We’re just going to say it…if you’ve been thinking of planning a spring or early summer vacation to Kalispell, northwest Montana and Glacier National Park, now is the time to make those plans a reality. From comfortable hotels to mouthwatering culinary offerings and Flathead Lake to outdoor adventures, there is so much to see, do and experience in Kalispell. This time of year is also lush, with rushing waterways, blooming wildflowers, snow-kissed mountain peaks and vibrant landscapes.

Here are 10 reasons to visit Kalispell this spring and summer.

1. It’s the prime time to bike the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park. Spring and early summer are dreamy in the Crown of the Continent, especially as the Going-to-the-Sun Road is not open to vehicular traffic, making it a paradise for bikers and hikers. While you can bike the road on your own (there are bike rentals available in Kalispell), Glacier Guides also offers guided day rides and multi-day bike riding adventures in the park.

PS: here’s what you need to know for visiting Glacier National Park in 2024, including when and where vehicle reservations are needed. Spoiler alert: no vehicle reservations are needed to get into Apgar.

2. Cherry blossoms. While Kalispell tends to fly under the radar when it comes to our cherry scene, we’ve got a great one. So much so that Country Living named Kalispell as one of the 30 best places to see cherry blossoms in the U.S. The best way to take in the cherry blossoms? Take a drive. During spring, cherry blossoms can be found all around Flathead Lake. From Kalispell, take U.S. Highway 93 south, turn left at Polson and then come back up the lake via Montana Highway 35. Be sure to take advantage of scenic pullouts and the cute towns that line the lake.

3. Fewer people. Many of Montana’s visitors come during the height of the summer season, making spring and early summer a prime time to visit. Using Kalispell as your hub, it’s easy to get away from it all, with room to breathe and abundant trails that are perfect for taking a walk, a hike or a bike ride. If you want to explore Glacier National Park, the Bob Marshall Wilderness, Flathead National Forest and the region with less people, this is the time to do it.

4. Flathead Lake. The largest natural freshwater lake in the West, Flathead Lake is nearly 200 square miles and has 185 miles of shoreline. During the time of year, hit the lake on a guided kayaking tour with Sea Me Paddle, cruise the lake aboard The Far West, hike on Wild Horse Island State Park (accessible via boat/kayak), pull in a lake trout on a guided fishing trip or simply take a drive to enjoy the view.

5. Cowboy up. If you’re looking to experience the West, Kalispell is a great place to hang your hat. Set out on a four-legged mountain adventure with Montana Horse Works, Swan Mountain Outfitters or Bar W Guest Ranch. Stroll Main Street and get decked out in cowboy gear at Western Outdoors, a family-owned and -operated store with boots, hats and plenty of clothing options. You can also catch a rodeo during the Brash Rodeo Summer Series in Columbia Falls (May-September). Visiting later in the summer? Check out the events calendar.

6. A blooming food scene. Truth be told, our mountains and lakes tend to get most of the attention around here. But honestly, Montana’s culinary offerings – especially in Kalispell – can hold their own. And if you haven’t been to Kalispell in the last few years, you and your stomach are going to be literally delighted with all we have to offer. A few places to put on your list – Freestone Restaurant, Big Mountain Ciderworks, DeSoto, Mercantile Steak, Waters Edge Winery & Bistro, Bias Brewing and Ceres Bakery. 

7. Long daylight hours. One of the best things about Montana is how long the days are in spring and summer. Depending on when you visit, you’ll be met with 12-14 hours of solid daylight, which means you can pack in as much fun as possible on your vacation. 

8. Something for (basically) everyone. We don’t want to fall into the cliche of saying that there’s something for everyone in Kalispell, but it is true and there’s no better way to say it. From horseback trail rides to mountain biking and fishing to exploring museums, there are abundant options of things to see and do. Want more details? Start here

9. Trails, trails and trails. While Kalispell is a mountain town that has trails extending in every direction, it also has trails right in the heart of downtown. Be sure to check out the recently complete Parkline Trail, as well as the Great Northern Rail Trail. Don’t have a bike? Rent one at Wheaton’s Cycle in downtown. Additional trail-friendly destinations (be sure to check where bikes are allowed to ride) include Herron Park, Glacier National Park and Jewel Basin. 

10. Explore with the Wander Map. Through our newly launched Wander Map, it’s easy to create your personalized list of “things to do” during your trip in Kalispell. The map includes a variety of categories, from shopping to trails and food and drinks to hidden gems.

If you need help planning your trip, visit DiscoverKalispell.com or call us at 406-458-2811. Already here? Swing into our Visitor Information Center at 2 S. Main Street, Suite 205. And as a reminder, when you’re here, please do your part to recreate responsibly.