Folks come to experience Bozeman, Montana for its unbeatable access to outdoor recreation, diverse dining scene, rich history, and fun downtown area.
Bozeman is the kind of place where visitors and locals alike spend all day outdoors and evenings hanging out at one of the many local Montana breweries.
Bozeman is home to a more relaxed way of life where people you’ve never met make eye contact and say, “Hello!” as they walk by. There’s so much to discover in this small mountain town with a fun Western personality.
Here are some of the best things to do in Bozeman, Montana, on your upcoming trip!
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Explore the Dining Scene
Bozeman is filled with amazing locally-owned restaurants serving up tasty dishes, unlike anywhere else. Since there are so many restaurants to choose from, we’ve narrowed it down to a few you absolutely must try!
South 9th Bistro
Special occasion or just craving some out of this world Steak au Poivre? South 9th Bistro is always hosting a can’t-miss dining experience. From the friendly staff to the cozy layout that makes you feel at home, this Bozeman restaurant has the food and environment to impress.
Everyone wants to know about the best breakfast spot in town. Nova is arguably that! A full selection of caffeinated beverages, fresh juices, and a trendy menu that still includes the classics.
Backcountry Burger Bar
Keepin’ it casual! Happy hour at Backcountry Burger Bar is a must for anyone visiting Bozeman. Conveniently located in the downtown area, this restaurant is home to the best burger in town!
Enjoy a Night Out
Get out on the town and explore Bozeman’s fun nightlife. Downtown stays awake all night with live music, drink specials, and swing-dancing!
There are many fun venues to check out, but these are a few of our favorites:
Bozeman Taproom & Spirits
The Taproom is Bozeman’s favorite rooftop bar. With a casual atmosphere, great views, and a full-service bar, the Taproom is a perfect stop after a day outdoors or exploring the town.
Feeling a little fancy this evening? Head over to Plonk for wine, cocktails, craft beers, and an atmosphere that will make you feel like a VIP.
Whiskey connoisseurs will fall in love with the Copper Restaurant and Whiskey Bar. Their selection of whiskey options span from Bozeman’s own local distilleries to globally recognized brands. This is the perfect place to try your first Montana Mule.
Taste the Taps on a Bozeman Brew Tour
If you didn’t already know, Bozeman’s craft brew scene is flowing with variety. There are so many breweries to choose from, each with their own unique flavors and atmosphere.
Looking for a little more guidance? Take an afternoon tour with locally owned Tour de Foam’s professionally guided trip!
Itching to get a taste of a few of the area’s very best breweries on your own? Here are our top three favorites with beer recommendations:
MAP Brewery: Midus Crush IPA
Bridger Brewing: Mad Mile Cream Ale
Outlaw Brewery: Passive Aggressive Pale Ale
Take a Hike in Bozeman
Getting outdoors is the Bozeman way of life.
There are seemingly endless miles of hiking trails ranging from mellow strolls through relaxed terrain to intense multi-day backcountry missions.
Lace up your boots and check out some of the area’s best hiking trails to see what all the hype is about.
A popular local favorite is a 1.6-mile loop that’s fit for anyone. Follow the tight switchbacks, which take you to the giant M that stands proudly over Bozeman and radiates Montana State University pride. (Go Cats!)
There are a couple of ways to reach the M ranging from easy to moderate in difficulty.
Petes Hill and Burke Park
Catch the sunset over the Bridger Range from the top of Petes Hill.
Take in the mountain views from one of the many conveniently located park benches or bring a blanket to sprawl out on the grass.
Note: must love dogs to hang out here.
This one is for the peak baggers out there.
Although challenging, this 4.5-mile round trip hike to the top of Sacagawea Peak, the tallest peak in the Bridger Range, offers rewarding views of the surrounding area from 9,650 ft. The mountain goats like this hike, so keep your eyes peeled!
Learn the Local History
The Gallatin Valley is full of rich and interesting history.
From the original Native American tribes that called the valley home to its colonization in the 1860s led by frontiersman, John Bozeman, this area has a fascinating story to tell.
You can learn about some chapters of Bozeman area history by visiting the Museum of the Rockies and Missouri Headwaters State Park.
Museum of the Rockies
Did you know that the Museum of the Rockies boasts the largest collection of dinosaur fossils in North America and that they have all been collected from Montana and surrounding states?
In addition to their complete dinosaur exhibit, the Museum of the Rockies also has local history displays, a never-disappointing rotating exhibit, and a planetarium.
Missouri Headwaters State Park
Only a short drive from Bozeman, this state park is where the Gallatin, Madison, and Jefferson Rivers converge to form the Mighty Mo.
This Historic Landmark is also the sight of one of the many camps that Lewis and Clark used during their famous expedition.
There’s plenty of history and scenic trails to explore here!
Spend Some Time by the River
Bozeman is in proximity to the Yellowstone, Madison, and Gallatin Rivers. All three of these well-known rivers offer great opportunities for on-water recreation!
The Gallatin River is the closest to Bozeman, but access to both the Yellowstone and Madison is less than an hour’s drive away.
Hot summer days in the valley are perfect for lazy river tubing down the Madison.
You can buy your own tubes or rent them from Madison River Tubing Company.
Try your hand at fly fishing
Home to one of the scenes in A River Runs Through It with Brad Pitt, the Gallatin River offers a world-class fishing experience!
Anglers from around the world come to fish these Blue Ribbon fisheries.
Go out on your own or book an experienced guide to show you the ropes and get you hooked on some beautiful native trout.
Go whitewater rafting
Experience one of the three nearby rivers at highwater for an exciting whitewater adventure!
With Montana Whitewater’s experienced guides, you can run the Mad Mile, a rowdy section of Class III-IV rapids on the Gallatin, the Kitchen Sink, an intense Class IV rapid on the Madison, or the Yankee Jim Canyon, on the Yellowstone right near the boundary of Yellowstone National Park.
Enjoy Some Winter Adventures
Bozeman is, without a doubt, a 4-season destination. If you plan to visit in mid-winter, expect snow and a lot of it!
With powder days galore, there’s no wonder why so many skiers and snowboarders rank Bozeman high on the list of must-visit winter destinations.
Conveniently located between two top-rated ski areas, Bridger Bowl and Big Sky Resort, there’s a lot of skiable terrain to cover!
No interest in the downhill shredding? Not a problem. There are still tons of fun outdoor things to do in Bozeman for non-skiers!
Some fun suggestions are Nordic skiing, ice fishing, snowshoeing, ice climbing, ice skating, snowmobiling, and dog sledding. Gear rentals and experienced guides are abundant and easy to find in this outdoor paradise!
Downtown Bozeman is the perfect place to find locally made art, practical outdoor clothing, and fun home decorations.
By walking up and down W Main Street, you’re sure to find a storefront that catches your eye!
Some of everyone’s favorites are Heyday, Cactus Records, Montana Gift Corral, and Chalet Sports.
Check Out the Weekly Events
This mountain town keeps things lively in the summer with a schedule of fun and diverse events.
There are a few that reoccur multiple times throughout the warm season to keep everyone coming back for more.
Enjoy Music on Main
Main Street shuts down on Thursday evenings throughout the summer, allowing locals and visitors alike to roam the street freely to shop, eat, and drink, all while listening to live music.
Don’t be shy! Dancing in front of the stage is highly encouraged.
Shop at the Weekly Farmers Market
Join local artisans for the summer farmers market, which happens every Tuesday in Lindley Park.
The Bozeman Farmers Market is the perfect place to socialize while supporting local businesses.
Take an Art Walk
The art scene in Bozeman is flourishing!
On the 2nd Friday of every month, galleries open their doors to all art lovers.
Enjoy live music dispersed throughout Main Street and a chance to discover amazing pieces of unique artwork.
Take a Soak
Hot springs are a popular attraction in Bozeman! There are three highly recommended hot springs in and around the area that are fun for all ages.
How does it work? The natural mineral water from the ground is harnessed and released into soakable pools for anyone to enjoy.
If you’re in Bozeman and want to check out a hot spring head over to Bozeman Hot Springs, Chico Hot Springs, or Norris Hot Springs for a little self-care and relaxation!
There are so many exciting things to do in Bozeman, from exploring the outdoors to immersing yourself in the lively downtown scene. This fun-filled mountain town is sure to impress every visitor!
Emily is a freelance travel and outdoor recreation writer from Big Sky, Montana. Her adventurous spirit has led her to the high peaks of the Sierras and the largest wilderness areas in the lower 48. When she’s not writing, Emily can be found backpacking, road tripping to outdoor destinations, climbing, or rowing whitewater.