You'll Cross Off Many Must-See Destinations On This Bucket List Road Trip In Idaho
If we were to name all of the best bucket-list-worthy destinations in Idaho, that list would be long and extensive. The Gem State is an incredible place to live with beautiful sights, unique attractions, and one-of-a-kind adventures. To experience just a handful of the attractions that we’d put at the top of our Idaho bucket list, we created this road trip. Each stop on this journey definitely deserves a spot at the top of your must-visit list.
You can begin this road trip in the northern or southern part of the state — whichever is most convenient for you. You will travel approximately 740 miles one-way, so we suggest taking multiple days for this trip, especially since you’ll want to spend a full morning or afternoon — if not the entire day — at many of the following destinations. Also, we realize that there are dozens of other bucket-list-worthy destinations we will pass on this trip. So, you can use
this interactive map
to add in any other stops along the way.
1. Lava Hot Springs Resort, Lava Hot Springs
Lava Hot Springs Foundation World Famous Hot Springs, 430 Main St Ste.A, Lava Hot Springs, ID 83246, USA
For our road trip, we will begin at
Lava Hot Springs Resort
. Here, you can either choose to sit and relax in the hot pools or have a day of fun at the aquatic center. If you choose to soak in the hot springs, there are five separate hot pools to choose from, each varying in temperature from 102 degrees to 112 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Shoshone Falls, Twin Falls
Shoshone Falls, Idaho 83341, USA
Of course, we can’t have a road trip to bucket-list-worthy destinations in Idaho without a stop at Shoshone Falls. This beautiful waterfall is known as the "Niagara of the West" and is actually one of the
tallest falls in the entire country
. You'll instantly be mesmerized when you visit as Shoshone Falls is an impressive 400 feet wide and 212 feet tall.
3. Thousand Springs State Park, Ritter Island
Thousand Springs State Park - Ritter Island, 1205 Thousand Springs Grade, Wendell, ID 83355, USA
Thousand Springs State Park
is one of the most beautiful and unique state parks in Idaho. This park is actually comprised of six different units and one of the most awe-inspiring is Ritter Island. This charming island is where you can play in the crisp waters, view waterfalls, and even tour a historic dairy barn. Make sure you have your camera ready for this stop because this entire area is picturesque!
4. Boise River Greenbelt, Boise
Boise River Greenbelt, Boise, ID, USA
While there are a handful of things you can choose to do in Boise, we cannot drive through our capital city without stopping at the
Boise River Greenbelt
. This is a great place to get out and stretch your legs as this 25-mile paved path takes you along the Boise River, through numerous parks, and over gorgeous bridges. There are also multiple portions that are lined with trees, which makes this path absolutely stunning in the fall months.
5. Payette Lake, McCall
Payette Lake, Idaho 83638, USA
While there are many beautiful lakes throughout the Gem State, one that should be on every bucket list is Payette Lake. You can enjoy this lake from the small town of McCall that sits on its shores or spend some time in Ponderosa State Park, one of the
most beautiful state parks in Idaho
6. University of Idaho Arboretum and Botanical Garden, Moscow
Arboretum & Botanical Garden, Johnson Cutoff Rd, Moscow, ID 83843, USA
The panhandle is home to a number of bucket-list-worthy destinations like the Palouse. But, one of our favorite places to visit is the
University of Idaho Arboretum and Botanical Garden
. This stunning 63-acre destination features thousands of plants, trees, bushes, and other vegetation, not to mention some of the most gorgeous views of the Palouse's rolling hills. There are also ponds, bridges, and walking paths all throughout the arboretum so you can easily explore the entire space or just sit back and admire its beauty.
7. Route of the Hiawatha Trail, beginning at Lookout Pass Ski Area in Mullen
Route of the Hiawatha Trail, Rte of the Hiawatha Trail, United States
Route of the Hiawatha
is one of the most popular trails in Idaho and also one of the most beautiful. This world-class rail trail is a dream as you’ll travel through tunnels, bridges, and lush northern Idaho forests. This trail is most commonly used by cyclists and if you choose to begin your journey at Lookout Pass Ski Area in Mullen (which we suggest), you can rent a bike and purchase a shuttle ticket, allowing you to easily explore one of the most breathtaking trails in the country.
What do you think of this bucket list road trip in Idaho? Are there any stops you’d add to the itinerary? Let us and your fellow travelers know in the comments!
OnlyInYourState may earn compensation through affiliate links in this article. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.