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Sawtooth National Forest ©Mark Goebel

Rugged Idaho occupies an almost mythical place in the American imagination. It was the final home of Ernest Hemingway, and the qualities that transformed the writer into a literary icon are the same that have made Idaho legendary.

It is a harsh place of jagged peaks, waterfalls and deep canyon gorges, where the hardiest outdoorsmen can find adventure. But it is a place of stunning beauty as well, where visitors can fall into the soothing rhythm of fly fishing, ski pristine slopes, see wildlife in its natural habitat and experience a dynamic landscape that has, to a large degree, remained unspoiled.

In the early 1800s, explorers Lewis and Clark dazzled Americans back east with descriptions of Idaho, and pioneers began to trickle into the territory, though the state's population did not cross the million mark until the 1980s. Today, however, Idaho has changed from frontier outpost to posh locale. The real estate market has exploded, particularly in resort areas, with several celebrities taking up residence. Sun Valley, the state's original ski destination, is now a magnificent vacation spot.

In spite of its increasing popularity, Idaho has maintained its small-town, friendly nature. Boise, the state capital and largest city, has fewer than 220,000 residents. This is Idaho's allure.

Idaho is a splendid destination for outdoor recreation, from boating and white-water rafting to rock climbing and horseback riding to skiing and dog sledding; but, unlike neighbouring Colorado, the state remains a hideaway, tucked into a far corner of the US. Even the fashionable resort towns, like Sun Valley, Ketchum and Coeur d'Alene, for all their luxury remain laid back and unhurried, almost as if they too are in awe of the breath-taking scenery that surrounds them.

Climate Info

Idaho has a diverse climate with differing temperatures between north and south, but overall the air is dry and clear with little humidity. Generally the south is drier and has hotter summer temperatures, while the mountainous areas experience long and very cold winters with lots of snow. The best time to visit Idaho is in the late spring (May and June) and early autumn (late August and September).

In Boise, the capital of Idaho, average high temperatures in summer climb to about 90°F (32°C), and heatwaves are common in July and August. Winter temperatures typically average between 24°F (-4°C) and 37°F (3°C).

Getting Around

Boise's Green Belt path system makes walking, jogging and biking highly enjoyable. ValleyRide bus service is available, as are various taxi companies. For those with rental cars, Boise offers many convenient and inexpensive parking options.

Boise Airport (BOI)

LocationThe airport is located four miles (6km) from downtown Boise.
Time DifferenceGMT -7 (GMT -6 from mid-March to the first Sunday in November).

Tel: +1 208 383 3110.

Getting to city

Taxis, shuttles and ValleyRide buses into Boise are located at the lower level roadway outside baggage claim. The Sun Valley Express picks up passengers at the blue curb.

Car Rental

Avis, Alamo, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, and Thrifty have counters in the rental car lobby on the first floor.

Airpor Taxis

Metered taxis are located on the lower level roadway outside the baggage claim. Taxis park near the black coloured curb.

Airport Facilities

Facilities at the airport include food and beverage outlets, newsstands, gift shops, art exhibitions, ATMs and conference facilities.

Car Parking

Four parking options are available: short-term parking, garage parking, long-term surface parking and a remote lot with connecting shuttle service. Short-term parking is $2 per hour up to $21.50 per day. Long-term parking has a daily rate of $9 or $11.50 in the covered garage. The parking facilities accept cash, cheques and all major credit cards.


Lewiston-Nez Perce County Airport (LWS)

LocationLewiston-Nez Perce County Airport is located two miles (4km) south of downtown Lewiston.
Time DifferenceGMT -8 (GMT -7 from mid-March to the first Sunday in November).
Getting to city

Ride the Valley has an hourly service from the airport between 6.20am and around 7pm. Taxis are available to town. Some resorts and hotels also offer transfer services.

Car Rental

Car hire companies at the airport include Budget and Hertz.

Airpor Taxis

Taxis are available from the airport, however it is a good idea to book ahead as they may not be waiting.

Airport Facilities

Airport facilities are limited, but include a café, hair salon, FedEx and a lost and found.

Car Parking

Parking is available in clearly-marked short and long-term sections, and is free of charge.


Basque Museum and Cultural Center

A flood of immigrants from the Basque Country (Spain and France) built lives in the US, with immigration peaking in the 1830s. Idaho is one of five American states with a notable Basque heritage. The mission of the Basque Museum and Cultural Center is to perpetuate, preserve and promote
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Basque Museum and Cultural Center ©Mark Goebel


Wallace, Idaho has the distinction of a downtown centre in which every building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its historic pedigree and quaint demeanour makes it the perfect American small town, and Hollywood has taken advantage of this by filming a number of mov
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Wallace Historic District ©Jayjayp

Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area

Bogus Basin, the remarkable recreation area in Boise's backyard, has grown from a small ski hill with a rope tow into a large holiday ski destination with numerous chairlifts, three lodges, night skiing offerings and Nordic trails. Rental, repair and retail shops are available on site, a
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Bogus Basin ©PdxCobra

Craters of the Moon

About 15,000 years ago, Idaho was shaped by volcanoes, and Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve is a fascinating glimpse into the state's dramatic geological past with a vast landscape of hardened lava flows and tubes scattered with cinder cones and sagebrush. The landscape
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Craters of the Moon ©David Wilson

Travel Guide powered by www.wordtravels.com, copyright © Globe Media Ltd. All rights reserved. By its very nature much of the information in this guide is subject to change at short notice and travellers are urged to verify information on which they're relying with the relevant authorities. Globe Media and UNIGLOBE Travel does not accept any responsibility for any loss or inconvenience to any person as a result of information contained above.

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