Portland Walking Tours

Portland Christmas Ship Parade Insider Tips, Part 1 (Columbia River)

December 3rd, 2013

XmasFleetOne of Portland’s great annual holiday traditions kicks off this week – the sailing (and viewing) of the Christmas Ships up and down the Willamette and Columbia Rivers.

Officially dubbed the “59th Christmas Ship Parade” (because who doesn’t love a parade?), the two fleets (one per river), totaling 55-60 ships per night, depart most nights around 7 PM starting Saturday, December 7, and put their well-lit hulls on display for your viewing pleasure.

Ideal viewing locations include the Eastbank Esplanade, the west bank river front, and the many wonderful hotels and restaurants situated along the rivers. Many of these restaurants are sponsors of the parade and make special efforts to provide excellent viewing opportunities to their customers.

Here are some great viewing spots by location for the Columbia Fleet.

Tomorrow we’ll post great viewing locations for the Willamette Fleet. If you “Like” our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter, you’ll get daily updates each morning as to that day’s schedule.

Indoor viewing locations (St. Helens):

  • Klondike Restaurant & Bar, 71 Cowlitz Street
  • Royal Thai, 295 Strand
  • St. Helens Pizza & Pub, 298 S 1st St.
  • Good Things Cafe & Bakery, 291 S. 1st Street
  • Kozy Korner Restaurant, 371 Columbia Blvd

Outdoor viewing locations:

  • Columbia Courthouse — above the St. Helens City Docks
  • Columbia View Park — [south of courthouse parking lot]
  • Sand Island — Access by boat only
  • Caples House Museum, 1925 First St, Columbia City (6-8 PM – Cookies and hot chocolate w/donation)
  • Pixie Park, Columbia City

Scappoose / Sauvie Island

  • Mark’s on the Channel, 34326 Johnson’s Landing Rd
  • Coon Island [boat access only]
  • McCuddy’s Landing, Scappoose (formerly Brown’s Landing)
  • Hadley’s Landing, Sauvie Island
  • Sauvie Island Boat Launch area.
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