The wooden sign welcoming guests to Paradise Lodge says it best, “There are no strangers, just folks we haven’t met.” That seems to be the attitude of nearly everyone rafting Oregon’s Rogue River. From the strong and confident river guides paddling our rafts, to the bartender pouring cold beer from the tap at Paradise Bar, this neck of the woods in scenic Southern Oregon is all about having a good time while being surrounded by nature. After a hot day on the Wild & Scenic Rogue, I see why they call this place Paradise.
My husband and I joined a group of 15 other adventure seekers to float the Rogue on a four day, Lodge to Lodge rafting trip with Row Adventures. This was our last night sleeping above the sometimes calm, sometimes rough waters of the lower Rogue River. We had become accustomed to nightly appetizers, hearty dinners and lights out after dark, settling into a nightly routine off the grid in Oregon’s National Forest.
Paradise is no exception to off the grid living. The historic lodge, built in 1907 by the Pettinger family, offers an all-inclusive lodging experience that is not your typical hotel stay. You won’t be plugging in your laptop computer, tablet – or hair dryer for that matter – but you will be plugging into nature. Open yourself up for a sense of adventure. Follow the foot path to the swimming hole and grab a few blackberries on your way. Grab a few friends for a game of volleyball, capture the flag or disc golf in the grassy meadow. Take a swing in the hammock on the deck before dinner, but don’t forget to slap on some bug spray before you get comfortable.
Dinner is served buffet-style out on the huge deck above the Rogue River at 7:00 p.m. Appetizers (tortilla chips dip and spicy chicken wings on our visit) are served in the main lodge before the chicken and rib buffet. Paradise Lodge has their own liquor license, so you will not be able to byob (bring your own booze) onto their deck. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t create your own Happy Hour on the deck at the Garden House. Do save room for the apple blossom dessert.
I mentioned the Garden House because that’s where we stayed. The Garden house, made of cedar wood, is the newest lodging on the property, and includes a conference room on the first floor. There are 18 cozy rooms in 6 unique cabins, some with river views, others with garden views. Rooms range from queen beds to twins and differ in configuration for honeymooners to families.
As I mentioned, this is off the grid lodging. If you have food allergies or special dietary needs, this may not be the place for you. That being said, you are welcome to bring your own “heat & eat” foods if you like. Rates start at $155 per person and increase to $165 at the all-inclusive resort. As always, check the website for prices.
I was a guest of Row Adventures while researching Southern Oregon story ideas. As always, all opinions are my own.