Life & Teachings
10 Famous Buddha Statues (Note: the Buddha has been depicted in many different styles and poses)
Top 10 Most Beautiful Buddhist Temples in the World
Nam Quang Vietnamese Buddhist Temple--3337 NE 148th Ave, Portland, OR 97230
Great statuary, gardens, places to meditate. Lots of interpretive signs, some with English translations. Leave your shoes at the door of the Temple and your cares at the gate. Master Kevin was so wonderfully helpful!
Wat Buddhatham-Aram--4350 NE 133rd Ave, Portland OR
Only caretakers were here when I found the place. They have event space for gatherings.
Chùa Linh Sơn Buddhist Temple--2535 SE 118th Ave, Portland, OR 97266
Next to a Vietnamese restaurant, the gates of the Temple were closed when I went to see it. A tantalizing huge statue was frustratingly behind a tall tree from my view. Buddha's Birthday was May 5 in 2023 (see also the linked discussion at top of this page).
Bửu Hưng Tu Viện Buddhist Temple--17808 NE 18th St, Vancouver, WA 98684
Photos taken Dec 22, 2019.
Links to a few of about 40 Buddhist Temples/Centers listed in the Portland OR area
Mt. Adams Zen Buddhist Temple at the Trout Lake Abbey--46 Stoller Rd, Trout Lake WA 98650
We had a wonderful adventure exploring the Mt Adams (WA) area July of 2021. For more about that, see:
Buddhist Holidays & Ceremonies
Top 5 Buddhist Holidays (March), Vesak (May), Dharma Day (July), Kachina (Oct-Nov)
Cultural Connections & Countries
“Buddhism is the dominant religion in Bhutan, Myanmar, Cambodia, Mainland China [those that dare to be religious], Hong Kong, Japan, Tibet, Laos, Macau, Mongolia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Kalmykia and Vietnam. Large Buddhist populations live in North Korea, Nepal, India and South Korea. China is the country with the largest population of Buddhists”, though only an estimated 18% of China's population practice Buddhism, whereas about 97% of Cambodians, 95% in Thailand, 88% in Myanmar, and 70% in Sri Lanka are Buddhist.
The Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience in Seattle WA had exhibits for immigrants from China, Japan, Vietnam, Burma/Myanmar, Cambodia, South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh), and a sample Buddhist altar at the time I visited. See 2nd link below.
India—land of Buddha’s Birth, Life, Teaching, and Enlightenment
Though India was the birthplace of Buddhism, only about .7% of the population in 2011 (unchanged from 1951) still practiced Buddhism, according to Pew Research. Yet there remain many shrines to Buddhism in the land. I couldn't travel to India, but pictured below are my explorations of Indian culture, not all of it Buddhist. I didn't have a chance to try all of the Indian restaurants/food trucks below, but I did try the mixes and prepared foods.
12 of the Most Famous Buddhist Temples and Monasteries in India
Top Burmese Burma Joy is a fun place to go if you can manage the tight streets, traffic, and parking challenges. The travel video I checked out makes going to Burma itself look really enticing (though not wheelchair accessible).
Top Burmese Burma Joy--1305 NW 23rd Ave, Portland, OR 97210
Cambodia & Laos
Mekong Bistro--8200 NE Siskiyou St Suite 111, Portland OR
Delicious food, often live music (see event link below), friendly & helpful service, plenty of free off-street parking, at least mid-day. Not sure when there's live music in the evening.
Links for more Chinese culture, including performances, gardens, museums, more food and restaurants, etc.
Japan is reportedly about 70% Buddhist, including those who practice both Buddhism and Shinto. I love children's books because they are simplified learning, as you can see below.
This was one of our little adventures into a cuisine we hadn't experimented with much yet, fall of 2022. We did enjoy the food. Some can make you cry in delight, one or two of the appetizers brought hot tears of almost regret (spicy hot Kimchee). In 2023 while visiting Olympia WA I found the Korean War Veterans Memorial.
K-Town Korean BBQ Restaurant--8723 NE Hwy 99, Vancouver, WA 98665
Chang's Mongolian Grill--San Rafael Shopping Center, 1600 NE 122nd Ave, Portland, OR 97230
(just north of Halsey St & the Goodwill store, south of Winco, Wells Fargo etc--one of several locations)
I give this place high marks for easy accessible parking as well as being a great place for people with dietary restrictions. You can adjust how much salty/soy and how many carbs for yourself, before your meal is cooked in a healthful way. The staff is friendly and helpful, the decor is pleasant and appropo. The restrooms are not wheelchair accessible: it was hard enough to enter, but I almost couldn't get out of the ladies'.
Malaysia, Singapore, & Indonesia
My folks spent 18 months in Malaysia about 20 years ago, and my mom being interested in exploring cultures and cuisines, collected some recipes. She was so impressed that they could cook by smell, and that they were so dextrous. She saved the wrapping from a gift, and I used that to make a cover for the recipes she brought home.
I was excited to find a place that serves food from Singapore, but despite the advertised hours, and the sign saying he'd be back at 4:15, he didn't make it back by then. I waited an extra 5 min, but it was a very hot day, so I couldn't wait longer. I can only assume that something came up and then he was detained longer than expected. The pictures on his food truck were very appealing, though.
21SG Foodie Singapura-- 2280 NW Burnside Ct, Gresham, OR 97030 (Gresham Food Carts)
Nepal, Tibet, & Bhutan
Nepali Kitchen & Chai Garden--3434 NE 49th Ave, Portland, OR 97213 a little peace of paradise from city life
menu link at The Heist link below
The Heist Food Cart Pod in Woodstock community--4727 SE Woodstock Blvd., Portland, OR 97206
Taiwan Bistro PDX--11136 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, OR 97219—11642 NE Halsey St, Portland OR; Wed-Mon 11am-9:30pm
Thai food is very popular, no problem finding it. Following are some I found & foto'd.
Montira's Thai Cuisine, replaced by The Dalles Thai Cuisine--302 W 2nd St, The Dalles, OR; loved it, went twice
Yellow Curry Cozy Thai--20 N. Holladay Dr, Seaside OR
Thai Time Vancouver--11310 NE 49th St Suite 107, Vancouver, WA 98682
Talay Thai Cuisine--13510 NE 84th St #109, Vancouver, WA 98682
and more . . .
About Thailand, including history
Explored Vietnam through food, books, memorials.
Kim Huong Vietnamese Restaurant, 2950 Silverton Rd NE, Salem, OR 97301
Unprepossessing exterior, lovely interior with delicious food and kind, friendly service. A Dong Asian Market next door.
I've been in a wheelchair for 30+ years. It poses some challenges for traveling. Maybe others can benefit from my experiences.