HotelTonight – Salem, Oregon Hotels Nearby
The Willamette River may not be a river that's known by everyone around the world, but its imprint on the planet has been powerful and unmistakable. It carved an entire valley in the mountains of northeastern Oregon, and what it left behind is a bucolic scene that has to be experienced to be fully appreciated. I had been to Portland and to Eugene, the two cities that sit on either end of the Willamette Valley. I had never really spent any time in Salem, though, which is not only in the heart of the valley, but it's also the capital of Oregon. I got a chance to spend time there one day when I was traveling from San Francisco to Vancouver, and the city looked so appealing that I decided to take a full day there to explore it. I hadn't planned on being there long, but I tend to fly by the seat of my pants a bit when I'm on the move. That's why I travel with my HotelTonight app. I booked a Salem hotel room within a few clicks. Beyond that, all I wanted to do was get out and see the area.
Every city has trees, and in some cities they tend to stand out more so than in others. No city in the United States, however, can claim to have been named, "Tree City U.S.A." by the National Arbor Day Foundation for 30 consecutive years other than Salem. The city has long been dedicated to carefully managing its forestry, and it's paying off in a big way. You notice the gorgeous and majestic trees of all types when you walk down any street, and there are cherry blossoms in bloom at certain points during the year. It's really quite beautiful.
Salem is known for being a larger small town. Nearly 175,000 people live here, but it doesn't feel that way when you stroll through town. There are a lot of little community-oriented activities happening, and one of the more well-known is its community theater. It's situated under a canopy of – naturally – trees, and locals put on surprisingly big-time productions of different plays throughout the year. I saw a comedy on the night that I was there, and was blown away by the quality of the production and the acting as well as the passion of the crowd.
The microbrewery explosion was in many ways ignited in Oregon, and Salem was one of the first places where this all started happening. After the play, I decided to have some dinner and a few local brews at what was once a home built for a veteran of the Civil War. Yes – that Civil War. The home was gorgeous and incredibly well maintained, the food was scrumptious and the beers were tastier than about any I had ever tasted. It was a unique way to spend an evening eating, sipping and talking with friendly locals.
HotelTonight – Salem, OR Hotels Are Available
After a few conversations and with a full belly, it was time to get to my Salem hotel room. I called my ride and it was on the way in a flash. I think I was asleep before my head hit the pillow. Thanks to HotelTonight, I didn't have to worry about finding lodging. It had been a great day.