Great Oregon Towns to Settle Down In

Oregon is a West Coast state with a lot to offer. It has big cities like Portland, with unique culture and a top-notch food scene, and small towns like Scappoose and Clackamas. It has picturesque ocean landscapes with beaches, cliffs, and deep forests covering almost half of the state. It has an abundance of natural beauty, home to incredible scenery that drives residents to live an active, outdoorsy lifestyle.

Image source: City of Sherwood, Oregon Government (Facebook page)

Oregon makes for a great state to live in, with diverse landscapes, quaint towns, and busy cities. It is a state with unique regions that stand apart from one another, but anywhere you go in Oregon, chances are you’ll find somewhere beautiful. Let’s look at some of Oregon’s great, lesser-known towns and cities to settle down in.

Let’s start with Sherwood, Happy Valley, and Lake Oswego. Sherwood is a small city just southwest of Portland, home to about 20,000. Sherwood is widely considered one of the best places to live in the state, a small and peaceful suburb with easy access to Portland. It has a low crime rate, good schools and is a great place to raise a family.

Image credit: M.O. Stevens

Happy Valley is a rapidly growing suburb of Portland. It is an affluent community of around 21,000. It has a high cost of living, but it is worth the price with beautiful luxury homes and a scenic residential area. It has a peaceful vibe that makes it feel far off from the city lights. Lake Oswego is a city of about 40,000, less than 10 miles south of Portland. The town is centered around Oswego Lake, making the town a great place for boaters, anglers, and swimmers. The town also has great golf courses and top-notch schools.

Cornelius, Eagle Point, and West Linn are other Oregon towns that are intriguing options for homebuyers. Cornelius is a small city to the west of Portland, a quiet place with great access to nature. It has multiple wineries nearby, numerous trails for hiking, and a welcoming community.

Image source: Cornelius, Oregon (Facebook page)

Eagle Point is a small city in southwest Oregon not far from the California border. Home to just under 10,000 residents, it is a quiet city with an old west feel. It’s a homey town that is safe, affordable and has great nearby natural scenery. West Linn is an affluent suburb south of Portland, a thriving community with lots of greenery not far from Lake Oswego. It is one of the oldest settlements in Oregon, with a great waterfront setting.

Image credit: Little Mountain 5 (Wikipedia)

Next, we have Tigard, Tualatin, and Canby. Tigard is another city in the Portland Metro Area, a thriving place home to over 50,000 residents. It has a safe, community-centric feel and is often considered one of the better places to live in the state. With top-notch shops and restaurants, there’s a reason more, and more people are relocating here every year.

Just south of Tigard, also in the Portland Metro Area, you’ll find Tualatin. Tualatin is a small city of about 27,000. It has an interesting natural history that dates back to the Ice Age, but today it is a young city with a lot to do. Canby is another suburb of Portland, located to the south of the big city. Canby is home to about 18,000 residents, and it has an incredible history. Located in the beautiful North Willamette Valley, the area used to be a season meeting place for tribes of Native Americans. It has plenty of natural beauty, with stunning meadows and wild strawberries.

Image credit: City of Tualatin - Government (Facebook page)

Hillsboro, Salem, and Keizer are three more wonderful Oregon towns. Hillsboro is a big city outside of Portland, home to over 100,000 residents. It is a growing city that has turned into an economic hub in recent years. Locals call it Silicon Forest due to the tech hubs like Intel that reside there and the great start-up scene overall.

Salem is the state’s capital, a big city with over 170,000 residents. It has a thriving local culture, with many high-quality shops, restaurants, art galleries, and museums. It is a scenic city with lots of greenery, gardens, flower fields, vineyards, and green pastures. Salem is a lovely place to make a home. Keizer is a small city outside of Salem. It has just under 40,000 residents and is known for the great history associated with the area. It has top-notch museums, town festivals, and great hiking options.

Lastly, Corvallis, Medford, and Bend should be considered by those looking to move to Oregon. Corvallis is a city in central-western Oregon, with over 50,000 residents. It is a tree-lined city with some top-notch outdoor recreational options, great for mountain biking, hiking, and rafting.

Medford is a southern Oregon city that has over 80,000 residents. There is much to do in this city, with great hiking options at Prescott Park, top-notch shows at the Craterian Theater, and numerous museums and galleries. Bend is a city home to around 95,000 residents. It is located on the Deschutes River, but the Cascade Mountains are a big part of what pull people into this town. It’s a great place for outdoor excursions, with great skiing and boarding in the winter and top-notch hiking and biking in the summer.