7 Things to Do in Portland at Night: Adventures After Dark
Here are a few of the hundreds of things you can do in Portland, Oregon – the City of Roses – after the sun goes down.
Beer. Street food. Roses. Gardens. You name it, Portland has it. The largest city in Oregon, Portland has a lot of things to boast about (like the best city for happy hour in the United States). It's a place that's full of things for you to do, even when – or maybe, especially when – it gets dark. Here are some of them.
Get involved in Portland's music scene
If you're a music lover, there are tons of activities to choose from. You can go for the usual concerts and shows, which Portland is rich in. Portland is home to a good deal of awesome professional musicians such as the Decemberists, Mel Brown, and the late Elliott Smith.
But if you're looking for something a bit more on the quirky side, you can always choose to provide your own entertainment with activities like karaoke. Two of the best choices would be either the more conventional – but still awesome – Boiler Room or the more unique Karaoke from Hell. Karaoke From Hell is a live karaoke band for when you want to fulfill your front man fantasies. They play the music, you sing the songs. With more than a hundred different songs to choose from, you can't go wrong.
Eat your heart out with more than 500 choices of food
So it's been said that Portland is just one giant food court. The Rose City is known for its abundance of food stalls and carts (about 475) that can be found practically everywhere. These feature all kinds of food from hotdogs to vegetarian to sweets to grilled cheese to fish to Italian to Japanese to Indian to Czech to really just about anything you can imagine. If you want to go to a proper establishment, however – depending on your definition of "proper" – there are always places like the Voodoo Doughnut shop (open 24 hours), which offers flavors like Gay Bar, Dirty Snowballs, and Cock-N-Balls. Yes. Portland truly does live up to its unofficial slogan: "Keep Portland Weird".
Even if you're still out late at night to the wee hours of the morning, there are a lot of places you can grab a bite to eat at these times. You can find pizza, salad, and sandwiches at Sizzle Pie. Departure offers scrumptious Asian eats. If you're a lover of food and leather, you can always find both at Driftwood Room. When you're craving for Italian, on the other hand, there's Nostrana. A favorite of many is the Vietnamese eatery Luc Lac. These are only some of the places to eat in Portland, which is a massive understatement. You'll never go hungry when you're here – every street has something to eat.
Experience true Beervana with Portland's breweries and beer houses
This has to be on the list if we're talking about Portland, which is widely known as the world's best beer city and for good reason. Portland a.k.a. Beervana a.k.a. Beertown has the most breweries and microbreweries than any other city in the world. When visiting Portland, you simply can't go without experiencing the local beer culture. Old time favorite spots include Upright, Cascade, Lompoc, Hair of the Dog, and Coalition. Of course, there are always new breweries opening as well, like The Commons, Ex Novo, and Ecliptic.
Portland even has movie brewpubs. Movie brewpubs. If you've ever gone to see a really good movie with your friends and a bucket of popcorn and thought the only thing missing was a good beer, this is definitely the place for you. Need I say more?
Get into the rhythm at the Rose City's dance clubs
Portland's dance scene caters to both young and old, as well as different types of music. There are regular high energy dance clubs, clubs that offer free salsa lessons, and even country music clubs (like Dixie Tavern). If you're looking for places where you can have awesome no-labels fun, you can go to Embers Avenue or The Escape Nightclub, which are two of the most popular gay dance clubs and showbars in the city. Still other great clubs you can visit are The Rose Bar & Lounge, The Crown Room, Holocene, and Splash Bar – where you can always play at the pool tables and video games for free.
Get your geek on at OMSI After Dark
OMSI is the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and it has its famous After Dark events that involve food (yayy) beer (of course) and science (yayy!). The interactive science museum is an amazing place for kids during the daytime and, well, older kids – think 21 and above – during the nighttime. If you consider yourself as either a geek or a nerd and you've fantasized once or twice about getting drunk beside double helix models and human fetuses, then this is perfect for you. The discussions are almost the same as the daytime – except with beer – with talks like Bourbon and Bacon, Tapas and Tequila, or Sex and Love.
Return to your past at the Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade
Going back to 8-bit games and video tables (cue the post-90's kid raised eyebrows at this point), the Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade offers beer, wine, live music, DJs and a nostalgic return to childhood. Again, this is a Portland spot that's famous as one of the best arcades in the United States so you shouldn't miss this opportunity. Pinball. Pac-Man. Tetris. Take me to Portland now, please.
Bonus: Strip Clubs
Of course this option isn't really ideal for those who want to keep their Portland visit in the family, but it's worth mentioning that aside from beer, Portland is also the city with the most strip clubs per capita in the world. If you need a lot more of that type of adventure, again, this is exactly where you need to be.
Again, these are only some of the activities you can do in Portland after sunset. You don't have to limit yourself to the items on the list. Go crazy. Stop waiting and start doing. Your adventure awaits!
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