Tips for enjoying Bozeman, Montana
Let’s face it, chances are you are not flying into Bozeman Airport to stay in Bozeman for your vacation. Don’t get me wrong, we love Bozeman. However, chances are you are coming to this area to get outside of town and enjoy the great outdoors. Albeit exploring Yellowstone National Park, hunting elk in the Crazies, fly fishing on the Big Hole, or skiing at Big Sky.
Many visitors to the area make the big mistake of skipping downtown Bozeman in favor for getting on the road as fast as possible (usually via Walmart). Please do not do this! Bozeman is one of the few main streets left in America almost completely void of national retailer/ restaurant chains. There are some excellent restaurants, unique shops, and great people.
We have found that visitors coming in are seeking a few main things prior to heading out on their adventures. Here is a list of some of our favorite providers.
Grocery: Heebs Grocery. East side of Main Street. Excellent butcher and just about everything else you need. Fairly priced and locally owned.
Very good wine and beer selection.
Liquor Store: Montana Spirits and Wine. The biggest and best wine/ booze store in Montana. Located on 19th street on your way downtown from BZN.
Outdoor Apparel, footwear, hunting/ fishing: Schnees/ Powderhorn. One store on 19th, another on Main Street. The northern Rockies equivalent of LL Bean. Makers of their own shoes and boots as well as clothing and accessories. Great stuff.
Backpacking/ Camping/ Skiing/ Outdoors: Northern Lights Trading. Locally owned, great selection of equipment, extremely knowledgable staff. About 100 times better than REI, same price or less. Located on west Babcock. They also have a second location of rafting and paddling equipment.
Sporting Outdoors: Wholesale Sports has the best selection of hunting and sporting, Bob Wards has hunting and fishing as well as soccer, tennis, and every other sport. Both are located on north 19th. Bob Wards is Montana owned.
Our favorite restaurants in Bozeman: You can go to an Olive Garden at home- eat local.
- Blackbird Cafe
- John Bozeman’s Bistro
- Pho Real
- The Emerson Grill
- Dave’s Sushi
- Ted’s Montana Grill (chain)
- The Garage
- Burger Bobs
- The Mint (Belgrade)
- Bar 3 BBQ (Bozeman and Belgrade)
- Damascos (Belgrade)
- McKenzie River Pizza Co. (chain)
If it is a rainy day, make a trip to Museum of the Rockies. A fine little museum by all measures, and contains the largest collection of fossils in the world.
Regardless of what you choose, take the time to have a walk down main street Bozeman, you will not be let down.