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Best things to do in Boise

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Where in the world: USA  /  Idaho  /  Boise

Top 15 things to do in Boise

1. Boise River Greenbelt

A lush greenspace, Boise River Greenbelt stretches over 32 km (20 mi). This once-neglected space was once used for dumping trash. In the 1960s, the city began transforming it for recreation. The greenbelt now stretches from Lucky Peak Dam to just past Eagle Road. Its trails are used for leisure by cyclists, joggers, and walkers. It's also an alternative commuter trail. Much of the trail is paved, but cars are prohibited. The tree-lined greenbelt winds through numerous riverside parks, communities, and wildlife habitats, as well as past landmarks, such as the Anne Frank and Human Rights Memorial.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Tours from $60 › Learn more about Boise River Greenbelt

2. Old Idaho Penitentiary

Experience what prison life was like for the most notorious criminals of Idaho's "Wild West" and the guards that worked there at Old Idaho Penitentiary. The prison first received inmates in 1872 and remained a functioning prison for 101 years, housing a total of 13,000 inmates. Walk through buildings like the dining hall, women's ward, and the maximum security area--Cell House 5--which served as Death Row. If you are feeling brave, lock yourself into one of the solitary confinement cells to better understand the harsh conditions of the prison's past. You can also take a guided tour. The facility is home to multiple exhibits, notably the J. Curtis Earl Memorial Exhibit of Arms and Armaments, which features one of the nation's largest collections of military history from Medieval times, the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, World War I, and World War II.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Old Idaho Penitentiary

3. Idaho State Capitol Building

The Idaho State Capitol in Boise is the home of the government of the state of Idaho. Although Lewiston, Idaho, briefly served as Idaho's capital from the formation of Idaho Territory in 1863, the territorial Legislature moved the capital to Boise on December 24, 1864.
Construction of the first portion of the capitol building began in the summer of 1905, 15 years after Idaho gained statehood. Architects were John E. Tourtellotte and Charles Hummel. Tourtellotte was a Connecticut native whose career began in Massachusetts and skyrocketed further when he moved to Boise. Hummel was a German immigrant who partnered with Tourtellotte in 1903. The final cost of the building was just over $2 million; it was completed in 1920. The architects used varied materials to construct the building and their design was inspired by Classical examples.
Tourtellotte and Hummel used four types of marble: red marble from Georgia, gray marble from Alaska, green marble from Vermont, and black marble from Italy. Architectural inspirations included St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, St Paul's Cathedral in London and the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. The most prominent feature of the capitol is its dome. Surmounting this dome is a bronze eagle, 5ft tall. The capitol building is 208ft high, occupies an area of 201720sqft, and contains over 50000sqft of artistically carved marble.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Tours from $21 › Learn more about Idaho State Capitol Building

4. Boise River Guided Rafting, Swimming and Wildlife Tour

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We specialize in river trips meant for folks of broad experience levels with a unique outdoor opportunity. Get out and enjoy the river with Boise River Outdoor Opportunities! We can do private trips but please call to schedule a chartered raft. Check out our website for more information!!
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Tours from $60 › More about this tour at viator.com ›
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5. Room Escape Games

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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6. Zoo Boise

Suggested duration: 2 hours
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7. Idaho Botanical Garden

The Idaho Botanical Garden (IBG) is a nonprofit botanical garden located on 50 acres (200,000 m2) at 2355 North Old Penitentiary Road, Boise, Idaho, United States. Until 1973 the site served as the Old Idaho State Penitentiary's farm and nursery. After the penitentiary was closed, the land lay dormant for more than a decade, and in 1984 the gardens were first created. The facility is operated by a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation. To help fund the garden, an admission fee is charged for entry.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
Learn more about Idaho Botanical Garden

8. Boise Scavenger Hunt Adventure

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Turn Boise into a giant game board with this fun scavenger hunt adventure! This challenge combines the excitement of the Amazing Race with a 3-hour city walking tour. Guided from any smart phone, teams make their way among well known and overlooked gems of the city, solving clues and completing challenges while learning local history. Note: Pricing is per individual, but teams must book together in order to be included in the same adventure.
Suggested duration: 2 to 3 hours
Tours from $21 › More about this tour at viator.com ›

9. World Center For Birds of Prey

The World Center for Birds of Prey in Boise, Idaho, is the headquarters for The Peregrine Fund, an international non-profit organization founded in 1970 that conserves endangered raptors around the world.
Built 38 years ago in 1984, the World Center for Birds of Prey is located on 580 acres (2.3 km2) on a hilltop overlooking Boise, south of the airport and east of Kuna. The campus consists of the business offices of The Peregrine Fund, breeding facilities for endangered raptors, the Velma Morrison Interpretive Center, and the Herrick Collections Building, which houses a large research library and the Archives of Falconry.

The Peregrine Fund is known for its worldwide conservation and recovery efforts of rare and endangered raptors. The organization's first recovery effort focused on the peregrine falcon, which was facing extinction due to the widespread use of the chemical DDT. The peregrine falcon was removed from the U.S. Endangered Species list in 1999 at an international celebration held in Boise.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about World Center For Birds of Prey

11. Warhawk Air Museum, Nampa

The Warhawk Air Museum is an aviation museum located in Nampa, Idaho.

Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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12. Boise Bash Scavenger Hunt

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Our very unique, immersive adventures are the only ones of their kind. We, unlike other companies, provide your very own remote, interactive, live host to assist and encourage you along through your phone. We are an Austin, TX-based global custom event design company offering scavenger hunts and other events in 300+ cities in North America and beyond. Our specially hand-crafted adventures are equal parts tour, creative challenge, detective hunt, and social experiment! Guests get to discover in an alternate reality our favorite hidden gems off the beaten trail and creatively interpret fun art, history, and culture clues - for points! They get to enjoy fame and glory while appearing on our website’s international leaderboard, no matter what their score. They get to essentially race other teams in other cities, even if they don’t have competitors who have signed up in their city that day. Get ready to discover unusual oddities, laugh out loud, and make the experience your own!
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Tours from $27 › More about this tour at viator.com ›

13. Julia Davis Park

Julia Davis Park is a municipal park in the downtown region of Boise, Idaho. Created in 1907 with a land donation from Thomas Jefferson Davis, it is the first park in the "String of Pearls", the group of parks operated by the Boise Parks and Recreation Department that are located along the Boise River. Being centrally located in Boise, the park contains several prominent sites, including museums such as the Boise Art Museum, the Idaho Historical Museum, and the Idaho Black History Museum, as well as other attractions like Zoo Boise, the Idaho Rose Society, and the Gene Harris Band Shell. The Boise River Greenbelt runs through the park, which is bordered by Broadway Avenue to the east, Capital Boulevard to the west, the Boise River to the south, and Myrtle Street to the north. Other amenities at Julia Davis Park include river access, statues, a rose garden, a playground and tennis court, a pond with paddle boat rentals, and a pedestrian bridge that connects the park to Boise State University.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Tours from $27 › Learn more about Julia Davis Park

14. Camel's Back Park

Camel's Back Park is an 11-acre (4.5 ha) urban park in Boise, Idaho, managed by the Boise Parks and Recreation Department. The park includes picnic tables, play areas, an outdoor gym, practice fields, and facilities for tennis and volleyball. The park is adjacent to the 63-acre (25 ha) Camel's Back Reserve and the 292-acre (118 ha) Hulls Gulch Reserve.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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15. Kathryn Albertson Park

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Kathryn Albertson Park