Corvallis is a college town in the heart of Oregon’s Willamette Valley, with rugged mountain ranges, lush green parks, and community charm at every turn. Home to Oregon State University, as well as some of the State’s best wining and dining, the social scene and town spirit leave little to be desired.
The perfect mix of city life and walkable charm, with the great outdoors right outside your window, Corvallis is a dream destination for anyone looking for comfort and sustainability all in one. It’s only a short drive from the coast and an even shorter drive from the mountains. So, here are the top things to do in Corvallis, Oregon.
- Corvallis, Oregon
- Top Tour
- 20 Things To Do In Corvallis
- 1- Climb To The Top Of Mary’s Peak
- 2- Visit The Irish Bend Covered Bridge
- 3- Go For A Walk At Oregon State University
- 4- Browse The Corvallis Farmers’ Market
- 5- Attend A Tasting At 2 Towns Ciderhouse
- 6- Catch A Show At The Majestic Theatre
- 7- Take A Hike At Chip Ross Park
- 8- Adventure In Nearby Ghost Towns
- 9- Stroll The Corvallis Alley Art Walk
- 10- Sightsee In The McDonald-Dunn Forest
- 11- Watch A Film At Darkside Cinema
- 12- Go Boating And Floating With Willamette Tides
- 13- Traverse The Jackson-Frazier Wetland
- 14- Go Shopping In Downtown Corvallis
- 15- Experience Nature At The William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge
- 16- Stop For Brunch At WiseCracks Cafe
- 17- Smell The Flowers At The Rose Garden In Avery Park
- 18- Grab A Local Brew At Block 15 Brewing Co
- 19- Admire The Bald Hill Natural Area
- 20- Visit The Historic Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site
20 Things To Do In Corvallis
1- Climb To The Top Of Mary’s Peak
Towering at an impressive 4097 feet (1248m), Mary’s Peak is a popular hiking and sightseeing destination known for being the highest point in Oregon’s Coastal Range.
Mary’s Peak is adorned in stunning floral arrangements throughout the spring and summer months, with its rich green vegetation and wildflower displays earning it a designation as a Scenic Botanical Area.
During the winter months, Mary’s Peak is a highly frequented spot for many winter recreational activities, including snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.
Mary’s Peak is a scenic 25-mile (40km) drive from the heart of Corvallis and is a dreamy destination for any nature-lover, with a multitude of options for hiking and camping.
Mary’s Peak is at Marys Peak Observation Point Parking Lot, NF-3010, Philomath, OR 97370.
2- Visit The Irish Bend Covered Bridge
This historic covered truss bridge was built in 1954, then dismantled and relocated in 1989, where it now stands on Oak Creek.
The Irish Bend Covered Bridge is accessible by foot or by bike and is midway through a pleasant paved path surrounded by vibrant green fields and agricultural wildlife.
The bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is worth visiting for its architecture and picturesque placement.
Irish Bend Covered Bridge is at Midge Cramer Path, Corvallis, OR 97330.
3- Go For A Walk At Oregon State University
Oregon State University is one of Corvallis’s crown jewels, a public land-grant university that specialises in agriculture, engineering, and sustainability.
Oregon State University’s campus spans 400 acres (160ha), and its design and architecture have landed it on the National Register of Historic Places.
From its Neoclassical architecture to streets lined with trees to sculptures and large artworks scattered across campus grounds, it’s a lovely campus to explore.
Oregon State University is also known for Reser Stadium, home to the Oregon State University football team since 1953, with an impressive seating capacity of over 43,000.
The perfect destination for history, culture and natural beauty all in one, Oregon State University’s campus is a must-see pinnacle of Corvallis.
Oregon State University is at Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331.
4- Browse The Corvallis Farmers’ Market
The Corvallis Farmers’ Market is a popular draw in Corvallis’ downtown district, and runs outdoors through April and November, then indoors throughout the colder winter months.
Held twice a week (Wednesdays and Saturdays), the market is teeming with lively vendors, mouthwatering baked goods and a diverse selection of local meats, cheeses, and produce.
The Corvallis Farmers’ Market is the perfect spot to get to know locals, enjoy some lighthearted entertainment, give back to the locals and eat your heart out!
Corvallis Farmers’ Market is at NW 1st St, Corvallis, OR 97330.
5- Attend A Tasting At 2 Towns Ciderhouse
Locally sourced and independently owned and operated, 2 Towns Ciderhouse is the go-to craft brewery of cider in Corvallis.
All 2 Towns ciders are brewed in their Corvallis-based production facility, and their fresh-pressed apples are all sourced from farmers in Oregon and Washington.
2 Towns Ciderhouse has a regularly open taproom to the public and is bookable for private events, with dog-friendly patio seating, over 22 rotating taps, and top-notch customer service from knowledgeable and friendly staff.
Head down to 2 Towns Ciderhouse for a quick drink or a longer personalised tasting room experience.
2 Towns Ciderhouse is at 33930 SE Eastgate Cir, Corvallis, OR 97333.
6- Catch A Show At The Majestic Theatre
Corvallis’s iconic Majestic Theatre is an arts and culture hub, hosting live performances, theatre classes and interactive experiences, among other events!
Originally constructed in 1913 as a vaudeville house, this building has been a staple of the Corvallis community for years, including after its renovation in 1990 and reestablishment as a local community theatre.
The Majestic Theatre puts on various performance arts acts, from music to dance to theatre and everything in between.
From a small concession area to reasonable pricing and comfortable seating, it’s clear why The Majestic Theatre has maintained use and popularity throughout the years.
The Majestic Theatre is at 115 SW 2nd St, Corvallis, OR 97330.
7- Take A Hike At Chip Ross Park
Hilltop views and lush forest scenery are among the many attributes of Chip Ross Park, an easily accessible park with sweeping views of Corvallis and its natural scenery.
Established in 1979, this has been a popular stop for families, with hilltop greenery and wide open spaces for children to play their hearts out.
Chip Ross Park is most often used for hiking and picnicking but is also frequented by horseback riders, runners and cyclists.
Chip Ross Park is also a popular spot for birdwatching, with sightings of bluebirds, swallows and woodpeckers being common throughout the park.
Chip Ross Park is at NW Lester Ave, Corvallis, OR 97330.
8- Adventure In Nearby Ghost Towns
The state of Oregon is known for being home to over 200 ghost towns, more than any other state in the United States, and Corvallis is conveniently close to many of them.
11 miles (17km) west of Corvallis sits the unincorporated community of Wren, which contains many abandoned structures, unique hiking experiences, and the abandoned Harris Covered Bridge, which makes for great urban exploring and photography.
Along the same stretch of highway as Wren is the ghost town of Kings Valley, an old mining town named after Nahum King, one of Oregon’s earliest settlers.
Perfect for urban exploration, photography, and historical pursuits, take a drive down Oregon Route 223 and visit some of Oregon’s many most alluring ghost towns.
9- Stroll The Corvallis Alley Art Walk
A self-guided tour through the arts district in Corvallis’s downtown, the Corvallis Alley Art Walk takes one through streets lined by murals, sculpture art and art galleries.
Located along the Corvallis Alley Art Walk are ceramic galleries, in-person painting exhibits, bookstores, artsy boutiques and other quirky tributes to the arts.
This is the perfect opportunity for lovers of the arts or those looking to get to know the local talent and culture of Corvallis.
The Corvallis Alley Art Walk is regularly adding new exhibits and vendors, so it is worth visiting more than once for a unique experience every time!
The Corvallis Alley Art Walk is at 700 SW Madison Ave, Corvallis, OR 97330.
10- Sightsee In The McDonald-Dunn Forest
This scenic research forest maintained by Oregon State University is a stunning destination for walking, biking, hiking and sightseeing.
With an array of tree species and other forest wildlife, these forests are used as a teaching laboratory for Oregon State University students while remaining open to the public.
Because the forest is maintained by Oregon State University staff and students, this is a safe location that is regularly serviced and has many family-friendly hikes and trails.
Covering over 11250 acres (4552ha), the McDonald-Dunn Forest has hilly terrain and land to explore and marvel at.
McDonald Dunn Forest is at 3695 NW Goldfinch Dr, Corvallis, OR 97330.
11- Watch A Film At Darkside Cinema
Corvallis’s only indie theatre, Darkside Cinema, is locally owned and open every day of the year.
Opened in 2005, Darkside Cinema follows a retro design and aesthetic, with gallery artwork lining the deep purple walls of the interior and vintage warm bulb lighting to set the mood.
The prices at Darkside Cinema are reasonable, with student and senior discounts offered, and there is also an option to book the cinema for a private screening or event.
Well-loved by locals and frequented by tourists, Darkside Cinema is a quirky vintage theatre showing top-notch cinematography in an inviting environment.
Darkside Cinema is at 215 SW 4th St, Corvallis, OR 97333.
12- Go Boating And Floating With Willamette Tides
The Willamette River is a beautiful stretch of water, perfect for most water-based recreational activities, and Willamette Tides provide all the materials you need.
Their website has a wide assortment of activities, including kayaking, rafting and tubing.
Willamette Tides bookings are kid-friendly and dog-friendly, and you can bring food and drinks for your journey out on the river.
There’s no better way to enjoy a perfect sunny day in Corvallis than floating down the river with Willamette Tides and taking in Oregon’s impressive scenic views.
Willamette Tides is at 500 NW 1st St, Corvallis, OR 97330.
13- Traverse The Jackson-Frazier Wetland
Established officially in 1992, Jackson-Frazier Wetland is the perfect spot for a nature walk and enjoying Corvaliss’s biodiversity.
Jackson-Frazier Wetland has a well-maintained boardwalk that stretches across 3400 feet (1036m) and is frequented by people and dogs hoping to see what the wetland offers.
Surrounded by marsh grasses and willow trees, and with a variety of songbirds and waterfowl flitting from place to place, there is much to observe and sightsee in the Jackson-Frazier Wetland.
Jackson-Frazier Wetland is at 3600 NE Lancaster St, Corvallis, OR 97330.
14- Go Shopping In Downtown Corvallis
Corvallis’s downtown district is one of its most prized attributes, with unique shopping experiences and casual dining to explore around every corner.
Downtown Corvallis is known for being easily walkable and decorated with vibrant colours, from the greens and reds of trees lining the streets to the bright yellows and blues of the mural-coated buildings.
Art and culture are a huge part of Corvallis’s downtown, with galleries and theatres popping up often along the well-kept sidewalk streets.
Shopping is of enormous appeal in downtown Corvallis.
From quirky, higher-end boutiques, to well-curated vintage shops, to popular outlet stores, there’s sure to be something for everyone.
Taking in the sights, smells, sounds and tastes of Corvallis is best done through a visit to its lively downtown district.
15- Experience Nature At The William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge
William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge dates back to 1964 and is a stunning hotspot for wildlife with more than six different trails to explore.
The refuge was originally created to provide a safe wintering habitat for a vulnerable species of geese, the dusky Canada goose.
William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge is now a popular spot for hiking and birdwatching, with over 8 miles (12km) of natural land to observe.
The refuge is a 14-mile (22km) drive south of Corvallis, with impressive views along the way and many pull-off spots for photography and sightseeing.
Willam L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge is at 26208 Finley Refuge Rd, Corvallis, OR 97333.
16- Stop For Brunch At WiseCracks Cafe
Located in the busy downtown district of Corvallis, WiseCracks Cafe is consistently voted a top spot for brunch in the county and has been a staple in Corvallis since early 2007.
WiseCracks Cafe is known for its all-day breakfast and conveniently early opening hours for anyone looking to grab a quick bite before starting a day of adventuring.
The cafe is in a building that has stood since 1923 and maintains some of the older design pieces from its previous models while updating other aspects of the cafe’s interior to appeal to a more modern and hip crowd.
Some more popular menu items include their pancakes and “skillet” dishes, while their extensive drink menu consists of an assortment of cocktails, coffees and juices.
WiseCracks Cafe is at 119 SW 3rd St, Corvallis, OR 97333.
17- Smell The Flowers At The Rose Garden In Avery Park
The Corvallis Rose Garden, which is in Corvallis’s Avery Park & Natural Area, is a breathtaking spot often booked for weddings and large outdoor events, but also widely open to the public.
With over 250 varieties of roses on display, the Rose Garden is most prominent in the summer months, attracting tourists from spring and into fall to see the bloom.
Besides the wide array of roses and the stunning central gazebo, the Rose Garden is also accompanied by multiple picnic shelters, grassy areas, reservable ball fields, rentable sports equipment and a large community room.
The Rose Garden in Avery Park is at 1200 SW Avery Park Dr, Corvallis, OR 97333.
18- Grab A Local Brew At Block 15 Brewing Co
A popular brewpub crafting drinks locally in Corvallis, Block 15 Brewing Co is a must-stop location for some of the Pacific Northwest’s finest craft beers and pub fare.
Block 15 hosts three unique locations – their original restaurant and brewery location, a brewery and taproom, and a European-style pub location.
Block 15 Brewing Co are very involved in the Corvallis community, hosting multiple events, fundraisers and raffles, with a percentage being given back to other local organisations.
With indoor and outdoor dining, sustainable initiatives across all sectors of the company, and exclusively regionally sourced ingredients, Block 15 Brewing Co is an excellent choice for hearty food and brews that gives back in more ways than one.
Block 15 Brewing Co is at 300 SW Jefferson Ave, Corvallis, OR 97333.
19- Admire The Bald Hill Natural Area
Over 1200 acres (485ha) of protected lands make up the Bald Hill Natural Area, a multi-use recreational area with impressive wildlife habitats and plant communities.
This area is popular for horseback riding, hiking, and biking, and some of its most visited attractions include the Fitton Green Natural Area and the Lupine Meadows.
One of this natural area’s most loved attractions is the Bald Hill Barn, a rustic building set against a picturesque backdrop, which can be booked for personal events or use.
With multiple entrances, easily accessible parking, and various trails from easy to experienced, there is something for everyone at Bald Hill Natural Area.
20- Visit The Historic Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site
Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site is a historic landmark and state park, home to Oregon’s oldest water-powered mill.
Thompson’s Mills is a 16-mile (25km) drive from the hub of Corvallis and is a little-known but highly treasured stop for anyone in the area.
The mills themselves were built in 1852, originally called the Boston Mills, and have been used throughout history for processing wheat and flour, including processing flour for the U.S. Food Administration during World War 1.
The mills are functioning to this day, and you can be shown around the site and see the inner workings or admire their historical value from afar.
The Historic Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site is at 32655 Boston Mill Dr, Shedd, OR 97377.
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