Portland is nicknamed River City, and with good reason: The Willamette River and Columbia River both run through town, with the former defining the east and west sides of the city. There are various businesses, destinations and events for families that occur year round on both sides of the river.
Families may also enjoy themselves on the river: The Portland Spirit yacht plots a path along the river and through the literal center of the city. Nautical-minded kids will enjoy taking one of the several cruise this three-story, 150-foot yacht offers Portland residents and visitors. Parents who fancy themselves seafaring folk, but restrain from braving the Seven Seas for sake of their children, can still enjoy the excitement of being adrift within Portland’s city limits. Parents may book a cruise with their children and their own parents (whether they also live in town or are just visiting) up to six months in advance online. Group rates begin at parties of 15 or more.
There are lunch cruises every other day through most of the year, excepting for special events booked for the Portland Spirit. Admission is $38 per adult, $33 per senior citizen and $19 per child, and it lasts from noon until 2 p.m. with a meal included in the price. A dinner cruise is also available most weeknights starting at 7 p.m., at rates of $68 per adult and $63 per child or senior with a meal included.
There are various other cruises the Portland Spirit offers, from the Cinnamon Bear Cruise during the holiday season to a concert cruise during Friday mornings during summer. Take a look at the Portland Spirit website for details about these exciting cruises and to learn more about this vessel and others that cruise the Willamette River and the Columbia River, or to schedule a watery adventure for the whole family!
The Portland Spirit loading area is near the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), with ample parking available during all hours. TriMet Bus Lines 4, 17 and 33 all make stops within a half-mile of the dock, with several walking and cycling paths leading to it as well (bike parking is limited).