Newberg is the second most populous city in Oregon’s Yamhill County, with a population of 25,477, according to the 2021 census.
It’s located in the Portland metropolitan area, on the west bank of the Willamette River.
With its location near a water system and a Mediterranean climate, the city is the perfect spot for vineyards and is known as Oregon’s “Wine Country.”
Fur trapper and trader Erwin Young from Tennessee found himself in Portland in 1834 and built what was believed to be the first house on the western side of the river.
Joseph Rogers later settled in present-day Newberg, where he founded a community called Chehalem, later renamed Roger’s Landing.
It may be known today because of its endless vineyards, but there is so much more to the city than wine tasting.
Here are the best things to do in Newberg, Oregon:
Visit the Hoover-Minthorn House Museum
Built in 1881 by Jesse Edwards, the Hoover-Minthorn House is the oldest standing structure in the original Newberg township, located on South River Street.
It’s the childhood home of former president Herber Hoover, where he lived from 1885 to 1891 with his uncle and foster father, Dr. Henry John Minthorn.
The museum showcases Hoover’s Quaker upbringing, his years in office, and artifacts owned by the Minthorn family.
Among those displayed are Hoover’s bedroom furniture, fishing creel and fly-fishing rod, and two rocking chairs.
On the museum grounds are beautiful camellias, an herb garden, and a pear tree that Hoover remembered from childhood.
The Hoover-Minthorn House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003
Visit this piece of Oregon history and learn about Hoover’s early life.
Catch the Exhibits at ART Elements Gallery
ART Elements Gallery, located on East 1st Street, was established by friends Loni Parrish and Lauren Wylie in 2010.
Housed in a mid-century building renovated by the founders, the gallery features pieces from more than 50 artists that showcase the beauty of Oregon.
Artworks displayed in the gallery include outdoor sculptures, ceramics, contemporary modern art, woodwork, and jewelry.
Exhibitions by featured artists are done all year round, so there’s a chance a different show will be displayed monthly.
You can purchase paintings depicting Oregon’s vast vineyards and beautiful landscapes as a souvenir from your visit.
Drop by ART Elements Gallery to catch a show or buy pieces to support the local art community.
Taste Anam Cara Cellars’ Acclaimed Pinot Noir
Now no trip to Newberg is complete without tasting locally made wines.
One of the city’s beloveds is Anam Cara Cellars, which boasts its critically acclaimed pinot noir line.
Founded in 2001 by Nick and Sheila Nicholas, its name “Anam Cara” is of Celtic origin and means “friend of my soul.”
The winery prides itself in producing wines grown and farmed organically in a six-acre estate on the slopes of Chehalem Mountains AVA.
Don’t miss the Heather’s Reserve Pinot Not and the Nicholas Estate Dry Riesling.
Book a tasting tour or shop for a bottle or two at Anam Cara Cellars on North Main Street.
Go Truffle Hunting with Black Tie Tours
Ever wondered how one of the most luxurious food items in the world is harvested?
You can now forage for truffle around the Oregon wilderness with Black Tie Tours on East 4th Street.
The two-hour hunting tour is conducted by Stefan Czarnecki and his truffle dog, Ella, and the duo will show you how they team up to find these flavor-packed little chunks.
The tour package includes transportation from a designated meet-up spot in the city to the foraging area, but you may also be picked up from your home or lodging.
Stefan will teach you the basics of hunting and the proper care and storage of truffles.
Concluding the tour is a truffle-themed picnic lunch where you can sample wines from local winemakers.
Try your hand at foraging and taste native Oregon truffles by booking with Black Tie Tours!
Have Dinner at The Painted Lady Restaurant
You haven’t experienced real fine dining until you do it in a restored Victorian house.
Located on South College Street, The Painted Lady Restaurant got its name from the Painted Lady Colorist Movement.
It aims to restore and revive Victorian homes by painting them in three or more contrasting colors that complement each other.
Founded by Chef Allen Routt and his wife Jessica in 2005, the restaurant serves classic dishes with a modern touch, staying true to The Painted Lady Movement’s rules.
Their menu revolves around seasonal local ingredients that can be paired with wines from neighboring wineries.
Make sure to reserve your table as the restaurant gets booked, especially during dinnertime.
Experience fine dining in a beautifully restored Victorian house at The Painted Lady Restaurant.
Watch a Movie at the 99W Drive-in Theatre
If you’re a fan of rom coms, you’ve probably dreamt of watching a movie with your significant other in a drive-in theater.
Well, you’re in for a treat as the 99W Drive-in Theatre offers just that in their Portland Road location.
It opened in August 1953 and is one of the few remaining drive-ins in the area, so people from as far away as Portland and Washington drive down to the theater to watch some classics.
The family-operated theatre is open on select nights from late April or early May through late October.
Make your rom-com dreams come true and catch a movie at the 99W Drive-in Theatre.
See Newberg’s Vineyards from a Different View with Vista Balloon Adventures
The city’s landscape is already stunning from the ground, so what more when you’re up there?
Located on Commerce Parkway, Vista Balloon Adventures will take you on a different kind of sightseeing in their FAA-certified hot air balloons.
The flight starts shortly after sunrise at their launch site at Sportsman Airpark and lasts approximately an hour, depending on wind conditions and landing options.
Fly over the Willamette Valley wine country and marvel at the gorgeous terrain.
Once the balloon has landed and been deflated, you’ll be transported back to the launch site, so plan to spend around two and a half hours for the whole experience.
You can book group flights for up to 10 passengers or opt for the romantic private flight for two.
You’d have to book in advance as flights get sold out easily.
Have the best view of the Wine Country from up above with Vista Balloon Adventures.
Admire the Artworks at the Chehalem Cultural Center
The Chehalem Cultural Center is a multipurpose art gallery and exhibition hall housed in the former Central School on East Sheridan Street.
The historic brick building dates to 1935 as a Depression-era Works Progress Administration project and is currently owned by the Center’s partner, Chehalem Park and Recreation District.
The center has a fine arts gallery, art studio classrooms, a clay studio, a recording studio, and a 5,200-square-foot grand ballroom that can host public and private events.
Exhibitions rotate every two months, so there’s a chance you’ll see something different on your next visits.
If you’re lucky, you might be able to catch a show by one of the featured musicians in their Fall Concert Series or join the festivities in the annual Newberg Camellia Festival and Willamette Valley Lavender Festival.
The Chehalem Cultural Center also highlights the different segments of Oregon’s population each month by showcasing its history and culture.
Enjoy Family-Style Dining at Recipe Neighborhood Kitchen
Recipe Neighborhood Kitchen is set in a beautiful Victorian house on North Washington Street.
They offer a menu built around seasonal local ingredients that you can enjoy a la carte and family-style.
Some must-tries are the Braised Anderson Farm Lamb Shoulder and the Crispy Spanish Octopus, which you can pair with a glass of wine from a carefully curated wine menu.
If you’re dining with five or more people, their family-style menu consisting of three to five courses is recommended, but you’d have to book your table in advance.
Recipe Neighborhood Kitchen is the place for people looking for fine dining that isn’t intimidating and will still feel homey.
Other Things to Do Nearby
Explore Champoeg State Heritage Area
Champoeg State Heritage Area is a state park located along the Willamette River, just 10 minutes south of the city.
The area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as it’s the site of Oregon’s provisional government formed in 1843.
Aside from its historical background, it’s also rich in biodiversity, with its wetlands, forests, and fields serving as a home to more than 130 species of birds.
You can take a hike or walk the paved trails while admiring the scenery and spotting rare birds such as western bluebirds and acorn woodpeckers.
Experience a unique combination of history, nature, and recreation at Champoeg State Heritage Area.
Take Instagram-Worthy Pictures at Little Lavender Farm
Little Lavender Farm is a 2.5-acre working farm in the hills of Dundee owned by Mark and Pam Baker.
Located on Paren Springs Road in Dundee, the farm is a six-minute drive from Newberg and offers lodging in its Lavender Farm Loft, which has a private deck overlooking the surrounding vineyards and hillside.
They grow nine varieties of lavender that you can enjoy through on-site products or in their shop in downtown Newberg.
Make the rows of lavender plants a backdrop to your photos, and buy essential oils, soaps, and candles that will help you relax after your tiring trip.
Book your stay at the Little Lavender Farm and observe how these beautiful flowers are turned into handcrafted goodies.
Try Sustainably Farmed Wines at The Four Graces
The Four Graces is a sustainable winery founded in 2003 by the Black family on an existing vineyard just 1.5 miles south of the city.
The estate was named in honor of the founder’s four daughters and is now owned by Bill Foley.
The 40-acre vineyard has been one of the Low Impact Viticulture and Enology program’s largest sites, allowing it to be farmed sustainably by promoting biodiversity and using biodiesel fuel in equipment.
Today, The Four Graces produces critically acclaimed Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Blanc that you can enjoy in their tasting room.
You can also stroll through the demonstration vineyard and set up a picnic on the estate’s grounds.
Eat Wood-Fired Pizzas at Red Hills Market
Located just five minutes from downtown Newberg, Red Hills Market is a country-style market that offers wood-fired pizzas, gourmet sandwiches, craft beers, and local wines.
Founded in 2011 by Jody and Michelle Kropf, the restaurant aims to promote the Willamette Valley by serving seasonal dishes made from locally sourced ingredients.
Every month, they feature a local winery and host a tasting night where they also serve pairing bites to complement your glass of wine.
Order their roast beef sandwich or the Oregon albacore tuna melt.
The Big Spicy Kahuna and House-Made Duck Prosciutto are must-tries for pizzas.
Drop by Red Hills Market to get your fix of wood-fired pizzas!
Learn about Alpacas at Alpacas of Oregon
You may be of the people who often confuse alpacas with llamas, and you can’t be blamed.
Alpacas of Oregon’s mission is to educate people about all things alpaca: their lifestyle and the luxurious fibers from their fur.
The family-operated zoo was founded in 1990 by Suzanne and Doug Campbell in Sherwood, around 15 minutes outside Newberg.
Today, their daughter Katy conducts fiber arts classes while their son Connor trains the animals for tours and birthday parties.
If you’ve been dreaming of owning an alpaca but don’t have the space, you can avail of their Easy Ownership Program, where they take care of your pet in their facility.
Buy a fleece sweater from their barn store, or take some alpaca yarn for your knitting needs.
Detour to Alpacas of Oregon for a unique farm experience.
Newberg may be known as Oregon’s Wine Country, but there is so much that this city can offer than touring vineyards or tasting wine.
Its lovely location near the Willamette River and the hills of Chehalem gives it the contrasting romantic vibe of the vineyards and the rough terrains of the mountains.
The city’s colorful past is evident in beautifully restored buildings that serve as living pieces of history.
Now, pack your bags and spend a weekend doing the best things to do in Newberg, Oregon.