Inspired by The Amazing Race, CityScape Adventures—held across the United States—entangle race participants in webs of 12 puzzles and challenges in citywide races to the finish line. Participants compete in teams of two, using their wits, teamwork, and underground network of mutant-turtle spies to complete the tasks given at the start of the race. The 12 challenges take the form of puzzles, riddles, and clues that guide treasure hunters to a specific location within the city, where each team must complete a special task using only their cleverness and muscles. Players can also use the Internet, and the winning team is usually the one that best leverages its resources. The first team to successfully complete all tasks and vault over the finish line will receive a prize and assembly line of high-fives.
Plumes of steam puff from the locomotive as it travels along the Pacific coast. A mountainside blanketed in evergreens towers above the vessel as waves pound against the boulder-strewn shore below. The nonprofit Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad serves as both a living history museum and excursion operator for the state's forested coastline. Antique locomotives that hearken back to the region's logging origins take guests on waterside excursions as a crew feeds the engines recycled motor oil and coal-flavored candies. Seasonal events bring about the railroad?s dinner trains, which treat guests to four-course meals as they gaze at the sparkling water of Tillamook and Nehalem Bays.
As a kid, marine biologist and gray whale researcher Carrie Newell dreamed of working on Jacques Cousteau's team. In 2004, that dream approached reality when Jean-Michel Cousteau, Jacques's son, asked Carrie to contribute her groundbreaking research to The Gray Whale Obstacle Course, an episode in the first season of his PBS series. Carrie continues to share her passion and knowledge for gray whales on daily, year-round trips through Whale Research EcoExcursions. After an educational talk, Carrie invites up to six guests to board a six-person ex-coast guard Zodiac and venture into waters where gray whales swim during summer feasts and winter migrations. Carrie also teaches patrons about marine life through her Whale, Sea Life & Shark Museum, which she stocks with her extensive collection of shark, seabird, sea lion, seal, and gray whale artifacts.
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 4+ hours
Pro Tip: Bring a pair of binoculars to get good views of birds, wildlife, and distant landscape features.
Handicap Accessible: No
Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Nature tour of the Columbia River Gorge
Recommended Age Group: All Ages
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On our tours, we leave no stone unturned, so to speak. As biologists and naturalists, we're passionate about the whole natural world, from the tiniest insect or plant, to the biggest rivers and mountains. We make sure to bring the full spectrum of nature to the attention of our guests. On a hike to a popular waterfall, for example, we might stop to muck around near a small stream to see what creatures are hidden there. We feel that we can show our guests things that they won't see on tours offered by other businesses.
Know Your City gives a voice to underrepresented communities through social justice and art programs, including its most high-profile endeavor, city tours. During the Multicultural Portland tour, visitors immerse themselves in Chinatown, which boasts the second-largest Chinese population in the country. They also learn about Japan Town, which thrived before WWII and disappeared during the U.S.'s forced implementation of Japanese internment camps, and explore the site of the city's first African-American community, which pulsated with jazz clubs, hostels, and barbershops.
The DIY PDX walking tour swaps out national chains for local mom-and-pop, mom-and-mom, and pop-and-pop stores that dot the City of Roses and unleash innovative artisans, writers, food truck purveyors, and coffee roasters into local culture. Finally, the Portland 101 tour throws back the curtain on Portland's left-leaning politics and shows how they've shaped the world-renowned city.
Dreamboat Cruises harks back to a bygone era, sweeping passengers on scenic cruises aboard the Ananda, a 1929 Blanchard motor yacht. This beautifully restored vessel—outfitted with modern amenities such as an electric-flush toilet—features an iconic, whitewashed hull and raised foredeck that adjoins a squared-off passenger house. From this heated enclosure, passengers observe the Portland waterfront's forested terrain and signature landmarks, such as the country's oldest vertical-lift bridge that's also made out of popsicle sticks.
Specializing in six-passenger tours, Dreamboat Cruises adjusts its excursions to suit each season. Whereas winter trips highlight holiday lights and Christmas ships, other outings feature bridges, shipyards, and depositories of misplaced tub toys. In addition to tours, Dreamboat Cruises hosts intimate weddings and memorial cruises.