15 days in Montana Itinerary

15 days in Montana Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in Montana Itinerary

Start: San Francisco
Fly + taxi:  5​h 15​min
1
Glacier National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
2
Great Falls
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
3
Helena
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 15​min
4
Cooke City
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
5
West Yellowstone
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
6
Missoula
— 4 nights
Fly:  5​h 15​min
End: San Francisco

3
nights
Glacier National Park

Glacier National Park ©
The glaciers from which Glacier National Park takes its name mostly dissipated eons ago, but they left behind a scoured landscape of high and steep mountain peaks, sparkling lakes, lush alpine meadows, and thick forests.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Highline Trail and Virginia Falls. Spend the 10th (Wed) exploring nature at Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. Next up on the itinerary: hike along Iceberg Lake Trail, take in the dramatic natural features at Jackson Glacier Overlook, get to know the fascinating history of Garden Wall, and cruise along Going-to-the-Sun Road.

For photos, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Glacier National Park planner .

San Francisco to Glacier National Park is an approximately 5.5-hour combination of flight and taxi. You can also drive; or do a combination of bus, train, and taxi. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from San Francisco to Glacier National Park. When traveling from San Francisco in July, plan for a bit warmer days in Glacier National Park, with highs around 85°F, while nights are slightly colder with lows around 49°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Thu) so you can drive to Great Falls.

Things to do in Glacier National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Virginia Falls ©
Virginia Falls
Garden Wall ©
Garden Wall

2
nights
Great Falls

Great Falls ©
Great Falls is a city in and the county seat of Cascade County, Montana, United States. On the 12th (Fri), take in the architecture and atmosphere at Holy Spirit Catholic Parish, listen to music at Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, and then immerse yourself in nature at Giant Springs State Park. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 13th (Sat): get engrossed in the history at Ursuline Centre, pause for some serene contemplation at St. Ann Cathedral, then admire the masterpieces at C.M. Russell Museum, and finally steep yourself in history at First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park.

To find more things to do, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Great Falls route planner .

You can drive from Glacier National Park to Great Falls in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, train, and bus. In July, daytime highs in Great Falls are 86°F, while nighttime lows are 53°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Helena.

Things to do in Great Falls

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park
Highlights from your plan
Giant Springs State Park ©
Giant Springs State Park
First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park ©
St. Ann Cathedral ©
St. Ann Cathedral

1
night
Helena

Helena ©
Helena is the capital city of the U.S. Kick off your visit on the 14th (Sun): ponder the world of politics at Montana State Capitol, explore the striking landscape of Gates of the Mountains, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Cathedral of St. Helena, and finally admire the striking features of Original Governor's Mansion.

To find reviews, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Helena trip itinerary builder tool .

Drive from Great Falls to Helena in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle. In July, daytime highs in Helena are 89°F, while nighttime lows are 57°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sun) so you can travel to Cooke City.

Things to do in Helena

Historic Sites Nature Parks
Highlights from your plan
Gates of the Mountains ©
Gates of the Mountains
Cathedral of St. Helena ©
Cathedral of St. Helena
Original Governor's Mansion ©
Original Governor's Mansion

1
night
Cooke City

Cooke City ©
Cooke City-Silver Gate is a census-designated place (CDP) in Park County, Montana, United States. On the 15th (Mon), stroll through Clarks Fork Trail, then take an in-depth tour of Cooke City Montana Museum, then look for gifts at Sylvia's Sweet Shoppe, and finally cruise along Beartooth Hwy.

Planning Cooke City trip won't be overwheling when you use's Insprock itinerary maker.

You can drive from Helena to Cooke City in 4.5 hours. Prepare for little chillier weather when traveling from Helena in July: high temperatures in Cooke City hover around 73°F and lows are around 39°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Mon) early enough to travel to West Yellowstone.

Things to do in Cooke City

Trails Parks Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Cooke City Montana Museum ©
Cooke City Montana Museum

3
nights
West Yellowstone

West Yellowstone ©
The town of West Yellowstone has served as a gateway to Yellowstone National Park since the early 1900s.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Earthquake Lake and Yellowstone Historic Center. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Horseback Riding Tours and Hebgen Lake. Next up on the itinerary: get interesting insight from Tours, get your game on at Madison Avenue Old Time Photos, look for all kinds of wild species at Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center, and stop by Eagle's Store.

Find out how to plan West Yellowstone trip without stress by asking Inspirock to help create an itinerary.

You can drive from Cooke City to West Yellowstone in 5 hours. In July, daily temperatures in West Yellowstone can reach 77°F, while at night they dip to 39°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Thu) early enough to drive to Missoula.

Things to do in West Yellowstone

Tours Outdoors Parks
Highlights from your plan
Earthquake Lake ©
Earthquake Lake
Fishing Charters & Tours
Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center ©
Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center

4
nights
Missoula

Missoula ©
Missoula is a city in the U.S. Popular historic sites such as Garnet Ghost Town and St. Ignatius Mission are in your itinerary. You'll discover tucked-away gems like National Bison Range and A Carousel for Missoula. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Missoula: Philipsburg (Gem Mountain Sapphire Mine, Philipsburg Treasures and Gift, & more). The adventure continues: look for all kinds of wild species at Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, examine the collection at Aerial Fire Depot and Smokejumper Center, and stroll through Jacob Island Dog Park.

To see reviews, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, read our Missoula sightseeing planning site .

You can drive from West Yellowstone to Missoula in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or do a combination of shuttle and flight. In July, Missoula is a bit warmer than West Yellowstone - with highs of 88°F and lows of 53°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 22nd (Mon) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Missoula

Parks Wildlife Theme Parks

Side Trips

Philipsburg, National Bison Range, St. Ignatius Mission
Highlights from your plan
National Bison Range ©
National Bison Range
Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation ©
Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
Garnet Ghost Town ©
Garnet Ghost Town

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