Living in Boise: The City of Trees

Nestled against picturesque foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Boise offers a unique balance of small town friendliness and big city sophistication. Boise’s natural beauty and limitless access to the outdoors, offers an enviable lifestyle. As Idaho’s capital and largest city, Boise abounds in cultural opportunities, outdoor adventure, and scenic beauty. Boise is home to a population of 235,000 while the Greater metropolitan area is home to nearly 750,000.


Boise is a great basecamp for all kinds of adventures! Starting in downtown, the 25-mile paved Greenbelt along both sides of the Boise river offers car-free biking, walking, and running. Minutes from downtown, there are almost 200 miles of single-track trails in the foothills that are perfect for a casual hike, exciting mountain bike ride, or a grueling trail run.

Parks and Recreation:

Ridge to Rivers:

Visit Idaho:

Winter sports:

There are 18 ski resorts accessible from Idaho. They range from mom and pop local resorts to world famous places like Sun Valley (3 hours from Boise). Our local hill is Bogus Basin (1 hour away) that offers affordable skiing for the whole family. If self-propelled turns are your thing, Boise has a multitude of backcountry options.

Ski Idaho:

Bogus Basin:

Sun Valley

The world’s first chair lifts were installed at this ski resort in 1936. Today, Sun Valley (about 3 hours from Boise) features something for everyone all year long, with miles of trails to explore during the day and restaurants, shops, festivals, and concerts to enjoy at night.

Visit Sun Valley:

Water Sports

The waters of Idaho offer a full range of activities. During the summer, floating the Boise River is a relaxing and popular way to beat the heat. For adrenaline junkies, white water is easy to find on Idaho’s serpentine rivers including the Payette and Salmon.

Idaho Whitewater:

Hot springs

If soaking in hot water is your thing, Idaho is a perfect place! There are hundreds of natural hot springs scattered around the state. A few have been harnessed by resorts, but the majority remain wild.

Hot Springs:

The Sawtooths

These jagged mountains are surprisingly accessible from the charming and tiny town of Stanley, a 3-hour drive from Boise. This is a paradise for hiking, climbing, and fishing. In the winter Stanley is a wonderland for backcountry skiing and snowshoeing.

Stanley, Idaho:


This charming resort town is fun all year long. During the winter, the local ski resort Brundage offers chill skiing and riding. During the warmer months, McCall (2 hours from Boise) is a perfect basecamp for hiking, camping, or mountain biking, with a cool town to grab dinner and a fantastic lake for water sports.

Visit McCall:


Tamarack Resort:

Craters of the Moon National Monument

The remnants of a dormant volcano 3 hours from Boise, these lava flows are an otherworldly sight with vast plains of black rock and intact lava tubes!

Owyhee Range

Southwest of Boise, this desert region features fantastic rock formations, rocky canyons, and historic ghost towns. This region is popular for hiking, fishing, and boating.

Shoshone Falls

This waterfall on the Snake River is actually taller the Niagara Falls! Just off I-84, this is a perfect pitstop for a road trip.

Yellowstone National Park

The world’s first national park is a day’s drive from Boise. See geysers, bison, and historic lodges.

Grand Teton National Park

Offering everything from casual day hikes to classic alpine rock climbs. America’s most beautiful skyline is a day’s drive from Boise.

Boise City Life


Boise features a small-town vibe with the perks of a big city. We have a vibrant downtown that has high quality restaurants, shops, and museums. Here are some of the fun attractions of Boise!

Boise Visitors:

Boise Weekly:

Basque district

Boise is home to a proud Basque population. They share their culture in the Basque District. There is a museum dedicated to Basque culture and several restaurants that serve delicious Basque cuisine. Be sure to try the paella during one of the regular Basque Block festivals!

Basque Museum:

Basque Center:

Basque Activities:

Arts and Education


Boise has a satisfying range of museums. There are several historical museums including the Idaho State Museum, the Idaho Black History Museum, and the Old Penitentiary. Families can enjoy the Zoo Boise and Discovery Center of Idaho.

Idaho State Museum:

Idaho Black History Museum:

Boise Art Museum:

Old Penitentiary:

Zoo Boise:

Discovery Center of Idaho:

Birds of Prey

Boise is home to a birds of prey sanctuary and educational center. We are at the heart of a global breeding program for endangered species, the visitors center is highly educational and has many live bird exhibits and shows, and we are next door to a nationally protected raptor breeding area.

The Peregrine Fund:

Concerts and Music

Many big musical acts swing through Boise on national tours, at one of several excellent venues. Boise also hosts many of the big Broadway shows. Local artists also shine in all genres, ranging from folk and rock to classical and opera.

Boise Events:

Treefort Music Fest:

Morrison Center:

Knitting Factory:

Boise Philharmonic:

Opera Idaho:

Boise Contemporary Theater:

Idaho Shakespeare Festival:

Ford Idaho Center:

Century Link Arena:


Boise is home to baseball, hockey, and football! Watch the Steelheads hit the ice right downtown, travel out to the fairgrounds to watch the Hawks take the field all summer, or enjoy some indoor football with the Idaho Horsemen! We are also home to the Boise State University, where you can watch all of their varying sports teams. Of particular mention are the BSU Broncos and their famous blue turf, where you can watch them perennially compete as one of the nation’s top 25 college football programs! Don’t forget about the original sporting event of the west, the rodeo!

Idaho Steelheads:

Boise Hawks:

Idaho Horsemen:

Boise State Broncos:

Caldwell Night Rodeo:

Snake River Stampede: