comScore
Downtown Boise picture in Boise
Anna Gorin / Getty Images

Details

  • Shopping, Sightseeing, Neighborhood/Area Type
  • 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.2
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    5.0
  • Food Scene
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    4.0

Read about how we rank Things to Do.

Downtown Boise – or Boise's central business district – sits north of the Boise River and welcomes visitors with its local restaurants, shops and attractions. Here you'll find the Idaho State Capitol Building and the nearby Zoo Boise and Albertsons Stadium, home to the Boise State Broncos football team. Two markets operate from the spring to the fall and winter, and a collection of popular events, such as Restaurant Week, fill downtown Boise's calendar.

Recent visitors highly recommend spending time in downtown Boise, also suggesting that travelers check out the district's ever-changing lineup of events on downtownboise.org to take advantage of the vibrant activities. Others highlight the high-caliber dining establishments and nightlife venues.

This vibrant downtown is the place to dine, shop and just meander around, and visitors should build some time in to do just that during a trip to Boise. The hours of operation for the various restaurants, shops and attractions vary, as do their price points. For more information, visit downtown Boise's website.

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Anne Frank picture in Boise
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Old Idaho Penitentiary picture in Boise
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#1 Boise River Greenbelt The Boise River Greenbelt stretches 25 miles along the Boise River and offers runners, joggers, walkers and cyclists a beautiful place to get some exercise. Since it travels through the ... Read more » Anna Gorin / Getty Images

#2 Kathryn Albertson Park The 41-acre Kathryn Albertson Park is filled with broad footpaths and peppered with gazebos, which are ideal for the main attraction here: wildlife watching. Along with various waterfowl, herons and ... Read more » Courtesy Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau

#3 Idaho Botanical Garden The Idaho Botanical Garden occupies more than 30 acres of what used to be the grounds of the Old Idaho Penitentiary, but now those acres are filled with gardens ranging ... Read more » Terryfic3D / Getty Images

#4 Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial Occupying less than an acre of space, the Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial is a park "inspired by Anne Frank's faith in humanity," according to the City of ... Read more » Courtesy Wassmuth Center for Human Rights

#5 Downtown Boise Downtown Boise – or Boise's central business district – sits north of the Boise River and welcomes visitors with its local restaurants, shops and attractions. Here you'll find the Idaho ... Read more » Anna Gorin / Getty Images

#6 Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area Less than a 20-mile drive north of downtown Boise, the Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area attracts visitors to its ski and snowboard slopes in the winter and its hiking trails ... Read more » Steve Bly / Getty Images

#7 Old Idaho Penitentiary The Old Idaho Penitentiary started receiving criminals to its cell blocks, solitary confinement and even gallows back in 1872 – and closed in 1973, after a prison riot. Over the 101-year ... Read more » Terryfic3D / Getty Images

#8 Wineries In the last few decades, Idaho's wine industry has experienced remarkable growth. According to Visit Idaho, the state contains upward of 50 wineries and more than 1,200 acres ... Read more » Courtesy Cinder Wines

Boise River Greenbelt picture in Boise
Kathryn Albertson Park picture in Boise
Idaho Botanical Garden picture in Boise
Anne Frank picture in Boise
Downtown Boise picture in Boise
Bogus Basin picture in Boise
Old Idaho Penitentiary picture in Boise
Wineries picture in Boise
Boise River Greenbelt picture in Boise
Kathryn Albertson Park picture in Boise
Idaho Botanical Garden picture in Boise
Anne Frank picture in Boise
Downtown Boise picture in Boise
Bogus Basin picture in Boise
Old Idaho Penitentiary picture in Boise
Wineries picture in Boise

The Boise River Greenbelt is a must-do, especially if you're traveling in fall when the trees turn gold. Anna Gorin / Getty Images

Kathryn Albertson Park is one of the most beloved parks in Boise, and it sits conveniently along the Boise River Greenbelt. Courtesy Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau

Starting in 1973, the former prison grounds of the Old Idaho Penitentiary underwent a transformation of what would become the beautiful and serene Idaho Botanical Garden. Terryfic3D / Getty Images

Occupying less than an acre of space, the Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial is a park "inspired by Anne Frank's faith in humanity," according to the City of Boise. Courtesy Wassmuth Center for Human Rights

Downtown Boise is filled with interesting shops and dining establishments. Anna Gorin / Getty Images

Powder hounds have only good things to say about Bogus Basin's ski runs and views. Steve Bly / Getty Images

Touring the Old Idaho Penitentiary gives visitors a sense of what it was like to be incarcerated in the late 1800s and early to mid-1900s. Terryfic3D / Getty Images

The Boise area is home to an up-and-coming wine scene, with more than 20 nearby wineries to explore. One traveler favorite is Cinder Wines. Courtesy Cinder Wines

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