Whether you’re interested in a hub and spoke tour from Missoula, a history tour through Montana’s Bitterroot Valley, a scenic loop tour, or a full day in Glacier National Park, Glacier Country Tourism has itineraries to help your group tour have the best experience in “Big Sky Country.” Fall is arguably one of the best and most beautiful times to visit Glacier Country., when the temperatures are ideal for outdoor adventures, and recreation opportunities are limitless. Come discover Western Montana’s golden season.
Kalispell is located just 45 minutes from the West Entrance to Glacier National Park. A wilderness of lakes, towering peaks, and remnants of glaciers is readily accessible. Stop in West Glacier and get your provisions for the day. Include snacks and water, as those are scarce once you head into the park. Travel to the grand, hand-hewn Lake McDonald Lodge (20 minutes from West Glacier) where you can hop aboard a red bus for a tour of the 50-mile-long Going-to-the-Sun Road (various tour lengths available). The historic canvas-top tour buses were introduced in the 1930s and have since been restored and outfitted with propane engines—a gift from the Ford Motor Co.
Make your way around Kalispell and climb aboard a historic trolley for a customized tour—your group is in for a treat. The guide will help lay out the history of downtown Kalispell and its historic homes and tell the story of the famous people who resided in them. Afterward, Lonesome Dove Guest Ranch is available for a fun afternoon horseback ride followed by chuckwagon dinners.
Tour the grounds of Purple Mountain Lavender just above Flathead Lake in Lakeside, Montana, featuring more than 1,000 lavender plants of 25 different varieties all grown in a chemical-free environment. Take in breathtaking views of the Flathead Valley and learn about all the different uses for lavender—from oil distillation and cooking, to drying for arrangements. If your itinerary schedule is tight and you’d rather have a class brought to your group, they are available at your hotel location and are great fun for everyone. Deb—the owner—will introduce you to lavender cookies and lemonade and show you how to make lavender sachets so you can take some Montana lavender home with you.
Explore Missoula with a River City Brews Cruise. The microbrew industry is more than alive and well in Montana, with 30 breweries in Western Montana’s Glacier Country alone. Tour Missoula’s finest breweries with a downtown self-guided walking tour. If you are looking for a less strenuous way to visit our breweries, River City Brews Rafting Tours lets you fill up a growler with your favorite brew and enjoy either the Blackfoot or Clark Fork rivers while sipping suds with 12 of your friends, or strangers who will become friends by the end of the tour.
Llama trekking is a wildly fun way to hike Western Montana, and one of those totally unique experiences you’ve likely never done before. When you take a pack trip with a llama you get to hike into the mountains or forest without having to carry your gear. That’s because a llama does it for you! Local outfitters like Swan Mountain Llama Trekking encourage you to “Take a trek with the ‘Camels of the Clouds.’” The company has guides ready to accommodate you on a llama trek through popular hiking spots like the Swan Mountain Range and other areas around Glacier National Park.
Llama Trekking with Swan Mountain Outfitters
Credit: Andy Austin