Astoria is gritty and likes it that way. But that rustic exterior is just a cover for the many enchanting dichotomies you’ll find waiting around the corner. Here, fisherman are poets, loggers drink espresso, and Main Street welcomes both the nouveau gallery and the five n’ dime. For Astoria, it’s about character, and it’s also about characters: the people who call this place home with a passion that borders on evangelical. The skipper who challenges the same mighty river his great grandfather once fished; the artist who migrated here in search of a new palette; the hotelier who resurrected a once-bustling pier.
Day 1 – Salem to Astoria
This journey starts with a full day adventure that only happens twice a year! Ride the Portland Spirit as she cruises down the Willamette and Columbia Rivers to Astoria, where the river collides with the Pacific Ocean. The broad waters of the Columbia River will carry us from Portland’s vibrant harbor through the forest covered coast range on an adventure filled day, re-tracing the route of Lewis & Clark, the famed American explorers. Ocean freighters and tugboats share our route to Astoria, a quaint scenic river town that is filled with history and places to explore. This day-long adventure covers 60 miles of the Willamette & Columbia Rivers. Pass under the bridges that make Portland famous, and travel through Portland’s industrial area where the Willamette meets the Columbia. We’ll be treated to the Captain’s narration as we continue our adventure through some of the most beautiful and secluded landscapes in Oregon. Don’t forget to look for the City Hall Clock Tower as you pass through St. Helens. It faces the river a throw-back to times when the river was the main route of transportation through the area. Continental breakfast and lunch buffet are provided on-board. Our home for the next 2 nights is the Holiday inn Express located next to the Astoria Bridge. We’ll have a reception in our private room before saying good night. Holiday Inn Express (B, L, D)
Day 2 – – Astoria Local Touring
After breakfast we head to Cape Disappointment… The Cape offers 27 miles of ocean beaches, two lighthouses, hiking trails, camping, and the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. Perched on a cliff, 200 ft above the mouth of the Columbia River, the center tells the story of the Corps of Discovery’s journey, focusing particularly on their Pacific Coast stay. Your afternoon is free to explore Astoria… you can ride the historic Trolley (near the hotel) The newly restored trolley goes along the waterfront, where you can check out the quaint shops in historic downtown, visit Waterfront Park where you can view ships, visit the Heritage Museum, the Firefighters Museum, or the Flavel House. We’ll meet up this afternoon for atour of the Columbia Maritime Museum…. One of the best in the country! Explore marine transportation from the days of dugout canoes, through the age of sail, to the present. Watch a dramatic 12-minute film introducing the history of life and commerce on the Columbia River, including the dangerous work of the Bar and River Pilots. Walk the bridge of a World War II warship, marvel at the 44-ft motor lifeboat plowing through a wave in a rescue mission. Participate in four interactive, hands-on exhibits. Dinner tonight is at Silver Salmon Grill… Located on the beautiful Oregon coast, they take advantage of the freshest seafood available. Silver Salmon Grille reflects a cozy, intimate casual, but elegant dining experience with stunning architectural treatments and superb interior decor Holiday Inn Express (B, D)
Day 3 – – Astoria to Home
Today we’ll visit Fort Clatsop, it was the encampment of the Lewis and Clark Expedition near the mouth of the Columbia River during the winter of 1805-1806. It’s located along the Lewis and Clark River at the north end of the Clatsop Plains. Next we’ll enjoy Lunch at Camp 18 Restaurant and Logging Museum… Its’ architecture is authentic in materials and construction techniques and features an 85-foot ridgepole that’s the largest such piece in the United States and weighs approximately 25 tons! Oh yeah, the food is real good too! (B, L)
A $100 per person deposit will hold space; balance is due by ????