A visit to Boise brings with it the chance to enjoy some of America’s most breathtaking natural scenery, with the Rocky Mountains so close by. Ski in the winter, hike and mountain bike in the summer, or relax with a fishing rod by an idyllic stream.
The city itself is the largest in the state and offers everything that visitors will need, without being at all stressful. There are also plenty of museums, such as the old State Penitentiary, an engaging Museum of Basque Culture (as many Basque people settled in Idaho), as well as the Boise Art Museum, which showcases local talent.
Within town, nature lovers can find out more about the local flora and fauna at the Botanical Gardens (which becomes a Christmas wonderland in December) and the World Centre for Birds of Prey, where expert guides will introduce visitors to some of the local residents.
However, this is a destination which will delight any lovers of the outdoors. In the winter months resorts like Bogus Basin provide world-class skiing opportunities. In the summer, leisurely walks or canoe rides down the Boise river can be enjoyed, there is a white-water rafting centre, and holidaymakers can even spend a day at the horse races at Les Bois.
But the real attractions lie just outside Boise. A network or trails and tracks lead hundreds of miles into the forested hills and valleys, while sites like Snake River are easy to access by car, where visitors will be able to see Native American rock art and walk across the spectacular Swan Falls Dam.
Visitors can soar across the valleys by hang-glider or scale the cliffs with expert support. If you are lucky, a visit to Boise may even coincide with one of the regular meteor showers that light up the skies – providing an unforgettable sight.
This is a year-round destination. Visit between November and late March to ski, snowboard and skate, or head over between June and August to hike, hang-glide and fish to your heart’s content. A trip in September and October may be ideal, with accommodation bargains aplenty.
Boise is really a city for motorists, so anyone renting a car has a major advantage. However, shuttle buses will head to the ski resorts and major hiking areas. Those on foot or renting bikes can enjoy the stunning Boise Green Belt, which stretches for 15 miles across the town, and is well worth the effort.