Portland, Oregon has a reputation for being a bike-friendly city. Part of what makes this reputation possible are the numerous greenways in East Portland. Greenways are roads that pass through Portland and have been chosen to keep traffic low and to offer cyclists a safe and quick way to cross the city. Many offer speed limits to slow down car traffic, fewer stop signs, and occasional center blocks (see illustration below) to keep cars out. These greenways are popular with commuters and holidaymakers alike. Greenways are great for going to work or taking a family bike ride in the afternoon. They are a fantastic way to explore many of Portland’s quaint neighborhoods, whether you go for a walk, run or bike. (Although we recommend cycling to enjoy more sights).
Below are three of our most popular greenways and some things you can do on the (green) way.
Clinton Street Greenway
One of the many things you’ll notice while enjoying the Greenway on Clinton Street are the identifying bikes on the street signs. This greenway takes you right past the popular Portland Street Division, which has a variety of restaurants, cafes and boutiques. It’s easy to cover the entire length of this greenway. We recommend driving from SE 50th and Clinton towards the river. You can enjoy the beautiful houses in the area and stop at SE 26th and Clinton on your way. This intersection area offers some restaurants, bars, an ice cream parlor, and local shops.
Keep going and Clinton Street will take you straight to the river bank. Perhaps the best part of this greenway is that not only do you end up on the esplanade on Portland’s riverside, but the entire ride is primarily downhill, allowing for easy outdoor activity.
Lincoln Street Greenway
This is a great greenway to follow if you are looking for a ride with lots of views. In addition, this greenway leads you directly to the famous Hawthorne Street in Portland. You can visit numerous vintage shops and restaurants, and stop by two Powell locations near 37th and Hawthorne. If you stay on Lincoln Street, we recommend starting at 60th and Lincoln. This is at the foot of the mountain. Tabor, a small mountain with a quick but steep hike up that offers a view of the city. From there you can easily go downhill.
Around 30th SE Lincoln turns into Harrison. If you follow Harrison, go straight to the Ladd’s Addition area. A unique neighborhood of beautiful old houses and public rose gardens. In the middle of Ladd’s annex is a green area where you can enjoy a picnic in the middle of hydrangeas and greenery. If you follow one of the diagonal streets of Ladd’s, you will get either towards Division or Hawthorne.
9th Street Greenway
This greenway takes you from Irving Park to the Alberta Arts District. If you follow this road from south to north and start at Irving Park, you will be driving directly onto Alberta Street. Similar to Division and Hawthorne, this street offers a lot to do when shopping and eating. We highly recommend exploring this area if you are looking for brunch.
If you drive in the evening, on Thursday you can enjoy Cruz Control’s comedians on Thursday evening. If you want to do a small park tour, we recommend that you drive from Irving Park to Alberta Park. Follow 9th Street Greenway (north) past Alberta to Jarrett Street. You can then drive east on Jarrett Street Greenway until you reach Alberta Park.
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