experience oregon state


One of America's Great Small Towns

Location is one of the most important factors affecting your decision to attend Oregon State. Corvallis is the #1 College Town in the Pacific Northwest and consistently ranked among the top 10 college towns in the nation. It is known for innovation, education, entertainment, sustainability, and overall livability. Corvallis embodies the spirit of the Northwest, with beautiful landscapes, friendly citizens, and an outstanding quality of life.

We love it here. We think you will too.

You’ll be making Corvallis your home for the next four years. There is so much to experience beyond campus life.  There is a vibrant downtown with restaurants, unique shops and galleries, theaters, and a twice-weekly farmers’ market. Get outside on hiking trails, forests, and rivers. The spectacular Oregon Coast is about an hour away, or head in the opposite direction to find yourself in the mountains of the Cascade Range. And all the excitement of Portland is just 90 miles away.


Farmers Insurance Group has repeatedly ranked Corvallis very high for being most secure, taking into consideration crime statistics, extreme weather, risk of natural disasters, housing depreciation, foreclosures, air quality, life expectancy and job loss numbers.


US News and World Report named OSU as the Most Innovative School in the PNW (2024).  Forbes called Corvallis the fifth smartest city in 2008, and it's no wonder with Oregon State University having been here for more than 150 years. It also ranked the 17th best small place for business and careers in 2020. We are also proud to have Hewlett-Packard and Samaritan Health Systems call Corvallis home.



Our community values sustainable and environmentally responsible choices, whether it be how we power our university, what we put in our bodies, or how we choose to commute. We are committed to keeping Oregon green and being a leader for other communities to learn from.


History and Community

Corvallis is located within the traditional homelands of the Mary's River or Ampinefu Band of Kalapuya. The city is about 50 miles northwest of Eugene, 90 miles south of Portland, and has a population of about 58,000. Small, local businesses surround the Oregon State campus, and major national retail stores are only a short drive away.

  • No. 1 Safest College (ADT Security Systems, 2018)
  • No. 2 Friendliest College Town in America (Great College Deals, 2016)
  • No. 3 Top 100 Best Places to Live (Livability, 2018)
  • No. 17 Best Small Place for Business and Careers (Forbes, 2020)
  • No. 5 Most Beautiful College Town in America (Travelers Today, 2017)
  • No. 4 Best College Town in America (Forbes, 2014)
visitor map of oregon state university and corvallis area


Downtown and the Valley

Not only does Corvallis have a bustling downtown, but it is also in the heart of the Willamette Valley. In late January, you can visit the Oregon Truffle Festival in Eugene. There are also dozens of wineries to visit within a short drive during summer and fall. If you prefer the water, an hour drive to the west will take you to the spectacular Oregon coast.

Getting Around Town

Corvallis is one of only a handful of communities nationwide rated Gold for bicycle friendliness by the League of American Bicyclists. Corvallis also has one of the few fareless transit systems in the United States, and a free university shuttle operates three routes around campus. ZipCar rentals are available on campus, and Pedal Corvallis offers a bike-sharing service for your convenience.

Community Resources

We know that relocating to Corvallis is sometimes more than a simple move. Many students come with partners and families. Corvallis has always been a family-friendly town, and its many resources are among the reasons it is consistently ranked one of the top small towns in the United States.

Enjoying the Outdoors

There are many outdoor activities in the western Oregon region and due to the temperate climate, outdoor activities are possible most of the year. Oregon is home to 13 national forests, 21 national wildlife refuges, and 361 state parks, as well as national scenic areas and national grasslands.

The Pacific Ocean is a mere hour’s drive away with miles of scenic coastline dotted with charming seaside towns offering numerous attractions, in addition to public beaches, tidepools, surfing, shellfishing, and seafood.


Marys Peak, the highest point of the Oregon Coast Range, is about an hour west of Corvallis. Given good weather, you can see both the Willamette Valley and the Pacific Ocean from the peak. (Source: Visit Corvallis Video)

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