If you live in Oregon and aren’t familiar, the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge & Visitor Center is a hidden gem! It’s off the beaten path and not many people know about it. Located at 19255 SW Pacific Hwy, Sherwood, OR 97140, this national wildlife refuge is home to a variety of animals and natural habitats. The visitor center offers unique exhibits and programs throughout the year. In fact, it’s open year-round so there are plenty of things to do every time of year. Here are 10 Things You Should Do in Tualatin River NWR & Center!
Hike on the Tualatin River Trail
Located just southeast of Sherwood and accessible from the city of Portland, the Tualatin River Trail is a great place to start a hike. The trail follows the Tualatin River for about 8 miles through the heart of the refuge. This is the perfect trail for an urban hike and you can access the river from a number of places in Sherwood. The trail is popular and is often crowded. In order to avoid the crowds, try to hike the trail at a time when the crowds are low. You can also bring food and water with you to avoid having to stop at a water source along the way.
Check Out the Exhibits at the Visitor Center
The Tualatin River NWR & Center Visitor Center is home to a variety of unique exhibits. At the center, you can check out the visitor center, take a virtual tour of the refuge, or visit the gift shop. The center also hosts a variety of programs throughout the year. During the summer, the center hosts a variety of programs that focus on wildlife and conservation. The visitor center is open daily.
Go Horseback Riding
You’ve probably hiked the Tualatin River Trail and checked out the river in the area, but have you ever ridden a horse on the trail? Tualatin River NWR & Center offers guided horseback riding along the trail. The trail is a multi-use trail, so it’s not always open for horseback riding. In the spring and summer, you can ride the trail for about an hour. In the fall and winter, you can ride the trail for an hour or two.
Play Golf – Sherwood District has a course!
If you love to golf, then you’ve found your new home. Tualatin River NWR & Center is home to Sherwood District, a public golf course. The course is a 9-hole, 18-hole, and par-3 course. There are also a variety of tee times available for everyday and weekend play. The course can be accessed by car or by bike. Keep in mind that at the refuge, you are not allowed to play golf.
Eat and Drink at Tualatin Valley Brewing Company
Just a short drive away from the refuge, you can visit Tualatin Valley Brewing Company. This brewpub is open year-round and is the perfect place to stop and relax while enjoying some delicious food and craft beer. The brewpub has an airy, open-air feel and you can enjoy some of the best views in Sherwood while you dine. There is also plenty of outdoor seating. With a menu that features everything from bar snacks to full meals, you can eat and drink as much or as little as you like.