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. Alder Creek Children’s Forest

    Alder Creek is an 80-acre site protected by the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy and dedicated to the residents of Douglas County.  Alder Creek is a great place to experience the wonderful and natural beauty of Southern Oregon.  There are over 2 miles of trails that…

    Location: 749 Canyonville-Riddle Rd., Riddle, OR 97469
  2. Crystal Mountain Summit House

    Hop on the Rainier Express chairlift or take a challenging hike, to Washington State’s highest restaurant (6,872 feet) where you can have your butternut squash ravioli with a complimentary view of the gorgeous Cascades. On a clear day, you can see many of the area’s…

    Location: 33914 Crystal Mountain Blvd., Crystal Mountain, WA 98022
  3. Flying Turtle Gallery

    The Flying Turtle Gallery is nestled in the foothills of the Cascade Mountain Range.  The gallery offers a unique blend of work from a select group of artists who reside in the Central Cascades.  The art is varied in style and media, with much of…

    Location: 47488 Highway 58, Oakridge, OR 97463
Browse all locations:

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