Summer officially starts after July 4th in Oregon. That’s when you can actually start wearing your tees and tanks outside. For a mommy with a toddler, staying inside the home is no fun. And hence we search for places to go during weekends which is enjoyable for both kid and the parents.
We got to know about these two parks in a 30 mile radius from Portland city few days back. Of course, instagram is so helpful in finding such cutesy little places. One of the park is in Lake Oswego, which is towards the south of Portland and the other one was the Oxbow Regional Park, Sandy located in the east of Portland. Both these parks have small beach set up where your kids can play happily and you can get some beach time. The actual beaches aren’t that far though, but weather plays a lot of role and you can never predict the weather at the beach.
This park offers rare access to many natural wonders and also provide recreational opportunities. The Sandy river is perfect for swimmers, kayaker and anglers. As you enter into the park further ahead, you will be welcomed with century old tall tress. The wilderness is absolutely heavenly. The park is super clean and has excellent access to the river, beautiful sandy beach where you can swim as there are spots where the water current is slow and the depth is shallow.
And there are some spots like the “happy creek” where the swimming option was lesser as the water current was super fast. But this spot gives you a very scenic and therapeutic view. There were pebbles all over, small fishes swimming their way to the deep river, loose sandy shore. Your kids will enjoy building a castle or throwing rocks on the water. Oh, also this is a no alcohol and no dogs allowed park.
Stress factor : Low stress. I just had to pack some snacks, water, juices and change of clothes when we decided to head to this place. My daughter was super fine playing in the water, with the wild flowers, her shovel and mud. As a parent, I would totally recommend this spot to my fellow friends.
Fun factor: High. Each place gives you a unique view. And if you drive further inside, there is a play area for the kids too.
Camping factor: They have huge campgrounds too with barbecue spots etc.
A hidden gem tucked away on the Willamette river. The George Rogers offers hours of sun and sand to your little ones and makes it fun outing for your kids. They can feed the mallards and ducks sitting on the shore. Don’t forget to bring some pool tubes so they can play in the water. Once you are done with the beach fun, you can climb upstairs and play in the greener lawn area too. This is also a best spot to plan a small picnic as a family as there are some sheltered spots too with outdoor barbecue pits. I love to take my little one here as she gets super tired out of all the running around and water fun.
Distance from Portland : around 8 miles from Portland City
Stress factor: Low/ Medium
I would say a medium stress factor because of those goose and ducks gracing on the shore. You never know when they can act wild. So I was a bit cautious when my daughter was around them. The water in some places are shallow but not everywhere. You need to keep an eye on your kids throughout.
Fun factor: High
You can picnic on the shore, watch the kayaks and boats. Get some tan while lying on the beach. You can even bring your bikes and ride them on the short trails surround the park.
Camping factor: No camping is allowed.
Both these spots have restrooms which is very much needed.
Always remember to come prepared when you plan to visit such sandy summer spots. Make sure you pack a pair of change of clothes, towels, picnic mat, snacks, juices, sunscreen and some beach play gear too which your little one might need. I am planning on creating a caddie full of picnic gear which I can leave in the car and that would help me to be more spontaneous. Do you have any suggestions on beaches tucked away in the city of Portland? Comment below.