Best Idaho Attraction (2017)


Idaho, America's 14th largest state, is home to just 1.5 million people with far more untouched land than developed. With so many wild places to explore, the Gem State attracts adventurers from across the globe to its natural attractions, including the most miles of white water rapids in the U.S. But it's not only about the outdoors in Idaho; Boise, the state capital, is quickly becoming a thriving metropolis rich in its own cultural offerings. So what's Idaho's best attraction? 

  • World Center for Birds of Prey

    World Center for Birds of Prey

    The World Center for Birds of Prey, and indoor/outdoor education center in Boise, brings visitors eye to eye with flying predators from around the world. A 1/4-mile trail winding through the surrounding restored wilderness offers opportunity to spot raptors in the wild.
    Photo courtesy of iStock / chameleonseye

  • Hells Canyon National Recreation Area

    Hells Canyon National Recreation Area

    Within Hells Canyon National Recreation Area, travelers find North America's deepest river gorge, as well as world-class whitewater rafting, fishing and hiking trails.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

  • Craters Of The Moon National Monument

    Craters Of The Moon National Monument

    Ethereal and threatening, this sagebrush landscape of ancient and present-day lava flows, spatter cones and other volcanic activity is dynamic and dramatic. Visitors drive a 7-mile loop and hike nature trails where nearly 300 species of animals come as a surprise amongst the stark topography.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

  • Sawtooth National Forest

    Sawtooth National Forest

    Idaho's Sawtooth National Forest protects some 2 million acres of wilderness near Sun Valley. The vast park attractions more than a million visitors each year to its abundant natural attractions, including thousands of miles of rivers and hundreds of lakes. Redfish Lake is a highlight.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

  • Silver Creek Preserve

    Silver Creek Preserve

    Trout fishermen from around the globe come to the Silver Creek Preserve for the abundant trophy trout, while birdwatchers come for the fall migration of sandhill cranes, in addition to some 150 species of birds. 
    Photo courtesy of Tal Roberts

  • The Palouse

    The Palouse

    The Palouse, one of the world's richest agricultural regions, is also a dream landscape for photographers who come from far and wide to shoot its rolling fields of wheat. 
    Photo courtesy of iStock / mkmetsker

  • Shoshone Falls

    Shoshone Falls
    Twin Falls

    Just outside of Twin Falls, the Snake River plummets 212 feet – higher than Niagara Falls. Visitors can view Shoshone Falls from a scenic overlook or take a dip in a nearby swimming area.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

  • Lake Coeur d'Alene

    Lake Coeur d'Alene
    Coeur d'Alene

    Lake Coeur d’Alene is a 25-mile-long lake in Idaho that’s a popular tourist destination, for its beaches, fishing, nearby camping and other outdoor activities. Visitors also enjoy the wildlife in the area, such as bald eagles that nest nearby and bass and chinook salmon in the water. Also enjoy hiking and walking on the trails, cycling, kayaking, or head nearby for shopping and dining. Ten golf courses line the edges of this narrow, squiggly-shaped lake.
    Photo courtesy of iStock / JoanBudai

  • Downtown Boise

    Downtown Boise

    Affordable and often overlooked, Boise offers big city sophistication – wine bars, bistros and a modern cityscape – in a small, unassuming package. Visitors can whitewater raft through an eco-conscious city where a revitalized downtown attracts crowds for culture (there's a significant Basque heritage) and cuisine.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

  • Stanley


    Founded by fur trappers in the 1820s, the town of Stanley now serves as a gateway to Idaho's Sawtooth Wilderness. Besides serving as a base for adventure, the thriving town has several restaurants and cafes, and hosts numerous summer music festivals.
    Photo courtesy of Visit Idaho

We asked our readers that question, and for the past four weeks, they've been answering with their votes. The top 10 winners in the category Best Idaho Attraction are as follows:

  1. World Center for Birds of Prey - Boise
  2. Hells Canyon National Recreation Area
  3. Craters Of The Moon National Monument - Arco
  4. Sawtooth National Forest
  5. Silver Creek Preserve
  6. The Palouse
  7. Shoshone Falls - Twin Falls
  8. Lake Coeur d'Alene - Coeur d'Alene
  9. Downtown Boise
  10. Stanley

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Steve BlyChad Case and Katie Williams (Traveling Spud) were chosen based on their knowledge and experience of travel in Idaho.

Congratulations to all these winning attractions!

License the 10Best Readers' Choice Award Logo



AlertThe Experts

Steve Bly

Steve Bly

Steve Bly

Chad Case

Chad Case

Chad Case

Katie Williams

Katie Williams

Katie Williams