33 Things to Do With Your Kids Around Portland This Spring Break

Mar 27, 2018

At long last, spring is here.

Along with the booming trees and flowers, longer days and warmer weather, every child is on spring break.

If this vacation will be a staycation, you don’t need to stay cooped up all week. We’ve compiled a list of 33 diverse adventures to get you and your children out of the house. With ideas for all ages, and everything easily accessible by transit, this is your guide to the ultimate Portland spring break staycation.

Pro tip: Use a Hop card on your spring break adventures for cheapest fares and greatest flexibility across MAX, buses, WES, Portland Streetcar and C-TRAN. 

The Classics

1. Ride the newest roller coaster at Oaks Park

Fun fact: Oaks Park is one of the few remaining trolley parks; an amusement park designed to be visited via transit. Their newest roller coaster, Adrenaline Peak, launched March 24th


2. Visit five star animals at the Zoo

Visit the zoo and have your family rate the animals. Spoiler alert: they’re all five out of five stars.


3. Celebrate Piano Day, TriMet style

Stop by the Washington Park MAX Station on Piano Day and inspire your child to fall in love with music.


4. See a Trail Blazers game and (just maybe) be a part of history

Don’t look now but the Trail Blazers are on a roll. Take your kids to one of the few remaining home games this season, so they can say they were there in 2018.


5. Go on an Easter egg hunt

Easter is April 1 and there are family-friendly activities and egg hunts in every part of town.

Happy ninth birthday to the Portland Aerial Tram! 🎉🚡🎉

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6. Get a different view of the city on the Portland Arial Tram

Give your child a whole new perspective on their home town with a three-minute trip that climbs over 500 feet.


7. Meet Robots at OMSI

OMSI’s newest exhibition, Robot Revolution, just opened. Go and get close to some of the coolest robots ever assembled!


Pop Culture

8. Witness the magic of Laika at the Portland Art Museum

The Portland Art Museum’s soon-to-conclude Laika exhibit offers a mesmerizing look into the sets, puppets and costumes that infuse life into Hillsboro-based Laika’s beloved stop-motion movies.


9. Indulge their inner Star Wars geek at Saber Forge

Leave your Star Wars-obsessed child speechless with a trip to a store that makes and sells lightsabers.


10. Visit all the Simpsons references in Portland

Is your child a fan of the legendary animates series? Seek out all the local places that inspired Simpsons creator Matt Groening.

11. Stop by Movie Madness and set up your own movie marathon

The newly-saved local landmark is as vital as ever. With thousands of titles in dozens of genres at this rental shop and museum of film, you can create a movie marathon that will appeal to any child.


Be Active

12. Ride a wave (indoors)

Mt Scott Indoor Pool features a water slide, wave pool, and perfect 84 degree water, allowing your kids to pretend spring break is summer vacation.


13. See how you roll at Gresham Skate World

Gresham’s classic Skate World is still the place for your child to learn how to skate, or show off the moves they already know.


14. Burn off energy at an indoor bike park

The Lumberyard, the West Coast’s only indoor bike park, is the perfect place for your extreme sports loving child to while away the hours this spring break.


15. Hit the trampolines

Instead of bouncing off the walls at home, let your child bounce on trampolines at Tigard’s Sky High Sports Trampoline Park.


Get Outdoors

16. Take a hike

There are dozens of hikes suitable for children of all ages across the Portland area. Our Transit to Trails map is a great starting point.

Hello, weekend. ☀😎 🌸#GoByTransit

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17-20. Visit a garden at its peak

Portland is rich in stunning parks, and spring break is when many are at their most beautiful. See the cherry blossoms at their peak in Tom McCall Waterfront Park. Walk among the blooms and wildlife (and maybe spot bald eagle) at the picturesque Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden. Or, see the newly remodeled Japanese Gardens in Washington Square Park, one of the finest Japanese gardens outside of Japan. Or, discover Lan Su Chinese Garden, a walled secret hiding in the urban landscape of Old Town.

#GoByTransit: Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden

#GoByTransit: Tom McCall Waterfront Park

#GoByTransit: Japanese Garden

#GoByTransit: Lan Su Chinese Garden

21. Get a “Before” view of Willamette Falls

The Pacific Northwest’s largest waterfall will be transformed in the coming years. Visit this historic landmark with your child and give them a memory of this falls as they were, before the ambitious restoration begins.


22. Get back to nature at the Spring Break Exploration Days in Tualatin

See spring unfold in the wild with the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge’s spring break-focused kid friendly programming.


 … Or Escape the (Probable) Rain

23. Take Oregon’s newest trains to see some of its oldest

Show your child how previous generations used to #gobytransit at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center, conveniently located on the MAX Orange line.


24-25. Play wildly creative indoor mini golf at Glowing Greens

Regular mini golf is fun, but indoor black light mini golf is an experience. Find it in Beaverton and in Downtown Portland.

#GoByTransit Beaverton

#GoByTransit Portland

26-27. Challenge your child to a classic arcade games

Let your child dive into 40 years of arcade games, from early classics to incredible modern day releases, at Ground Kontrol or Quarterworld.

#GoByTransit: Ground Kontrol

#GoByTransit Quarterworld

Spend Some Time With Furry and Feathered Friends

28. Get up close with feathered friends in Tualatin

Meet more than a dozen stunning and intelligent birds up-close when The Bird Man comes to the Tualatin Public Library.


29. Spend some time with the cats at Purrington’s Cat Lounge

Portland’s first cat lounge gives you and children as young as 6 a chance to enjoy a cozy beverage in the company of feline friends up for adoption.


30. Volunteer at the Humane Society

Do good while spending time with animals who could use the love; children as young as 12 can volunteer at Oregon Humane Society.


Go On An Adventure Of Your Own Making

31. Try to find Portland’s best dumpling

Kid-friendly dumplings are a great way to introduce a child to our diverse food scene. Hunt down Portland’s best dumplings and find a favorite.

32. Tour Ramona’s Portland

Perhaps Portland’s most famous and beloved fictional resident, Ramona Quimby’s imprint can be found across NE Portland. Pick up Portland-based Microcosm Publishing’s “Walking With Ramona” for instructions on how to take a three-mile Beverly Cleary walking tour.

33. Go on a tiny horse-finding adventure

Explore Portland’s quirky side with your child by tracking down as many tiny horses as you can find! Your all day Hop pass will allow you to traverse the city with ease as you uncover this whimsical art project.

Leaving town after all?

Take the train to the plane! We’ve added additional trains, including earlier and later trains, to and from PDX. Getting to the airport is easier than ever and as affordable as always.

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