Getting Around Glacier National Park
The best way to get around Glacier National Park is by car or by using one of the park's shuttle services. If you're arriving by car, Highway 2 runs along the southern edge of the park, while Highway 89 offers access on the east side. Glacier Park International Airport (FCA), located half an hour from the park and about 10 miles northeast of the city of Kalispell, is serviced by Delta, United, Alaska and Allegiant airlines and offers rental cars from several major companies. There is also one taxi company available at the airport, Glacier Taxi.
The park offers a variety of shuttle services, including a free hop on, hop off shuttle system that runs point-to-point along the Going-to-the-Sun Road between the Apgar Visitor Center and St. Mary Visitor Center. A fee-based shuttle service, operated by Xanterra, runs from the St. Mary Visitor Center and Many Glacier Hotel/Swiftcurrent Motor Inn and connects to the Going-to-the-Sun Road shuttle. You can also take the fee-based shuttle ($10 for adults and $5 for children) from west side locations, including the Lake McDonald Lodge, Village Inn or West Glacier train station. Parking at the shuttle hubs is free and all shuttles are air-conditioned and offer educational narration along the route via a free downloadable audio app. Some shuttles feature bike racks. The shuttle system runs during peak season from July to Labor Day.
Although driving is the best way to get around the park and the best way to take advantage of the spectacular scenery, be aware that road closures are common, especially during the winter. Check the park's website or stop at a visitor information center for real-time updates on road and hiking trail closures, as well as important safety information. Also make sure to fill up your gas tank and pack snacks, water and additional clothing, as facilities along the park roads and trails are minimal.
|Red Bus Tours||
The park's vintage 1930s Red Buses feature roll-back tops, perfect for viewing the mountain scenery. Tours depart from both the east side and the west side of the park. On the east side, tours leave from Swiftcurrent Motor Inn, Many Glacier Hotel and Rising Sun Motor Inn, as well as from various locations outside the park including the town of St. Mary's, Johnson's Hotel (for hotel guests only) and at the Glacier Park Lodge. On the west side, you can hop on a tour at the Apgar Visitor Center, Village Inn at Apgar and Lake McDonald Lodge. A variety of tours are offered, including the all-day Crown of the Continent Tour (tickets start at $94 for adults, $47 for children, and vary in price depending on pick-up location). East side tours run from early June to late September and west side tours operate from late May to early October. Each of the fleet's 33 vehicles seats 17 passengers, so tours sell out quickly. Book tickets online or reserve and purchase at any of the park's visitor centers.
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