Located in the heart of the Willamette Valley, Corvallis is a city defined by its community charm and a love for the local. The Oregon State University is ranked #2 for its Forestry program – its living laboratories are a testament to this success. Visitors can enjoy the wildlife and nature areas, the hiking trails and the historic parklands. Indulging in luscious local produce is also a firm favourite for locals and visitors alike, especially when restaurants create cuisine that is organic, sustainably sourced and family farmed.
1.William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge
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The significant sanctuary is located ten miles south of Corvallis and includes the Willamette Valley wet prairie. The almost exclusive winter home of Dusky Canada Geese from November through to March. The geese have suffered a decline in population due to environmental changes and the wetlands are managed to promote the flourishing of the geese and other wildlife who feed on the millet and sedges grown here. The William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge is accessible by two roads and two trails throughout the year, with four viewpoints providing kiosks and bulletin boards for convenience.
Finley Refuge Rd., Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-757-7236
2.Oregon State University
© Devin Allphin/stock.adobe.com
The largest university in the state, Oregon State University has a rich history. Since offering its first college curriculum in 1865, the university enjoyed notable status as an agricultural institution for many decades. Now recognised as a public research center, the university provides an internationally renowned education to students from over 100 countries. The university is proud of its alumni who are attributed with the creation of the artificial heart valve and the computer mouse – these pioneering efforts have seen the university recognised as a top 1% university in the world.
1500 SW Jefferson Way, Corvallis, OR 97331, Phone: 541-737-1000
3.Bald Hill Natural Area
A nature lover’s haven, the trails leading to the summit of Bald Hill are framed by lush prairie plants such as the endangered Willamette daisy and the threatened Nelson’s checkermallow. The first property to come under the protection of the Greenbelt Land Trust, Bald Hill Natural Area uses traditional fire methods to restore its oak woodlands and protect its prairies. Open from 6am, hiking or mountain biking to the summit affords breathtaking views.
375 NW Monroe Ave, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-766-6918
4.2 Towns Ciderhouse
© 2 Towns Ciderhouse
Oregon’s largest craft cider producer, 2 Towns Ciderhouse is the result of strong friendships forging an innovative path in crafting historic cider using seasonal whole fruits. A company that values its place in the community, 2 Towns hosts an annual harvest party, Brewfest and promotions throughout the year. Their Tap Room offers 14 rotating ciders, as well as bottled varieties that can be enjoyed on site in a welcoming atmosphere from noon daily. Dining options are available, but admission is limited to adults over 21.
33930 SE Eastgate Circle, Suite E, Corvallis OR 97330, Phone: 541-207-3915
An historic treasure of the region, Peavy Arboretum has facilitated the outdoor education of generations of nature lovers. The land reveals the presence of the native Kalapuya people in its numerous lithic scatters and the evidence of regular burning through the diversified forest. Open from 5am, visitors can enjoy a picnic by the pristine pond or one of the numerous hiking trails through the forested mountain. Peavy Arboretum is an iconic living laboratory for the students of Oregon State University whose forestry research is recognised internationally.
NW Peavy Arboretum Rd, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-737-2004
6.OSU McDonald-Dunn Research Forest
Over 155,000 non-motorized visitors are attracted to the abundant recreational facilities in the McDonald and Dunn Research Forests just north of Corvallis. Connecting with nature has become a community focus with local volunteers assisting with the maintenance of the forests in conjunction with the students of Oregon State University. The students utilize the breathing classroom to manage its diverse species of plant life, including the focus on Douglas-fir, which has been flourishing in the area since early Euro-American settlement.
NW Peavy Arboretum Rd, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-737-2004
7.Siuslaw National Forest
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Where the forest meets the sea, Siuslaw National Forest epitomises natural beauty with forested trails that lead visitors to waterfalls and wildernesses furnished by Sitka spruce and western hemlock. From the highest point in Oregon’s Coast Range, visitors can marvel at views of the Pacific and the Cascade mountains from Marys Peak. Visiting the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area is the key to discovering ranger-led programs, forest and beach hiking, as well as camping and picnic sites. The Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area is a fascinating ecosystem, it is one of the world’s largest temperate coastal sand dunes, perfect for off-road driving, beachcombing and sandboarding. Siuslaw is also home to the nation’s first Scenic-Research Area, Cascade Head, a protected region that provides critical habitat for rare wildlife species including the Oregon silverspot butterfly.
3200 SW Jefferson Way, Corvallis, OR 97331, Phone: 541-750-7000
8.Chip Ross Natural Area
The 125.6 acres of oak woodland has a 1.5 mile hiking trail that offers views of Corvallis, as well as the stunning coastal ranges and the beautiful Cascade Mountains on clear days. This is a dog-friendly natural area and families can enjoy the picnic area, the hilltop meadow of Dimple Hill, as well as the numerous hiking trails of the adjacent McDonald Forest, accessible from the Lester Avenue trailhead. Seasonal horseback riding and cycling are permitted on designated trails.
NW Lester Ave, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-766-6967
Since 1992, four acres of the wetlands have been accessible to the public year-round. A 3400 foot wooden boardwalk escorts visitors through the abundant wildlife habitats, with signposts of educational information about the plant varieties, which include meadow foxtail and tall fescue. A cattail marsh forms the center of the wetlands, while the larger wetlands is celebrated for its biodiversity, enriched by the inclusion of endangered plant species. Part of the wetlands came under the management of the Greenbelt Land Trust in 1999 in an effort to protect its biodiversity and hydrology.
3600 NE Lancaster Street, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-766-687
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Built in 1953, Reser Stadium was originally known as Parker Stadium, with an original seating capacity of 28,000. After substantial renovations over the years, the stadium now has a capacity of over 43,000 and continues to serve as the home of the Oregon State University football team and its innumerable fans. Situated on the south campus, the stadium is a source of pride for the university, as the home of athletic events, club sports, graduation ceremonies and concerts. The Terrace serves as an innovative experience for fans, who enjoy prime food and beverage options.
2600 SW Western Blvd, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-737-4455
11.Irish Bend Covered Bridge
Constructed in 1954 and originally designed to span the Willamette Slough in Monroe, Irish Bend Covered Bridge fell into disrepair before being instated in the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. The current bridge is a reconstruction, funded by the Irish Bend Advisory Committee and Benton County. The 60 foot long bridge was built in the Howe truss style and is now an historical part of the Oregon State University campus and its research farm along Oak Creek and is frequented by visitors year-round.
SW Campus Way Bike Path (OSU Campus), Corvallis, OR 97330
12.Tyee Wine Cellars
© Tyee Wine Cellars
Five generations of family farming are at the heart of the Tyee Wine Cellars, Estate Vineyard & Family Farm. First settled in the 1850s, the rich farmlands and pastures were raised and revered by the Buchanan family, with the first grape crops being planted in 1974 before the founding of the Wine Cellars in 1985. The family farm welcomes visitors to the estate vineyard and winery, tasting parlour and historic barn for special events, or to enjoy the Willamette Valley woodlands, wetlands and the Tyee’s Beaver Pond Loop Nature Trail. Solar-powered and certified salmon-safe, eco-friendly and organic farming strategies are in use to produce the limited-edition wines available. Open Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
26335 Greenberry Rd., Corvallis, OR 97333, Phone: 541-241-8933
A burgeoning cultural center for the creative arts in Corvallis, the Majestic Theatre has a rich history of active patronage and volunteering that spans over 100 years. The theatre hosts nearly 100 local organizations in the spirit of artistic and cultural flourishing annually. As well as generating 70 productions in a theatre season, Majestic Theatre is the creative home to nearly 1,000 performers, artists, technicians and support staff. Since 2015, the Corvallis Parks and Recreation Department have been in control of operations and the community support continues to abound.
115 SW 2nd Street, Corvallis, OR 97333, Phone: 441-758-7827
14.Fort Hoskins Historic County Park
Open for daily use by the public since July, 2002, Fort Hoskins was originally established in 1856 to protect the coastal Indian reservation. Visitors can enjoy 130 acres of self-guided trails for hiking and the restrooms are accessible from dawn to dusk. Larger group functions can be held at the Fort Hoskins Shelter, where ten picnic tables, barbecue facilities and public amenities are available for use. A truly historic site, a visit would not be complete without meandering through the original Commander’s House situated on the edge of the parade grounds.
15.Chintimini Wildlife Center
A wildlife sanctuary just north of Corvallis, the 9.4 acre rehabilitation center is open to the public for educational programs and Family Saturday activities. The rehabilitation clinic takes calls on its emergency hotline and serves the needs of animals in need daily, relying on its volunteers to return wildlife to natural habitats and to educate the public about animal needs. The Center is also home to the Raptor Education Program, which includes demonstrations and informative lectures on birds of prey and the threat they face in the wild. The Center is funded solely by the public; the Center offers day camps, spring break and summer camps to facilitate the funding of the daily care and provision of wildlife.
311 NW Lewisburg Ave, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-745-5324
© Second Glance
Thriving on the values of eco-friendly, sustainable and conscious living, Second Glance is a timely reminder of the pertinence of Slow Fashion and its essential resurgence. This is a specialty resale experience. Open daily, Second Glance invites customers for an in-shop perusal of their seasonal stock or encourages consignment and a revolving wardrobe that is environmentally functional. Classic, savvy and chic, Second Glance is community-centered and globally-minded, employing 14 local ladies and celebrating the entrepreneurial success of the expanding company since 1984.
312 SW 3rd Street, Corvallis, OR 97330, Phone: 541-753-8011
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17.Wise Cracks formerly The Broken Yolk Cafe
© Wise Cracks
A homestyle café with a rich history dearly loved by the Corvallis community, Wise Cracks has remained true to its roots whilst updating its décor to suit locals and visitors alike. Located in the old Burton’s building, breakfast is done right with house made cinnamon rolls, pancakes, omelettes and organic fair-trade coffee, the all-day breakfast menu is available from 7am, seven days a week. Comfort food at its finest, the café is minutes from OSU, has free wifi, and a family-friendly play area. The early bird special is available until 8am.
119 Southwest 3rd Street, Corvallis, OR 97333
18.Castor Kitchen & Bar
© Castor Kitchen & Bar
Proud of the abundance of seasonal and organic produce harvested in the region, Castor Kitchen & Bar offer lunch, recess and dinner menus that celebrate the local farmers, foragers and families of the Pacific Northwest. Presenting a fusion of French, Creole and Pacific Northwest cuisine, Castor also provides family-focused and organic wine selections with a desire to transcend barriers and promote enjoyment. Locally sourced and inspired, Castor also run private events and oblige with custom menus to meet specific dietary requirments.
458 Madison Ave., Corvallis, OR 97333, Phone: 541-231-3322
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19.American Dream Pizza
© American Dream Pizza
Whether dining in to enjoy the rooftop ambience with hand-crafted cocktails, or enjoying some take out, American Dream pizzas are the answer for good, quality food. Serving third generation family recipes using the finest non-GMO Pendleton Mill flour, vegetables and sources that are prepared daily, American Dream Pizzas can be enjoyed at their site on campus, or downtown. Both restaurants offer outside dining and excellent bar service, as well as good music and art to add to the experience. A sustainably minded business, American Dream Pizza is passionate about reducing their carbon footprint and maximising their impact in the local community.
214 SW 2nd, Corvallis, OR 97333, Phone: 541-753-7373
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20.4 Spirits Distillery
© 4 Spirits Distillery
Whiskey, rum, vodka and gin: the four spirits that are produced in the 4 Spirits distillery. Established to honour fallen soldiers and the courage of servicemen past and present, 4 Spirits Distillery donate a portion of their Bourbon Whiskey sales to support reintegration programs for veterans and families. Open every weekday from noon, the Distillery offers $5 Happy Hour cocktails, including Whiskey Ginger and Rumarita, as well as a scrumptious selection of accompanying appetizers. The 1,500 square foot space is also available for private events of up to 150 people, with an in-house sound system and catering options available.
3405 SW Deschutes St., Corvallis, OR 97333, Phone: 541-368-3195
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20 Best Things to Do in Corvallis, OR
- William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge, Photo: Rob Mutch Photo/stock.adobe.com
- Oregon State University, Photo: Devin Allphin/stock.adobe.com
- Bald Hill Natural Area, Photo: Jacob/stock.adobe.com
- 2 Towns Ciderhouse, Photo: 2 Towns Ciderhouse
- Peavy Arboretum, Photo: PKZ/stock.adobe.com
- OSU McDonald-Dunn Research Forest, Photo: shorty25/stock.adobe.com
- Siuslaw National Forest, Photo: Rob Mutch Photo/stock.adobe.com
- Chip Ross Natural Area, Photo: Gabriel/stock.adobe.com
- Jackson-Frazier Wetlands, Photo: Jeri/stock.adobe.com
- Reser Stadium, Photo: naftizin/stock.adobe.com
- Irish Bend Covered Bridge, Photo: paulfell/stock.adobe.com
- Tyee Wine Cellars, Photo: Tyee Wine Cellars
- Majestic Theatre, Photo: fesenko/stock.adobe.com
- Fort Hoskins Historic County Park, Photo: stock.adobe.com
- Chintimini Wildlife Center, Photo: anankkml/stock.adobe.com
- Second Glance, Photo: Second Glance
- Wise Cracks formerly The Broken Yolk Cafe, Photo: Wise Cracks
- Castor Kitchen & Bar, Photo: Castor Kitchen & Bar
- American Dream Pizza, Photo: American Dream Pizza
- 4 Spirits Distillery, Photo: 4 Spirits Distillery
- Cover Photo: Ulf/stock.adobe.com