11 Interesting And Beautiful Places To Visit In Livingston, MT

If ever I felt like I found a different version of myself, it was during my month-long stay in Livingston, Montana.

All of a sudden, after living in New York working an office job for eight years, I was a hardened rancher. An outdoorsman who protects cattle and goes fly fishing in the Yellowstone River to clear his head. 

It’s a gorgeous place that makes you contemplate the beauty of the plains as well as their history.

Stories and legends of the wild, wild west are kept alive in the small towns scattered across the western plains including Livingston.

Through museums, food, activities, and a general way of life, you can get a taste of what life was like back in the day, but while comfortably sipping a cocktail or eating a delicious sandwich.

My time spent in Livingston was memorable, so I’d love to share with you some of my favorite activities and places to visit while I was there. Here are the most interesting and beautiful places to visit in Livingston, Montana.

Yellowstone National Park

Ever heard of it? Of course you have because it’s one of the most visited National Parks and destinations in the country.

It’s also the very first National Park! Which is almost an unfairly high bar to set for all the following National Parks.

Famous for its geysers, hot springs, wild life, and all around beauty, Yellowstone is one of the most glorious places I’ve ever been. 

Some of the main attractions here you might’ve heard of or seen a photo of, including Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic Spring, Hayden Valley, and the Upper Falls of the Yellowstone River.

All worth the hype, but not the only attractions to make time for.

You can also take in mind-bending colors of Morning Glory Pool, watch Bison or the resident Wolf Pack roam at Lamar Valley, and catch some lesser known geysers erupt at Norris Geyser Basin. 

For any nature and wildlife lover, Yellowstone should be a must. Nowhere in the country and you find this unique combination of landscape features and ecosystems. Yellowstone is an incredibly beautiful place to visit near Livingston, Montana, so be sure to add it to your list!

Bison in Montana

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Yellowstone River

While not Missoula, you can still feel like Brad Pitt in A River Runs Through It in Livingston. Partly because a river pretty much runs through it.

The longest undammed river in the continental US, the mighty Yellowstone River runs for 671 miles. It goes right through many of Montana’s small towns on its way to Yellowstone National Park through the glory that is Paradise Valley, which is just outside Livingston. 

Particularly when visiting Livingston in the warmer months, it’s essential to spend some time by the river.

Whether you decide to take on some fly fishing, float down the river on a tube, or simply plant a chair in ankle high waters with a filled cooler, it’s hard not to appreciate the beauty of the river.

It’s one of the prime fly-fishing spots in the country, and a great place to see wildlife like elk and golden eagles. It is possible to spot a bear in the water as well so be prepared with bear spray!

Montana is all about the great American outdoors, so celebrate that by one of this country’s great rivers, the Yellowstone. Spending time on the Yellowstone is a must for people visiting Livingston.

Yellowstone River outside Livingston Montana

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Chico Hot Springs

After a day of outdoor adventure, one excellent way to relax and recover is by sitting in a warm hot spring.

Just outside of Livingston you can do just that at Chico Hot Springs.

It’s a resort and spa in the heart of Paradise Valley with dining, lodging, and two open-aired natural mineral hot spring pools. If you’re not staying at the resort because you’re staying in awesome Livingston, the spa offers day passes.

It’s a lovely way to spend a day whether you’re a couple, a family, or just looking for alone time and self-reflection. 

If you do decide to spend a night here, you can stay in an old-western looking wagon like on the Oregon Trail, or an old train caboose! There are several dining options on site of different scales, such as the up-scale and exclusive Tasting Room or the Chico Saloon serving up good old-fashioned bar food and cocktails. 

River near Chico Hot Springs

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Yellowstone Gateway Museum

The Yellowstone Gateway Museum is a must-see attraction for anyone interested in the rich history and culture of Montana.

The museum features a wide range of exhibits and artifacts that showcase the region’s diverse history, from the prehistoric era to the present day.

The exhibits cover a wide range of topics, including the history of the local Native American tribes, the Lewis and Clark expedition, the development of the railroad, and the area’s ranching and mining industries.

Visitors can also learn about the history of Yellowstone National Park and its impact on the surrounding area.

The museum’s collection includes photographs, artifacts, and interactive displays that bring the history of the region to life, making it a great educational experience for people of all ages.

In addition to its impressive collection, the Yellowstone Gateway Museum also offers a range of programs and events throughout the year, including lectures, workshops, and guided tours.

Visitors can participate in hands-on activities, such as panning for gold or trying on period costumes, which provide a fun and engaging way to learn about the history of the area.

Whether you’re a history buff or simply interested in learning more about the region, the Yellowstone Gateway Museum is a must-visit attraction that will provide a fascinating and informative experience.

Custer Gallatin National Forest

For vast wilderness that offers some of the best hiking opportunities in Montana, head to Custer Gallatin National Forest.

One of the most popular trails in the forest is the Fairy Lake Trail, which is a 2.5-mile hike that leads to a stunning alpine lake surrounded by the dramatic peaks of the Bridger Mountains.

The trail is moderately difficult, with a steady uphill climb through dense forest and open meadows.

At the top, hikers are rewarded with breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape and a refreshing swim in the crystal-clear waters of Fairy Lake.

Another great hiking trail in Custer Gallatin National Forest is the Pine Creek Lake Trail, a challenging 9.5-mile trek that takes hikers through some of the most spectacular scenery in the forest.

The trail begins at the Pine Creek Campground and follows Pine Creek through a narrow canyon before opening up to a series of alpine meadows and stunning waterfalls.

The final push to the lake is steep and challenging, but the reward is well worth it. At the top, hikers are treated to a picture-perfect alpine lake surrounded by jagged peaks and pristine wilderness.

Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just looking for a fun day trip, the hikes in Custer Gallatin National Forest are sure to impress.

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Livingston Peak

Livingston Peak is a prominent mountain in the Absaroka Range of the Rocky Mountains, located in Park County, Montana.

It is a popular destination for hikers and rock climbers due to its challenging terrain and stunning views.

The peak rises to an elevation of 9,310 feet and is visible from many points in the town of Livingston and the surrounding area. It is named after Crawford Livingston, who was a prominent early settler in the area and a member of the famous Livingston family.

Hiking to the summit of Livingston Peak is a popular activity for visitors to the area.

The trailhead is located about 10 miles south of Livingston, and the hike to the top is a challenging 6.6-mile round-trip trek with an elevation gain of 2,800 feet.

Hikers should be prepared for steep switchbacks and rocky terrain, but the views from the summit are well worth the effort.

From the top, hikers can see panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, as well as the town of Livingston and the Yellowstone River Valley.

Additionally, the peak is a popular spot for rock climbers, with routes available for climbers of all skill levels.

Viewpoint near Livingston

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Bozeman is a vibrant and dynamic college town located just 26 miles east of Livingston, Montana.

It is known for its stunning natural beauty, as well as its thriving arts and culture scene.

One of the top attractions in Bozeman is the Museum of the Rockies, which is home to one of the largest collections of dinosaur fossils in the world.

Visitors can also explore the historic downtown area, which is filled with boutique shops, galleries, and restaurants.

Additionally, Bozeman is home to Montana State University, which offers a wide range of events and activities for visitors to enjoy.

Another reason why Bozeman is a cool place to visit from Livingston is its proximity to some of the best outdoor recreation opportunities in Montana. The town is located just a short drive from world-class skiing and snowboarding at Bridger Bowl and Big Sky Resort, as well as countless hiking and mountain biking trails in the surrounding mountains.

The nearby Gallatin River also offers some of the best fly fishing in the state. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure or cultural attractions, Bozeman is a great destination for a day trip from Livingston.

Bozeman Music Venue near Livingston

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Pine Creek Lodge

Pine Creek Lodge is a rustic retreat located just 20 miles south of Livingston, Montana.

This charming lodge offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, with cozy cabins, delicious food, and a variety of outdoor activities.

The lodge is situated on the banks of Pine Creek, offering guests easy access to fishing, kayaking, and swimming.

The surrounding mountains are also a popular destination for hiking and mountain biking, with miles of scenic trails to explore.

Also, the lodge’s restaurant, The Pine Creek Cafe, serves up a variety of delicious dishes made from locally sourced ingredients. The menu includes classic Montana fare like bison burgers and steak, as well as vegetarian options and tasty desserts.

However, my favorite aspect of the Lodge is its frequent live music and events. We loved going to a show surrounding by forest and twinkling hanging lights. Dancing, drinking, eating, and laughing at this venue while the sun sets on the distant mountains was an idyllic experience, and one I won’t soon forget.

Pine Creek Lodge near Livingston

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Historic Downtown Livingston

Historic Downtown Livingston is a charming destination in the heart of Montana that offers visitors a glimpse into the town’s rich history and culture. The district is home to many beautifully preserved buildings dating back to the late 1800s and early 1900s, including many that have been converted into shops, restaurants, and galleries.

Visitors can take a stroll along the town’s main street, Park Street, and admire the many historic buildings, as well as browse through the many unique shops and boutiques that line the street.

There are also several art galleries and museums in the area, including the Livingston Center for Art and Culture, which showcases the work of local artists.

One of the highlights of visiting Historic Downtown Livingston is the many dining options available in the area.

Visitors can enjoy everything from casual cafes and bakeries to fine dining restaurants and gastropubs, all within walking distance of each other. Many of the restaurants feature locally sourced ingredients and classic Montana cuisine, such as bison burgers and steak.

After a delicious meal, visitors can take a leisurely walk around the town, taking in the beautiful architecture and charming atmosphere of this historic district.

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

The Murray Hotel

The Murray Hotel is a historic landmark in the heart of Livingston, Montana, that has been welcoming guests since 1904. The hotel features beautifully restored rooms and suites that combine modern amenities with historic charm, making it a popular choice for visitors who want to experience the town’s rich history and culture.

The hotel’s lobby and public spaces are decorated with antique furnishings and artwork that evoke a sense of the town’s past.

In addition to its beautiful accommodations, The Murray Hotel is also home to several popular dining and entertainment venues. The hotel’s restaurant, The Murray Bar, is a popular gathering place for locals and visitors alike, serving up classic Montana cuisine and a wide selection of local beers and spirits.

The hotel also hosts live music and other events throughout the year, making it a hub of activity in the heart of downtown Livingston.

Whether you’re looking for a comfortable and historic place to stay or a lively spot to grab a drink and catch some live music, The Murray Hotel is a Livingston legend.

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Paradise Valley

Paradise Valley is a stunningly beautiful destination located just south of Livingston, Montana. The valley is named for its idyllic scenery, which includes sweeping views of the Absaroka Mountains and the Yellowstone River.

Visitors to the area can explore the many hiking trails that wind through the mountains, stopping to take in the breathtaking vistas and abundant wildlife.

The valley is also home to several natural hot springs, including the famous Chico Hot Springs, where visitors can soak in the healing waters and relax in the scenic surroundings.

One of the highlights of visiting Paradise Valley is the opportunity to experience the local culture and way of life. The area is home to many small ranches and farms, where visitors can get a taste of Montana’s agricultural heritage.

There are also several charming towns and communities in the area, including Gardiner, which serves as the north entrance to Yellowstone National Park, and Emigrant, a historic community that dates back to the 1800s.

Whether you’re looking to explore the great outdoors or experience the local culture, Paradise Valley is a must-visit destination in Montana.

Image by Daniel Hayes (IG: indecisive_travels)

Did we miss any of your favorite places in Livingston, Montana?

Let us know in the comments if there are anymore places in Livingston, Montana you’d like to see on our list!

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