Making the Most of a Day Trip to Oregon’s Willamette Valley

Do you ever long to get away for just the day? I’ll show you how we made the most of a day trip to Oregon’s Willamette Valley in February.

olive trees in a nursery

Do you ever feel the need to get away, even if it’s for one day?

Well, that’s exactly what a friend and I did on a Thursday afternoon in February.

We left at 8:30 AM and headed for Willamette Valley, Oregon on a day trip. This area is agriculturally rich and known for its incredible Pinot Noir. You can see more about why this region makes such amazing wine HERE. Hazelnut orchards are a big deal here as well.

In fact, Wine Enthusiast Magazine awarded Oregon’s Willamette Valley as its 2016 Wine Region of the Year for the annual Wine Star Awards.

vineyards in Willamette Valley Oregon

This is the first time I’ve been to Willamette Valley but my friend Lori is a regular so she knew exactly where I would love to go that day.

The only thing is, we will definitely plan to spend a night or two next time because there’s no way you can do everything you want to do in one day.

We will go back in the summer to enjoy more of the wineries and other community events.

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The Allison Inn and Spa in Willamette Valley Oregon
Photo Credit: The Allison Inn and Spa

The Allison Inn and Spa – Newburg OR

Our first stop in Willamette Valley was The Allison Inn and Spa for lunch.

The Allison Inn and Spa in Willamette Valley Oregon
Photo Credit: The Allison Inn and Spa

This is on my bucket list for a spa treatment but we only had time for lunch on this trip. Let me just tell you…I had the BEST BURGER I’ve ever had here. AMAZING!

Durant nursery Willamette Valley, Oregon

Durant at Red Ridge Farms and Vineyards – Dayton OR

Our next stop in Willamette Valley was to Durant Nursery and Gift Shop at Red Ridge Farms and Durant Vineyards Tasting Room. You can see their website HERE.

Durant Nursery

I’m sure you can imagine how much fun I had here with all of these amazing plants in the nursery area.

I bought quite a few little plants to put in containers to liven up the garden a bit.

 plants at the nursery in Willamette Valley, Oregon

They really had a great selection. There were quite a few ferns and mini lemon cypress for $3 which I had to bring home with me.

succulents and plants in a wreath

How cute is this wreath? It looks like it would be easy enough to create yourself.

olive trees in Willamette Valley Oregon

The olive trees were incredible but we didn’t have enough room in the car to take one home. Maybe next time.

nursery in  Willamette Valley, Oregon

This rusty container was just my style. Can’t you see it in my garden? Too big and too expensive for this trip though.

hanging basket

Here’s more inspiration. I think I have a basket like this that I’m going to try hanging on my porch this year.

Durant Red Ridge Farms gift shop Willamette Valley Oregon

Durant Gift Shop

There were so many fun things in this shop. This was probably my favorite place to shop on the trip to Willamette Valley.

They had inspiring cookbooks, dishtowels, and every wooden gadget you could ever want.

Durant Red Ridge Farms gift shop Willamette Valley Oregon

This basket with the handles came home with me for $45. I can’t wait to figure out what I’m going to do with it.

garden terrariums

These brought back some serious memories. I remember making terrariums in 4-H and in school as a kid.

Durant Red Ridge Farms gift shop Willamette Valley Oregon

The gift shop also had soaps, candles, succulents, comfy throws, and more.

garden obelisk

I brought these garden obelisks home with me as well as a rusty metal one.

Durant vineyards tasting room in Willamette Valley Oregon

Durant Vineyards Tasting Room

I picked up a couple of bottles of wine here.

Durant vineyards tasting room Willamette Valley Oregon

This place is hopping in the summer. I can’t wait to visit again. Willamette Valley has the most beautiful views you’ve ever seen.

blue and white vintage dishes at Lafayette Schoolhouse Antique Mall Willamette Valley Oregon

Lafayette Schoolhouse Vintage and Antique Mall – Lafayette, OR

What trip would be complete without a visit to an antique mall?

The cool thing about this place is that it used to be a schoolhouse. There are 3 stories of vintage treasures.

Lafayette Schoolhouse Antique Mall

They had so many glassware collections.

Lafayette Schoolhouse Antique Mall

You really need to pay attention and go slow to catch everything. There is so much stuff!

vintage brass candle holders

I snagged some vintage brass candle holders for $8.

vintage suitcases

Vintage suitcases are the last thing I need in my house. I have so many that I don’t know where to put them all. But these were all at a really good price.

Kraemer's Garden in Willamette Valley Oregon

Kraemer’s Garden – McMinnville, OR

There’s nothing like another nursery to end a day of shopping. I was shocked by all the inventory they had.

Kraemer's Garden in Willamette Valley Oregon

There were a lot of potted bulbs and primroses.

Calluna  Blazeaway heather

I also found some amazing heather plants that I had never seen before. I’ll grow them in my planter over by the greenhouse to give that space some much-needed color in the winter.

Calluna blazeaway heather plant tag

The Calluna Blazeaway heather is perfect for this garden space because of the constant changes to its appearance throughout the year.

  • bronze-yellow foliage in spring that darkens to green as the season progresses
  • Lavender flowers from August-September
  • orange foliage in the fall
  • red foliage in winter
plants at nursery in Willamette Valley Oregon

Ferns, succulents, and grasses filled the nursery.

rusty obelisk

I bought this rusty obelisk at the nursery for $45. We barely got it into the car but I felt like this was a good deal.

It will look great in my cut flower garden.


The Dundee Bistro – Dundee, OR

We decided to head over to The Dundee Bistro to avoid the rush hour traffic, I”m so glad we did.

I can’t wait to come back. We had steamed mussels for an appetizer and let me tell you…they were the most flavorful I have ever had. The pizza was amazing as well.

Thank you so much for following along on my day trip to Oregon’s Willamette Valley. I’m looking forward to sharing my summer trip with you when I go.

Have you ever been here or perhaps planning to? Let me know in the comments below.

Until next time,


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Days trip to Oregon's Willamette Valley

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  1. It’s nice to go somewhere new, especially when it’s right in your backyard! What a fun day for you and Lori. ??

  2. Hi Kim!
    My dog found me totally annoying as I read about your trip to Willamette. I squealed, squee’d, ohhhhed and ahhhhed my way through your post. I came close to clapping my hands like a little girl receiving a pony on her birthday! So many things to love (hello blue and white chip and dip set!). My travel bucket list now includes a trip to Willamette with a little map that follows your path. I’ll have to find a way to make it a “girl’s trip” – with the exception of the food and the vineyard, my husband would probably not find the activities a bucket list item for him. ☺️

    1. I really hope you get to go Beth. It really was so fun and I know it will be even better in the summer when we can be outside more. The nurseries were incredible and now I can’t wait to try the wineries. Make sure you report back when you go!

  3. How fun to follow along on your great little trip! You packed a lot into one day and came home with unique items. I know how good it feels to get out for a day of adventure this time of year!

    1. We really did pack a lot in. We got home at 11:30 PM and we were exhausted. It really is a trip for an overnight. Thanks for reaching out Nancy. Have a great week.

  4. What a great day trip with a friend. Truly jealous here. We aren’t traveling or eating at restaurants yet but I will save this for when we start again.
    I would have wanted to bring an olive tree home too! I look forward to seeing your new finds in their new spots soon. Can’t wait for your summer trip!

    1. It really was fun, thank you, Lori. It was hard to leave an olive tree behind but maybe next time. I’ll share my new homes for everything soon!

  5. This looks a perfect trip!! All my favorite things…food, plants, cool things for the garden!! I am crushing on the garden obelisks you bought…I’m over here expanding the picture trying to figure out how to make one…

    1. I know you can make one Jennifer. You are so talented. I thought of you when I saw the succulent wreath. Hugs.

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