Hi and thanks for reading. I'm planning a Portland trip for early July. As with most cities, Portland Downtown hotels are much more expensive than the suburban stuff. I've been working on cross-referencing the hotels with the MAX stations, and have come up with a few (I have to emphasize FEW) but they're generally more expensive. However, I'm wondering if Portland is one of those cities, like San Diego, where there is a good transit system, but you still need a car to get places. If that's the case, then I'll just save my money and choose a cheap hotel. I am planning on renting a car for one day regardless to take a side trip. My time in Portland will be a mix of touristy stuff like museums and parks and just wandering Downtown and other neighborhoods. Any advice? Is it worth it to pay the extra money for a Downtown hotel?
I live in Portland and I would say that it depends on exactly what you'd like to see here. There are some things very accessible by the public transit, and other things not so accessible. If you stay somewhere on the lightrail line, then it's easy to get downtown (however, in my opinion, it's slower compared to most large cities' public transit). There are a few decent hotels in the Lloyd District (east side) (Doubletree, Courtyard, Holiday Inn, etc) that are within walking distance of the lightrail stop and about 10 minutes from downtown using that method. Once you're downtown, there are buses and the streetcar to get around. It's pretty easy to just walk to wherever you're going while downtown as well. If you're wanting to see the Japanese and Rose Gardens, you can ride the light rail under them to the Zoo, and then take a shuttle bus to them. If you can, give a list of things you'd like to do here and I'll try to better advise.
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