Welcome to Salem, Oregon.

Things to Do in Salem, Oregon

7 September 2022

Salem, Oregon, is a beautiful place to live, work, and play. There are plenty of things to do in Salem, Oregon, that will keep you entertained and engaged. Whether you enjoy outdoor or indoor activities, there is something for everyone in Salem, Oregon.

Salem is the capital of Oregon, and it is also the county seat of Marion County. Salem is located in the Willamette Valley region of the state, and it is about an hour’s drive south of Portland.

If you prefer spending time outdoors, there are many parks and trails in Salem, Oregon, that you can explore. If you want to explore more, you can hike up to the top of Mount Hood or take a scenic drive down the coast.

Salem is also home to several wineries, so you can sample some local wines while enjoying the beautiful scenery. Here are some places you don’t want to miss when visiting Salem, Oregon:

Outdoor Activities

  • Visit the Mount Hood

Mount Hood in Salem, Oregon, to hike, bike, or ski. The mountain is located just outside Salem and offers beautiful views of the city and the Willamette Valley.

  • Take a scenic drive down the Oregon Coast.

The Oregon Coast is a beautiful place to take a drive. The coast features towering cliffs, sandy beaches, and quaint towns. The drive from Salem to Brookings, Oregon, is about 3 hours and 30 minutes.

  • Sample Local Wines at Willamette Valley Vineyards

Willamette Valley Vineyards is a family-owned winery located just outside of Salem. Visitors can take tours of the

  • Tour the Willamette Queen Sternwheeler

The Willamette Queen Sternwheeler is a replica of a 19th-century riverboat that offers cruises on the Willamette River. Visitors can take a 1-hour sightseeing cruise or a 2-hour dinner cruise and enjoy views of Salem’s skyline and bridges.

  • Stroll Through Bush’s Pasture Park

Bush’s Pasture Park is a 90-acre city park with walking trails, gardens, a pond, and a historic mansion. The park is also home to the Salem Art Association, which offers classes and workshops for all ages.

  • Go on a Hike in Silver Falls State Park

Silver Falls State Park is Oregon’s largest state park and features waterfalls, hiking trails, a lodge, and a campground. The park is home to the famous Trail of Ten Falls, which takes hikers past ten waterfalls.

  • Attend the Oregon State Fair

Held every August in Salem, the Oregon State Fair is one of the state’s biggest annual events. The
fair features carnival rides, live music, agricultural exhibits, and a wide variety of food and drink.

How about spending time indoors in Salem, Oregon? It has plenty to offer. There are several museums in Salem, Oregon, that you can visit, including the Oregon State Capitol Museum and the A.C. Gilbert House Museum, and others.

You can also catch a live performance at one of Salem, Oregon’s many theaters. Check out the many other places to gain a unique experience while visiting the beautiful Salem, Oregon:

Indoor Activities

  • Visit the Oregon State Capitol

Visit the Oregon State Capitol in Salem, Oregon, and learn about the state’s history and government.

  •  Browse the Salem Saturday Market

The Salem Saturday Market is a weekly farmers’ market and art fair downtown Salem. Shop for fresh produce, handmade goods, and local food, and enjoy live music and entertainment.

  • Take a Tour of the Willamette Heritage Center

The Willamette Heritage Center is a 5-acre museum complex with 12 historic buildings, three gardens, and a library. Visitors can take tours of the grounds, see exhibits on Oregon history, and attend special events.

  • Visit the Gilbert House Children’s Museum

The Gilbert House Children’s Museum is a hands-on museum for kids aged 3-10. Visitors can play in the water park, build with giant LEGOs, and explore a life-sized treehouse.

  •  See a Show at the Elsinore Theatre

The Elsinore Theatre is a historic movie palace that now hosts live performances, movies, and special events. Built-in 1926, the theatre is on the National Register of Historic Places and features a grand lobby, an ornate auditorium, and a large stage.

  • Visit the A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village

A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village is an interactive children’s museum with hands-on exhibits and educational programs. Kids can explore a two-story treehouse, build with giant LEGOs, and play in the water park.

  • Enjoy The Elsinore Theatre

Enjoy The Elsinore Theatre is a historic 1920s-era theater that hosts a variety of live performances, including music, dance, and comedy. The theater also offers guided tours and houses a museum with memorabilia from its 90-year history.

  • Ride the Carousel at Riverfront Park

Riverfront Park is a 22-acre park with a walking trail, a playground, and a carousel. The park is also home to the Salem Farmers’ Market, which takes place every Saturday from April to October.

  • Visit the Historic Deepwood Estate

The Historic Deepwood Estate is a Victorian mansion that was built in 1894. The estate features beautiful gardens, a museum, and a bed and breakfast. The estate is open for tours from April through October.

Whether you are looking for things to do in Salem, Oregon, that are free or paid, there is something for everyone! So, if you are ever in the area, check out all the great things to do in Salem, Oregon.


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