Montana

TRAVEL GUIDE

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Big Sky Country is more than just a nickname: Montana has huge expanses of rugged country. It's a place to discover how beautiful the night sky can be and what "dark" truly is with limited city lights. But in addition to the natural beauty—stunning glaciers and ski slopes, trout-filled streams and high plains—you'll also find a welcoming place full of locals who love to share their state's natural beauty, mining history, and thriving cultural communities with others.

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Glacier National Park

The massive peaks of the Continental Divide in northwest Montana are the backbone of Glacier National Park and its sister park in Canada, Waterton...

Missoula

A fertile valley hemmed in by mountains cradles Missoula, the cultural center of northwest Montana. The largest metropolis around (population...

Billings

A bastion of civilization on an otherwise empty prairie, Billings is a classic Western city, full of the kind of history that shaped the frontier...

Big Sky and Gallatin Canyon

The region known as "Big Sky" is actually three areas: the Mountain Village at the top of the 9-mile-long Lone Mountain Trail (Highway 64);...

Helena

Montana’s state capital is a city of 28,000, with 25 city parks, several museums, a thriving arts community, and its own minor-league baseball...

Flathead Lake

The 370-foot-deep Flathead Lake, with 180 miles of shoreline, is the largest natural freshwater lake in the western United States. It’s a wonderful...

Great Falls

One of Great Falls’ greatest assets is its sense of history. Here, along the banks of the Missouri where the plains meet the Rockies, explorers...

Whitefish

A hub for golfing, lake recreation, hiking, mountain biking, and skiing, Whitefish sits at the base of Big Mountain Ski and Summer Resort. Nine...

Red Lodge

Nestled against the foot of the pine-draped Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, this little burg is listed on the National Register of Historic Places...

Livingston and the Yellowstone River

The stunning mountain backdrop to the town of Livingston was once Crow territory, and a chief called Arapooish said about it, "The Crow country...

Bozeman

This recreation capital offers everything from trout fishing to white-water river rafting to backcountry mountain biking to skiing. The arts...

Butte

Dubbed the "Richest Hill on Earth," Butte was once a wealthy and rollicking copper-, gold-, and silver-mining town. During its heyday, 100,000...

Kalispell

Main Street (U.S. 93) in busy downtown Kalispell is lined with galleries, jewelry stores, boutiques, and restaurants. This century-old city...

Big Timber and the Boulder River

People come to Big Timber for its small-town (population 1,600) Western ambience, to fly-fish the blue-ribbon trout streams, float the Yellowstone...

Hamilton

Home to retirees, gentleman ranchers, and the Ravalli County Museum, Hamilton (pop. 5,000) is a gateway to the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness...

Dillon

Blue-ribbon trout fishing on the Beaverhead River attracts thousands of anglers here year-round. A capital of southwest Montana’s ranch country...

Seeley Lake

Bordered by campgrounds, hiking trails, and wildlife-viewing opportunities, this community of 2,400 centers on lovely Seeley Lake. Nearby is...

Virginia City

Remnants of Montana’s frontier days, Virginia City and its smaller neighbor, Nevada City, are two of the state’s standout attractions. Boardwalks...

Flathead Indian Reservation

Home to the Salish and Kootenai tribes, this 1.2-million-acre reservation is a fascinating historical site. Archaeological evidence indicates...

Lewistown

Started as a small trading post in the shadow of the low-lying Moccasin and Judith mountains, Lewistown has evolved into a pleasant town of...

Anaconda

Nicknamed the Smelter City, Anaconda is a window on the age of the copper barons, who ran this town from the 1880s through the 1950s. A number...

Stevensville

Stevensville, population 1,550, sits on the site of the state’s first non–Native American settlement, St. Mary’s Mission, a restored treasure...

Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area

Centered on a 60-mi-long lake, this park stretches between the Pryor and Bighorn mountains, well into Wyoming. Really just a wide spot on the...

Bob Marshall Wilderness Area

The Bob Marshall, Scapegoat, and Great Bear wilderness areas take up 1.5 million rugged, roadless, remote acres within the Flathead National...

Ennis

In addition to being a hub of ranching in the area, this tiny town sits among some of the best trout streams in the West. People come from around...

Miles City

History buffs enjoy the ranch town of Miles City (population 8,120), at the confluence of the cottonwood-lined Tongue and Yellowstone rivers...

Big Snowy Mountains

South of Montana’s geographical center an island of rocky peaks rises more than 3,000 feet from the sea of windswept prairie, beckoning scenery...

Columbia Falls

...

Deer Lodge

Deer Lodge, a quiet community of 3,400 residents, maintains a complex of history museums in and near its old state penitentiary. Many locals...

Havre

Mainly a place to stay when visiting Fort Assinniboine, the town of Havre (population 9,621) is the trading center for a wide area of extreme...

Fort Benton

The gateway to the Upper Missouri River, this town of 1,594 people has a rich and rugged past that’s captured in a trio of excellent museums...

Three Forks

Although the scenery in Three Forks is striking, it’s the historic sites that make this place worth a visit. Sacajawea (circa 1786–1812) traveled...

Hardin

Although its roots are firmly planted in cattle ranching, Hardin makes a significant portion of its living as a visitor gateway to the Little...

Fort Peck

Fort Peck itself is mostly a quiet retirement town today, with 240 residents; at night the lights of ranch houses here are few and far between...

Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge

...

Makoshika State Park

...

West Yellowstone

The most popular gateway from Montana, particularly in winter, is West Yellowstone, near the park's West Entrance. This is where the open plains...

Big Hole National Battlefield

...

Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness

Although millions of summer visitors swarm into Yellowstone National Park to the south, the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness is blissfully unpeopled...

Bannack

...

Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge

...

Holland Lake

Outdoorsy types come to this 400-acre lake for fishing, boating, swimming, hiking, trail riding, and camping in summer and ice fishing, cross...

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument

When the smoke cleared on June 25, 1876, neither Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer (1839–76) nor the 200 soldiers, scouts, and civilians...

Gardiner

As the only entrance to Yellowstone open the entire year, Gardiner, in Montana, is always bustling. The town's Roosevelt Arch has marked the...

Darby

This town of 900, site of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s first Forest Service ranger station, is a destination for wilderness adventurers...

Medicine Lake National Wildlife Refuge Complex

Established in 1935, this refuge sandwiched between U.S. 2 and the Canadian border encompasses more than 30,000 acres of wetlands that provide...

Missoula

A fertile valley hemmed in by mountains cradles Missoula, the cultural center of northwest Montana. The largest metropolis around (population...

Billings

A bastion of civilization on an otherwise empty prairie, Billings is a classic Western city, full of the kind of history that shaped the frontier...

Big Sky and Gallatin Canyon

The region known as "Big Sky" is actually three areas: the Mountain Village at the top of the 9-mile-long Lone Mountain Trail (Highway 64);...

Helena

Montana’s state capital is a city of 28,000, with 25 city parks, several museums, a thriving arts community, and its own minor-league baseball...

Flathead Lake

The 370-foot-deep Flathead Lake, with 180 miles of shoreline, is the largest natural freshwater lake in the western United States. It’s a wonderful...

Whitefish

A hub for golfing, lake recreation, hiking, mountain biking, and skiing, Whitefish sits at the base of Big Mountain Ski and Summer Resort. Nine...

Great Falls

One of Great Falls’ greatest assets is its sense of history. Here, along the banks of the Missouri where the plains meet the Rockies, explorers...

Red Lodge

Nestled against the foot of the pine-draped Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, this little burg is listed on the National Register of Historic Places...

Livingston and the Yellowstone River

The stunning mountain backdrop to the town of Livingston was once Crow territory, and a chief called Arapooish said about it, "The Crow country...

Bozeman

This recreation capital offers everything from trout fishing to white-water river rafting to backcountry mountain biking to skiing. The arts...

Butte

Dubbed the "Richest Hill on Earth," Butte was once a wealthy and rollicking copper-, gold-, and silver-mining town. During its heyday, 100,000...

Kalispell

Main Street (U.S. 93) in busy downtown Kalispell is lined with galleries, jewelry stores, boutiques, and restaurants. This century-old city...

Big Timber and the Boulder River

People come to Big Timber for its small-town (population 1,600) Western ambience, to fly-fish the blue-ribbon trout streams, float the Yellowstone...

Hamilton

Home to retirees, gentleman ranchers, and the Ravalli County Museum, Hamilton (pop. 5,000) is a gateway to the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness...

Dillon

Blue-ribbon trout fishing on the Beaverhead River attracts thousands of anglers here year-round. A capital of southwest Montana’s ranch country...

Seeley Lake

Bordered by campgrounds, hiking trails, and wildlife-viewing opportunities, this community of 2,400 centers on lovely Seeley Lake. Nearby is...

Virginia City

Remnants of Montana’s frontier days, Virginia City and its smaller neighbor, Nevada City, are two of the state’s standout attractions. Boardwalks...

Flathead Indian Reservation

Home to the Salish and Kootenai tribes, this 1.2-million-acre reservation is a fascinating historical site. Archaeological evidence indicates...

Stevensville

Stevensville, population 1,550, sits on the site of the state’s first non–Native American settlement, St. Mary’s Mission, a restored treasure...

Anaconda

Nicknamed the Smelter City, Anaconda is a window on the age of the copper barons, who ran this town from the 1880s through the 1950s. A number...

Lewistown

Started as a small trading post in the shadow of the low-lying Moccasin and Judith mountains, Lewistown has evolved into a pleasant town of...

Ennis

In addition to being a hub of ranching in the area, this tiny town sits among some of the best trout streams in the West. People come from around...

Miles City

History buffs enjoy the ranch town of Miles City (population 8,120), at the confluence of the cottonwood-lined Tongue and Yellowstone rivers...

Big Snowy Mountains

South of Montana’s geographical center an island of rocky peaks rises more than 3,000 feet from the sea of windswept prairie, beckoning scenery...

Columbia Falls

...

Deer Lodge

Deer Lodge, a quiet community of 3,400 residents, maintains a complex of history museums in and near its old state penitentiary. Many locals...

Fort Benton

The gateway to the Upper Missouri River, this town of 1,594 people has a rich and rugged past that’s captured in a trio of excellent museums...

Havre

Mainly a place to stay when visiting Fort Assinniboine, the town of Havre (population 9,621) is the trading center for a wide area of extreme...

Fort Peck

Fort Peck itself is mostly a quiet retirement town today, with 240 residents; at night the lights of ranch houses here are few and far between...

Hardin

Although its roots are firmly planted in cattle ranching, Hardin makes a significant portion of its living as a visitor gateway to the Little...

Three Forks

Although the scenery in Three Forks is striking, it’s the historic sites that make this place worth a visit. Sacajawea (circa 1786–1812) traveled...

West Yellowstone

The most popular gateway from Montana, particularly in winter, is West Yellowstone, near the park's West Entrance. This is where the open plains...

Big Hole National Battlefield

...

Bannack

...

Holland Lake

Outdoorsy types come to this 400-acre lake for fishing, boating, swimming, hiking, trail riding, and camping in summer and ice fishing, cross...

Darby

This town of 900, site of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s first Forest Service ranger station, is a destination for wilderness adventurers...

Gardiner

As the only entrance to Yellowstone open the entire year, Gardiner, in Montana, is always bustling. The town's Roosevelt Arch has marked the...

Glacier National Park

The massive peaks of the Continental Divide in northwest Montana are the backbone of Glacier National Park and its sister park in Canada, Waterton...

Bob Marshall Wilderness Area

The Bob Marshall, Scapegoat, and Great Bear wilderness areas take up 1.5 million rugged, roadless, remote acres within the Flathead National...

Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area

Centered on a 60-mi-long lake, this park stretches between the Pryor and Bighorn mountains, well into Wyoming. Really just a wide spot on the...

Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge

...

Makoshika State Park

...

Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness

Although millions of summer visitors swarm into Yellowstone National Park to the south, the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness is blissfully unpeopled...

Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge

...

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument

When the smoke cleared on June 25, 1876, neither Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer (1839–76) nor the 200 soldiers, scouts, and civilians...

Medicine Lake National Wildlife Refuge Complex

Established in 1935, this refuge sandwiched between U.S. 2 and the Canadian border encompasses more than 30,000 acres of wetlands that provide...

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