Portland There is no place in the country better known as a bastion of good living, leisure and happy inebriation than Oregon’s largest little city, the low-lying mini-metropolis of Portland. Bisected by a river and surrounded by peaks, Portland is nothing if not a very pretty and almost preternaturally pleasant town. But much of its appeal comes from being, for better or worse, one of our national capitals of cool. The city’s sensibility — its stylized aesthetic, its thoroughly hyped food culture, its taste for irony — is celebrated, imitated and satirized. Portland is at its best, though, when you step back from its overwrought reputation and appreciate its appetite for simple pleasures: beer and bike riding, day trips to the Columbia River or Sauvie Island’s farm stands, movies in vintage theaters and cocktails in ornate lounges.