In the last few years, Oregon keeps on popping up as a place where friends and even some family members have moved to. And relatives of friends. And friends of friends. And where even one of my university room mates from the UK has been living for decades! If you have not been to OR yet, Portland is the place to start to experience the bookstores, cafes, restaurants, street food, funky retail places and the general ambience (Portlandia?). The state offers so much more as well – we did a circle tour including crater lake, the Pinot Noir belt, the coastal towns and Ashland, home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Ashland is a must – tons of theater, great dining and retail stuff. Parks to explore, etc. But what about Bend and Central Oregon? Again, several friends have mention this place – high desert – little rain, lots of sunshine. Major emphasis on outdoor activities. Microbreweries, biking, water activities, skiing, snowshoeing, etc. We just spent three days there just to scope it out and it was terrific. Just a few snippets below – a great little coffee place, the Deschutes river running right through the town, a nearby lake just 30 minutes out of town.