This page summarizes some of the things you can enjoy in and around Boise, Idaho, based on the information from Boise Visitors Bureau and Idaho State Tourism office. It is provided here for the convenience of QFD attendees; it is not an endorsement.
Our venue Hampton Inn is located in the heart of downtown Boise, where you will find a plenty of restaurants, pubs, cafes, shops, and theaters within short walking distance.
See the right column for the lists of restaurants, specialty markets, theaters, shops, as well as local events including the Art In The Park (open-air festival, free) and Boise State football games (advance ticket recommended) that take place during the QFD events and are within walking distance from the venue.
Boise River Greenbelt Park (24 miles / 40 km path along the river) is an excellent place for walking, jogging, bicycling, or just relaxing. See the downtown area Greenbelt Map (PDF). The access to the path can be found virtually anywhere along the river, which is only a few minutes walk from the hotel.
Along the Boise River Greenbelt, you will find these parks:
Julia Davis Park:
4 min. walk from the hotel. One of Boise's best parks, complete with paddle boats, playground equipments, jogging/walking/biking path, picnic area.
Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial: 6 min. walk from the hotel. Located at the south end of 8th Street.
A quiet park space of reflection and beauty, consists of two reflecting ponds, three waterfalls, a reading circle, a bronze sculpture.
Ann Morrison Park:
20 min. walk from the hotel.
Boise's largest public park and the take-out for a Boise river float. Large shaded playgrounds, free disc golf course.
MK Nature Center
600 S Walnut St. 25 min. walk or 5 min drive from the hotel (map)
Tel 208- 334-2225
Open Tuesday-Friday 9 am to 5 pm;
Saturday-Sunday 11 am to 5 pm. Located behind the Idaho Fish and Game offices and near the Boise Greenbelt. Enjoy the educational Stream Walk program (call to schedule 208-287-2906; $1.50 per student; up to 1.5 hours) where both children and adult can learn about Idaho wildlife and the importance of habitat in a short classroom session plus a guided walk. Self-guided tours are also possible. The center also has a starter fish pole set. PDF Brochure
The Boise River has healthy populations of rainbow trout, brown trout, and steelhead. (Video) U.S. residents can get a State Fishing Permit online. Or, you can use one of the outfitter services that provide all the necessary equipment and supplies including a guide and permit.
A charming, living "museum" of specialty gardens, including the "Lewis and Clark native plants garden," conservation gardens, rose garden, nature trails, hilltop observation area. Adult $7 (AAA member discount $1)
The highlights include Celebration Park (Idaho's only archaeological park with Native American petroglyphs), Dedication Point (an outstanding view of Snake River Canyon and snow-capped Owyhee Mountains, sights of raptors in flight), Initial Point (a lava butte with an 1867 US Geological Survey marker), Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area, Swan Falls Dam.
45 minutes from Boise. This is a rugged high desert with 316 miles of wild scenic rivers, 517,000 acres of protected wilderness, 104 mile-long Owyhee Uplands Back Country Byway. Trail Guide
Wildlife Canyon Scenic Byway
Allow 3 hours to complete the loop from Boise and back. The highlights include Payette River, canyon, roaming wildlife including elk.
The highlights include Payette River and Lucky Peak, Idaho City (historic mining town),
majestic Stanley Basin and Stanley Lake, Boise National Forest, Salmon-Challis National Forest, impressive views of the Sawtooth Mountains.
National Monuments, State Parks, Outdoor Activities
The Springs (hot springs resort): Soak in natural hot springs pools under the clear mountain skies just 45 minutes from downtown Boise. Admissions: $16/day for adults, $10/day for kids 12 and under -- include access to the pools, splash deck, steam room, lounge, showers, lockers, pool towel, complimentary shampoo/shower gel, sunscreen, moisturizer, and poolside tea / coffee / mineral water. Private pools, massage, aquatic bodywork are offered at additional costs. This resort has gormet cafe restaurant and live music at night.
Located about 1 hour 45 min. from Downtown Boise.
(10 Miles Northwest of Buhl or 9 Miles South of Hagerman just off Highway 30;
Along the Historic Thousand Springs Scenic Byway)
Miracle Hot Springs
19073B U.S. 30, Buhl, ID 83316
Banbury Hot Springs
1128 Banbury Rd, Buhl, ID 83316
These springs have a large public swimming pool and several private and VIP spring pools filled with geothermal natural mineral water that is soft to the touch and ordorless with pH 9.6.
Admission to the general pool is $10/adult. Prices vary for private pools. Bunk room cabins, geothermal dorms, camping facility are also available. Banbury Hot Spring has access to the beautiful Snake River (canue, kayak, paddle board).
The Payette River is located about 45 min. drive from Boise via scenic Highway 55. This river is major tributary of the Snake River and a popular place for whitewater rafting and kayaking. Here are a couple of companies that provide tours.
Hagerman is home to over two hundred different species of fossil plants and animals: including sabertooth cat, mastodon, bear, camel, ground sloth, and many other species. Over 3,000 new fossil fragments are found each year.
Formed from major eruptions 15,000 - 2000 years ago, Craters of the Moon is a vast landscape of strange looking Lava formations. You can take a 7-mile loop scenic drive as well as hiking trails that allow you to explore various volcanic features. The visitors center has informative exhibits and films.
Sometimes called "Niagara of the West," Shoshone Falls is 212 feet (65 m) high over a rim 1,000 feet (300 m) wide — This is 45 feet (14 m) higher than Niagara Falls. The city of Twin Falls operates the park which has an observation area, paved hiking trails, and picnic areas.
One of the internment camps during the WW II, Minidoka at its peak imprisoned over 9,000 Japanese Americans. The 1.6-mile trail identifies the historic structures and landscape, describe camp life. NOTE: Due to its remote and isolated location, adequate fuel, water and a cell phone are recommended.
Also, bring a hat and sunscreen (there is no shade).
Boise Art in The Park September 9–11, 2016
at Julia Davis Park
This is an annual open-air art fair held in the Julia Davis Park by the Boise Art Museum (map: 4 min. walk from the hotel). More than 200 artists showcase and sell their work. Food, music entertainment, sculpture garden pub, children's programs.
Rental Cars at Boise Airport
Take the hotel's airport shuttle back to the Boise Airport. Car Rental desks are located on the first floor of the airport.
Outfitters are wilderness/outdoor sports guide services that provide equipment, supplies, and logistics for your outdoor activities such as rafting, hunting, canoeing, hiking, climbing, fishing and trail riding.
In Idaho, outfitters must have a state license to operate and also obtain special use permits for you if necessary.