Saturday, August 18, 2007

River Cruising on the Portland Spirit

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The Portland Spirit is a 150' yacht based in Portland, Oregon that offers tours of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers. With room for 350 guests for seated meal cruises, it has three public decks, two of which are enclosed and climate controlled. It is considered the Pacific Northwest's premier dinner ship with fresh local cuisine prepared and served on board.

We were extremely fortunate to be invited as guests for a large dinner cruise on Friday evening and had a delightful time. We enjoyed a stress free coach ride on a tour bus, from Salem to Portland, and a welcoming boarding of the ship... complete with complimentary photos of each of us against a background of the docked vessel. The never ending buffet was served on two decks and was filled with platters of fresh salmon, pork tenderloin, lovely fruits and salads, fresh breads and so many kinds of chocolate cheesecakes to select from, that I could barely decide which one to choose next!

We cruised the Willamette River for about 1 and 1/2 hours. Going back and forth between the wonderful buffet inside, and the beautiful scenery outside, with views of the city of Portland (and all of the various buildings, resorts and million dollar homes) from the many decks was a lot of fun. It was a temperate, clear night and the lights, both on and off of the river, were spectacular.

The Willamette is the largest river contained entirely within the state of Oregon. Confined by the Cascade Mountains, the ancient Calapooyas and the never elevations of the Coast Range, it gathers waters from the east, south and west. Flowing south to north, which is relatively rare for rivers, the Willamette pours into the Columbia River eleven miles downstream from Portland. The name "Willamette" translates as "green waters. And as "green builders", it seemed an entirely appropriate event to have been invited to... and one that we were certainly delighted to participate in!

Our captain hats off to N.W Natural for sponsoring such a fun evening. It was a lovely break from the constant hard work of summer and it was incredibly nice to stand out on the decks of the ship and view the incredibly lovely sights of the Portland skyline... all lit up at night!

2 comments:

  1. The Spirit's dock was two blocks from our hotel. I tried to talk DH into going on a cruise, but he wasn't interested. Maybe the next time we get to Portland we'll be able to go on a cruise.

    I'm glad you had a great time. Aren't the views of Portland just simply gorgeous?

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  2. I love boat rides in general, and yours sounds fabulous!

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Michele Bilyeu blogs "With Heart and Hands" as she journeys between Douglas, Alaska and Salem, Oregon.