The Spectacular Columbia River Gorge

MOVE OVER, VIRGINIA: It’s Washington that’s for lovers. And the Gorge may be its most romantic region, with its winding river, breathtaking lookouts, and charming wineries.

Topping the list for any romantic getaway in the Gorge is the Maryhill Winery (maryhillwinery.com) in Goldendale, which offers tasting flights and live music on a vine-covered terrace overlooking the Columbia River on summer weekends. Nearby is the eclectic Maryhill Museum of Art (maryhillmuseum.org), with its collection of Romanian artifacts donated when that country’s Queen Marie visited the region in 1926, and a Stonehenge replica, both built by businessman and settler Samuel Hill. Come here after dark to gaze the starry skies—while the beloved Goldendale Observatory (Goldendale observatory.com) is closed through 2019 for renovations, its telescope viewing programs will continue at Maryhill Stonehenge.

Romantics will also swoon for a riverboat cruise. American Queen Riverboat Company (americanqueensteamboatcompany.com) offers multiday itineraries departing from Vancouver and taking in incredibly scenic views of the Columbia and Snake rivers, including the dramatic gorge, and stopping in small towns along the way. For a shorter cruise, board the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler (portlandspirit.com/sternwheeler.php) at Cascade Locks on the Oregon side, and enjoy a sightseeing tour, a champagne brunch, or a locally sourced dinner while the historic paddleboat cruises along.

—EMILY ALHADEFF