The Explore Washington Park free seasonal shuttle runs on a loop inside Washington Park, stopping at all of the major attractions in the park. If coming to the park via TriMet MAX Light Rail Red or Blue lines, catch the shuttle on the plaza level of the Washington Park station. 

Portland has an international reputation as a green city, and at the green heart of that reputation is our beautiful Washington Park. Built many years ago into our historic West Hills, the park’s history is the history of a city that thrives in the forest. We are working on an article about the history of Washington Park that should be coming soon, but today we want to talk about what Portland’s playground offers to visitors to Portland today. Washington Park hosts some of our biggest attractions. From their website: “Oregon Zoo, Portland Children’s Museum, World Forestry Center, Hoyt Arboretum, Portland Japanese Garden, International Rose Test Garden and all of the park space in between.” A visitor could spend their entire trip in Washington Park, and still not explore all of the attractions, trails and views!

The organization that promotes and organizes access to Washington Park is Explore Washington Park. They help visitors get there in six different ways. These include a live parking availability indicator on the website for those that want to drive a car up, rideshare services, a seasonal shuttle that ensures that everyone has access during the summer season when parking is at a premium, walking (yes, it’s that close to the city center!), biking, and taking our world-class mass transit system to a direct light-rail stop in the parking lot at the zoo. Everyone has a reason to visit Washington Park.

Another major resource on the website is of course the calendar. Between all the different venues there is always an event worth considering. The zoo alone has programs running all year round for people of all ages. Look out for concerts, light displays, and rotating exhibits of art and culture throughout the year. The attractions are close enough together that it’s good to be aware of what each venue is offering while you’re there. No trip to Portland is complete without a visit to our very own Washington Park!

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