Idaho Vacation Planner

2024 Idaho Visitors Guide

From its high mountain peaks to its lush forests to its desert sand dunes, it is obvious that Idaho is a geographically diverse state. Visitors from all over the world are drawn to the state’s abundance of recreational activities, ranging from hitting the slopes at one of Idaho’s ski hills to embarking on a wild whitewater rafting tour. Located in the northern portion of the state, the Idaho Mountains encompass the centers of Coeur d’Alene and Sandpoint, each ideally located for those wishing to partake in the many outdoor adventures found in the area. Boise, the state capital, is found in the southwestern part of Idaho and also boasts a plethora of recreational opportunities, as well as numerous historic attractions. East Idaho is also very mountainous, making it a perfect destination for those wishing to horseback ride, fish and camp in one of the region’s many parks, including Harriman State Park.

Idaho Mountains Visitors Guide

The Idaho Mountain region stretches from the Northern Panhandle down to south-central Idaho. The region encompasses vast forests and pristine lakes, offering a world of outdoor possibilities and exceptional scenery. Recreational activities, ranging from boating to picnicking to wildlife viewing, are facilitated at Coeur d’Alene Parkway State Park. Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes State Park boasts a 73-mi (117-km) smooth, asphalt trail that attracts scores of bikers, in-line skaters and joggers. Situated just off Lake Pend Oreille’s sandy beaches and a short drive from Schweitzer Mountain Ski Resort, Sandpoint is another city well-positioned for outdoor fun. At Kellogg, visitors have the chance to tour a gold mine and hit the slopes at Silver Mountain Resort ski area, which features a scenic gondola ride to the ski hill. Visitors staying in this region have a spectrum of accommodations to choose from, including bed and breakfasts, inns, guest ranches, campgrounds, and upscale resorts.

East Idaho Visitors Guide

Neighboring Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park, East Idaho’s countryside is blessed with similar beauty, but without the inconvenience of large crowds. Impressive waterfalls, a rich variety of wildlife and scenic parks are characteristic of the region. The lush forests and meadows of Harriman State Park are home to a 16,000-acre (6475-ha) wildlife refuge graced by rare trumpeter swans, abundant waterfowl, elk, deer and other wildlife. Henry’s Fork Greenway of the Snake River, a world-famous destination for fly fishing, flows through Harriman Park’s meadows. The area’s core, Idaho Falls, has plenty of sights and attractions awaiting the adventurous traveler, including the Caribou-Targhee National Forest and the Museum of Idaho. Whether fishing, hiking, bird watching, boating, jogging along the Greenbelt or just taking in the view, Eastern Idaho is a paradise for the outdoor enthusiast, ideal for recreation and relaxation.

Coeur d’Alene Visitors Guide

Coeur d’Alene is an ideal gateway for discovering northern Idaho’s lush countryside, which boasts the largest concentration of lakes of any western state. A wide variety of accommodations are offered in Coeur d’Alene, including bed and breakfasts, inns, guest ranches, campgrounds, and the first-class Coeur d’Alene Resort. Nestled in Kootenai County, which is home to over 80 parks and campgrounds, 47 hiking trails and outdoor activities, including fishing, golfing, skiing, horseback riding, and rafting, Coeur d’Alene is an open doorway to adventure. Silverwood, the Northwest’s largest theme park, is just a short drive out of the city. The Art Spirit Gallery, the Museum of North Idaho and the Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre Carousel Players are other popular attractions.

Sandpoint, ID Visitors Guide

Nestled on the northwest shore of Lake Pend Oreille and only a short drive away from Schweitzer Mountain Ski Resort, Sandpoint is ideally located for outdoor recreation. Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho’s biggest lake, features sandy beaches, excellent trout fishing, boat tours and plenty of opportunities for water sports, not to mention impressive scenery. Schweitzer Mountain boasts terrific hiking and mountain biking in the summer and first-class skiing in the winter. In addition, a variety of outdoor activities await the adventurous traveler at the Selkirk and Cabinet Mountains. For a break from recreation, Sandpoint has a blossoming art scene offering an array of visual and performing arts year-round. Visitors have the chance to learn about local history at Bonner County Historical Museum, a facility that is surrounded by a native plant arboretum. Sandpoint accommodations range from motels and hotels to bed and breakfasts and vacation home rentals.

Boise Visitors Guide

Boise, which is also known as the City of Trees, is situated in the southwestern region of Idaho. This city and its surrounding area is one of the state’s premier destinations for recreation. The Boise River and the nearby Bogus Basin Ski Resort offer an abundance of outdoor activities including hiking and mountain biking in the summer and downhill and cross-country skiing in the winter. The city also offers indoor sights and attractions, cultural venues, shopping, and restaurants when a break from outdoor pursuits is required. The Idaho State Capitol is a small-scale replica of the Capitol in Washington, DC, and is open for tours. The well-preserved Old Boise Historic District has retained many of its original attributes, offering visitors a glimpse into the city’s history. Other attractions include the Boise Art Museum, the Idaho Farm and Ranch Museum and Zoo Boise.

Idaho Falls Visitors Guide

Although the highways from Idaho Falls lead to the nearby Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, the city is much more than just a gateway to these popular destinations. Idaho Falls is an outdoor wonderland, as each season offers new recreational activities, which can include biking, hiking, hunting, fishing, skiing, snowmobiling, and rafting. North of Idaho Falls is Yellowstone Bear World, a wildlife park where a variety of animals, including black bears, grizzlies, elk and reindeer, can be seen in their natural habitat. Visitors seeking to enjoy the city’s vibrant entertainment and cultural scene appreciate the variety of exhibits, fairs and live concerts hosted each year. Whether visiting the Museum of Idaho or the Idaho Vietnam Memorial, cruising the trails on the Snake River Greenbelt or one of the city’s 39 parks, Idaho Falls is a jewel waiting to be discovered.