Welcome to Willamette Valley
Natural beauty abounds in Oregon wine country
Stretching from Portland past Eugene, Willamette Valley is a fertile, expansive plain bordered on three sides by three distinct mountain ranges. With sparkling waterways, incredible waterfalls, and abundant trails through leafy and coniferous forests, the views are breathtaking. The warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters create ideal growing conditions for vineyards. Willamette Valley is Oregon’s wine country.
Willamette Valley’s early inhabitants, the Kalapuya tribe of Native Americans, flourished in the area’s rich, open land. They thrived on the plentiful deer, salmon, and acorns from the native oak trees. When the Oregan Trail opened in 1841, settlers flocked to this paradisal area. The commencement of a successful lumber industry, along with the sumptuous farmland and transportation network provided by the river, gave the town a key role in Oregon’s achieving statehood.
The vigorous economy of its early days endures in the bustling Willamette Valley today. As the headquarters for several notable companies, families and young professionals find work fulfillment in the community. With more than 750 vineyards, wineries are a significant part of the area’s economic province.
What to Love
- The area’s award-winning wines
- Hiking to waterfalls
- Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival
- Spectacular scenery
Willamette Valley’s streets are lined with an astounding variety of trees, from green ash, towering elms, lovely maples, and magnolia to lush lindens and stately oaks. They lavishly frame the equally diverse homes, which include craftsman, bungalow, Victorian, and quaint farmhouses. In this walkable neighborhood, people can be seen walking along these picturesque streets, enjoying the view.
From the street’s whimsical collection of homes to the shops and restaurants on its historic Main Street, Willamette Valley is the ideal place for a stroll. The mild weather of the area serves to enhance the locals’ walking experiences. Downtown wine walks are one of the area’s favorite ways to enjoy the pedestrian-friendly neighborhood.
Dining, Entertainment & Shopping
The 750 wineries and nearly 20 tasting rooms in Willamette Valley make it a wine connoisseur’s Eden. Local growers, able to grow their grapes in the prime conditions of the area, provide world-class wines that have won numerous awards. With so many outstanding wineries, residents never run out of premium wines from which to choose.
Lumos Wine Co. grows its grapes in a certified organic vineyard. With a cozy tasting room, monthly feature wines, a cabin rental, and a world-class selection of wines, Lumos Wine Co. is a wine paradise. Cardwell Hill Cellars features award-winning wines produced from the owners’ vineyard. This winery affords a tasting room and a wine shop, hosts musical events, and is dog-friendly.
Compton Family Winery, a family-owned farm, has a fine selection of collectors and garden series wines. Willamette Valley Vineyards is a world-class winery using sustainable farming practices to produce its impeccable wines. Its tasting room pairs wine with delectable plates. Harris Bridge Vineyard LLC produces excellent wines as well as sweet vermouth, aperitifs, and dessert wines with wine club member access to their lovely picnic and camping areas.
Things to Do
Willamette Valley residents have found many ways to enjoy the fruits of their vineyards’ harvests. Downtown wine walks allow locals to sample several of the outstanding local wines downtown while listening to music, eating at area restaurants, and browsing in the local shops. If visiting a local vineyard, one will find most have wine-tasting rooms for sampling their fare onsite. Many of the wineries also host special events, such as live music events, benefits for local organizations, and dinners.
Willamette Valley Tour offers wine tours of local vineyards. A cycling wine tour is available for intrepid cyclists. Enjoying the stunning scenery while sampling wine is just one of the area’s unique pleasures. Residents can also enjoy the outdoors by hiking to local waterfalls, white water rafting, or kayaking. Willamette River Greenway Trail, Bolton Creek, has a network of trails for a peaceful hike allowing one the chance to take in the spectacular views.