Blake Walsh

23 Best Things to Do in Pocatello, ID

  • Published 2023/03/27

In the state of Idaho, you’ll find a mystical place called Pocatello.

The largest city in Bannock County, Pocatello boasts a number of attractions that will serve all your travel needs and give you the experience of a lifetime.

This city is a very calm, clean, and historic place with a small population of about 50,000 people.

Covering a significant portion of Bannock County with such a small number of residents, this city is an ideal destination for people who wish to explore new towns and cities or love visiting small towns with peaceful little places.

From fascinating museums and a thriving downtown area to scenic hiking trails and beautiful lakes, this charming city has so much for tourists to see and experience.

These are the best things to do in Pocatello, Idaho:

Visit the Idaho Museum of Natural History

Welcome sign of Idaho museum of natural history

Abbaby, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The beautiful Idaho Museum of Natural History holds within its walls the secrets and history of the country.

It stores the culture and customs of the city and is especially a must-visit for people interested in biology and zoology.

It displays a grand collection of various exhibits that include animals, skulls, paintings, sculptures, and even equipment-like three-dimensional printers and loads of other stuff.

An ammonite displayed in Idaho Museum of Natural History

James St. John, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

It is a great place to visit with your family and kids.

The gift shop in the museum has souvenir-worthy items for sale, including things like rings, bracelets, sculptures, and more.

The most fascinating thing about the museum is that its exhibits rotate, making each visit different from the last.

Bison fossil displayed in Idaho Museum of Natural History

James St. John, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Explore the Quirky Museum of Clean

Cleaning tools displayed in Museum of clean

karenfoleyphotography /

Museum of Clean” – sounds odd, right?

Well, this museum has put in a lot of effort to make this place an attraction to remember.

The Museum of Clean is basically home to everything clean—from clean habits to clean speech and clean design, this museum has got it all.

Exterior of Museum of Clean

karenfoleyphotography /

It holds an extensive collection of one-of-a-kind cleaning appliances like early vacuums, cleaning supplies such as brooms, and other related apparatus from around the world.

It also has a great display of wax statues, paintings, weird sculptures, and art.

The cleanliness of this place is mind-blowing, and it is a must-visit if you are in Pocatello, especially if you consider yourself a clean freak.

Floor cleaning products displayed in Museum of Clean

karenfoleyphotography /

Pet the Cutest Indigenous Creatures at Zoo Idaho

Zoo Idaho is home to a significant number of plants and animal species.

The wildlife here is free to roam around the park for people to observe.

This zoo is home to species that are native to Idaho, and most of them are rescue animals, making this the most appealing zoo in Idaho.

It is a great place to interact with animals up close.

This zoo is great for getting a firsthand experience of wildlife; you can come here and relax while looking at the beauty of nature and supporting local wildlife.

Beat the Heat at the Ross Park Aquatic Complex

The Ross Park Aquatic Complex is a great place to visit with your family or friends, relax, play around, and get on some fun slides and jump on lily pads.

It offers a fun time to visitors of all ages.

You can get into the aquatic water pool and swim around.

The Lazy River is usually crowded and a famous place to roam around, have a little picnic or just relax.

It is a clean and well-maintained garden and also ensures all the safety standards.

The Lazy River is undoubtedly a must-visit, and the beauty of this place will make you want to come back in the future.

Go Hiking along the Gibson Jack Trail

The Gibson Jack Trail is a really beautiful trail in the heart of the city of Pocatello.

It is a great place to go for a stroll, relax, or walk your dog.

The view of the mountains is truly mesmerizing and makes this trail great for taking pictures.

You can ride your bikes, go horseback riding, and watch the moonlight on this well-maintained and alluring trail.

There are small streams filled with beautiful big flowers along the whole trail.

It is fully covered with snow during wintertime and is truly a must-visit if you are in Pocatello.

Go Back in Time at Historic Downtown Pocatello

Buildings along Old Town Pocatello

StudioKampOC /

Historic Downtown Pocatello breeds culture and heritage and is filled with art and history.

The vintage shops here have a great collection of various antique dresses and shoes.

It is a must-visit if you are a shopaholic.

People walking along old town Pocatello

StudioKampOC /

The ambiance and structure of the market give a very old-school experience.

A ’90s kid’s heart will truly be filled with joy in this place, as it breeds positivity, history, and happiness.

The farmers’ market in this place is the most famous for its delicious native food and is a great way to support local businesses.

Night scene at Downtown Pocatello

117FILMS Ross Mitchell, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Mysterious Standrod House

Exterior of the Standrod House

Eric Kjaemperud, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Have you ever heard of buildings or houses in various parts of your city with mysterious ways of construction or an element of mystery attached to them?

The Standrod House, a historical landmark in Pocatello, features beautiful architecture.

People often visit to witness its magnificence.

Different people have different interesting views about the construction of this house.

The Standrod House was built using the Chateauesque architectural style.

It is truly a must-visit if you are into exotic and mysterious buildings.

Slide Down the Hills at Ammon Park

If you are in Pocatello and looking for a spot to go for a picnic on a sunny afternoon, Ammon Park has got you covered.

This beautiful park situated in the middle of Pocatello is not just a mainland green park but is home to various hills.

In the winter, there are ice blocks where you can go sliding, chill, and have fun.

It is an excellent spot for a picnic, relaxing, walking your dog, or riding your bike.

You can enjoy some chilled drinks or even take the time to meditate, journal, paint, or take photos.

The park is clean, quiet, well-maintained, and a great place to reconnect with nature.

Pocatello Model Railroad and Historical Society

By now, you must have realized that Pocatello is a land of history and culture.

The Pocatello Model Railroad and Historical Society is one of the most notable historical landmarks in the city.

It is a museum adjacent to the Union Pacific PR and has on display an extravagant collection based on the modern railroad.

The museum is a great place to stop and stare at some trains.

It also comprises train memorabilia ranging from the 1900s to today.

This place is excellent for taking your kids and showing them all the trains.

The Pocatello Model Railroad and Historical Society is truly a must-visit for those who love trains.

Go Fishing or Ice Skating at the Edson Fichter Nature Area

The Edson Fichter Nature Area is a great place to go fishing, take a leisurely stroll, go for a jog, or simply relax.

The beautiful views, especially the sunsets, are the most fascinating thing about this nature area.

You can walk, ride around, or go fishing in the pond.

The lake gets frozen during the winter, and visitors may experience what it feels like to walk on ice.

It’s also a great place to go ice skating.

The views are truly mesmerizing, and this place is a must-visit if you are a sucker for beautiful scenery.

Learn about Native American History at Fort Hall Replica

Exterior of Fort Hall Replica

Jeffrey G. Backes, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This old fort hall is a replica of a trading fort along the Oregon Trail.

You could find clothing, provisions, ammunition, replacement cattle and horses, and other equipment in the original fort hall.

While you won’t find these things at the Fort Hall Replica, it still gives off the exact same vibes.

The courtyard of Fort Hall Replica

Jeffrey G. Backes, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you are interested in learning about the history of the Native Americans, this place is definitely a must-visit as it will give you a great experience of their history.

The adjoining museum has a great display of various historic equipment and art and is definitely worth visiting.

A wagon on the grounds of Fort Hall Replica

Jeffrey G. Backes, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Take a Walk in the Cherry Springs Nature Area

Have you ever dreamed of walking in the middle of beautiful cherry springs while small little cherry leaves keep sprinkling on you?

The Cherry Springs Nature Area in Pocatello is your dream come true.

It is yet another park where you can reconnect with nature, go for a walk or jog in the midst of the cherry springs.

The trails are well-established, well-maintained, and clean to walk on.

The overall scenery and colors of the place make it all the way more pleasurable for the people.

If you want some really good pictures of yourself in Pocatello, this is the best place to visit.

Drink Your Woes Away at the Bannock Peak Casino

Did you think Pocatello was only about parks, museums, history, and culture?

If so, you aren’t exactly right, but you aren’t wrong, either.

Pocatello’s Bannock Peak Casino is the right place to go for a party, gamble, and drink your woes away.

This place is known for serving the best coffee and conversations, so you need not worry if you are going alone.

It’s nearly impossible to get bored at this fun casino.

The cherry on top here is that you can build your own pizza here.

Admire the Unique Exhibits at the Bannock County Historical Museum

The Bannock County Historical Museum is different from any museum you’ve ever been to or heard of.

It is a museum made from only donated exhibits—cool, right?

Located right beside the old Fort Hall Replica, the museum’s exhibits are fascinating enough to make you stop and stare.

It is well-maintained, polished, and a great place to visit with your friends and family.

The Bannock County Historical Museum paves a great way to learn about Bannock County’s history and educate your kids.

This place is truly a must-visit if you want to experience something exotic and traditional.

Take the Kids to Outer Limits Fun Zone

This gaming parlor in Pocatello is a grand indoor recreation center with a wide variety of games like laser tag, mini-games, mini-golf, a mini-arcade, and more.

Outer Limits Fun Zone has a built-in food station to gratify your hunger needs and is most famous for its pizza and chicken, so do not forget to check it out.

This is a great place to take your kids with you and have some quality time.

The whole vibe of this place is truly mesmerizing.

The neon lighting adds to the ambiance and makes it even more fun.

This place is truly a must-visit if you are into gaming, action, adventure, and fun.

Watch a Football Championship Game at Holt Arena

Aerial view of Holt Arena

B Brown /

For over half a century, Holt Arena has been the site of hundreds of graduations, championship football games, and rodeos.

Idaho State University’s iconic facility is the oldest covered football field in the nation and is easily Idaho’s most beloved landmark.

Milton “Dubby” Holt proposed building a giant indoor multi-purpose athletic stadium in Idaho, but everyone around him dismissed it as they thought it was harebrained.

However, Holt didn’t give up on his hallmark idea and instead brought it to life using ingenuity, grit, and determination.

Now 50 years later, standing tall in Holt Arena’s honor is a testament to the collegiate rugby team’s grit, hard work, and dedication as they play host to game after game.

Holt Arena stands at a height of nearly 4,600 feet.

The building is often home to university teams like the Big Sky Conference’s Idaho State Bengals.

Venture into Nature at Edson Fichter Nature Area

Edson Fichter Nature Area is a community pond in the southwest portion of Pocatello.

This pond is right by the Portneuf River and has several docks as well as a walking trail that goes around most of its perimeter.

A lot of anglers meet up here and talk about their most recent catches.

There are limited development and activities here to ensure that this body of water remains untouched for all to come and enjoy.

Edson Fichter Nature Area offers many outdoor activities.

It’s a fantastic place to go walking, biking, or rollerblading.

In addition, there are plenty of places to stop and sit down for a moment.

This is the spot for all ages to go for a walk or just hang out with friends.

Roll a Strike at the Tough Guy Bowling Lanes

Signage of Tough Guy Bowling Lanes

melissamn /

Located along E Lewis Street, Tough Guy Bowling Lanes offers 24 spacious lanes with automatic scoring to allow bowlers of all skill levels to have a good time.

They set the lanes up with bumpers and a dinosaur ball slide for children to have extra support during their time on the lanes.

This family-friendly venue also serves delicious food, drinks, and ice-cold beer.

Tough Guy Bowling Lanes boasts a lovely atmosphere.

This is a great place to bring your family, have a date night with a significant other, host parties and team building sessions, or just relax and enjoy yourself.

Bond and Play with Family at Deleta Skating & Family Fun Center

For an all-around family fun experience, Deleta Skating & Family Fun Center is the place to be.

This indoor skating-rink-and-entertainment-center-in-one has everything that you might need for a nostalgic atmosphere.

Serving the community since the 60s, it offers open skating lessons and private party rentals.

Get your groove on as you match your moves with the strobing lights and classic music.

If skating is not your thing, try your hand at solving puzzles and mysteries at the facility’s escape rooms.

Grab a snack while you’re at it, too!

Get to Deleta Skating & Family Fun Center by driving along Yellowstone Avenue.

Taste Craft Beer at Portneuf Valley Brewing

Started in 1996, Portneuf Valley Brewing is a must-visit if you’re ready for a food and drink adventure in Pocatello.

This brewpub offers local craft beers and a globally-inspired menu.

Set within a comfortable atmosphere, it also features live music and community events.

Be sure to order the pub’s weekly specials along with your on-tap beer choice.

For a light and flavorful taste, opt for the Krystalweizen.

The pub’s Premium India Pale Ale is a hit among those who love their beer bitter and aromatic.

But there are many beer options for you to cleanse your palate, so don’t be afraid to try new things.

Portneuf Valley Brewing is on South 1st Avenue.

Test Your Aim and Target at Heber Hatchets

You don’t have to be a lumberjack to throw perfect ax targets.

And at Heber Hatchets, you can practice your aim all you want.

This axe-throwing center is a family-friendly destination with 11 axe lanes and a backwood-inspired setting.

If it’s your first time throwing targets, you don’t have to worry!

Staff onsite can help you learn the ins and outs of scoring a bull’s eye.

Bring your family and friends over at Heber Hatchets and get ready for a fun, challenging time.

The center also has other locations in multiple cities across three states.

Bring Your A-Game to the Outback Golf Park

At the Outback Golf Park, you have many reasons to spend your leisure time outdoors.

This miniature golf course offers stunning natural vistas and affordable prices.

With challenging fairways and several obstacles, any golfer of every skill level can play and amuse themselves.

The mini golf features 18 holes.

The course also has a driving range and putting greens for those still practicing their swing and balance.

Its shaded course layout and offered snacks and beverages complete the golfing experience.

The Outback Golf Park sits along Pocatello Creek Road.

Have a Picnic at Sacajawea Park

A woman enjoying the hot spring at Sacajawea Park

melissamn /

Sacajawea Park is a 22.6-acre park with a wide range of facilities for you.

Featuring an open space with verdant woodlands, its most highlighted amenity is its collection of multi-use trails.

There are trails for jogging, walking, and even biking.

And if you’re traveling with your furry companion, you can bring them for an on-leash walk along the perimeter, too!

The trails run parallel to the Portneuf River.

There are picnic tables around too—ideal for quick group snacks.

Located along Aspen Lane, Sacajawea Park is the perfect outdoor getaway in Pocatello.

So, be sure it’s a part of your itinerary!

Final Thoughts

If you’ve never been to Idaho, then make sure you visit Pocatello at least once in your life.

There are plenty of opportunities to unwind and rejuvenate while taking in some new scenery in this city.

It’s a lovely city with all kinds of exciting attractions and awesome entertainment.

Whether your interest is historical or cultural, you’ll find that nothing is lacking here.

This isn’t only attractive for tourists: people find themselves staying for a variety of other reasons as well.

When coming to this blossoming city, make sure to check out this list of top things to see and do in Pocatello.

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