8 min read

August 26, 2021

OnJuno Picks: The Five Best Places to Live in Oregon

Moving to Oregon? Check out our list of Oregon's top five cities to live in to know where to settle in the state.

Oregon, the tenth-largest US state, is in an incredible location, where you can enjoy the evergreen beauty and wilderness of America's Pacific Northwest. From pristine waters, picturesque beaches, and rich forests to majestic waterfalls and a charming coastline, Oregon offers an experience like no other to both locals and tourists — and that’s not to mention the zero sales tax and lower housing prices than most of the US! 

With such amenities and scenic attractions, every city in Oregon might be a good place to call home. But, to make it easier for you, we’ve rounded up the five best places in Oregon for you to live in.

Best for Families: Portland 

Known for the gorgeous backdrop of Columbia and Willamette rivers, Portland is the largest city in Oregon, with a population of over 655K. This Pacific Northwest gem is famous for its friendly locals, eccentric culture, and various outdoor activities. And since the city is nestled in the white-capped Mount Hood, you can find picturesque views everywhere. 

Portland Oregon

From great schools to kid-friendly restaurants and parks, Portland is one of the best places for families to live in. Residents can find a good mix of apartments and houses, such as single-family homes, elegant condos, townhouses, and small cottages. 

Forest Park — one of the largest urban parks in Portland — is the perfect spot to spend time with your kids. Birdwatching, hiking trails, zoo, museums, rose gardens — there's something for everyone. You can even grab some popcorn and enjoy a movie on the big screen at Regal Lloyd Centre & IMAX

When it comes to schools, Portland is home to various high-rated schools, such as Forest Park Elementary, Stoller Middle School, Lincoln High School, and many more. 

Median home price: $552,071

Median monthly apartment rental price: $1,565

Best for Safety: West Linn 

Next on our list of the best places to live in Oregon is a beautiful city located in Clackamas County: West Linn. West Linn is a small city situated 15 miles south of Portland, along the west bank of the Willamette River. It features high-quality living, quiet neighborhoods, a vibrant community, and great restaurants, boutiques, and grocery stores

West Linn Oregon

With a crime rate of 18.64 per 1,000 residents, West Linn is considered the safest city to live in Oregon. Total crimes here are 63% lower than the national average. As for violent crime, your chance of becoming a victim is 1 in 1420, and for property crime, it is 1 in 117.

When it comes to outdoor activities, the city boasts 600 acres of park land where people can enjoy activities like hiking, picnicking, walking, biking, and watching wildlife. Plus, with meeting rooms, a public library, computer labs, and a community kitchen, the 28,000-square-foot West Linn Public Library is an important part of the city. 

However, such local amenities and safety come at a huge price. In fact, the cost of living in West Linn is 38% higher than the national average. 

Median home price: $696,010

Median monthly apartment rental price: $1,748

Best for Jobs: Beaverton 

Want to enjoy the best of both the suburban and urban worlds? Beaverton is the right spot for you. Located between the West Hills and Tualatin Valley farmlands, the city offers various wineries, international restaurants, and historical landmarks. Readers can rejoice too, as it boasts top-notch libraries and a world-class bookstore: Powell's

Beaverton Oregon

Beaverton is also the home to the famous "Silicon Forest", which hosts a large number of tech companies like IBM, Intel, Columbia Sportswear, Adidas, and Tektronix. And, of course, Nike’s headquarters is among Beaverton's most prominent employers. Outside of tech employees, Beaverton is also filled with residents working in the banking, retail, hospitality, and education sectors.  

Median home price: $503,276

Median monthly apartment rental price: $1,197

Best for Those on a Budget: Salem

Looking for a place that fits your bill? Try Salem. 

With a population of over 170k, the state's capital is situated close to the hustle and bustle of Portland, but offers a lower cost of living mixed with a peaceful environment. Although Salem is full of amenities, its cost of living is still 7% lower than the Oregon average. Further, its housing prices are 3% lower than the national average, making it the most affordable city on our list. 

Salem Oregon

Salem is located in Marion County and provides easy access to the outdoors. Strolling along the Willamette River, visiting museums and historical landmarks, and enjoying different kinds of beers and wines, it has plenty to offer for everyone. And if you have children, the Enchanted Forest is the perfect theme park to visit together. 

Despite the lower living cost, numerous local amenities, educational options, and affordable healthcare has helped Salem make it to the list of best places to live in Oregon. Not only does it house the major Salem Hospital, but also the oldest university in the Western United States: Willamette University

Median home price: $375,183

Median monthly apartment rental price: $1,178

Best for Outdoor Lovers: Eugene

Landing last (but almost certainly not least) on our list of the best places to live in Oregon is Eugene, a city in the Willamette Valley and an hour’s drive away from the Oregon coast and the Cascade mountain range.  

Eugene Oregon

From hiking trails and parks to recreational opportunities and a vibrant art scene, Eugene has a strong outdoorsy culture. Cycling, kayaking, and rafting are all popular here due to the easy access to rivers. Plus, you can also find people going for a jog at all hours of the day. 

Strolling in the parks, visiting the coast to spot sea lions and whales, or heading to Hays Tree Garden to enjoy a relaxing walk are just some of the outdoor experiences which await you here. 

You’ll also find plenty of green areas, meadows, forests, water gardens, mountains, and more. And if it's beer or wine you crave, take a different path on the Eugene Ale Trail, which boasts award-winning wineries and breweries in the Willamette Valley. 

Median home price: $422,022

Median monthly apartment rental price: $1,460

With endless vineyards, outdoor recreational activities, and vibrant culture, who wouldn't want to call Oregon home? So, whether you're looking for a weekend away or perhaps the chance to rent an apartment in Oregon, don't forget to keep our list of best places to live in Oregon handy.


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Aishwarya Aggarwal
Aishwarya Aggarwal is a content writer passionate about helping brands create value-packed content that connects and converts. When not writing, she finds solace in dabbling with the beauty of colors on a white canvas.

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