This 4th of July weekend, my in-laws came to visit from Denver, so we did every touristy thing you could fit into a few days. From Voodoo Doughnuts and Salt & Straw, to going back to Multnomah Falls

But my husband and I got to play tourist too by visiting two places we hadn’t been yet: The Portland Japanese Garden and the International Rose Test Garden. I HIGHLY recommend both! Both are within walking distance of one another, so you can just park once and visit each.

The Portland Japanese Garden is one of the most peaceful and serene places I’ve ever been. I want to live there! After walking through the gates, you’re immediately surrounded by the most lush trees and bushes – breathing in the purest oxygen. Broken down into what’s called the Five Gardens, the walk through includes Koi fish, a beautiful waterfall, and a stunning view of Mt. Hood.

Admission for entry is: $9.50 for adults, $7.75 for seniors (62+), $7.75 for college students with ID, $6.75 for youth (6-17), and children 5 and under are free. It’s worth every penny, especially to help keep it preserved and taken care of!

The International Rose Test Garden is one of the best smelling places I’ve ever been. Coming in at an impressive 4.5 acres, and housing over 10,000 roses, how could it not smell so good?  I only mentioned to my husband about a million times that we should have gotten married there (and yes, they do weddings!)

Admission is free, and voluntary donations help keep it that way!

Below is a photo gallery of both places! So take a look, and next time you’re in Portland (perhaps on a stop on one of our Columbia River Cruises), you’ll want to pay them a visit!