16 Awesome Things to Do in Medford, Oregon

Medford, Oregon, is great destination for those who love the outdoors, yet it’s often overlooked by visitors to the state, overshadowed by  better-known places. With that in mind, we’re here today to share a list of suggestions of awesome things to do in and around Medford. On a personaly note, we merely passed through the city while driving along Highway 5. We were thoroughly impressed with the surrounding forests and overall scenery though. We’ll be going back to Medford, for sure, so I know this list of itinerary items suggestions will come in handy for us. Hopefully, it’ll help you as well.

16 Things To Do In Medford, OregonLet’s kick start this list with an actual list! As you’ll notice, there’s a mix of trails and scenic hikes, as well as museums and city attractions. We’ll go into them in more depth in a minute.

  1. Upper and Lower Table Rock
  2. Craterian Theater
  3. Rogue Valley Zipline Adventure
  4. Alpacas at Lone Ranch
  5. Medford Railroad Park
  6. Natural Bridge Loop
  7. Diamond Lake
  8. Applegate Lake
  9. Howard Prairie Lake
  10. Prescott Park
  11. Bear Creek Park
  12. Siskiyou Mountain Park
  13. Valley of the Rouge State Park
  14. Kid Time Museum
  15. Science Works Hands-On Museum
  16. Crater Rock Museum

Why You Should Visit Medford, OR.

Southern Oregon has become a well-received and relatively inexpensive vacation destination with Medford itself located in the Rogue River Valley – surroudned by woodland and gorgeous scenery.

The seasons are temperate and the terrain is lush. It is great for both outdoor enthusiasts and bikers since there are biking trails abound. The Rogue River is only 90 minutes away from Crater Lake.

An aerial image of Medford, Oregon.
An aerial image of Medford, Oregon | Photo by Little Mountain 5

If you are traveling to the U.S.A. from a foreign country, then it is certainly worth mentioning that you should rent a car to travel to the places listed here. Americans usually take their vehicles for granted. However, foreigners sometimes think a car is not necessary.

You need a car to have a successful trip to Medford, Oregon. Once you get a car, you will be ready to travel to all of the places listed on this list – they are all either in Medford itself, or within an hour’s drive of town.

Unique Things to See and Do in Medford, OR

There is a wide variety of activities for you and your family to do in Medford, Oregon. There are plenty of great options especially if you like the outdoors.

1. Upper and Lower Table Rock

Upper Table Rock and Lower Table Rock are two well-known volcanic plateaus that can be found north of the Rogue River in Jackson County, Oregon. It was created by an andesitic lava flow around seven million years ago. They are about 800 feet above the encompassing Rogue Valley.

Upper and Lower Table Rocks are two of the most prominent topographic features in the Rogue River Valley.
Upper and Lower Table Rocks are two of the most prominent topographic features in the Rogue River Valley. | Photo by Bureau of Land Management Oregon and Washington

Native Americans have lived in the Table Rocks area for a minimum of 15,000 years before Europeans and Americans settled in the area. Beginning in the mid-19th century during the famous gold rush, European and American settlers forcibly removed the Takelma tribe into reservations.

See more on Travel Medford’s website.

Fees

There are no fees year-round.

Opening Hours

Oregon state parks are open from 9 A.M. to 5 P. M.

2. Craterian Theater

The Craterian Theater which is located at the Collier Center for the Performing Arts is a five-star performing arts center that can be found in Medford, Oregon. The theater has a total seating capacity of 732 people, and the theater is known for holding national concerts and theatrical tours.

The facility is also used for community classes, conferences, rehearsals, performances, receptions, and more. Two theater companies that have adopted the Craterian Theater. They are the Next Stage Repertory Company and the Teen Musical Theater of Oregon.

The historic Collier Center, formerly Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater,
Craterian Theater at The Collier Center for the Performing Arts | Photo by Ian Poellet

See more on Craterian’s website.

Fees

Ticket sales will be unavailable online one hour before an event. There is a fee of $2.50 per ticket to order online plus a $5 handling fee per order.

Opening Hours

Opening hours vary.

3. Rogue Valley Zipline Adventure

The Rogue Valley Zipline Adventure is a commercial zip line business that conducts its business in a private park. They offer a zipline tour and a special  “Zip, Dip, & Sip Tour” conducted by five-star certified guides. The “Zip, Dip, & Sip Tour” includes rafting, lunch, and wine tasting.

Their tours include amazing views, replica gold mining town, shuttle ride, five zip lines, and ends with the most exciting zipline in the Pacific Northwest. They have all the equipment that is necessary and you do not need experience either.

See more on Rogue Valley ZipLine’s website.

Fees

ZipLine Tour Prices:

$75 per person – Youth (8 to 17 years old)

$85 per person – Adults (over 18 years old)

Zip, Dip, & Sip Tour Prices:

$200 per person – Under 21/Non-Wine Tasting

$205 per person – Over 21 years old

Opening Hours

Office Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 7 Days a Week

The Park is open year-round by appointment.

4. Alpacas at Lone Ranch

Alpacas at Lone Ranch is a five-star alpaca ranch. Alpacas are a business and a way of life at this ranch. The ranch is special because it will give you information that makes business operations seem simple assuming you are trying to make an investment.

If you feel great when you view a herd of alpacas that live peacefully in the countryside, then make sure you stop by the Lone Ranch.

See more on Alpacas at Lone Ranch’s website.

Fees

Tours are free. This business offers a wide variety of products as well as alpacas.

Opening Hours

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 5 Days a Week

5. Medford Railroad Park

The Medford Railroad Park is a forty-nine-acre parcel that was previously the city’s sewer treatment plant. A total of seven developed acres now comprises the concrete, rounded settling tank. It is a storage tank for many of the clubs that function at the park.

The development of this unique park began in 1979 when an agreement was made with the City of Medford and the S.O. Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society. This park has attractions such as a caboose, Medco’s “Four Spot” Willamette Locomotive, a working telegraph system to send and receive telegrams in the compound, full-size cars, a hopper car, an operating outdoor Garden Railway, and an HO Scale Track/Trains in the clubhouse.

See more on the city of Medford’s website.

Fees

There are no fees.

Opening Hours

Hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., 7 Days a week

6. Natural Bridge Loop

Natural Bridge Loop has one of nature’s most magnificent disappearing act. It can be found in the Rogue River national park. If you see the Rogue River vanish into an ancient lava tube, then you will certainly not believe your eyes.

The water goes underground in a 250-foot lava tube. This leads to the formation of a land bridge before finally resurfacing. The Rogue River is very noticeable at the Natural Bridge since you can smell, hear, and feel the water as it bends, bubbles and curves throughout the land.

Beckie’s Cafe in Prospect serves lunch, breakfast, dinner and sweet treats every single day of the year. Pies are baked daily, and there is no better motivation to finish the Natural Bridge Loop trail than a flaky slice of baked pie.

See more on Travel Medford’s website.

Fees

There are no fees.

Opening Hours

Oregon State parks are open from 9 A.M. to 5 P. M.

7. Diamond Lake

The Diamond Lake can be found near the intersection of Oregon Route 230 and Oregon Route 138 in the Umpqua National Forest. The outlet of Diamond Lake is at the lake’s north end. Water flows from the north end through Lake Creek into the North Umpqua River which flows into the Pacific Ocean.

Diamond Lake with a view of Mount Thielsen
Diamond Lake with a Mount Thielsen view

John Diamond is the man that Diamond Lake and Diamond Peak are named after. He observed the lake in 1852 while on Diamond Peak. He was a pioneer settler of the small town called Coburg, Oregon.

See more on Diamond Lake Resort’s website.

Fees

Fees vary depending on the type of reservation.

Opening Hours

Opening hours are not listed online. Quiet hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

8. Applegate Lake

Applegate Lake is a 988-acre reservoir that can be found in the Rogue River–Siskiyou National Forest. It is about twenty-seven miles southwest of Medford. Applegate Lake is an impoundment of the Applegate River.

Applegate Lake
Applegate Lake

The U.S. Congress approved the construction of the Applegate Dam in 1962 as a part of an important flood-control project. The Corps of Engineers began work on the dam in 1976. It was completed in 1980. The dam was meant to store water for recreation and irrigation as well as controlling floods.

See more on Applegate Lakes’s website.

Fees

Fees depend on which campground you want to stay at.

Opening Hours

Opening hours are not listed online. Quiet hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

9. Howard Prairie Lake

Howard Prairie Lake is a reservoir that is in Jackson County, Oregon. It is 4,526 feet above sea level. The lake was developed by the 100-foot tall Howard Prairie Dam.

The reservoir was completed by the Talent Division of the Rogue River Basin Project. It impounds Beaver Creek in the Klamath River.

See more on Jackson County’s website.

Fees

The daily parking fee is $4.00 for every vehicle.

Opening Hours

Opening hours are not listed online. Quiet hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

10. Prescott Park

Prescott Park can be entered from Roxy Ann Drive. The park is 1740 acres in size. 200 acres were bought by the Lions Club and donated to the City in 1930. 1500 acres were bought by the City through the Federal Lands to Parks Act in 1931.

At this park, you will find many lookout points and numerous nature trails. It is closed in the rainy season as well as the dry season. If the bottom gate is locked to keep vehicles out, then you can still hike to the park. Unfortunately, camping is not allowed at this park.

See more on the city of Medford’s website.

Fees

There are no fees.

Opening Hours

Hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., 7 Days a week

11. Bear Creek Park

Bear Creek Park encompasses around 110 acres and includes an off-leash dog area, baseball fields, an outdoor performing amphitheater, a BMX track, a 25,000 square foot skatepark, four tennis courts, three covered pavilions, and two restroom facilities. The park borders the Bear Creek Greenway, a paved pedestrian/bike path that leads into Central Point if you go north and into Ashland if you go south.

Bear Creek Park (Oregon)
Bear Creek Park (Oregon) | ZabMilenko at English Wikipedia

See more on the city of Marion’s website.

Fees

Day Use Area visitors are required to pay a parking fee of $5 per day per vehicle or buy a $30 annual parking pass.

Opening Hours

Hours: 6 a.m. – 10 p.m., 7 Days a week

12. Siskiyou Mountain Park

The Siskiyou Mountain Park and adjoining Oredson-Todd Woods were produced through a cooperation between the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy and the City of Ashland. This park is above Ashland on the south side. It includes approximately 300 acres of single-track trails for hiking, mountain biking, or horseback riding.

See more on the city of Ashland’s website.

Fees

There are no fees.

Opening Hours

Hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., 7 Days a week

13. Valley of the Rouge State Park

Campground in Valley of the Rogue State Park on the banks of the Rogue River adjacent to Interstate 5 (Oregon).
Campground in Valley of the Rogue State Park on the banks of the Rogue River adjacent to Interstate 5 (Oregon) | Photo by Bobjgalindo

Valley of the Rogue State Park is in west-central Jackson County, Oregon. It is also near Grants Pass and Medford. It can be found adjacent to the banks of the Rogue River too. The park is open year-round and includes a full-service campground, a day-use area, and a nature trail. There is also river access for fishing, boating, and swimming.

See more on Reserve America’s website.

Fees

There is an $8 reservation fee per site. The extra vehicle fee is currently $7.00 per night.

Opening Hours

Hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., 7 Days a week

Medford, OR Museums

Medford has a couple of museums that are especially great if you have kids. Also, rock lovers will rejoice when going to a Medford museum.

14. Kid Time Museum

Kid Time is an early learning center and nonprofit children’s discovery museum in the center of downtown Medford. The museum’s concentration is on children that are one to ten years old. It allows for a diverse environment for free-play plus both monitored and instructed activities that are directed by skilled staff members. ​

Free-play, or Imaginative activity, is an important component in proper brain development according to scientists. It actually changes the way the prefrontal cortex is developed. It is been proven for a long time that kids who engage in free-play activities create a foundation for success their entire life as well as school.

See more on the Kid Time Museum’s website.

Fees

Children: $10.00 (Kids under one year get in for free)

Adults: $6.00

Opening Hours

Opening hours vary.

15. Science Works Hands-On Museum

ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum is located in Ashland, Oregon and is an interactive science museum that serves people of all ages. It was established in 2002 as a way to counteract the crisis in public science education. ScienceWorks is serious about encouraging curiosity and spurring creative exploration with interactive and fun science.

ScienceWorks is designed to bring energy and life back into the long-closed building which gives the building an exciting and fun new look. A couple of hundred volunteers helped to transform the building as a part of a strategic plan.

See more on the ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum’s website.

Fees

  • $10 for ages 2 to 12
  • $12 for adults and teens
  • $10 for ages 65+
  • Free for kids under 2

Opening Hours

Open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

16. Crater Rock Museum

Crater Rock Museum has some of the most excellent displays of minerals, rocks, and gems on the West Coast. Displays include a collection of world-class Native American artifacts, collections of petrified woods, minerals, fossils, and more.

The gift shop at the museum is packed with the works of local artists from the Roxy Ann Gem and Mineral Society. The museum began as a small “shack” where locals would visit and inquire about an interesting rock, or to assemble as a group and share rock collecting stories.

See more on the Crater Rock Museum’s website.

Fees

  • Adults – $7
  • Students – $4
  • Veterans and Seniors – $5
  • Family of 2 Adults, 2 Children older than 6 – $20
  • Children 5 years old and younger

Opening Hours

Tues. to Sat. from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Best Things to do in Medford, OR at Night

Medford’s nightlife was not super impressive around two decades ago. However, an increase in tourism and classier bars has led to a better nightlife Medford.

Bozz’s is a live music club that is a non-smoking club. Local reviews mention that it has an incredible vibe.

HighWaters will have a DJ and a dance floor plus a light dinner menu. The DJ will play hip hop and EDM.

If bars are not your thing, then you could always go to a nice restaurant. Jasper’s Cafe has some of the best bison burgers in town. Kaleidoscope Pizzeria & Pub is number one when it comes to pizza.

Free Things to do in Medford, OR.

You can get into most state and national parks for free, but you will usually have to pay a fee for parking and other things. There are some museums where kids can get in free.

The Medford Railroad Park is free and is a great place to bring those interested in history.

Even More Oregon Awesomeness

That was a lot about Medford, now, wasn’t it? Oregon is one of our favorite states, so we have a bunch more guides posted on the blog about other great places you can visit in the Beaver State. Check these out –

The Oregon Bucket List: 11 Places You Really Should Visit

The Oregon Coast’s 20 Must-See Places Along (Super Detailed Guide!)

The Ultimate Crater Lake Road trip

Columbia River Gorge Day Trip Guide (Including a Map)

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16 Things To Do In Medford, Oregon

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