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Can you really have too much of a good thing? In the case of Bend, maybe. With 250 days of sunshine a year, the beautiful Deschutes River flowing through downtown, and rafting, fishing, hiking and rock climbing all within 30 miles of town, Bend has just about everything you could ask for in a summer destination. But, over the past decade, Bend has become a media darling, voted everything from "best town to buy a house" to "best town to live" to "best outdoor town" in the country. Then…everyone moved here. Property values skyrocketed. Bend exploded. Although Bend is no longer the small town it once was, its downtown is still a joy to visit. ...

Can you really have too much of a good thing? In the case of Bend, maybe. With 250 days of sunshine a year, the beautiful Deschutes River flowing through downtown, and rafting, fishing, hiking and rock climbing all within 30 miles of town, Bend has just about everything you could ask for in a summer destination. But, over the past decade, Bend has become a media darling, voted everything from "best town to buy a house" to "best town to live" to "best outdoor town" in the country. Then…everyone moved here. Property values skyrocketed. Bend exploded. Although Bend is no longer the small town it once was, its downtown is still a joy to visit. Outstanding restaurants abound, three microbreweries turn out excellent beer, and cafes and boutique shops line the main drag. Locals float through town on the Deschutes in inner tubes, beers in hand, beneath the high desert sun. Yep, this still feels like the mountain paradise it was when folks first started moving here a decade ago. And with all there is to explore (Smith Rock, Mt. Bachelor, the Cascades, alpine lakes, rivers and more) it's still well worth a visit.

Danny Palmerlee
About the Expert

Danny Palmerlee is the main author of numerous Lonely Planet travel guides, including Ecuador, Argentina, South America on a Shoestring, and Pacific Northwest Trips.

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Danny Palmerlee for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    June through October