The Hotel Zags Guide to Family Fun in Portland

A growing metropolis with seemingly endless things to do, Portland has become an ideal travel destination for families. From outdoor adventures to delicious treats and family-friendly fun, there is plenty to discover when exploring Portland as a family. Read on for our guide to the top Portland family activities.


The perfect place to spend a day outside, Portland’s many parks are spacious settings to enjoy the outdoors and experience the city. Washington Park is an urban park in the center of the city, and features a zoo, museum, arboretum, and several special gardens. More of a forest than a park, Forest Park is one of the largest urban forests in the U.S. Here you can explore 5,200 acres of trails and rolling green pastures. Not a park in the traditional sense — but rather an amusement park — Oaks Park promises a day of thrilling family fun. Located a few miles south of downtown, Oaks Park was originally opened in 1905 and is one of the country’s oldest, continuously-operating amusement parks.

Oregon Zoo

Located inside of Washington Park, the Oregon Zoo is one of the best things to do in Portland with kids. People of all ages will enjoy exploring the 64 fun-filled acres, which are home to a diverse array of wildlife — ranging from reptiles to big cats and birds of prey. The Oregon Zoo was founded in 1888 and is the oldest zoo west of the Mississippi River.

Portland Children’s Museum

If you’re traveling to Portland with young kids, there’s no better place to spend the day than the Portland Children’s Museum. This museum offers an immersive learning experience for children through exhibits that spark creativity and encourage an active imagination.

Portland Saturday Market

Among the largest outdoor markets in the U.S., the Portland Saturday Market makes for a perfect day out in the city. With a focus on arts and crafts, the Saturday Market offers visitors an authentic taste of Portland culture and a unique selection of souvenirs with options for the whole family.

Portland Aerial Tram

See Portland from a new vantage point aboard the Portland Aerial Tram. The tram carries travelers between the South Waterfront district and the Marquam Hill neighborhood. On this ride, you’ll pass over lush greenery with stunning views of the city. They also frequently host family-friendly events, like their Halloween event and winter holidays celebration.

VooDoo Doughnut

Satisfy even the biggest sweet tooth in the family at famous Portland bakeshop, VooDoo Doughnut. Indulge in everything from traditional doughnuts, such as the classic glazed and chocolate frosted, to wacky flavors that include bubble gum and bacon maple.

Floating World Comics

One of Portland’s hidden gems, Floating World Comics is an independent bookstore filled with comic books of every genre. Kids will love reading their collection, with genres including superhero, sci-fi, action, adventure, and more. Don’t miss this unique shop during your family vacation in Oregon.