Bozeman, Montana is located in Gallatin County and is just over an hour away from Yellowstone National Park and Big Sky Resort. This picturesque city was named after trailblazer John Bozeman, who opened a way for pioneers to travel from the Oregon Trail to the mining town of Virginia City, Montana.
This new route, which opened in 1864, was named the Bozeman Trail. In the same year, John Bozeman helped found the city that also received his name.
Surrounded by several significant mountain ranges, Bozeman offers some incredible views of Montana’s stunning scenery. These ranges include the Bridger Mountains, Tobacco Root Mountains, Big Belt Mountains, Horseshoe Hills, the Gallatin Range, and the Madison Range.
With towering peaks in almost every direction, there are countless outdoor activities and adventures for locals and tourists alike to enjoy.
Bozeman is also home to Montana State University, the state’s largest university. The campus and surrounding area provide museums, restaurants, and galleries and are close to many Downtown Bozeman attractions.
The city can be reached via Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport and is not far from Yellowstone National Park itself. It features a wide variety of hotels, cabins, and vacation rentals to entice tourists to stay and experience all the area has to offer.
- Best Luxury Hotel in Bozeman – Kimpton Armory Hotel Bozeman
- Best Mid-Range Hotel in Bozeman – The LARK
- Best Budget Hotel in Bozeman – Baymont by Wyndham Bozeman
- Best Vacation Rental in Bozeman – Mountain View Carriage House
Best Areas to Stay in Bozeman
- Best area for first-timers/tourists – Downtown Bozeman
- Best area for budget travelers – Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport
- Best area for luxury travelers – Montana State University Area
- Best area for safety – Montana State University Area
- Best area for families – Bozeman Hot Springs
- Best area for food – Downtown Bozeman
- Best all-around area – Downtown Bozeman
Where to Stay in Bozeman, Montana
1. Downtown Bozeman
Downtown Bozeman offers a variety of eclectic shops, restaurants, bars, and art galleries that make the area a must-visit location. Its proximity to other favorite Bozeman attractions and easy access to museums, parks, and eateries provides another draw for travelers and tourists.
The unique vibe of Main Street and its 20-minute drive from the airport mean this is one of the best places to stay in Bozeman and is a great location for first-time visitors!
Many of the Main Street area hotels have spacious accommodations, an indoor pool, a fitness center, a business center, and a complimentary hot breakfast, and they are conveniently located.
If you are looking to stay in Downtown Bozeman, here are some of the best things to do in the area of Downtown Bozeman. Downtown Bozeman has some genuinely unique stores that will provide hours of fun.
Whether you’re only window shopping or out to spend some serious cash, you’ll find plenty of options in the town center. Make sure to visit Cactus Records and see why they’re proud when people say, “That place is a weirdo store!”
Visit Earth’s Treasures just off Main Street. This place is fantastic! It sells authentic fossils and a variety of beautiful objects, all made from minerals, gemstones, and rocks. Handmade jewelry, home décor, and treasures from Montana’s backyard can all be purchased here. The shop also sells gold prospecting supplies for anyone who wants to try their luck at panning or metal detecting!
Bozeman Farmers’ Market is an excellent way to sample local produce, meat, dairy products, and herbs. The market also offers local artists’ arts and crafts and delicious treats, drinks, and food from famous culinary artisans.
The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company is a toy store unlike any other! It features unique and unusual games, toys, stuffed animals, and learning activities that aren’t just for the kids. The whole family can find activities that will engage and delight! The store also sells dolls, building sets, outdoor toys, and fun impulse buys that make you want to take home one of everything!
Enjoy the many galleries featuring local art. Downtown Bozeman features many independent art galleries that display work by both current and historical artists. The Tierney Fine Art gallery, the Montana Trails Gallery, and the Artists’ Gallery are just a few places you’ll want to visit. Make a day of it and enjoy lunch between visits at one of the many nearby restaurants!
If you decide that you want to be centrally located, near Main Street, and stay in Downtown Bozeman, here are our top recommendations:
- Best Budget Hotel in Downtown Bozeman – Treasure State Hostel
- Best Mid-Range Hotel in Downtown Bozeman – LARK
- Best Luxury Hotel in Downtown Bozeman – Kimpton Armory Hotel Bozeman
See Related: Best Things to Do in West Yellowstone, Montana
2. Montana State University
The neighborhood surrounding Montana State University is filled with museums, college sports arenas, and local restaurants. The university campus is also home to the Smithsonian-affiliated Museum of the Rockies. This area is saturated with vibrant college energy and has some of the best Bozeman hotels.
Accommodations in this part of the city often include free Wi-Fi, comfortable guest rooms, a hot tub, an indoor pool, and a complimentary hot breakfast. Some are also pet friendly.
This neighborhood is a great place to stay if you’d like to be within walking distance of several university-related attractions. If you’re staying in the Montana State University area, here are the top things to see around Montana State University.
The Smithsonian Affiliated Museum of the Rockies holds both state and federal fossils. It’s known for its cultural contributions, exhibits, and programs. The Museum of the Rockies has many dinosaur fossils, including a fully-mounted T. rex skeleton. Visitors will also find planetarium shows, lectures, educational programs, and a museum store.
Experience the American Computer and Robotics Museum. Its exhibits cover 4,000 years of human history and include displays ranging from early cuneiform tablets and the space race to the first personal computers and artificial intelligence.
Most people may find the thought of a grizzly bear encounter terrifying. However, the Montana Grizzly Encounter is safe, educational, and very enjoyable! In fact, this destination is actually a grizzly bear rescue and educational sanctuary that provides a new home for rescued grizzlies.
See nearby Downtown Bozeman, which is a short drive from Montana State University and features dozens of restaurants, bars, and pubs that provide a host of cuisine options. The area is also home to unique shops, art galleries, and experiences that can be enjoyed during an evening getaway or for a full-day outing.
Check out the Montana Science Center. The science center is an amazing, family-friendly destination that will keep everyone learning and playing for hours! Popular exhibits include the 125-gallon Montana fish tank, the Universe, Dangerous Nature, and Physics Place. The science center also offers the STEAMlab where kids can engage in hands-on science, engineering, coding, and robotics programs.
If this sounds like the area for you, here are the best accommodations in the Montana State University area:
- Best Budget Hotel in the MSU area – Sapphire Motel
- Best Mid-Range Hotel in the MSU area – RSVP Hotel
- Best Luxury Hotel in the MSU area – Element Bozeman
See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Paradise Valley, Montana
3. Near I-90 and 7th Avenue
The area immediately surrounding Interstate 90 and 7th Avenue features a variety of comfortable hotels and accommodations. Some are pet friendly and offer complimentary Wi-Fi, breakfast, and free parking.
The average nightly price of hotels in the area depends upon the season and which hotel class you choose. Several parks, museums, and other historical sites make this neighborhood a great place to stay. If you’re in the area, here are the best things to see around I90 and 7th Avenue in Bozeman.
If you’re a history buff who enjoys seeing jail cells and hanging gallows, Gallatin History Museum is the place for you! With many permanent exhibits, a photo archive, a research library, and a bookstore, the Gallatin History Museum is an amazing spot to learn about life in the early days of Southwest Montana.
Enjoy a picnic at Walton Homestead Park. In addition to picnic tables and shelters, this lovely park provides a playground, a beautiful grass area, and even a place for dogs to play, all surrounded by the picturesque Montana scenery!
The Gallatin Art Crossing and Bozeman Sculpture Park provide art to the public by placing sculptures throughout the Downtown Bozeman area. Tours of the sculpture park and the rest of the collection owned by Gallatin Art Crossing can be scheduled for $5 per person.
The Ponderosa Social Club is a restaurant and bar like no other! In addition to amazing food and craft cocktails, the Ponderosa features bowling lanes, billiard tables, and a tasting lounge. It also has a gaming parlor with 18 gaming machines and daily drawings. Whether you’re there for the food or for a quick game of bowling, this club won’t disappoint!
Walk along the Cherry River trail. This tranquil one-mile path takes visitors through the beautiful land surrounding the East Gallatin River. Bird watchers, nature lovers, and everyone looking for a quiet place to reflect will love this peaceful location. With benches and grassy areas to sit all along the trail, it can provide rejuvenation for both body and mind.
If you decide that this is where you want to be in Bozeman, here are our choices for the top places to stay:
- Best Budget Hotel in the I-90 and 7th Ave. area – Baymont by Wyndham Bozeman
- Best Mid-Range Hotel in the I-90 and 7th Ave. area – Microtel Inn & Suites
- Best Luxury Hotel in the I-90 and 7th Ave. area – Best Western Plus GranTree Inn
See Related: Best Things to Do in Gardiner, Montana
4. Bozeman Hot Springs
The Bozeman Hot Springs area primarily features some of Montana’s best natural hot springs. Initially discovered in the late 1800s, this popular location is a lovely spot for a romantic getaway. It contains 12 different pools, each with its own temperature.
This excellent location also offers a complete fitness center and a steam room and hosts live events. Thomany of the hotels in this section is near Downtown Bozeman. They are all a short drive to the hot springs and provide guests with excellent amenities. Here are the best things to do near the hot springs:
Relax in the pools at the hot springs. The Bozeman Hot Springs features 12 pools, each with a water temperature ranging from 57-106 degrees Fahrenheit. The pools are heated naturally, with the water coming from an underground well. Eight of the 12 pools are found indoors, with the remaining four being outside.
Enjoy the amenities at the hot springs fitness facility. The fitness center at the Bozeman hot springs is considered a state-of-the-art, luxury facility that features top-of-the-line strength training and cardio equipment. Complimentary lockers, personal training sessions, and group fitness classes are also offered. Once you’re done with your workout, head over to the hot springs pools to relax and unwind!
Try ax throwing at the Lookout Throwing Co. If you feel like letting off a little steam or just testing your aim and accuracy, visit the Lookout Throwing Co. in Bozeman. The location features six bays with two targets to accommodate groups of up to eight people. This unique venue is a great way to spend an evening after a full day of sightseeing and exploring!
Find your way through the Bozeman Maze. If you’re visiting Bozeman during September or October, you’ve got to check out the Bozeman Maze! The owners create a new and unique maze constructed of hay bales yearly. Visitors must find their way through the many passages and dead ends to complete the maze correctly. This venue also provides other fall-based activities, including games, corn bins, hay rides, mini-train rides, pumpkins, concessions, and a PowerJump bungee trampoline!
The Bozeman Campground is a fantastic place to bring your trailer or RV, rent a cabin, or tent camp while enjoying the beautiful Montana scenery. The campground is within driving distance of Yellowstone National Park, Virginia City, and the Lewis and Clark Caverns. It features full bathrooms and showers, a laundry facility, essential Wi-Fi, and a complimentary breakfast.
If this all sounds great to you, there are plenty of accommodations with easy access to the Bozeman Hot Springs:
- Best Budget Hotel for Hot Springs access – Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Bozeman
- Best Mid-Range Hotel for Hot Springs access – La Quinta Inn & Suites Bozeman
- Best Luxury Hotel for Hot Springs access – Residence Inn by Marriott Bozeman Downtown
See Related: Best Breweries in Montana
5. Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport
Hotels near the Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport provide a convenient location for airline travel and a starting point for experiencing everything the Bozeman area offers.
This neighborhood is close to the historic downtown area; the Bridger Bowl Ski Area provides access to Yellowstone National Park and many more local attractions. Many of the hotels here also offer a complimentary airport shuttle for easy access to the Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport. If you are looking into this area, here are the best things to see and do.
During the ski season, the Bridger Bowl Ski Area is a fantastic place to spend the day skiing, snowboarding, or relaxing at the lodge. In addition to traditional skiing, Bridger Bowl features some of the most challenging and potentially dangerous ski terrain within any ski area boundary.
There are no hazard markings, grooming, or marked trails to warn about rock cliffs, steep chutes, or unexpected cliff falls that Bridger Bowl’s Ridge Terrain features. Additional safety guidelines exist for those wishing to experience this more extreme part of the mountain.
If you are visiting during summer, play a round of golf at the Bridger Creek Golf Course. Located at the foot of the Bridger Mountains, this golf course is known as one of Montana’s most beautiful and challenging courses. The 18-hole course also features an indoor golf simulator, golf lessons, a Pro Shop, junior golf camps, and family nights. The well-manicured greens, uninterrupted skies, and incredible views of the nearby mountains make this a top destination for golf enthusiasts!
If you’re ready to take a short break from nature, visit the Gallatin Valley Mall. With dozens of stores, shops, eateries, and entertainment, this mall is a great place to pick up a few last-minute items or to spend the day relaxing. A movie theater, bookstore, kids’ play area, and an arcade are also located on-site. Other shops and activities will also be available if you’re there during the holiday season.
Take out to Palisade Falls. Though this fantastic location is outside Bozeman in nearby Livingston, it is worth the drive! The easy paved trail begins at the East Fork of Hyalite Creek before ending at the stunning Palisade Falls. Found at the southern base of Palisade Mountain, the falls plunge more than 80 feet from a vertical rock wall to create a breathtaking natural attraction.
If you’re looking for a way to explore the nature and beauty of the Bozeman area, the Custer Gallatin National Forest is where you want to be! The area contains two dozen camping and cabin sites with various amenities and facilities. Activities in the national park include horseback riding, fishing, hiking, biking, picnicking, boating, and lots of wildlife viewing.
If you choose to stay near the Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport, here are some of its top accommodations:
- Best Budget Hotel in the Airport area – La Quinta Inn & Suites Bozeman Airport
- Best Mid-Range Hotel in the Airport area – Holiday Inn Express Belgrade-Bozeman Area
- Best Luxury Hotel in the Airport area – Country Inn & Suites by Radisson
See Related: Best Things to Do in Billings, Montana
What are some of the best hotels in Bozeman, Montana?
Some of the best hotels in Bozeman include the Element Bozeman, the Kimpton Armory Hotel Bozeman, the Residence Inn by Marriott Bozeman Downtown, and the SpringHill Suites by Marriott Bozeman.
What are some budget-friendly Bozeman, Montana, accommodations?
Some great budget-friendly hotels in Bozeman include the Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Bozeman, the Sapphire Motel, and the Baymont by Wyndham Bozeman.
What is the best place to stay in Bozeman, Montana, for winter sports?
The Country Inn & Suites by Radisson is one of the most convenient places to stay for hitting the slopes at the Bridger Bowl Ski Area, as it provides easy access to Interstate 90.
Where is the best place to camp near Bozeman, Montana?
The Bozeman Campground at the hot springs is one of the best campgrounds in the area. It has fantastic facilities and many activities and is the perfect location to enjoy all the hot springs attractions.