Best Hiking Trails Around Bend and Nearby Eats

Craving a good hike in Bend? After hitting the trails, you’ll likely want to unwind and fuel up. Start with some of the best hikes in Bend, Oregon! Then, venture to a nearby brewery, restaurant, or food cart lot.

With its diverse topography and vibrant local food scene, it’s no wonder hiking in Bend is so popular. Whether looking for a leisurely family walk or a challenging trek, Bend has something for everyone.

Here, we’ll explore some of the best hikes in Central Oregon. And, delightful spots to eat and drink! Ensuring your adventure—and appetite—are satisfied.

1. Tumalo Falls

The trail to Tumalo Falls offers breathtaking views of one of Central Oregon’s most spectacular waterfalls. This moderate hike is perfect for those looking to immerse themselves in nature without venturing too far from Bend.

Tumalo Falls is not just a hike; it’s an experience that captures the essence of Central Oregon’s natural beauty. Thus, making it one of the best hikes in Bend.

The Journey to Tumalo Falls

This 97-foot waterfall is located within the Deschutes National Forest. The trail leading to Tumalo Falls takes you through Bend’s west-end landscape. Rich with volcanic history, its saturated with lush conifer forests and the flowing sounds of the Deschutes River rapids.

The hike begins at the Tumalo Falls Viewpoint, where you’ll catch first glimpse of the falls. Here, you’ll find an Instagram-worthy backdrop to capture the beauty of the falls without venturing far from the parking area. Visit the Forest Service page for Tumalo Falls Day Use Area details.

Where to Eat: The Grove/Waypoint BBC

Waypoint BBC, part of the Bend Brewing Co. family, is fantastic for apres-any-activity. You can lounge on the Grove’s shared patio by the fire pit or soak up the sun at an outdoor table. Inside, Waypoint BBC has cozy seating for enjoying a post-hike cocktail or Bend Brewing Co. beer.

coup glass holds a cocktail with orange liquer and foamy top at waypoint bar at the grove in bend oregon

What’s great about Waypoint BBC is its proximity to several food counters inside The Grove. Choose from places like Thai Pas, Shimshon Israeli street food, and Elly’s Ice Cream. Our favorite libations are usually one of the weekly specials, like a strawberry Aperol Spritz or beet and mezcal-infused cocktail.

2. Pilot Butte State Scenic Viewpoint

Pilot Butte is an iconic landmark in Bend, Oregon, that offers more than a hike. Imagine a panoramic window into the heart of Central Oregon. This ancient cinder cone stands proudly within the city limits. Pilote Butte provides a unique urban hiking experience with breathtaking 360-degree views of the surrounding high desert landscape and distant snow-capped peaks.

Local Access and Views

Unlike many other Bend hikes that require a drive out of town, Pilot Butte is in the center of town. This makes it a popular spot for both locals and visitors. Its central location means you can enjoy a dose of nature without venturing far, offering a quick escape to the outdoors. Visit Oregon State Parks for trail and parking details.

Where to Eat: River’s Place Food Trucks and Taphouse

Located at the base of Pilot Butte, the restaurant offers plenty of indoor and outdoor space to unwind. The tap room serves kombucha, beer, and cider from local brewers and offers a variety of food carts.

sun shines through the silhouette of a black lab
Courtesy Photo | River’s Place

Satisfy a hearty appetite with nachos and quesabirria tacos from Sopa Mexican Cuisine. They also offer carts serving sushi, sliders, calzones, and Thai cuisine. Their overflow parking lot allows for easy access to the food cart lot and is friendly for families, kids, and (well-behaved) dogs.

3. Deschutes River Trail at Old Mill District

Add this to your list of easy hikes! The Deschutes River Trail is a jewel in Bend, Oregon’s crown of outdoor adventures. This trail offers a serene and picturesque journey along the banks of the mighty Deschutes River. Still, it’s more than just a path; it’s a corridor through diverse ecosystems, a historical journey, and a peaceful retreat all rolled into one.

With access points scattered throughout Bend, the Deschutes River Trail provides an array of experiences for walkers, runners, and cyclists alike. Let’s dive into the details of what makes this trail a must-explore for anyone visiting or living in Bend.

All-Seasons Trail

One of the most captivating aspects of the Deschutes River Trail is its year-round accessibility and beauty. Each season showcases vibrant colors and textures, from the towering pines and rushing waters of spring to the golden hues and crisp air of autumn.

Even in winter, the trail offers a tranquil escape, with snow-dusted paths and the peaceful silence of nature. However, the path can be icy during this time, and hikers should proceed with caution on slopes and grades. Visit the Deschutes National Forest informational page for details about the Deschutes River Trail.

Where to Eat: Old Mill District

Upon your return from the Deschutes River Trail, you can choose from several eateries in the Old Mill District. Dine al fresco at Greg’s Grill or Anthony’s Seafood for a dual riverside experience. Or, get a bit fancier at Lady Bird Cultural Society with prohibition-era cocktails and vibes, and wood-fired pizzas and seafood.

Stay casual at Mill Works Pub for burgers and fried chicken sandwiches in their family-friendly brewpub. Or, celebrate your gained steps with patio-front wine and bubbles at Va Piano Vineyards tasting room along the river’s edge.

4. Shevlin Loop

Head to picturesque Shevlin Park, just a few miles west of Bend, Oregon, for an idyllic escape just minutes from town. This 4.6-mile loop takes hikers on a journey through diverse ecosystems with a peaceful yet invigorating outdoor experience. One of Bend’s most popular hikes, it will captivate both seasoned hikers and casual walkers alike.

Easy Access Hiking

Shevlin Park itself is a testament to the natural beauty of the Bend area. Featuring towering ponderosa pines and quaking aspens, visitors will enjoy colors changing with the seasons. The Shevlin Loop Trail, approximately 4.6 miles in length, encapsulates the park’s essence, winding through open meadows, dense forests, and along the banks of Tumalo Creek. Visit AllTrails for details and parking at Shevlin Park.

Where to Eat: Spork

Take a short drive down Shevlin Park Road until it turns into Newport Avenue and you’ll end up at Spork, one of Bend’s most popular dining spots. Offering a fusion of international cuisines, Spork’s rich offerings are sure to satisfy your appetite after hitting the trail.

plate of green chilaquiles topped with a fried egg

Spicy fried chicken is one of their most beloved dishes, along with chilaquiles and spicy pork noodles. With a full bar, you can enjoy celebratory drinks like Thai Collins, Oaxacan Old Fashioned, and classic Margarita.

Another option when hiking the Shevlin Loop Trail is to order Spork’s family-style takeout and bring it along for your hike. With several spots for picnicking at Shevlin Park, you can break mid-hike and refuel with Dan Dan noodles, taco bowls, and coconut green curry.

5. Smith Rock State Park

paradise is known for its astonishing landscapes, towering rock spires, and the winding Crooked River that carves its way through the high desert plateau.

This park is not just a destination; it’s an experience, offering some of the most iconic and challenging hikes in Bend and Central Oregon. The beauty of Smith Rock calls to climbers, hikers, and nature enthusiasts from all over the world.

High-Impact Trails and Views

Smith Rock State Park is celebrated for its diverse trail system that caters to every level of hiker, from easy riverside walks to strenuous ascents up steep switchbacks. The park’s geology is a spectacle in itself, with towering basalt cliffs, spires, and the famous Monkey Face pillar. Visit Oregon State Parks for a parking pass.

Where to Eat: Brand 44N

Kick off your Smith Rock State Park adventures with breakfast at Brand 44N, or cap off an early morning hike with brunch and drinks. We can promise you one thing—you won’t leave this Terrebonne eatery hungry.

fried french toast garnished with a flower

Brunch offerings include hearty and distinctive plates like John Wayne Casserole, breakfast bao tacos, and strawberry shortcake pancakes. Sip on an espresso martini or share a mimosa tower with the table. Early risers can take advantage of a specialty discounted menu from open until 8 a.m.

6. Green Lakes Trail

Situated within the Deschutes National Forest, the Green Lakes Trail is a standout hike that embodies the essence of Central Oregon’s outdoor magnificence. Popular during the summer months, this trail offers a captivating voyage through varied landscapes.

This 9.1-mile round trip hike leads hikers to the stunning Green Lakes, set against the backdrop of South Sister and Broken Top mountains. It’s a hike that captivates with its natural beauty, geological wonders, and the serene tranquility of its alpine lakes. With its elevation gain of over 1,000 feet, hikers will want to ensure they’re prepared for the trek.

Diverse Landscapes

The Green Lakes Trail begins at the Green Lakes Trailhead, just off the Cascade Lakes National Scenic Byway. From the moment you set foot on the trail, you’re greeted with the lush forested paths that are characteristic of the Central Cascades. As the trail ascends, hikers are treated to the sights and sounds of Fall Creek, with its cascading waterfalls and clear pools that invite a moment of reflection. VIsit the Forest Service informational page for seasonality and permits.

Where to Eat: Pacific Pizza & Brew

Located near the entry to Cascade Lakes Highway, it’s the natural destination on your way back into town. The concept is in all in a name—pizza and brews. We love their habanero alfredo pizza and mojitos, which make a pretty awesome pairing.

Classic margherita pizza is covered in fresh arugula

Still, they offer options like the four-meat pizza, buffalo chicken pizza, and bacon and fig pizza. On warmer days, dine al fresco on their patio overlooking Century Drive.

7. Riley Ranch Nature Preserve

Riley Ranch Nature Preserve is a unique and relatively recent addition to Bend, Oregon’s plethora of natural gems. Unlike many of the high desert trails and mountainous adventures found throughout the region, Riley Ranch offers a different kind of wilderness experience.

This preserve is calm and serene, showcasing the diverse ecosystems of Central Oregon, including river, canyon, forest, and meadow environments. Here, the gentle trails of Riley Ranch Nature Preserve remain relatively untouched.

treeline of ponderosa pine trees at riley ranch nature preserve
Bend Parks & Recreation

A Sanctuary Near the City

Riley Ranch Nature Preserve covers 184 acres just minutes from Downtown Bend. With clear mountain views, this sanctuary dedicates itself to protecting habitats and offering educational experiences for visitors. 
The preserve’s unique aspect is its restriction on dogs and bicycles, a decision made to protect wildlife habitats and ensure the tranquility of the environment. This makes Riley Ranch a sanctuary for wildlife and a peaceful retreat for those looking to immerse themselves in nature without the bustling activity of other parks and trails. Visit Bend Parks and Rec for trail details and important information.

Where to Eat: Currents at the Riverhouse

Take a short drive down the road from Riley Ranch, and you’ll end up at the Riverhouse. The hotel’s resident restaurant and bar, Currents, sits along the rapids of the Deschutes River. No matter where you sit, you can catch a glimpse of the rumbling currents and sounds of the river rushing northbound.

focus on an eggs benedict with alaskan king crab, topped with hollandaise and sprinkled in paprika and green onions

Taking a midweek hike? Enjoy happy hour specials like discounted small plates, taps, and house cocktails. Kicking off your hike earlier in the day? Visit for breakfast and nourish yourself with a berry parfait, spicy chicken-apple scramble, or avocado toast.

8. Tumalo State Park

A few miles north of Bend, Oregon, Tumalo State Park offers a gentle, yet immersive nature experience. Unlike the rugged terrains and steep climbs found in other parts of Central Oregon, Tumalo State Park provides a family-friendly environment that’s perfect for a leisurely stroll, picnics, and enjoying the serene beauty of the Deschutes River.

From Riley Ranch to Tumalo State Park

The Deschutes River Trail connects Riley Ranch Nature Preserve and Tumalo State Park. This scenic pathway follows the river as it curves from one path to the next. This trail system is part of a larger network that aims to connect Bend’s outdoor spaces, providing continuous access for hikers, runners, and cyclists to explore the natural beauty of the area. Visit Oregon State Parks for trails, parking, and permit information.

Where to Eat: The Bite Food cart lot

Situated just minutes from the entrance to Tumalo State Park, The Bite is Tumalo’s resident food cart lot and tap house. With plenty of room to hang out, The Bite’s family-friendly outdoor lot is a favorite among locals and visitors.

Hand picks up a sliced of Margherita pizza from a box

Choose from carts like Pine Marten Pizza, North Fresh Sushi, and The Rogue Chef. After fueling up on lunch or dinner, venture across the street to one of two resident cideries. Tumalo Cider is just steps from The Bite, while Bend Cider Co. can be found a half-block down the road.

9. Cline Buttes

Cline Butte, located in the Eagle Crest area west of Redmond and just north of Bend, offers intriguing recreational diversity for hikers, mountain bikers, and off-road enthusiasts alike.

This area, less frequented than the more famous Smith Rock State Park or the trails around Bend, offers a quieter alternative for those seeking solitude and unobstructed nature experiences.

High Desert Haven

One of the most appealing aspects of Cline Butte and the surrounding Eagle Crest area is its relative obscurity compared to other outdoor destinations in Central Oregon. This lesser-known status often means fewer visitors and a more serene hiking experience, where one can truly connect with the natural surroundings without the distraction of crowds.

waterfalls at cline butte
Cline Falls

The area is home to a variety of wildlife, including mule deer, coyotes, and an array of bird species. The vegetation is typical of the high desert, with juniper trees, sagebrush, and bitterbrush dominating the landscape.

For those who venture to the top of Cline Butte, the reward is a 360-degree panorama that includes the Cascade Range to the west, the Ochoco Mountains to the east, and a vast expanse of Central Oregon’s high desert stretching out in all directions. The summit trail, while steep in sections, is manageable for hikers with moderate experience. Visit AllTrails for hiking trails and parking information at Cline Buttes Recreation Area.

Where to Eat: Niblick & Greene’s, Eagle Crest

Located within the Eagle Crest Resort, this Brasserie offers a cozy ambiance and a menu highlighting local microbreweries and hearty entrees. You can also enjoy sports viewing, broadcasted throughout the restaurant, and barside imbibing.

10. Paulina Lake

Newberry National Volcanic Monument, southeast of Bend, Oregon, is houses local wonder Paulina Lake Loop Trail. This trek wraps around Paulina Lake, one of the twin lakes formed within the caldera of the ancient Newberry Volcano.

A Journey Through Volcanic History

Paulina Lake lies at the base of the Newberry Volcano, the largest volcano in the Cascade Range. The trail around Paulina Lake provides hikers with a firsthand look at the volcanic forces that have shaped this landscape over millennia. From obsidian flows to pumice fields, the trail offers an up-close view of the diverse volcanic features of the Newberry caldera. Visit the Forest Service page for trail and day use information at Paulina Lake.

Where to Eat: Badlands Artisan Distillery and Bistro

On your way back into town, make a stop at this La Pine distillery and restaurant, complete with an outdoor food cart lot. After hiking one of the most beautiful hikes around Bend, celebrate with a spirits flight, hot cocktail, or coffee from their full barista bar.

Of course, you’ll want nourishment after hiking some of the highest peaks. Revive your energy with soups, salads, share plates, and hearty sandwiches. Treat yourself to a fancy sando like the Gunslinger with turkey, Brie, and green apple. Or keep it classic with a BLT or club sandwich.


Need to bring some sustenance along for the hike? Grab a breakfast bagel on your way out  with your choice of bacon, turkey, ham, or a little of everything.

Exploring the Best Hikes in Bend, Oregon

Remember, whether you’re regularly hiking the trails or just passing through, there’s always an adventure waiting and a meal to make it memorable.  As you set out to explore these trails, each step on these paths not only brings you closer to nature but also supports our Central Oregon community.

Whether you’re indulging in a post-hike meal, sharing your experiences, or simply soaking in the views, you’re leaving footprints on the trails and for our local business owners. We hope this guide serves as your compass to the best hikes in Bend, Oregon, and the local flavors that await!

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About Eat Drink Bend

Nancy Patterson of Eat Drink Bend takes a picture of beer on a table outside in Bend, Oregon.

I wanted to share more than where to eat, but what to eat. And not just what, but why? From where is the food resourced? Should it be paired with a beer, or a cocktail—and what kind? But most importantly, share the faces and tell the stories behind the people who make it all happen, showing support for small business in and around Bend.

– Nancy Patterson, Founder