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Pacific Northwest

"Asian American Experience in Oregon"
American Pathways National Cultural Itinerary

The diverse communities in Portland and Oregon have a very strong influence, which has helped shape the state's history and future. Today, some remarkable testaments to the contributions of and partnerships between all communities are visible. This tour will help interpret and inform travelers about those remarkable gifts.

Great value inclusions:

  • 4 nights moderate hotels
  • Round-trip luxury motorcoach transportation
  • Professional tour guide
  • Porterage for one suitcase
  • Breakfast each day plus one dinner
  • Airport/hotel transfers
  • Portland city tour
  • Japanese Garden visit
  • Authentic Chinese dinner
  • Fort Stevens State Park
  • High Desert Museum
  • John Day Fossil Beds National Monument
  • Kam Wah Chung Chinese museum
  • Four Rivers Cultural Center
  • Pendleton Underground Tour

Day 1 - Portland, Oregon
Japanese GardensWelcome to Portland, where diversity is incorporated into each and every day. Our history is influenced by immigrants from pioneer days to present day. 

A city tour highlighting the Asian influence is the emphasis of our cultural landscape, and includes stops at many Asian-related attractions such as the China Gate, Chinese Classical Gardens, Japanese Gardens, and the Japanese-American Historical Plaza.  Dinner: Chinese Restaurant in Old Town District. (Overnight in Portland)

Day 2 - Portland to Florence
Our journey today takes us to the pristine and beautiful Oregon Coast. A two-hour drive over the Coast Range mountains brings us to Fort Stevens, near Astoria, Oregon. This community was the first commercial settlement made by Americans on the Pacific Coast, and was the location where explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark spent the winter of 1805-06 on their epic journey.

Fort StevensNow an Oregon state park, Fort Stevens was previously the sole mainland U.S. location to be fired upon by Japanese submarines during World War II. The fort itself was built to protect the shores of the United States during the Spanish-American war, and the bunkers that housed turrets and large guns to protect against invasion are still in evidence.

On our drive southward, we see coastal fishing villages and magnificent scenery enjoyed by visitors from all over the world. Enjoy the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean as you end this day in Florence, gateway to the Oregon Dunes.    (Overnight in Florence)

Day 3 - Florence to Bend, Oregon 
Leaving the azure waters of the Pacific Ocean behind, travel east towards the splendor of the rugged Cascade Mountains and the "Other Oregon". Eastern Oregon boasts high desert beauty and a vibrant ranching community. A stop at the High Desert Museum in Bend will offer a delightful overview of the region's history and native wildlife. The Chinese that arrived in Oregon were instrumental in the development of the railways that moved the sheep and cattle from the ranches. Bend is a historic city, which derives its name from Farewell Bend where pioneers traversing the Oregon Trail last saw a view of the Deschutes River. (Overnight in Bend)

Day 4 - Bend to Ontario 
More surprises are in store as our itinerary continues heading East. Navigating through the arid terrain of Eastern Oregon, the John Day Fossil Beds emerge, where millions of years of history are embedded in the earth, reminding visitors that this wind-swept area used to be a tropical rainforest. A stop at the Painted Hills Interpretive Center provides an interpretive natural history lesson on the surrounding landscape.

Kam Wah Chung Chinese Museum In the town of John Day, visit the Kam Wah Chung Chinese Museum. The preserved site of a prominent Chinese herbalist doctor's office and residence still exists in its original condition. 

Continuing towards Ontario, we pass through the Blue Mountains, where gold mining boomtowns rose and fell in the late 1800's. Chinese laborers were brought in great numbers to work the mines. 

Before finishing the day in Ontario, at the eastern edge of Oregon, visit the Four Rivers Cultural Center, which houses interpretive displays exploring the heritage and culture of several types of immigrants to the region, including Japanese farmers. A permanent exhibit features a scale replica of Camp Minadoka, a World War II Japanese internment camp located nearby, and serves as a reminder of this dark chapter in the history of our nation.(Overnight in Ontario)

Day 5 -  Ontario, Pendleton and Portland 
Take in a little bit of the local history then head to Pendleton. This city boasts a unique feature: an extensive network of underground service tunnels. Chinese laborers found a use for them, creating an underground city, free from the persecution they experienced on the streets above. Before leaving the city, visitors might also see the Pendleton Woolen Mills and learn about the annual rodeo, one of the biggest in The West.

Return to Portland, where your journey will end this evening, as your adventure draws to a close.

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