Mt. Hood Summit / Photo by Peter Marbach

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.

Explore the Central Cascades

Just the start of what you’ll find in the Central Cascades

  1. The Enchanted Alpaca

    This alpaca farm offers breathtaking views of a meadow set at the base of Mt. Adams, and the farm hums with life-giving, sustainable farming. Alpacas are a growing part of the agriculturally dominated Gorge, appearing in parades, downtown events, hospice and care-facility visits, and First Fridays!  The…

    Location: 314 Oak Avenue, Hood RIver, OR 97031
  2. City of Rogue River

    Local communities in Southern Oregon are building the Rogue River Recreational Corridor and Greenway. It’s best described as an emerald necklace of parks and public-access areas along the Rogue River connected by a ribbon of greenway trail spanning 30 miles from Grants Pass to Central Point. …

    Location: Depot Street Bridge, Rogue River, OR 97537
  3. Desert Forest Journeys

    This site includes four trails: Ties Through Time Trail, interpreting the history of railroad logging in the Central Cascades Open Forest Trail, where you can experience 300-year-old ponderosa pines and the wide variety of wildlife that belong to this ecosystem Pines in the Pumice Trail, where you can…

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The National Geographic Central Cascades Geotourism MapGuide

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.

Get your Central Cascades Geotourism MapGuide

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.

Sustainable Travel

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.

National Geographic