FAQ’s for Multnomah Falls & Columbia River Gorge Tour

1. What days of the week do you run?

Answer: We operate the Multnomah Falls and Columbia Gorge Tour on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays  from May 24th to October 5th with the exception of the Saturdays of June 7th and June 14th due to a local parades.  (In other words, we operate on every day but Wednesdays.)  We  ask that you make reservations for this tour.  If by 9 pm the evening before a tour we have no reservations we will cancel the tour departure for that next day.

2. What time do the tours begin each day?

Answer: The tour begins at 8:45 am from Pioneer Courthouse Square on the corner of SW Broadway and SW Yamhill in downtown Portland.  Even if you have a reservation, plan on arriving at the ticket booth no later than 8:30 am to purchase your ticket.

3.  How much does it cost?

Answer: Adults $54, Children (6-12) $27, Children under 6 are free.

4.  Where do I buy my ticket and get on the tour?

Answer: The pink Gray Line/Big Pink Sightseeing ticket booth is located at Pioneer Courthouse Square at SW Broadway and SW Yamhill Street (approximate street address being 780 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97205).

5. Is this a narrated tour?

Answer: Yes, in the best of the Gray Line tradition the driver guide will be giving a narrated tour as you travel.

6. How long is the tour?

Answer: The tour is a scheduled 4-1/4 hours long.  Sometimes traffic congestion or a draw bridge may add 15 minutes or more to that schedule.

7. Where does the tour stop and for how long?

Answer: The tour includes driver guide narration and four varied stops that capture Columbia River Gorge views, waterfalls and the dramatic Bonneville Dam and Waterway.

  • Stop 1: Crown Point with its Vista House – a world class view of the Columbia River Gorge – approximately 20 minutes.
  • Stop 2. Latourell Falls – observe this falls from a mid height view with a dramatic rock backdrop – approximately 20 minutes.
  • Stop 3: Multnomah Falls and Lodge – a dramatic multi-tiered water fall that is world famous for its views, walkways and Depression era Lodge – approximately 25 minutes.
  • Stop 4: Bonneville Dam and Visitor Center – This stop at an amazing feat of design and engineering includes a visit to the excellent visitor’s center with its fish ladder and outdoor viewing area – approximately 30 minutes.

8. How long are the trails to the various sights and what is their condition?

Answer:

  • Stop 1: Crown Point with its Vista House – Adjacent to the bus parking area and all walking areas are paved.  Vista House has some stairwells to the interpretative center and restrooms but an elevator is available.
  • Stop 2. Latourell Falls – The Falls features two paved trails to two viewing areas. One trail rises somewhat steeply for approximately 200 feet to a viewing area.  The other trail descends very gradually for approximately 600 feet to the base of the falls.   The falls can also be viewed from the parking area.
  • Stop 3: Multnomah Falls and Lodge – The Lodge and lower falls are wheelchair accessible from the bus parking area with paved walkways.  The Lodge is approximately 200 feet from the coach parking area with the lower falls viewing area another 300 feet beyond the Lodge.   The falls are easily visible from the Lodge so the additional 300 foot walk is not required to view the falls.
  • Stop 4: Bonneville Dam and Visitor Center – The visitors center allows the coach to unload and load a short distance from the entrance.  Elevators are available to access the fish ladder.

9. Are there restrooms at the stops and on board the coach?

Answer: There are nice public restrooms at three of the four stops on the tour and if needed there is a restroom on the coach.

10. Is there a handicapped wheelchair lift available?

Answer: With 48 hours notice we can provide a coach that is equipped with a wheelchair lift.   Please provide us with this notice if a wheelchair lift is required.

11. Are tours ever cancelled because of inclement weather or for any other reason?

Answer: Tours will not be cancelled due to rain.   Tours may be cancelled if there are no reservations by 9 PM the evening before.

12. I am staying near the Convention Center, how do I get to and from the tour departure point?

Answer: The MAX Light Rail Line provides transportation ($2.50 per person) from four Eastside Stations to Pioneer Courthouse Square. Three different lines serve the stations to Pioneer Courthouse Square so board any of the west bound trains headed to Downtown Portland.  The Blue and Red Lines will bring you right to the Square where as the Green Line will result in a 1 block walk to the Square.

The trains run approximately every 10 to 15 minutes on weekdays and every15 to 20 minutes on weekends and holidays, but because you can use any one of the three lines servicing the Convention Center Station, the wait is rarely longer than 5 minutes.

The stations starting from the furthest East, their addresses, the transit times and number of stops to Pioneer Courthouse Square are as follows:

Lloyd Center/NE11th Ave – NE Holladay & NE 11th – 16 minutes – 8 stops on Blue and Red lines, 6 stops on Green line.

NE 7th Ave – NE Holladay & NE 7th14 minutes – 7 stops on Blue and Red lines, 5 stops on Green line.

Convention Center Station – NE Holladay and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd – 13 minutes – 6 stops on Blue and Red lines, 5 stops on Green line.

Rose Quarter Transit Center Station – 47 NW Holladay – 11 minutes – 5 stops on Blue and Red lines, 4 stops on Green line.

13.  I am driving to Portland, how do I get to where I can buy tickets?

Answer: If you are driving to Portland and want to come to our ticket booth at Pioneer Courthouse Square, MapQuest or Google Map the address of 780 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97205 and follow the directions.  The coach loading area is on SW Broadway just north of SW Yamhill Street in front of Nordstrom’s.  Below are also directions:

From the North:

Take I-5 South to I-405 via Exit 302B toward US-30W/Beaverton/St. Helens.

Take Exit 2A, Couch Street, toward Burnside Street.

Stay straight to go onto NW15th Ave.

Take 2nd Left on to SW Alder Street.

Turn right onto SW Broadway.

Coach Loading Location is just before you get to SW Yamhill Street.

Parking is available downtown, see below.

From the South

Take I-5 North to I-405 via Exit 299B, on the left toward US-26/City Center/Beaverton.

Take Exit 1A on the left toward Naito Parkway.

Stay straight to go onto SW Harbor Drive.

Turn right onto Naito Parkway.

Turn left onto SW Morrison Street.

Turn left onto SW Broadway.

Coach Loading Location is just before you get to SW Yamhill Street.

Parking is available downtown, see below.

From the West

Take US-26 East.

Once you near downtown Portland take the exit on the left marked Market Street/City Center.

Turn left on SW 10th Avenue.

Turn right on SW Yamhill.

Coach Loading Location is on Broadway which you will cross.

Parking is available downtown, see below.

From the East:

Take I-84 West to I-5.

Take the I5 Exit on the left toward Beaverton/Salem/City Center.

Take the exit toward City Center.

Take the ramp toward Morrison Street/City Center.

Turn slightly right on to the Morrison Bridge.

Take the ramp toward SW Naito Parkway Northbound.

Turn slightly left on to SW Washington Street.

Turn left onto SW Broadway.

Coach Loading Location is just before you get to SW Yamhill Street.

Parking is available downtown, see below.

14. Where do I park in downtown Portland?

Answer: We recommend the Smart Park lots operated by the City of Portland.  There are three lots convenient to Pioneer Courthouse Square.  The closest is at SW10th and SW Yamhill (780 SW 10th).  Other lots are at SW 4th and SW Yamhill (850 SW 4th) and SW 3rd and SW Alder (650 SW 4th).  Rates are a $1.60 per hour for the first 2 hours, $5.00 for 3 hours, $7.00 for 4 hours.  On weekdays the over 4 hour rate goes to an all day rate that varies by garage location but is between $12 and $15.  On  weekends the over 3 hour rate goes to an all day rate of $5.00 per day for the period from 5am to 6pm.  After 6pm, the rate for the period from 6pm to 5am varies from $3.00 to $6.00 depending on garage location.