Enjoy Insights into the Rich Culture and Natural Wonders of the Central Cascades…From the People Who Live Here
The sheer beauty and grandeur of the Central Cascades of Oregon and Washington will make any visitor give pause. But the many stories resting in the region’s foothills, high desert and mountain communities will inspire you to linger and explore. The National Geographic Society has collaborated with community members of the Central Cascades to illuminate the places and experiences that residents think are special. Some of the special qualities that define the Central Cascades are explored below.
Just the start of what you’ll find in the Central Cascades
Automotive history was made here June 20, 1905, when the first car to cross the Cascade Mountains conquered the Santiam Wagon Road. Dwight Huss drove “Old Scout,” a 1904 Oldsmobile curved-dash runabout, from New York to Portland in 44 days. “Old Scout” was the first…Location: Hwy 20, Milepost 47, OR 97386
The story of the Old Mill District began almost 100 years ago when two sawmills opened on the Deschutes River. Today, with the lumber business long gone, the same site is a full-scale mixed-use complex that boasts a carefully restored riverbank and preserved mill buildings…Location: Powerhouse Drive, Bend, OR 97701
The Lara House Lodge is a beautifully restored 1910 Craftsman, built by the Lara family, one of the first business owners in Bend. Located downtown in the Historic District at the heart of Bend and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Lara…Location: 640 NW Congress St., Bend, OR 97701
The National Geographic Society has partnered with Travel Oregon and Washington State Tourism to capture the history and heritage of the Central Cascades Region. The results are captured here — and in a colorful, informative print map.
What is Geotourism?
Geotourism is tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place – its environment, heritage and the well-being of its residents.
Central Cascade Themes
If you’re new the region, here are seven themes that will help you get to know the Central Cascades of Oregon and Washington.
- Sculpted by Water, Fire & Ice
- Northwest Tribes
- Our Roots
- Adventurous Spirits
- A Place For Refuge & Recreation
- Local Visionaries
- Nature’s Bounty
Sustainability is an important aspect to the concept of Geotourism. Learn how you can get the most out of your travels and leave it beautiful for others to enjoy.