Salem and the Capitol Grounds
The Capitol Mall
Like the building itself, the grounds facing the capitol and extending to either side, are owned by Oregonians. It's a great place to explore Oregon's history and have a picnic.
Famous for its cherry trees, which bloom in late February and early March, the park features dozens of statues and monuments that celebrate and commemorate Oregon's history. The Capitol Mall became the
State Capitol State Park in 2008. Pick up a brochure with a
walking tour map at the information kiosk on the first floor of the Capitol.
Near the Capitol
After a day touring the Capitol, take a stroll in the
Salem Downtown Historic District. Just two blocks east of the Capitol, the district boasts over 40 preserved buildings spanning the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Other popular nearby destinations are the Salem Riverfront Park and Carousel, Hallie Ford Museum, Gilbert House Children's Museum, Salem Multicultural Institute, Willamette University, and the historical Salem train station. A couple miles away, you'll also find the Forest History Center Museum and the Museum of Mental Health.
Willamette Heritage Center, a short walk south of the Capitol, features a number of well-preserved pioneer buildings, and is home to the Thomas Kay Woolen Mill, a Victorian-age factory listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Within walking distance of the mill are the
Bush House Museum, an 1878 Italianate mansion built by a pioneer businessman, and
Deepwood Museum & Gardens, a gabled Queen Anne home with lovely gardens.
Coined the Cherry City,
dining options and foodie finds are abundant in Salem. The area is also known for its
wineries, cider-making, and craft breweries.