CHAARG’s Guide to Bend

Boulder used to be my “mountain town of choice” — but, Bend, Oregon recently took the lead. I fell in love with Bend so hard — it has the most beautiful hiking trails, a river to float… AND surf in, zero noise pollution, THE TREES, + the spirit of the people. I always thought I would move to the ocean… but, Bend is giving me a run for my money. As my friend said about Bend: “it’s a VIBE.” You need to explore it for yourself!

Coffee + Cafes

1] Thump CoffeeA classic establishment, ++ every Friday they have live music + pizza — check out the schedule here!

2] Backporch Coffee Roasters: Get the salted chocolate chip cookie with your coffee — wow.

3] The Sparrow Bakery: OCEAN ROLL! OCEAN ROLL! OCEAN ROLL! Also, it does amazing breakfast croissant sandwiches — highly recommend.

For Next Time: Fix And Repeat, Kanona Cafe, Looney Bean Bend, Palate, Companion Coffeehouse, Spoken Moto, Wild Roots Coffeehouse, Bend Mountain Coffee, Strictly Organic Coffee Bar, + Megaphone Coffee Co [I clearly need to do a #CappyHour].


1] Mother’s Downtown KitchenSo good, we went twice in 12 hours… + got the exact same thing: the sunrise wrap [pictured], #drool.

2] El Sancho’s Taco Club: Tacos, enough said. The brisket + carne asada tacos are a must. + Make sure to get the corn, rice, beans, + guac! The margs are also amazing.

3] Humble BeetPerfect place for takeaway picnic food to bring to the river… AND, they have… OCEAN ROLLS! ; )

4] Market Of ChoiceAnother go-to for picnic food — the bulk section is incredible, Whole Foods on steroids.

For Next Time: Spork, The Lot [food truck heaven], Laughing Planet, Active Culture, Poke Row, Bo’s Falafel, Valentine’s Deli, The Lemon Tree, + Primal Cuts Market.

Drinks, Shops + Cute Places

1] Go To A Brewery: There are no shortage of breweries… aha. I was obsessed with Crux [they had tons of food trucks + live music, too! ++ VIEWS, pictured]. Other breweries I want to check out: The Riff Taproom, Boss Rambler Beer Club, + Avid Cider.

2] Shopping: The “main area” of Bend is adorable to just take a stroll + pop into shops that interest you. Shops that I loved: Found Natural Goods, Jubeelee, + Dudley’s Bookshop Cafe.

3] The Workhouse: Right next to Sparrow Bakery. Amazing selection of jewelry, paintings, candles, food + artsy thangs… all local! Random but — get the curry chips if they have them, so good.

4] Art Walk: If you happen to be in town for the first Friday of the month, there’s an art walk! Check out the details here.

Outdoor Adventures

1] Float The River: It’s very “touristy,” but it’s a must — it was so cool to see all the houses on the river… + watch the surfers!

2] Deschutes River Trail: FAVORITE TRAIL. 5 miles one way [or 10 miles, out + back] — I would walk/run here every day if I could.

3] Tumalo Falls: 7 mile loop with multiple stunning waterfalls — decent elevation gain, or so it felt like… I ran most of it, + was struggling on parts of the climb. [Then again, I’m used to zero elevation gain in Chicago, aha.]

4] Elk Lake: Hiking, paddle boating, boating, hanging… the works.

5] Phil’s Trailhead: This is the place to go if you’re into mountain biking — I didn’t go [I’m too scared!], but Isaac went + loved it.

6] Breitenbush: We didn’t go during this trip, but OH MY GOSH — favorite hot springs ever [+ I’ve been to a bunch!]. If possible, try to spend the night here… but it’s also worth it for a day trip. So funky + beautiful. It’s two hours away from Bend.

For Next Time: Green Lakes Trail, Smith Rock State Park, Climb South Sister [*if you’re a serious hiker — 5,000+ ft of elevation in 6 miles]… literally, the amount of outdoor adventures are limitless.


We stayed in two places — this incredible cabin with Isaac’s family [amazing for 8 people], + The Oxford Hotel. The Oxford Hotel is in a perfect location in town, + right next to two of my favorite spots: Mother’s + Thump. Also, they give you bikes to use for free, + wine//cocktail vouchers : ).

I’LL BE BACK! Did I miss anything? Let me know!

++ Elisabeth

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