1108 E Marina Way, ☎ +1 541 386-2200, fax: +1 541 386-8905.
  • Sunset Motel Hood River, 2300 Cascade Ave.

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Keep Connected

Internet

There is a very small internet bar/cafe culture in the USA. Even then most of the internet bars/cafes tend be located in major urban centers. Accessible WiFi networks, however, are common. The most generally useful WiFi spots are in coffee shops, fast-food chains, and bookshops, but also restaurants and hotels more and more have a network to connect on. Some of them might require you to buy something and you might need a password too, especially in hotels.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The general emergency phone number is 911. The USA has a great landline phone system that is easy to use. The country code for the U.S. is +1. The rest of the telephone number consists of 10 digits: a 3-digit area code, and a 7-digit number. Any small grocery store or pharmacy has pre paid domestic or international phone cards. These phone cards are very cheap and offer good rates. The once ubiquitous pay phone is now much harder to find. Likely locations include in or near stores and restaurants, and near bus stops. The cellphone network in the states is slowly getting better but is still not as good when compared to other western countries. Cell phones tend to operate using different frequencies (850 MHz and 1900 MHz) from those used elsewhere in the world (2100 MHz). This used to prevent most foreign phones from working in America. Phones must be tri- or quad-band to work in the U.S. Fortunately, technology has meant that most phones should now be able to pick up one of the U.S. networks. Prepaid phones and top-up cards can be purchased at mobile phone boutiques and at many discount, electronics, office supply and convenience stores. A very basic handset with some credit can be had for under $40.

Post

The US Postal Service is a very good and well priced mail system. There are post offices in every small and large town for sending packages internationally or domestically. Although some might keep longer hours, most are open at least between 9:00am and 5:00pm. If wanting to send a letter or postcard it is best just to leave it in a blue mail box with the proper postage. First-class international airmail postcards and letters (up 28.5 grams) cost $1.10. There are also private postal services like FedEx, UPS, TNT and DHL, which might be better value sometimes and are generally very quick and reliable too.

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Contributors

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This is version 9. Last edited at 13:05 on Jun 14, 19 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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