The Vista House is more than just a really ritzy rest stop, but not by much. The gorgeous building is topped only by the incredible views, and you could kill a bit of time here if you bring snacks, visit the gift shop, and read all of the plaques. You'd be missing out on an essential Columbia River Gorge experience if you don't stop by, even just for a bathroom break and some photos.
“The “Crown Jewel” of Oregon Parks”
The Vista House was built in 1917 on one of the most beautiful scenic points on the Historic Columbia River Highway. It was constructed to provide travelers a place to rest and refresh themselves as they made their way down the magnificent Columbia River Gorge.
Vista House was built between 1916-1918 by Multnomah County as a comfort station and scenic wayside for those traveling on the Historic Columbia River Highway, which was completed in 1916. Vista House is also a memorial to Oregon pioneers. It was formally dedicated on May 5th, 1918.
The graceful octagonal stone structure towers 733 feet above the Columbia River and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and in National Geographic Society’s 2001 Save America’s Treasures.
In 2000, Vista House was closed for almost five years while an extensive restoration was completed. Over $4 million was raised through the joint efforts of the Oregon State Parks Trust, the Friends of Vista House, and the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department to fund the restoration. The Vista House re-opened to the public in the summer of 2005 and was formally rededicated May 5, 2006, in a grand ceremony.
The Friends of Vista House now works in partnership with Oregon State Parks to help share the experience of Vista House with over one million visitors each year. Prospective volunteers may call (503) 695-2230 for more information.
Vital stats: There is no fee to use this park. For information, call 1-800-551-6949 or (503) 695-2261. The Vista House at Crown Point offers picnicking, historic buildings, historic and interpretive displays, interpretive displays, and opportunities for viewing scenery.
There's not a ton to do here, but the view of the Columbia River Gorge is pretty spectacular. We stopped at Vista House on our way back to Portland from Multnomah Falls and some of the other smaller waterfalls along the way.
There were actually quite a few people there, but it was a beautiful Saturday for getting out of the city and seeing some of the sights along the Columbia River Gorge. We took a few pictures and asked someone to get a picture of us and then we were on our way. Glad we stopped though!
This was the perfect quick stop to get a great view of the river and mountain. Also, they sell great coffee
Wow! We visited during sunset. Amazing view of the Columbia River.
It's mostly just a little gift shop and it has a few exhibits on history and a restroom, but I think it's worth a stop. There's a viewpoint a bit west of here where you can see the Vista House, so stop there first, then stop here. The architecture is pretty neat, there's ample parking, and the view is unreal.
Great vista! I caught the sunset, but sunrise would also have to be great. No shortage of people here though.
A feeling of adventure getting to the top of Crown Point. Beautiful settings. Great for photos. Quick tour will find a museum feel, but we were allowed to lay in the center of the floor to get great photos of the ceiling. Outside there is plenty of scenery to enjoy. Up close (I'm a people watcher) and we enjoyed watching the larger birds fly from trees and circle about.
Make this your first stop on the Columbia River Highway. The views are incredible. Go to the observation deck up top, and check out the little exhibits in the basement. It's definitely just a little stop, but you've got lots of highway to cover so that's totally okay!
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Crown Point Vista House
- Sun - Sat: 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
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