Things to Do in Ashland Oregon – 2024 Ultimate Guide

Table of Contents

Welcome

Welcome to Ashland, Oregon, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of the Pacific Northwest. This vibrant town is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, thriving arts scene, and a plethora of outdoor activities. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a culture vulture, or a foodie, Ashland has something to offer for everyone. Join me on a virtual tour of the top things to do in Ashland, Oregon, and discover why this charming town is a must-visit destination for your next adventure.

Can’t-Miss Attractions

1. Lithia Park: One of the top attractions in Ashland, Oregon, Lithia Park is a 93-acre oasis in the heart of the city. This stunning park offers visitors a blend of manicured gardens, wooded areas, and bubbling creeks. A highlight of the park is Ashland Creek, which runs through the center, providing a tranquil setting for a leisurely stroll or a peaceful picnic. The park is also home to a variety of wildlife, making it a popular spot for birdwatching and nature enthusiasts. With its lush greenery and scenic beauty, Lithia Park is a must-visit for anyone exploring Ashland.

2. Oregon Shakespeare Festival: As one of the oldest and most renowned Shakespeare festivals in the country, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is a cultural gem in Ashland. Every year, the festival presents a diverse array of classic and contemporary plays, attracting theater enthusiasts from around the world. The festival’s three theaters host performances from February to October, showcasing the talents of both established and up-and-coming actors. Whether you’re a fan of the Bard or simply appreciate the arts, a visit to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is a truly unforgettable experience.

3. Mount Ashland: For outdoor enthusiasts, a trip to Mount Ashland is a must. This picturesque mountain offers a range of recreational activities throughout the year, including hiking, mountain biking, and skiing. In the winter, the mountain transforms into a winter wonderland, with pristine slopes perfect for skiing and snowboarding. In the summer, visitors can explore the mountain’s trails and take in breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. Whether you’re seeking adventure or simply want to enjoy the great outdoors, Mount Ashland has something for everyone.

4. ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum: Perfect for families and science enthusiasts, ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum is a one-of-a-kind attraction in Ashland. The museum features interactive exhibits that explore a wide range of scientific concepts, from physics to biology. Visitors can participate in hands-on activities, experiments, and demonstrations that make learning fun and engaging for all ages. With its focus on education and exploration, ScienceWorks is a must-see destination for anyone interested in the wonders of science.

5. Lithia Artisans Market: Located in downtown Ashland, the Lithia Artisans Market is a vibrant hub of creativity and craftsmanship. This outdoor market showcases the work of local artists and artisans, offering a diverse selection of handmade goods, including jewelry, pottery, textiles, and more. Visitors can browse the stalls, meet the artists, and purchase unique, one-of-a-kind souvenirs to take home. With its lively atmosphere and array of creative offerings, the Lithia Artisans Market is a must-visit for anyone looking to support local talent and discover unique treasures.

Ashland, Oregon, is a city rich in culture, natural beauty, and artistic expression. Whether you’re exploring its lush parks, attending world-class theater performances, or immersing yourself in the local arts scene, Ashland offers a wealth of experiences for visitors to enjoy. These top attractions are just a glimpse of what this charming city has to offer, making it a truly unforgettable destination for travelers seeking adventure, culture, and inspiration.

One-day trip

Looking for exciting day trips near Ashland, Oregon? Here are five fantastic destinations within a 2-hour drive that offer a mix of outdoor adventures and cultural experiences for a memorable day out.

1. Jacksonville: Just a 15-minute drive from Ashland, Jacksonville is a charming historic town known for its well-preserved 19th-century buildings. Explore the quaint streets lined with shops, galleries, and restaurants. Don’t miss a visit to the historic Britt Gardens or a show at the Britt Music & Arts Festival.

2. Lithia Park and Ashland Watershed: Located right in Ashland, Lithia Park is a beautiful 93-acre park with hiking trails, a Japanese garden, and a duck pond. For a more challenging hike, head to the Ashland Watershed, offering stunning views of the Rogue Valley.

3. Crater Lake National Park: Approximately 1.5 hours from Ashland, Crater Lake is a must-visit destination. Marvel at the deep blue waters of the lake, formed in a volcanic caldera, and take a scenic drive around the rim. Hiking trails offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

4. Oregon Caves National Monument: About a 2-hour drive from Ashland, the Oregon Caves are a hidden gem. Take a guided tour through the marble caves and learn about the unique geology of the area. The surrounding old-growth forest offers additional hiking opportunities.

5. Historic Ashland Railroad District: Stay close to home and explore Ashland’s Railroad District, just a short walk from downtown. Discover art galleries, boutique shops, and cozy cafes housed in historic buildings. Don’t miss the Ashland Railroad Museum for a glimpse into the town’s past.

These day trips near Ashland, Oregon, offer a mix of outdoor beauty and cultural experiences, making them ideal choices for a day of exploration and enjoyment. Whether you’re into hiking, history, or simply strolling through charming streets, these destinations have something for everyone.

Restaurants and bars

When visiting Ashland, Oregon, be sure to check out these five top-notch dining establishments that offer a unique culinary experience:

1. The Gathering Table – Indulge in their signature dish, the Rogue Valley Pear Salad, featuring locally sourced ingredients that capture the essence of the region.

2. Hither – A cozy spot known for its innovative small plates, don’t miss their famous Truffle Mac n’ Cheese, a decadent twist on a classic favorite.

3. Amuse – This upscale eatery is a favorite among foodies for its exquisite tasting menu, with the Seared Scallops being a standout dish that perfectly balances flavors and textures.

4. Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine – Enjoy farm-to-table dining at its finest with their Farmhouse Burger, made with grass-fed beef and accompanied by hand-cut fries that keep locals coming back for more.

5. Smithfields Restaurant and Bar – Known for its rustic charm and hearty fare, try the Smoked Pork Chop, a house specialty that showcases the chef’s expertise in wood-fired cooking.

For a laid-back coffee or cocktail experience, make sure to visit these two beloved spots that offer a unique ambiance and quality beverages:

1. Noble Coffee Roasting – A local favorite for its ethically sourced beans and expertly crafted brews, this cafe is a must-visit for coffee enthusiasts looking to savor the perfect cup of joe.

2. Brickroom – Combining a hip vibe with handcrafted cocktails, this bar is a popular hangout for locals and visitors alike. Don’t miss their signature drink, the Lavender Mule, a refreshing twist on a classic cocktail that embodies the spirit of Ashland’s vibrant bar scene.

Interesting Facts

Welcome to Ashland, Oregon, a charming town nestled in the heart of the Rogue Valley. Let’s uncover three surprising and interesting facts about this vibrant destination:

1. Shakespearean Paradise: Ashland is home to the renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival, attracting theater enthusiasts from around the globe. With its world-class productions of Shakespearean plays and contemporary works, the festival offers a cultural experience like no other. Visitors can immerse themselves in the magic of live theater against the backdrop of Ashland’s stunning scenery.

2. Culinary Delights: Despite its small size, Ashland boasts a thriving food scene that caters to all tastes. From farm-to-table restaurants to quirky food trucks, the town is a haven for foodies. Don’t miss the Lithia Artisans Market, where local vendors showcase their culinary creations alongside handcrafted goods, creating a feast for the senses.

3. Outdoor Adventure Hub: Surrounded by the majestic Siskiyou and Cascade mountain ranges, Ashland is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Hiking, biking, rafting, and skiing are just a few of the activities available in this outdoor playground. The Lithia Park, right in the heart of town, offers a tranquil escape for nature lovers, with its manicured gardens and winding trails.

Whether you’re a culture vulture, a food connoisseur, or an outdoor adventurer, Ashland has something for everyone. Come and discover the hidden gems of this enchanting town in Southern Oregon.

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