5-Day Columbia River Gorge Itinerary
The natural beauty of the Columbia River Gorge beckons you to come explore. Take in the beautiful Pacific Northwest landscape as you adventure through stunning waterfalls, colorful wildflower meadows or exhilarating hiking trails. The Gorge is known for its orchards, wineries, breweries, art, farmers markets, snow and water sports along with fishing, golfing and museums. Here are our top recommendations, including fun, must-see attractions and our ultimate INNSider tips.

Day 1: Hit the Trails

Waterfall in Columbia River Gorge Scenic AreaSome of the Columbia River Gorge’s main attributes are breathtaking waterfallsand wildflower havens. This gorgeous landscape is what makes it one of the most popular destinations. When you drive along the Historic Columbia River Highway, you are greeted at nearly every bend of the road with another awe-inspiring view one of the 70 waterfalls found in the Columbia Gorge Scenic Area. To get to these cascading falls, enjoy a trek through towering trees and lush greenery! Here are a couple to get you started:

  •       Falls Creek Falls, located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, is a 335-foot three-tier waterfall guaranteed to delight. Throughout the hike you’ll see old-growth trees, skirt the falls creek, and depending on the season, there may be additional waterfalls.
  •       Panther Creek Falls is also located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. An easy walk down to the split rail fence displays two springs that converge together to create a million tiny diamonds glittering in a cascading waterfall.

Day 2: Sip, Savor and Socialize at the assortment of stunning Gorge wineries, cideries or breweries.

This area includes the fertile soils of both Washington and Oregon. From the Chef-prepared charcuterie board
marine-influenced climate of Underwood Mountain to the arid dryland of the Eastern Gorge, our grapes and wines are a spectacular selection of sweet whites and luscious reds. Also available are craft-styled beers showcasing locally grown hops.


Sycline, Cor Cellars and Domaine Pouillon offer diverse tasting experiences on the Washington side of the river with stunning views of Mount Hood in the distance. Stave and Stone, The Gorge White House and Cathedral Winery are all located on the Oregon side of the river and are sure to delight with their multiple generation winemaking experiences and their chef-created charcuterie boards.

Day 3: Adventure into a Festival

Grassy field with blossoming trees in Columbia River Gorge

Every season in the Gorge has a festival to be enjoyed. Spring starts off the fun with the Blossom Festival, followed by the Hood River Fruit Loop where you can enjoy a self-guided tour of cideries, farms stands and wineries. Summer introduces the farmers markets, live music venues and First Friday in Hood River, OR. Fall brings on the Hood River Valley Harvest Fest and the Hood River Hops Fest. Skamania County offers Logtoberfest, the Gorge Blues & Brews Festival and their county fair in Stevenson, WA.


Day 4: Water Sports for Thrill Seekers!

White water rafting group on White Salmon RiverWhitewater rafting down the White Salmon River will leave you feeling exhilarated! Choose from Class III to Class V rapids, complete with experienced guides to help you command the raft. Until the largest dam removal project in U.S. history, Condit Dam and Northwestern Lake Reservoir had hidden and blocked the unmatched beauty of the White Salmon River. Now you get to enjoy it front and center with three different rafting companies to choose from: Zoller’s Outdoor Odysseys,Wet Planet or River Drifters.


Day 5: Step Back in Time with a Visit to a Museum.


Everyone can find something to pique their interest with the eclectic collectionAirplane exhibit at a Columbia River Gorge Museum of museums in the Gorge. At the Interpretive Center in Stevenson, WA, learn about cataclysmic glacial lake outburst floods that swept across the country to create the Columbia River Gorge, or study the route that Lewis and Clark forged while making their way to the Pacific. In the summer, take a class on driving a Model T at the Air & Auto Museum in Hood River, which also features motorcycles, tractors, military vehicles, biplanes, gliders and so much more. Learn about the Oregon Trail pioneers and explorers at the  Columbia Gorge Discovery Center & Museum in The Dalles, OR. What in the Sam Hill were you thinking?! That’s right. Sam Hill homesteaded the MaryHill Museum in honor of his daughter, Mary. He was the visionary and founder of the Historic Columbia Highway and the museum is an expansive collection of his life’s accomplishments.

Tag us at @wainnsiders on Instagram! Let Washington INNSiders guide you to the perfect retreat. While we have highlighted a few great inns close to beautiful destinations, the Washington INNSiders boasts an exhaustive list of independent inns all over the state. Filter by desired characteristics to select the ideal B&B, inn, or hotel for your dream outdoor getaway. The experts behind Washington INNSiders inspect and approve all member properties, so you can confidently plan the perfect escape today.

See Places to Stay


Sign up for Washington travel tips, recommendations and updates delivered to your inbox monthly