Top 10 Tourist Destinations In Wyoming For The Holiday Season
And just like that, the holiday season is at our doorsteps, and if you're travelling out of state for the annual celebration circuit, you're probably at someone else's. Each year, millions of us venture out into the far reaches of the country to visit family members and maybe do some good ol' fashion site-seeing. For the latter, Wyoming is the perfect place to be.
Not only is the Equality State filled to the brim with the charm of a small town, it's surrounded by numerous one-of-a-kind regional museums and majestic wonders of nature. Narrowing down a list of things to do in such a beautiful place isn't an easy task, but we're giving it our best shot. Here's a list of the top 10 tourist destinations when visiting Wyoming.
This one doesn't need much explaining, but we'll do so anyway. The Yellowstone National Park is among the most iconic landmarks in the entire world, and it's also the oldest national park in American history. Filled with everything from grizzly bears and bald eagles to shimmering rivers and ceaselessly spouting geysers, the Yellowstone National Park is a nature-lover's version of Candyland. Tourists can choose to drive through Yellow Stone, but we'd recommend traveling the park's hiking trail infrastructure in order to take in the park's surreal scenic beauty.
You wouldn't be wrong for describing this place as a museum, but it's more like a time machine. Featuring dioramas and interactive presentations, the Casper National Historic Trails Interpretive Center transports visitors to a time when the West was flooded with hopeful explorers seeking opportunity in the form of gold and unsettled land.
The Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area is a haven for campers, hikers and water sport enthusiasts. For years campers have come to the area – which stretches from the Green River in Wyoming to Utah – for kayaking, swimming, fishing and camping. It isn't at all uncommon for tourists to do all of those things during one trip. As long as they have the energy. Even if you're not a water sports person, the Flaming Gorge offers plenty of value its scenery alone. The area get's its name for it's beautiful flame-red colored cliffs that overlook a massive reservoir, and they're more than a little pleasing to the eye.
The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is made up of five museums, each offering up a documentation of cultural treasures from the region. One of them is a museum dedicated to the legacy of Buffalo Bill, an American soldier who became a folk hero by the time of his death in 1917. Tourists can see bits and pieces of the near-mythical figure by examining the numerous artifacts and photos that make-up the museum. The Draper Museum of Natural History focuses on Wyoming's wildlife, while the Cody Firearms Museum zeroes in on pistols and other firearms from around the globe. If you want to brush up on your Native American history, you can visit Plains Indian Museum and learn about the folks who first inhabited the region. If you're an art-lover, you should take a visit to the Whitney Gallery of Western Art, featuring work from western sculpturs T.D. Kelsey, James Earle Fraser, Michael Coleman, Harry Jackson, Bob Scriver, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and Peter Fillerup.
The Bridger Teton National Forest stretches on for more than three million acres and it's as beautiful as any national park in the country. Located in Western Wyoming, the Bridger-Teton National Forest is filled with crystal-clear watersheds and is teaming with grizzlies, bison, wolves and other wildlife. The forest is one of the biggest ecosystems in the entire U.S., and it's got plenty of space for you to get into any number of outdoor recreational activities.
Jackson is a charming small town situated in the valley of Wyoming's famed Teton Mountains. If you're looking for a place that called to mind images of the seemingly mythical Wild West, visiting Jackson is an absolute must. It's also relatively close to the National Museum of Wildlife Art. We'll get to that one a bit further down this list ...
If you find yourself tired after a long day of hiking, you might want to take a visit to Hot Springs State Park. Honestly, you should probably stop by no matter what. The park surrounds one of the world's biggest mineral hot springs, and includes an indoor bathhouse and two outdoor pools. There are also hiking trails, if you want to explore nature a bit more before you make your way to the bathhouse.
The Grand Teton National Park is situated in Northwestern Wyoming and includes 12 mountain peaks and over 360 species of animals. Like a few other entries on this list, it's a perfect haven for someone with a major nature fix, but be warned, a few of the hiking trails close during the winter.
The Devil's Tower is a mountain situated in Northeast Wyoming above the Belle Fourche River. The national monument stands 5,112 feet above sea level and offers several miles worth of hiking trails for that explorer in your family. Also, if you want to get into some rock climbing, this is definitely a good spot for you to visit.
If you want to see an artistic documentation of animals across the globe, this is the spot for you. Established in 1987, the National Museum of Wildlife Art features more than 5,000 pieces of artwork and hosts 60,000 visitors every year. With work from artists such as Georgia 'O Keefe, Andy Warhol, if you stop through this place you'll be seeing some high quality stuff, to say the least. If you have kids you might be interested in the museum's interactive children's gallery and the sculpture trail. There's also a café, which we think you'll want to visit if you stay as long as we think you will.