[P]ortland, Oregon’s capital city on the Pacific Northwest coast of the United States, has long been one of travel insiders best kept secrets. With an abundance of local food and drink delicacies, a focus on wellness and community happiness, breath taking scenery a five minute drive from the city centre, creative hubs in every city district and a progressive and liberal approach to life (they even legalised recreational marijuana in 2015) – it’s hard to find much to fault. Luckily for the rest of us though, the secret’s now out.
With a population of just over 600,000 Portland feels more like a boutique city than a sprawling, urban capital and is the type of place where you can pick up ever-so-on-trend Blue Star donuts for breakfast, grab a locally brewed craft beer or Kombucha with your ethically sourced lunch, and then hit up a vegan strip club for some after dinner entertainment should the mood take you. Portland is as trendy as Stoke Newington wishes it could be, with an edge that forms the undercurrent of the city’s buzzing creative scene. But Zia McCabe, member of Portalnd-based band The Dandy Warhols reckons that we shouldn’t be surprised. “If you go back in Portland’s history it was founded by pioneers, adventurers and pirates – this rebellious spirit has always been a part of Portland”, she says. “Portland was always the environment that inspired our art and being in a place that’s a little harder to get to gives you an almost renegade feeling”, she says.