Blake Walsh

30 Best Things to Do in Billings, MT

  • Published 2023/03/10

With a population of over 110,000, Billings is the largest city in Montana.

It is the county seat of the Yellowstone county and the Billings Metropolitan area’s principal city.

It might not surprise you that Billings has been given multiple nicknames due to its mystic location, with nature’s beauty at its best and rapid variations of growth over the decades.

These nicknames include Magic City, Star of the Big Sky Country, and Montana’s Trailhead.

Billings practically surpasses the growth and popularity of every city in Montana at present, and hence, it can be a traveler’s perfect choice.

This city also has the highest number of hotels and resorts in Montana, so it’s always thriving with events, rallies, and more.

Both day and night, Billings is always quite eventful for people of all ages.

However, this does not mean that the city is in any way lacking in its natural capabilities or heritage values.

The city is close to 140 years old, and every nook and corner has a heritage center or a vivid museum to blow your mind.

Geographically, Billings is in between the South Hills and Rims, which provide the finest views in Montana.

Are you interested in learning about this destination?

These are the best things to do in Billings, Montana:

Capture the Beauty of the Rimrocks

People enjoying the view from the top at Rimrocks

Gary C. Tognoni /

One of the most visited locations in Montana, the Rimrocks are geological formations that run in between Billings.

They are rocky yellow structures, hilly in shape and massive in size.

Beautiful lavender coloured flowers at Rimrocks

Gary C. Tognoni /

Hikers can call the Rimrocks their paradise; one of the best things to do here is take the hiking path to the top and witness some of the most amazing views.

Getting to see the sunset from the Rimrocks should be a must when planning your Billings itinerary.

Top view of Rimrocks

Gary C. Tognoni /

Meet Beautiful Wildlife at ZooMontana

Tiger at ZooMontana

Montanabw, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

ZooMontana is not only an animal shelter but also a botanical garden and zoological area.

It is known to provide educational ideas and projects to preserve wildlife in Montana.

Cute squirrel at ZooMontana

Ammonite18 /

Located on Shiloh Road, this garden is truly an aesthetic cornucopia.

There are little cobbled ponds surrounded by flowering plants and fountains.

As for animals, you can see some of the most classic and exotic varieties, like the massive brown bear, the Bengal Tiger, and the blue peacock.

Red Panda at ZooMontana

Ammonite18 /

There are more than 100 animals of over 51 species.

ZooMontana’s seating areas and gardens make it even more enjoyable.

Get a Classic View of the Moss Mansion

Front view of Moss Mansion

Joseph Sohm /

Classic regality to entangle your royal sense, the Moss Mansion is located on Division Street.

Dense green woods surround the area, and the immediate garden around the mansion is a treat to watch with arrays of blooming flowers.

Closeup of Moss Mansion

Burley Packwood, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The inside is to be toured with the help of staff, who are ready and willing to tell you all about a bygone era.

Much like a classical kingdom set, the rooms, halls, and stairways are decorated in old architecture with royal artifacts.

Regular exhibits, rentals, parties, and educational tours and projects are organized here for everyone.

Surround Yourself with Natural Beauty at the DanWalt Gardens

Have a totally different day amid the unique ambiance of the DanWalt Gardens.

The DanWalt Gardens, located on Washington Street, is a regular favorite among locals, hence being of particular interest to travelers.

A range of tulips, roses, chrysanthemums, hyacinths, daisies, black-eyed Susans, dahlias, and many more are seen blooming in the freshly maintained green garden.

There is also a pavilion that you’ll spot as you enter the DanWalt Gardens.

These gardens change on a weekly basis, depending on what is currently blooming.

This place also has a koi pond on display for visitors.

Witness the Mystic Pictograph Cave State Park

Landscape of Pictograph Cave State Park

Jacob Boomsma /

Travelers should take their cameras with them when visiting the mystic Pictograph Cave State Park because this place is truly worth capturing in photographs.

The vast area, covered with sharp rocky formations and beautiful vegetation all around, will soothe your mind.

This park has been named a National Historic Landmark.

Closer view of the rock formations at Pictograph Cave State Park

Jacob Boomsma /

The scenery here is stunning, and there are walking trails, hiking zones, and many more activities for visitors to enjoy.

There are picnic grounds for families, and museum displays are also available.

Pictograph Cave State Park in Billings, MT

Jacob Boomsma /

The amount of pictographs you see here determines your personal events or acts as a future foretelling.

Get a Taste of True Art at the Yellowstone Art Museum

Get ready to be blown away by some fabulous contemporary art pieces and ethnic or traditional artwork.

The Yellowstone Art Museum has an extensive collection of more than 3,000 paintings, including works of famous cowboy illustrator Will James.

These artworks and forms include contemporary and heritage works from the Rocky Mountain West of America.

Apart from this, the archives are filled with precious artifacts.

Regular exhibitions are held at this museum in downtown Billings.

The struggle of women artists and their works have different areas of display.

The Yellowstone Art Museum also has an area specifically dedicated to children’s artworks.

See the Exemplary Western Heritage Center

Statue at the entrance of Western Heritage Center

Joseph Sohm /

Located on Montana Avenue, the Western Heritage Center reminds us that Billings is more than just a city with fun and beautiful rocky geological formations.

Its architecture is beautiful, regal, and palace-like in nature.

Exhibits and events are held year all year round.

Front view of Western Heritage Center

ALH, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Western Heritage Center showcases paintings, exhibitions, and the history of the wars.

Sculptures of animals and historical figures also stand tall at this museum, displaying the proud story of a bygone era.

Sit by Lake Elmo State Park

Tranquil water at Lake Elmo

Sara goth, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Located on Rolling Hills Drive, Lake Elmo State Park offers a peaceful escape for any and all visitors.

It is filled with different recreational zones.

There is a very well-maintained sandy beach, green walking trails, and an area where you can take your pets for a nice swim.

Moreover, there is a boating ramp, a dog park, a playground area for children, and a blue lake to add to the area’s scenic beauty.

The vegetation is dense and beautiful, with flowering trees and shrubs.

Seating areas are also present all around the trails.

Experience Billings’ Nightlife at the Local Pubs and Bars

As Billings is one of the biggest cities in Montana, its nightlife is quite on the fabulous side.

The city is scattered with an endless amount of restaurants, cafes, pubs, bars, clubs, discos, and much more.

The City Vineyard is one such place worth visiting, and the Old Chicago is another club with a bar.

Many all-night events like concerts and performances are held at various pubs and similar venues throughout the year.

The Pub Station is one such place that hosts events.

There are also sports bars like the Hooligan Sports Bar.

Other famous spots to add to your list include Rainbow, Daisy Dukes, and Doctor Harper’s.

Have an Active Day at Billings Studio Theatre

Billings Studio Theatre is located on Rimrock Road, right beside Rocky Mountain College.

This theater is known for its coziness and authenticity.

This intimate attraction is located around a beautiful greenery area.

Shows are performed here throughout the year, and there are plenty of seats and a well-maintained decor.

You can go on a pleasant stroll around the area and find shows like Frankenstein or Grease being performed at this place.

It is a perfect location to enjoy an evening of entertainment with the family or a dear one.

Mostly local artists perform at the Billings Studio Theatre.

Enjoy the Perfect Sip at Yellowstone Cellars & Winery

Billings is home to Yellowstone Cellars & Winery, which just so happens to be the most incredible mini cottage-like winery.

The area smells gorgeous and is lit in a countryside style with fairy lights.

There are a number of barrels, and the tasting area has a beautiful and easy-to-access setup for customers, with numerous beverages.

The staff is helpful and friendly and will help you through the process of fine wine tasting.

There is a drinking tour that will include the distillery, the brewery, and finally, the winery.

Food is served here as well, so you can grab a quick bite while enjoying the mouth-watering wine flavors.

Lose Yourself in the Greenery of Pioneer Park

Frisbee Golf at Pioneer Park

Jason Maehl /

Pioneer Park is over a hundred years old and is well-loved by Billings’ locals.

The long and beautifully tendered stretches of grassland and small woods that form a canopy, along with the blossoming flower trees all around, are sure to ensnare your senses.

The park has a playground with many rides for children, a basketball and gaming area, and a swimming pool.

It’s a pet-friendly park and features water fountain-like areas, waterfalls, hiking trails, and endless greenery.

Pioneer Park is therefore perfect for spending a day with your family.

Explore the Trails around Riverfront Park

A man fishing at Riverfront Park

Ammonite18 /

Every park has its own unique attraction at Billings.

The specialty of Riverfront Park is that it is located on the banks of the Yellowstone River.

The views, therefore, make this park worth your visit.

There are huge seating and celebrating areas and playgrounds.

Riverfront Park comprises the Butcher Trail, Norm’s Island, and a bridge to accompany all this scenic bliss.

There are flower gardens with violets and petunias in bloom.

You can sit by the bridge and enjoy the view of the vast lake, opposing deep woods, blue skies, and—occasionally—a team of black ducks swimming.

Find Peace at the Bootill Cemetery

Closeup of the cross at Boot Hill Cemetery

Joseph Sohm /

Give yourself a gift of an introspective tour by visiting the peaceful Boothill Cemetery.

This cemetery has buried mostly the brave war soldiers of America and infants.

It is called Boothill as most of the ones buried here went on with their boots on.

Bootill Cemetery filled with tomb cross

Sara goth, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The famous H.M. “Muggins” Taylor rests in peace here.

Historically speaking, the famous white horse during the flu was put down here, too.

The historical significance and art of ages, combined with the tranquil ambiance, are sure to make your mind think.

Spend a Fun-Filled Day at the Reef Indoor Water Park

When it comes to exciting activities, nothing can beat the fun of water parks.

The entire park is located indoors, and it features a long list of rids and other things for visitors to enjoy.

You will be mistaken if you think it is an area only for children because everyone can enjoy a nice dip at the gorgeous and clean pool.

There are big slides for adults, playing areas, and water games for children, like wave pools and splash pads.

There’s also a snack bar where you can take a break and grab a delicious bite in between games.

Visit the Magical Montana Audubon Center

A few minutes from the city’s central area, this is a recreational spot with nature’s bliss all around.

The Montana Audubon Center gives educational tours to people of all ages regarding the area and its vegetation and wildlife.

It’s like an oasis in the middle of the city.

This area is famous for birdwatching, as birds of varied species migrate to and from here.

Activities like fishing by the lake, animal tracking, nature walking, picnicking, and camping are all allowed here.

This is a perfect place for tourists to come over with their families.

Pass Wetlands and Signs at the Shiloh Conservation Area

One of the unlikely attractions in Billings is the Shiloh Conservation Area.

This water conservation site sits on 66 acres of sedimentation and wet detention ponds.

This waterway has provided stormwater control within the west end of Billings.

Among the site include scenic trails with interpretive signs on the site’s background and environmental measures.

Its trails run about 2 miles.

ThShiloh Conservation Area also has viewing platforms that offer wide-open sunset views and vistas of the site’s fishing pond.

You can get to this conservation area from Shiloh Road.

Learn about the Heartbreaking Tale of Sacrifice Cliff

Scenic view of Sacrifice Cliff

KPV89 /

Want to visit the most underrated attractions in Billings?

Sacrifice Cliff is one of them, so add it to your itinerary!

This unmarked site has an interesting story to tell, although a bit sad.

This place was once a meditation site for Crow Indian boys, according to hearsay and folklore.

One day, a deadly disease plagued their land.

And in grief and heartbreak, the boys blindfolded and rode their horses to their death.

This gave way to the name of Sacrifice Cliff.

Now, you can visit Sacrifice Cliff and read through the cliff’s legend through the markers and signs onsite.

This 60-foot cliff sits opposite Boothill Cemetery, near Swords Lane.

Guide Your Child along the Interactive Exhibits at Wise Wonders Science & Discovery Museum

Started in 2009, Wise Wonders Science & Discovery Museum is your little one’s ultimate entertainment center.

After many changes, the museum finally relocated to its current location in 2019.

This museum features a wide range of immersive and interactive exhibits fit for curious minds.

It specializes in STEM education and learning opportunities within a collaborative setting.

Wise Wonders Science & Discovery Museum hosts summer camps that delve into the magical world and the sciences.

Is your little one celebrating their birthday soon?

Have it held at the center!

This museum is on 2nd Avenue North.

Celebrate a Birthday at Splat Attack Battle Arena

A different kind of adventure awaits you at Splat Attack Battle Arena.

This indoor arena is not your usual paintball competition facility.

In fact, it doesn’t use the usual paintball equipment.

Instead, it makes use of weight pistols that hurt significantly less than airsoft and paintball.

Alongside its jelly blaster opportunities, the center also offers a wide selection of family-centered attractions, including laser tag and an active arcade center.

Practice your swing and arch with a game of mini golf and archery.

Feel like a soldier at war when you compete with loved ones at sword battles.

Get to Belknap Avenue to reach Splat Attack Battle Arena’s entrance.

Practice Teamwork to Win at Billings Escape Room

Want food for the brain while in Billings?

Try playing at Billings Escape Room!

This escape room is a real-life escape facility that fosters teamwork and critical-thinking skills.

The facility features three themed rooms.

Escape the hold of the Dollmaster and solve the disappearance of many circus performers.

And do so within an hour!

It’s a battle of wits and speed, and you’re welcome to prove your worth!

Billings Escape Room welcomes you to a fun and puzzling time on Overland Avenue.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Take a Trip to the Pryor Mountains

Horses galloping in Pryor Mountains

Christy berry /

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city and allocate an entire day to exploring the gorgeous Pryor Mountains.

These mountains are located to the south of Billings, about two and a half hours away from the city.

Landscape around Pryor Mountains

Benny Marty /

Owing to the vast range of the formations, there are endless activities to do here.

Hiking is a favorite activity for both beginners and professionals.

Horses drinking water at Pryor Mountains

Christy berry /

The landscapes are mystic, with blue skies, hefty rocky formations, and tall trees to complement the view.

The roads are wide, and the Pryor Mountains cover the view as far as the eyes can go.

Explore the Natural World at John H. Dover Memorial Park

John H. Dover is a park that’ll remind you how amazing the natural world is and how much beauty can be found all over the world.

If you’re looking for some peace and quiet, then this is the place to go; and you can even try out some outdoor traditions you may have forgotten but still want to revisit.

There’s also a trail you can follow if you want to explore the area.

It’s a pretty easy path to follow, taking only around 45 minutes to complete, so it shouldn’t give you any trouble.

Climb Up to the Yellowstone Kelly Interpretive Site

Luther Sage “Yellowstone” Kelly is a great American; he was a veteran, scout, and warrior.

The site, which sits atop the Rims, is Kelly’s grave, and in 1929, Billings started an initiative to care for and preserve his final resting place.

This project was only completed in 2017 when it was finally opened to the public, showcasing a great example of a memorial for a great man and the way a community can come together to preserve their heritage.

Make sure to pay a visit to this solemn site to honor Yellowstone Kelly and find out about his many adventures and great deeds.

Watch a Game at Amend Park

Amend Park can be found at 5101 King Avenue and has 40 acres of land where guests can do various recreational activities.

However, it’s the most popular selling point because it’s often used as a soccer stadium.

When you go there, you can catch games played by amazing teams; so this is definitely a must-visit if you’re interested in the sport.

If you’re looking to catch a specific game, make sure to check their dates and make appropriate arrangements to ensure you’ll get to see your favorite team play.

Relax at Terry Park

Terry Park, located at 5th Street West and Terry Avenue, is one of the best parks to visit while you’re in Billings.

It only has four acres of space, but there’s still a lot to do.

There’s a splash pad where kids can run around and have fun in the summer, and for the adults, you can make good use of the basketball court if you’re into the sport.

The place also has a lot of green space, making it the perfect place for a picnic or just hanging out to appreciate the scenery.

Have a Picnic at Castle Rock Park

Castle Rock is the largest park in Billings, and it’s the perfect place for recreational activities and moments of relaxation.

The park boasts 25 acres of land where you can do a wide variety of things.

Sit back and relax, have a picnic or simply close your eyes and take in the fun and cheerful atmosphere all around you.

You can even have a little get-together there with other tourists or some locals you may know.

Have a meal, catch up with each other, and have as much fun as you can for as long as you can.

Final Thoughts

Billings is a big place with a lot of great sites to see.

Its rapid growth ensures that there’s always something new and interesting popping up every few years, making the place interesting, dynamic, and full of surprises.

Travelers will enjoy themselves immensely when they visit the city, so make sure to book a visit today and start planning your itinerary.

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