Float On- Our flotation tank experience in Portland, OR!

with 21 Comments


On our recent road trip through Portland we had the great opportunity to visit Float On, the largest sensory deprivation floatation tank center on the West Coast.  Sensory deprivation allows your mind to achieve a relaxed dreamlike state while floating weightless in complete darkness. By eliminating light, sound, and gravity your brain stops searching for outside information and switches from producing alpha waves to theta waves; this normally occurs right before falling asleep. We’ve been interested in floating for years, even debated about whether we could handle it or not, but we haven’t had the opportunity until recently.


Float On is located on Hawthorne Blvd in SE Portland. They have 6 tanks available in various styles including two large open pool style tanks. Everyone at the facility was super friendly and helpful and the place was very clean. They provided everything, including ear plugs, and a towel, and made us feel so comfortable.


The float itself was AMAZING. “It’s like relaxing in outer space.” The ninety minutes just drifted away. It was a beautiful relaxing experience. It’s a great chance to spend some quality time with yourself.


As far as the psychedelic state its concerned, I was expecting a much more intense experience than I achieved. I think with some practice it could be much more powerful. All of our debating on whether we could handle our own brains for ninety minutes seemed silly afterward; you’re in total control the whole time.




"The Afterglow"


The after glow was nothing short of bliss. You feel INCREDIBLE when you come out of there. Your brain feels like you’ve been away on an extended vacation and your body feels so nice after floating weightless for an hour and a half.

The Lobby

We can’t say enough great things about float on. It was a much needed relaxation for our minds and our bodies. We had such a great time that we’ve already booked our appointments for our next floats. We’d recommend it for anyone.

For more information or to book a float, you can check out their icredibly informative website floathq.com

21 Responses

  1. Lori says:

    I’m going to have to try this now. My brain is a little on the over active side and I have a hard time winding down even in massage…

    This might just do the trick 🙂

    • admin says:

      Thanks for commenting, you should definitely check it out! We’ve done it twice now, both first thing in the morning, and mid afternoon. I found that i t was much easier to get into the float in the morning, but i think it might be more rewarding to have it as a mid day break. I’m glad you liked the article!

  2. Very interesting! I’m tempted to try this myself. Thanks for the review and information.

  3. Rob Taylor says:

    Wow, I have heard about doing this but not actually read a review. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t intrigued… and a bit scared to do this. I would like to venture into it, I think. I know there’s a place in Seattle, so that could be a great day trip!

    • LocalNomads says:

      Yeah man. We talked about this for years…I was always gung ho about it, but Gabby was worried her brain would take her dark places…afterward we felt silly for having waited so long to do it.

  4. Laura says:

    it’s not surprising there’s a place like that in Portland. How fun! We’ll have to check it out next time we’re down there.

    • LocalNomads says:

      I honestly can’t recommend it enough, and Float On in Portland is one of the most highly revered float centers in the country, actually. So that’s a great place to try it for the first time.

  5. Karilyn says:

    Wow, I have never heard of these sensory deprivation chambers! So cool. you mentioned there are 6 pools – does this mean that each individual person has their own pool? If you don’t use the earplugs does it not work as well? this sounds really cool, I want to know everything!!!

    • LocalNomads says:

      I’m so glad you’re excited about it! There are six different rooms, and it’s most definitely an individual experience. The earplugs aren’t really for sound so much as they prevent you from getting the water in your ears. They’re the wax ones that mold into your outer ear, it’s REALLY salty water so I imagine it’d be terrible to get it in your inner ear. There are lots of places you can get more information. Definitely check out floathq.com and reddit.com/r/floattank There are float centers all around the US, and they’re in lots of major cities, although few can compare to Float On.

  6. Tiana says:

    My husband can’t swim, would he still float?

    • LocalNomads says:

      Definitely! The water has 800 pounds of epsom salt dissolved into it, so you just float automatically! There’s no stopping it, it’s similar to floating in the dead sea. Also, there’s only 10 inches of water so it’s not deep at all.

  7. This sounds like something I must try, and what better place to enjoy sensory deprivation than in the second weirdest city in the US behind Austin! I’ve been aching to shut my mind off for years, so I’m gonna keep this in mind when I visit Portland !


  8. Heather Cole says:

    What a quirky and unique experience, never heard of this before! Not sure I’d have the right mind set to totally ‘let go’ and allow it to work it’s magic, but would be fun to try. a bit like those ‘dining in the dark’ restaurant experiences you see all over the place.

  9. I have always wanted to try a deprivation tank since I saw the movie Altered States. They’ve popped up in Washington too. I think with all our modern technology people might start using these more to get their minds and bodies reset. Thanks for posting, sounds like it’s worth it.

  10. I have wanted to try a deprivation tank since I saw the movie Altered States. These are popping up in Washington too. I think as technology grows and buzzes in our brains that this will become more popular. Thanks for sharing. It sounds like it is worth it.

  11. Jaynie says:

    Interesting! A great way to de-stress. I bet it’s healing for injuries or after surgery.
    Thanks for sharing.

  12. Sheli says:

    Hi Adam!
    Great post!
    This is the first time I heard of this floating tanks!Must be soo healing and relaxing.I gonna definitely try it one day.Great review.

  13. We have a place like this locally. I have always wondered how it would feel. Maybe I will try it! Thanks for the post!

    • LocalNomads says:

      OMG Allison! You should definitely give it a try! Find out if there are any promotions or groupons you could take advantage of as it can be a bit pricey if you’re just going to “try it out.” We’ve actually floated 3 times each now and the experience keeps getting better every time. It’s incredibly relaxing and allows you to get rid of outside distractions for a while. The after effects are indescribable. You feel so amazing when you come out of that tank!

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