Top 21 Montana Attractions You Don’t Want to Miss

Have you ever stood under the vast, sprawling sky of Montana, where the stars seem just a touch within reach and the landscapes whisper tales as old as time? If not, let me guide you through a journey to the heart of the Treasure State, where the allure of Montana attractions beckons travelers from every corner of the globe. 

Whether you’re an adventure seeker yearning for your next thrill, a history buff eager to tread paths woven with stories, or a family looking for that perfect vacation spot, this article promises something for everyone.

Through my travels across this breathtaking state, I’ve discovered that Montana’s beauty isn’t just in its landscapes but in the adventures that await at every turn. I’ll unveil the top 21 Montana tourist attractions that you should never miss visiting.

From hidden gems to iconic landmarks, we’ll explore the diversity and charm that make Montana a bucket-list destination. Get ready to be inspired, uncover new destinations, and plan your next great adventure. Grab your notebook, and let’s dive into the wonders of Montana together.

7 Key Takeaways on Montana Attractions

  1. Montana is home to spectacular national parks like Glacier and Yellowstone, offering breathtaking landscapes, glaciers, and diverse wildlife.
  2. Explore the rich history of Montana at attractions like Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument and the Museum of the Rockies, providing insights into Native American culture and the region’s geological past.
  3. Unexpectedly, Big Sky Waterpark in Columbia Falls offers thrilling water attractions, making it a refreshing stop after a day of exploring the great outdoors.
  4. Museums like the C.M. Russell Museum Complex and the Western Heritage Center showcase Montana’s cowboy art, historical artifacts, and the diverse cultural tapestry of the region.
  5. Take a drive along Beartooth Highway for an awe-inspiring journey, comparable to Glacier National Park’s famed Going-to-the-Sun Road, offering intimate views and fewer crowds.
  6. Garnet Ghost Town preserves Montana’s mining heyday, allowing visitors to step back in time and experience life in the late 1800s.
  7. Gray Wolf Peak Casino stands as a testament to tribal heritage, blending gaming with cultural significance and offering an accessible location with stunning mountain views.

Best Tourist Attractions in Montana

Two women stand on the edge of a cliff overlooking a lush valley in Montana.

Montana, The Treasure State, isn’t just for cowboys and wide-open spaces. It hosts an impressive list of must-see tourist attractions that are as diverse as its rugged landscapes.

Venture into its rich historical sites, soak in the beauty of its national parks and don’t miss the thrill of modern-day fun that Montana offers. This top 21 list has everything you need for an unforgettable Montana adventure.

1. Glacier National Park

A stunning mountain range in Montana features a picturesque lake at its center.

Glacier National Park is more than a park – it’s a whole world, a montage unfurling grand landscapes and offering space for intrepid adventure. A place that begs to be seen, explored, and wrapped around your memory like an old, familiar coat.

This park in Montana is a must-see attraction, boasting 26 majestic glaciers, 762 sparkling lakes, and 563 serpentine streams.

  • Hiking – With 746 miles (1,200.5 km) of trails, the park has routes for all levels. Iconic hikes like Trail of the Cedars, Grinnell Glacier Trail, and Highline Trail promise amazing viewing scenes.
  • Going-to-the-Sun Road – This famous road is like an artist’s brush dipped in the richest hues. A 50-mile (approx. 80-km) journey stretching across the Continental Divide, you can see the valleys, alpine showcases, and vistas that make your heartbeat stutter. 
  • Water Activities – The waters here are not just any old blue, they’re clear enough to make your spirit wince with joy. Canoeing, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, or river rafting – pick your exhilarating water adventure and dive right in.
  • Park Views and Accommodation – Known for jaw-dropping views that leave you marveling at nature’s handiwork. Accommodation options, including campgrounds, lodges, hotels, and quaint bed-and-breakfasts, offer everything from the rustic to the deluxe. 

Glacier National Park doesn’t just promise a vacation; it promises a story. It’s where you can find that perfect panorama, but more importantly, where you can find yourself in nature’s open arms.

2. Yellowstone National Park

Tourists watching a geyser in Yellowstone National Park.

Yellowstone National Park encompasses only 3% of Montana’s territory, yet the state hosts three of the park’s five entrances. Near the north entrance is Mammoth Hot Springs, featuring limestone terraces shaped by dissolved material from hot, acidic water.

The west entrance in West Yellowstone offers convenient access to geyser basins like Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic Spring, and Fountain Paint Pot.

The northeast entrance is crucial for reaching Lamar Valley, renowned for wildlife observation, including grizzly bears, black bears, bison, and wolves. Visitors often describe Yellowstone National Park as a piece of heaven on Earth and a breathtaking nature experience.

For accommodations, options include ClubHouse Inn and Alpine Motel in West Yellowstone, Yellowstone Village Inn and Yellowstone Riverside Cottages in Gardiner, and Elk Horn Lodge or Alpine Motel in Cooke City.

Consider a guided experience with a private Yellowstone tour for a more personalized exploration. For water enthusiasts, the park offers unique experiences like fly-fishing, kayaking, boating on Yellowstone Lake, or half and full-day whitewater rafting tours.

Yellowstone is rich in natural marvels. And if you think you’ve seen it all after one visit, oh boy, does it have more in store for you. Just like a box of chocolates, but far more natural and calorie-free.

3. Big Sky Waterpark

A man and woman enjoying a ride down a water slide in a Montana waterpark.

In Montana, where you might envision wild landscapes and grand adventures, the unexpected yet immensely fun Big Sky Waterpark in Columbia Falls serves as a mountainous oasis of watery delights.

Here’s a small spoiler alert for the thrill-seekers amongst us – you are going to have a blast here. As you make your way around the park, you can’t miss the four standout water slides:

  • The adrenaline-pumping Super Bowl
  • A 360-degree enclosed slide

Love the adrenaline rush of a water slide? Big Sky has a plethora of thrilling options that’ll make your heart leap. For younger family members, the Splash Montana area offers equally cool adventures with smaller slides and kid-friendly water play.

The park isn’t just about the rocket voyages down slippery chutes, though. They also offer a lazy river for the more serene souls. And if you’ve always wanted to surf but haven’t been near an ocean, their wave pool (with waves up to three feet) has got you covered!

Indulge in ultimate relaxation as you lazily float down the Lazy River, or ride the exhilarating waves in the Wave Pool for a thrilling aquatic adventure. These water attractions cater to both those seeking tranquility and those in pursuit of excitement.

As you’d expect, Big Sky Waterpark has a variety of food that ranges from theme park essentials like burgers and pizza to that summertime staple, ice cream.

The convenience factor is off the charts too. Just a 20-minute car ride from Glacier National Park, it makes for a perfect playful stop after a day of hiking and exploring.

Big Sky Waterpark is genuinely one of the most fun surprises you can find, and as far as I’m concerned, it’s an essential part of any stay in Montana.

4. Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument in Montana

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, situated on the I-90 Frontage Road in Crow Agency, southeastern Montana, marks the historic Battle of Little Bighorn, also known as Custer’s Last Stand.

Steeped in relevance, the monument reflects a crucial turning point in Native American and U.S. military history. It’s an educative and somber location, perfect for those with an eye for historical significance.

When I visited, I was struck not only by the geological depth but by the human stories etched into the land. Here are some vital bits to note about this architectural tribute to American history.

  • History – In 1876 at this location, the Seventh U.S. Cavalry battled the combined forces of the Sioux and Cheyenne tribes, resulting in a significant victory for the Native Americans.
  • What to Expect – Start your visit at the visitor center and museum, both of which offer interpretive exhibits that shed light on the battle and the Native American way of life on the plains.
  • Self-Guided Tour – You’ll get the chance to walk through the chronology of the battle on a 4.5-mile (approx. 7.2-km) self-guided tour. This path will lead you from the Custer Battlefield to the Reno-Benteen Battlefield, giving you a firsthand look at the different phases of the conflict. Parking lots are available at both sites.
  • Address & Sentiment – Some reviews describe it as both “sobering” and “necessary,” much like Jane Austen for history buffs.

The monument is typically open year-round, with slightly reduced hours in the winter months. Plan for at least 2 to 3 hours to take in the museum and visitor center before embarking on the self-guided tour.

I’d suggest this site, particularly to those with a passion for American and Native American history. It’s not your average tourism fare; rather, it’s a place that adds depth and understanding to historical events we’ve only read about.

So, if you’re someone who believes that great insights often come from solemn moments, set aside some time to let the legacy of the past unfold before you at Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument.

5. Museum of the Rockies

A t-rex skeleton in front of a building in Billings, Montana.

From dino aficionados to history buffs, the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman is the place where the Smithsonian’s guardianship meets Montana’s treasures. Here’s a low-down so you can plan your visit with laser precision:

  • Buzzworthy – The World of North American Dinosaurs from its pride and joy, the Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton, to a bounty of Triceratops and Stegosaurus displays, this exhibit is as close as you can get to seeing the Cretaceous Period live.
  • Geological Artifacts – Time Travel Through Yellowstone Step back in time to the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano or marvel at artifacts from the park’s rich history.
  • History Chronicles – American Indians Discover the story of America’s first inhabitants in richly curated galleries featuring artifacts and displays that bring their lives and traditions to life.
  • Hands-On Fun for Young Explorers – The Children’s Discovery Center is designed for kids up to 8, mapping out the science of Yellowstone in a way that’s both fun and educational.
  • Celestial Expertise – The Taylor Planetarium Shows that take you to the outer reaches of the cosmos right from your comfy seat. It’s an experience to add that extra twinkle to your day.

To count the stars with a full belly, make Bozeman your base camp. The RSVP Hotel or the SpringHill Suites Bozeman are solid sleepover options to consider.

Rated among Bozeman’s top attractions, the Museum of the Rockies boasts crowd-pleasing dino digs and captivating exhibits that transport you to the past. With delightful children’s activities and celestial shows, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

6. Lake McDonald

A picturesque lake surrounded by majestic mountains.

Lake McDonald, nestled on Glacier National Park’s west side, spans 10 miles (approx. 16.1 km) in length and 500 feet (around 152.4 m) in depth, surrounded by hiking trails, waterfalls, and majestic mountains. It’s a serene haven offering opportunities to spot wildlife like bears and moose.

For the best experience, I recommend staying at Lake McDonald Lodge, which offers a lakeside location providing perfect views of the landscape. The lodge boasts amenities such as cabin-style rooms for rent, on-site restaurants, and shopping options.

Lake McDonald Lodge also offers a range of activities to enhance your park experience. These include park activities, tours, horseback riding, and educational talks conducted by knowledgeable park rangers.

The lake and the surrounding area at Glacier National Park offer a diverse range of experiences for nature enthusiasts and adventurers alike. With its stunning landscape and abundant wildlife, it’s a must-visit destination for anyone seeking to immerse themselves in the wonders of Montana’s outdoor experiences.

7. Big Sky Resort

A group of people visiting Montana, skiing in the snow at Big Sky Resort.

If you’ve heard people say “Go big or go home,” they’re probably talking about Big Sky Resort. Just an hour’s jaunt south of Bozeman, Big Sky isn’t just another ski resort; it’s the ski resort.

With an average snowfall of a staggering 400 inches annually, Big Sky is a snow sports enthusiast’s dream. If you’re one of those zooming snowboarders or sleek skiers, this mega-dump should have your full attention.

Covering a mind-boggling 5,850 skiable acres (around 23.64 sq km), Big Sky is larger than life. It’s like Montana said, “Hold my beer, I’m fixing to build something big.”

At Big Sky, heated eight-person lifts ensure you can reach and enjoy all that snow in comfort. The vibrant base resembles a mini-city with restaurants, shops, and après-ski watering holes to recount the day’s adventures.

While Big Sky dominates with its size, there are other skiing options worth exploring. Experience a more laid-back, old-school vibe at Lost Trail Powder Mountain near the Idaho border. For stunning views, visit Whitefish Mountain Resort, offering glimpses of Glacier National Park.

Closer to university towns, you’ll find Montana Snowbowl and Bridger Bowl, perfect for a quick weekend ski fix.

Pro Tips:

  • If you’re purely focused on skiing, aim for a visit between January and March, generally considered the prime snow months at Big Sky.
  • For a more budget-friendly ski adventure, plan your trip during non-peak times like early December or late March to early April.
  • Don’t forget to book your accommodation early, especially during peak ski season.

For those interested in checking out Big Sky Resort, you can find it at 50 Big Sky Resort Road, Big Sky, Montana. It’s a destination that truly offers something for everyone.

8. Moss Mansion

A red brick building with a wreath on the front located in Montana.

As I wandered through the Moss Mansion, built in 1903 for banker and entrepreneur Preston Moss and his family, I couldn’t help but be captivated by the sheer grandeur of the place. The family occupied this impressive abode until the 1980s, when it was transformed into a public museum, aimed at both preservation and education.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and featured in films set in its original era, the Moss Mansion offers a historic journey for visitors. With both self-guided and guided tours, guests can immerse themselves in the opulence and elegance of this iconic slice of history.

Featuring twenty-eight rooms spread across three stories, the mansion was commissioned at a cost approximately twenty-one times the average back in its day – truly a sight to behold.

To further enrich the visitor experience, a short educational film is available, providing fascinating insights into the mansion’s illustrious past. The Moss Mansion offers a journey into the past, inviting guests to marvel at its architectural splendor and the intriguing stories that unfold within its walls.

9. Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park

A breathtaking view of a valley nestled in the picturesque mountains and adorned with lush trees in Montana.

When I tell you that Lewis and Clark Caverns are a stalactite-lover’s paradise, you better believe it. This isn’t just any underground experience; it’s rugged, awe-inspiring, and, in the true Montana spirit, perfectly off the beaten path.

  • Location – Situated comfortably between Butte and Bozeman, these are far from your average limestone crevices. They’re Montana’s first state park, a fact that gives them a certain amount of bragging rights.
  • Guided Tours – If the idea of wandering blindly in a vast cave system doesn’t tickle your fancy, you’re in luck. Facilitated by the park’s expert staff, you’re handed a lamp to cast away the dark alongside other curious adventurers.
  • Viewing Paths – Progressing along a well-kept concrete walkway, you’ll be privy to the cavern’s colossal features without needing to hire a Sherpa. And don’t fret, it’s not all spacious: the exhilarating Wild Cave Tour has a few tight squeezes mixed in.
  • Aboveground Adventure – Enhancing its appeal, the park isn’t all about subterranean adventure. The aboveground area boasts a variety of hiking trails, a visitor center with interesting tidbits about the area, and even options to stay the night with cabins and tipis. The address is 25 Lewis & Clark Caverns Road, Whitehall, Montana.

While the labyrinth of formations and resident bats will keep your interest piqued underground, there are additional attractions on topside. Adding a midday hike was the cherry on top of my visit, as Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park offered a memorable Montana experience, showcasing grand cavern structures and an inviting atmosphere topside.

10. The World Museum of Mining

A historic train engine in Montana.

The World Museum of Mining in Butte, Montana. Situated at the old Orphan Girl Mine site, this place has a history that spans over 80 years, extracting silver, lead, and zinc.

With over 60 exhibits featuring artifacts from the mining days and a recreation of a mining town from the 1890s, it’s like stepping back in time. What’s truly remarkable is that many of the buildings in the town are originally from the mining period. It’s like walking through history.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can take a guided tour of the mine, going 100 feet (around 30.48 m) underground to explore life in the mines and see the mining equipment up close. It’s an experience that will leave you in awe and wonder.

Visiting the World Museum of Mining is not just a visit to a museum; it’s an immersion into the rich history of mining in Montana. It’s an opportunity to learn and appreciate the grit and perseverance of those who worked in the mines.

As you walk through the exhibits and take the guided tour, you’ll come away with a newfound appreciation for the mining industry and the impact it had on Butte, Montana.

 11. Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center

A grizzly bear walking near a waterfall in Montana.

Are you a fan of the wild? Then this stop in your Montana tour should be right up your alley, or should I say trail?

No other place quite captures the essence of the Montana wilderness and its charismatic creatures like the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center. Located in West Yellowstone, this isn’t your typical zoo visit but a testament to Montana’s rich eco-diversity.

  • 365-Day Engagement – The Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center, open every day of the year, aligns with your schedule and prioritizes conservation and education for animal enthusiasts.
  • Wildlife Insights – Encounter grizzly bears and gray wolves, offering unique perspectives into animal behavior and the challenges they face, as these animals couldn’t thrive in the wild due to injuries or acclimation to humans.
  • Thoughtful Exhibits – Explore well-curated displays featuring two wolf habitats, seasonal bird habitats, an educational museum, and a new exhibit showcasing native Yellowstone river otters and other water animals, both indoors and outdoors to replicate natural habitats.
  • Animal Well-being – The center prioritizes the welfare of its inhabitants, focusing on enrichment activities rather than circus shows, allowing visitors to observe and learn from the animals in their natural environment.

This isn’t just a sightseeing adventure. It’s an experience that helps you understand and appreciate the native species in a way you never thought possible.

Flip through the center’s event calendar and plan your visit around one of their informative talks or animal feedings. You’ll be surprised how much you learn, and how much fun it is.

12. Montana State Capitol

A large building with a dome in the background.

Stepping into the Montana State Capitol in Helena is like walking through the annals of the state’s history, and believe me, it’s a trip you do not want to skip.

Greeting visitors since 1902, this is not just any capitol building; it’s a living, breathing testament to Montana’s legacy and a hands-on experience in governmental architecture.

Here’s what you absolutely can’t overlook:

  • Free Entry – Who doesn’t love a freebie? The Capitol offers entry at no cost, so it’s a great way to enrich your Montana experience without denting your wallet.
  • Architectural Marvel – From the grand staircases leading to the impressive legislative halls to the iconic Rotunda Dome, the building itself is a work of art.
  • Artistic Journey – The Capitol houses an extensive collection of artwork that vividly depicts Montana’s past and present. It’s as if you’re walking through the stories of the state itself.
  • Kid-friendly – If you’re traveling with little explorers, they can enjoy specially designed scavenger hunts that make learning Montana’s history a fun and interactive adventure.
  • Additional Resources – Can’t decide where to start? Not to worry, the Capitol offers self-guided tour booklets to help you navigate the building like a pro.

As a bonus, opposite the Capitol building sits a charming store that’s your go-to for Montana-centric reads, souvenirs, and more. On a personal note, I bought the cutest bear-shaped cookie cutter there, and it’s now my little Montana keepsake.

Whether you’re an art enthusiast, a history buff, or just someone looking for an incredible outing that’s even enjoyable with the kids, the Montana State Capitol is a one-stop shop for everything you need to know and appreciate about Montana.

13. Montana Historical Society Museum

A historical museum with a sculpture in front.

When in Montana, visiting the Montana Historical Society Museum in Helena is a must for those looking for an educational activity.

The museum is dedicated to educating visitors about the state’s history, covering a remarkable span of 12,000 years. With diverse exhibits containing art, old artifacts, archaeological items, and rotating displays, the museum is committed to preserving Montana’s rich history.

There’s an incredible focus on educating visitors about the Native Americans who originally lived in Montana, showcasing items from their homes, daily lives, and weapons. What’s more, the museum houses an extensive art, photo, oral, and manuscript archive collection in addition to the exhibits.

It’s a treasure trove of knowledge waiting to be explored. If you want to dive deep into the history of Montana and gain a rich understanding of its past, the Montana Historical Society Museum is the perfect place to start.

14. Garden of One Thousand Buddhas

A row of white buddha statues with mountains in the background

I’ve recently stumbled upon the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas, nestled in the beauty of Montana. This grand Tibetan Buddhist site, located on a Native American reservation, offers a serene and peaceful experience beyond the natural splendor of the state.

The garden is adorned with bright-white Buddha statues, stupas, and vibrant lavender gardens, creating a picturesque and tranquil setting. Founded at the turn of the millennium, it serves as a pilgrimage site for Buddhist practitioners and a ceremonial gathering place for the local Salish-Kootenai people.

What’s particularly captivating about this site is that it’s open to visitors of any faith or background, providing a peaceful respite for travelers passing through Western Montana. It’s a unique and special destination that offers a sense of calm and tranquility amidst the stunning landscapes of the region.

15. Beartooth Highway

A scenic road through a picturesque mountain range in Montana

If you’ve been basking in the splendor of Big Sky Country, it’s time to turn the key and head on an epic journey to the neighboring Wyoming. Trust me, don’t let ‘Red Lodge to Beartooth Pass to Yellowstone’ slide off your map. I’m talking about the iconic Beartooth Highway; a road so mesmerizing it’s been labeled an All-American Road.

Comparable to Glacier National Park’s celebrated Going-to-the-Sun Road in terms of sheer jaw-dropping beauty, Beartooth offers a more intimate experience, with fewer matching fenders to negotiate.

  • High Altitude Adventure – Spanning 68 miles (around 109.44 km) and climbing over 5,000 feet (152.4 m) to Beartooth Pass at 10,947 feet (around 3,336.27 m), the highway offers daredevils breathtaking views, leaving them breathless in more ways than one.
  • Seasonal Spectacle – Open from May to October (Memorial Day to Columbus Day), this weather-dependent highway invites adventurers to pack their bags or load up their RVs for an unforgettable journey.
  • Beyond the Drive – Explore more than the road; discover hiking trails, scenic campgrounds, and landscapes that challenge your camera’s capabilities. Plan for frequent stops and capture Instagram-worthy sunsets at the Pass.
  • Tranquil Routes – Experience the Beartooth Highway as a refreshing escape from crowded Montana routes, offering a serene journey through one of America’s last wilderness corridors. It’s just you, your companions, and the unparalleled scenery – a unique traffic-free experience.

A jaunt along Beartooth Highway should be like the show-stopping number in your Montana itinerary. And when you have this grand Montana road trip just a wheel turn away, why keep it waiting?

16. Chico Hot Springs

A popular hot spring in Montana

Chico Hot Springs, nestled in the heart of Pray, Montana, is a timeless must-visit attraction. The natural hot springs have been welcoming guests since 1900, boasting a rich history steeped in relaxation and rejuvenation.

Visitors can unwind in the soothing hot springs pools, indulge in luxurious spa services, and explore the stunning surroundings. With its blend of calming retreat and outdoor pursuits, Chico Hot Springs appeals to those seeking both relaxation and adventure.

The historic Chico Dining Room and Saloon, brimming with rustic charm, offer delectable cuisine that is not to be missed. Accommodations range from cozy cabins to historic rooms in the main lodge, ensuring a comfortable stay for every guest.

Set against the backdrop of the picturesque Absaroka Mountains, this destination promises breathtaking views and a seamless fusion of natural relaxation, historic allure, outdoor excitement, and culinary delights.

Chico Hot Springs, a captivating haven nestled in Montana, is an essential experience that should not be overlooked during your visit. Explore the rejuvenating wonders of this enchanting destination.

17. Western Heritage Center

A large stone building in Montana, visited by tourists with cars parked in front of it.

Housed in the stately Parmly Billings Memorial Library, founded in 1901, the Western Heritage Center should be on anyone’s must-see list. Upon entering, my eyes were captivated by over 17,000 artifacts, each narrating a unique tale from the past.

The collection’s highlight is the impressive assembly of 6,000 photographs, offering a visually rich history of the Yellowstone River region, showcasing everything from prehistoric Native American tools to artifacts from the area’s early settlers.

It’s no small feat that the museum is affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution, a stamp of approval that underscores the importance of its mission.

The Western Heritage Center not only documents the history of the Northern High Plains and Yellowstone River Valley, but it also strives to preserve the cultural narratives of Native American tribes like the Cheyenne and Crow Indians.

If you love history, this place is like a candy store. The Western Heritage Center doesn’t just keep its wealth of artifacts locked away; it offers lectures, educational programs, and workshops, allowing visitors to dive deep into the subjects that captivate them.

The epicenter of Montana’s rich historical tapestry, the Western Heritage Center in Billings is a place where the past comes to life. It’s more than a museum; it’s an educational and cultural hub that celebrates the diversity of Yellowstone’s history.

18. Sweet Palace in Philipsburg

A Montana store with a wide variety of candy and other sweets.

As I cruised along the Pintler Veteran’s Memorial Scenic Highway, I stumbled upon Sweet Palace in Phillipsburg. This delightful candy shop boasts rows of candy jars, offering a wide variety of flavors and confectionary styles.

The old-fashioned setting adds to the charm, and visitors have the opportunity to fill their bags with candies, most of which are priced per pound.

But Sweet Palace is just the tip of the iceberg in Phillipsburg. The main drag features several local shops and other points of interest, making it a haven for curious wanderers.

And for those with a penchant for treasure hunting, there are places to shop for and sluice out Montana sapphires, adding a touch of adventure to the city’s attractions.

19. C.M. Russell Museum Complex

A large figurine of bison and a man on a horse in a museum in Montana.

At the heart of Great Falls, a city with its rich history, stands the C.M. Russell Museum Complex. This museum is more than just an ordinary collection; it’s a living testament to the life and tales of Charles M. Russell, also known as the Cowboy Artist.

  • The Original Russell House and Studio – As a lover of museums, you wouldn’t want to miss the chance to walk through the very spaces where Russell let his imagination dance. Designated as a National Historic Landmark, both the house and the studio give you an intimate look into the artist’s world.
  • The Russell Riders Sculpture Garden – Do you love art and wildlife? Then the Sculpture Garden is your place. These poignant statues vividly bring to life the animals that once roamed Montana’s plains, adding an extra layer of storytelling to Russell’s art.
  • Russell’s Art, Letters, and More – The museum’s vast collection houses not just his original paintings but also letters penned by Russell and a treasure trove of artifacts. 

Pair this visit with a trip to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center to supercharge your understanding of regional history.

And if you’re the kind who seeks solace in nature, Great Falls and its River’s Edge Trail provide a fantastic mix of urban and natural experiences that’ll keep you captivated throughout your stay.

The C.M. Russell Museum Complex allows you to touch Montana’s history, one oil painting and bronze sculpture at a time. Trust me, you’ll stand in awe at the footprints Russell left behind.

20. Garnet Ghost Town

Abandoned houses in a ghost town in Montana.

Witness Montana’s Mining Heyday If you’re a history lover or simply curious about Montana’s past, the perfectly preserved Garnet Ghost Town is a must-see on your Montana itinerary.

Think of it as a fascinating time capsule from the late 1800s when Montana’s mining endeavors were in full swing.

  • Historical Journey – Garnet Ghost Town provides a captivating glimpse into Montana’s mining boom, featuring log cabins, stores, and homes that transport visitors back in time.
  • Detailed Exploration – Take your time wandering through the town, immersing yourself in original furnishings and period-accurate displays within these well-preserved historic structures.
  • Living History Lesson – Garnet Ghost Town isn’t just a passive experience; the town’s Preservation Association actively works to maintain the structures, often with original furnishings, creating a dynamic living history lesson.
  • Garnet Day Highlights – June is an ideal time to visit, coinciding with Garnet Day, featuring educational activities and family-friendly re-enactments that enhance the historical experience.

Walking through Garnet Ghost Town feels less like sightseeing and more like walking through a living museum with whispers of history and hearty echoes from the past.

It’s tranquil, surreal, and deeply educational all at once. Plus, stepping inside these preserved log cabins, with each building’s history detailed on informative boards, makes the entire experience delightfully immersive.

21. Gray Wolf Peak Casino

A casino with a large sign nestled among the majestic Montana mountains.

Nestled in the heart of Montana and perched majestically on top of Evaro Hill, Gray Wolf Peak Casino is a proud endeavor of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.

This gaming paradise is not solely a flashy collection of over 300 state-of-the-art slot machines; it’s an experience that showcases Montana’s natural beauty and tribal heritage in one impressive package.

What to expect on your visit:

  • Diverse Gaming Options – From classic reels to the hottest new video slots, the over 300 games leave no stone unturned.
  • Indulgent Dining – Enjoy your daily dose of good fortune with daily food and drink specials at Waters Lounge and Mountain Pine Grill, where taste meets tradition.
  • A Sight to Behold – The casino’s scenic surroundings provide an escape for gaming enthusiasts who appreciate the beauty of wildlife.
  • Cultural Insights – Not just another casino, Gray Wolf Peak is an expression of cultural and historical significance for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, an integral part of the Montanan tapestry.
  • Accessible Location – Situated on the south end of the Flathead Indian Reservation, just a hop from Missoula, it’s easily accessible, even for day-trippers from the city.

On a recent trip, I enjoyed more than just the slots. The breathtaking mountain views and fresh air provided a tranquil contrast to the lively casino atmosphere. The thoughtful integration of food, gaming, and scenic beauty gave me a newfound appreciation for the multifaceted experience a casino can offer.

Whether you’re trying your luck at the tables, enjoying a leisurely meal, or soaking in the region’s breathtaking vista from Evaro Hill, Gray Wolf Peak Casino is a truly distinctive destination worth exploring.

Montana Attractions Final Thoughts

A tourist is standing on a rock overlooking a lake in Montana.

Montana, the Crown Jewel of the Continent, boasts the stunning Glacier National Park, home to breathtaking glaciers, pristine lakes, and iconic trails like the Grinnell Glacier Trail.

With three entrances to Yellowstone National Park, Montana offers access to geothermal wonders and abundant wildlife. Meanwhile, Big Sky Waterpark provides thrilling water-based attractions for all ages.

In southeastern Montana, the historical significance of the Battle of Little Bighorn is commemorated at its national monument. The Museum of the Rockies showcases cultural and historical exhibits, including dinosaur fossils and Yellowstone’s rich history.

The World Museum of Mining in Butte preserves the state’s mining heritage, while the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center in West Yellowstone offers insights into wildlife conservation.

Helena’s state capitol and the natural wonders at Lewis and Clark Caverns are must-visit attractions. Chico Hot Springs combines relaxation, outdoor adventure, and historic charm for a well-rounded experience.

For a deeper exploration of Montana’s captivating landscapes and rich heritage, scenic drives along Beartooth Highway and visits to ghost towns are highly recommended. Immerse yourself in Montana’s vibrant attractions and natural beauty, creating lasting memories filled with positivity and wonder.

Also check out our Maps of Top Montana Attractions.

Montana Attractions FAQs

1. What Is Montana Most Famous For?

Montana is most famous for its stunning natural landscapes, including the iconic Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park.

Known as the “Big Sky Country,” Montana is celebrated for its expansive skies, majestic mountains, and abundant wildlife, making it a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

2. What Is the Main Product of Montana?

Montana’s main agricultural product is beef, and the state is a leading producer of high-quality cattle. With vast expanses of grazing land, Montana’s ranches contribute significantly to the beef industry.

The state is also known for wheat production, especially hard red spring wheat, which is grown in its fertile plains.

3. Why Is Bozeman Montana Famous?

Bozeman, Montana, is renowned for its scenic beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and as a gateway to Yellowstone National Park.

It is particularly famous for being home to Montana State University, attracting students, and contributing to the city’s vibrant cultural and educational atmosphere.

Delighted by what you’ve just discovered? Dive deeper into the wonders of Montana in our dedicated section:

Photo of author

Written by:

Ashley Smith
Hello there! I'm Ashley Smith, born on a chilly winter's day, Montana has been my playground since childhood. The first snowfall of the year always brings back memories of building snowmen and winter hikes. Co-founding was my way of sharing the magic of Montana's seasons with the world. While Chris dives deep into the landscapes, I'm obsessed with Montana's rich culture, from the local festivals to the tales passed down generations.

Leave a Comment