Places to visit in Salem Oregon

Places to visit in Salem Oregon
Looking for places to visit in Salem Oregon?

If you’re wondering what the Salem Oregon has to offer, you’ll be glad to know that the city boasts many family-friendly attractions, city parks and many fun festivals such as the popular Oregon State Fair.

Another reason why Salem Oregon is such a popular vacation spot on the west coast it’s because the city is located a short drive from the beautiful Oregon Coast, and an hour’s drive either way from Portland and Eugene. Below it’s a handy list of places you can visit in Salem with friends and family:

Mission Mill Museum

If you’re a history buff, or simply would like to get an idea of 19th century Salem, Mission Mill in downtown Salem is one of the best places to visit in Salem Oregon.

You can enjoy interesting exhibits at the museum and visit the shops, as well as take a walking tour of the grounds which boast period historic houses.

Oregon State Capitol

The Oregon State Capitol (pictured) is one of the few free attractions that you can visit in Salem Oregon. The State Capitol is located on the northern side of Willamette University, adjacent Wilson Park, and offers an excellent opportunity to see the House of Chambers where you’ll find a public art gallery.

Riverfront City Park

The Riverfront Park is one of the best city parks you can visit in Salem to enjoy recreational activities wwith family and friends.

The Park is located overlooking the Willamette River and has many amenities like picnic areas, grassy areas, walking trails and a boat dock where the Willamette Queen Sternwheeler paddleboat docks.

If you’re looking for things to do in Salem Oregon with kids, you definitely can’t miss visiting Riverfront Park since it also boasts the beautiful handmade Riverfront Carousel, which you will simply fall in love with!

Apart from recreational activities and the Riverfront Carousel, you can attend various fun summer festivals at Riverfront Park such as the Salem World Beat Festival in June and the Bite & Brew of Salem in July.

The World Beat Festival features international crafts fair and fun activities like a Dragon Boat race; while at the Bite of Salem festival you’ll be able to sample delicious local foods and beers.

A.C. Gilbert's Discovery Village

The Gilbert’s Discovery Village is located adjacent the northern side of the Riverfront Park, and it’s another fun place where the whole family can have an entertaining day out.

Even on a rainy day, Discovery Village offers many indoor exhibits, workshops and things to do for kids, so if you’re traveling with little ones, you’ll also want to add this attraction to the list of places to visit in Salem Oregon.

Hallie Ford Museum of Art

The Hallie Ford Museum of Art is located a short walk from the Oregon State Capitol (on the western side of Willamette University), ans it is another of the places to visit in Salem Oregon.

The Halli Ford Museum is free admission on Tuesdays and it's one of the top museums in the state of Oregon, not only because of its world class art pieces, but also because of the museum’s collection on Native American woven baskets.

Prewitt/Allen Archaeological Museum

If you’re interested in archeological artifacts, or are looking for more free attractions in Salem, you can’t miss visiting the archeological museum.

The museum is located at Corban College library, though outside of Salem City center, it's only around 20 minutes drive along Oregon Route 22 south).

Salem Flea Markets

A visit to Salem Oregon wouldn’t be complete without visiting one of the city’s flea markets such as Salem Saturday Market where you can buy local produce and crafts, and Big Reds Flea Market where you can get all sorts of antiques and memorabilia merchandise.

Salem Saturday Market is located on Marion St Northeast at the corner with Summer St Northeast; while Big Reds Flea Market is located at 3545 Portland Road Northeast.

If you’re visiting Salem Oregon in December, Salem Saturday Market also boasts one of the largest Holiday Markets in the state. The Holiday Market in Salem  is held at the Oregon State Fairgrounds for two days on the second Saturday, and also features fun activities for kids like face painting.

Oregon State Fairgrounds

The Oregon State Fairgrounds is, without a doubt, one of the top places to visit in Salem Oregon. No matter when you visit Salem OR, you’ll find some kind of concert, interesting shows and fun events such as Oregon Wine & Food Festival in January and Oregon State Fair in August.

Attending the Oregon State fair is definitely one of the best things to do in Salem Oregon with kids as you can enjoy fun carnival rides, fun competitions and loads of live entertainment.

Bush's Pasture Park

Bush's Pasture Park is another popular city park in Salem where you can enjoy fun outdoor activities like jogging, or taking a pleasant walk with the kids while kiddies enjoy a bit of fun at the playgrounds.

If you’re visiting Salem OR in July, you can also attend the Salem Art Fair and Festival where you can see an amazing variety of art exhibits.

Bush House Museum

If you’re visiting Bush’s Pasture Park, you may also include a visit to Bush House Museum since it’s located nearby.

You can take a guided tour of this historic house and see what a typical 19th century mansion would’ve looked like back then. Inside of the house, you can see an exhibit on vintage quilts as well as original period furnishings.

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