Montana's cultural landscape is on par with its natural one. Between the state's two national parks, discover some of the West's most captivating museums. Western Montana's Glacier Country and Yellowstone Country Montana are teeming with arts and history hot spots-from the fastest-growing contemporary art museum in the intermountain West and one of the world's largest and most famous collections of dinosaur fossils, to museums housing unique treasures like a 7.5-foot sturgeon and one of the world's first personal computers.
We've curated park-to-park tours of Montana's many impressive and important museums, offering a cultural experience that history buffs, art aficionados, and anyone in between will treasure. View the work of renowned artists, and some of the most fascinating exhibits of historical artifacts providing glimpses into the Old West, railroad days, pioneer settlements, American Indian heritage, and our national parks-to name a handful.
Between stops, enjoy the charming small towns that make up the heart and soul of the region, featuring warm western welcomes, historic downtowns, local shops and art galleries, theater and live music, exceptionally good food and 40+ breweries and distilleries throughout the region.
An 1890's Catholic church with 58 original paintings on the walls and ceiling by Brother Joseph Carignano, plus a log home—which was the original Sisters' residence—a museum and a gift shop with mission and American Indian artifacts.
300 Bear Track Ave.
A museum depicting the history of the first permanent European settlement in Montana and traditional homeland of the Salish Indians.
517 Main St.
The home of more than two dozen vintage aircraft—including the world’s only airworthy Mk 47 Seafire—several aircraft engines, aircraft models and aviation art.
Call for address + to make an appointment
A historic Whitefish Railway Depot restored to preserve the history of Whitefish and the Flathead Valley through railroad and community artifacts.
500 Depot St.
A museum preserving the heritage of the Swan Valley with exhibits including a homesteader school room, kitchen and bedroom, artifacts from historic lodges, a Forest Service section and homesteader records and maps.
6774 State Highway 83 N.
A unique collection of historic buildings and artifacts from the Tobacco Valley area, including a school, church, library, general store, fire tower, railroad depot, caboose and several log cabins.
4 Dewey Ave.
The only archaeologically verified campsite of the Lewis and Clark Expedition in the U.S. offering a fascinating look at expedition replicas, Salish culture, American Indian crafts, and a frontier Main Street.
6717 U.S. Highway 12 W.
The Old Victor Depot Building, preserving and interpreting the rich history of American Indians, frontier life, early religion, schools, mining and railroads in the Victor area.
125 Blake St.
A historic district of old, corrugated steel buildings depicting the worst coal mining accident in Montana’s history.
2 miles west of Bearcreek on State Highway 308
A historic hotel on the Yellowstone River with fully-restored, turn-of-the-century room décor, an 1890’s saloon and noteworthy cuisine.
139 McLeod St.
A unique arts center featuring classical chamber music, recitals and large-scale, outdoor sculptures against a Beartooth Mountain backdrop.
96 S. Grove Creek Road
Over 50,000 objects, photos and books exhibiting the early days in the first gateway town to Yellowstone National Park including American Indian culture, Lewis and Clark, a one-room schoolhouse, a blacksmith shop, a fleet of transportation vehicles, and children’s activities.
118 W. Chinook
Public tours of one of the largest collections of cultural and natural history in the National Park Service, from pre-history through the present, including obsidian points and a historic vehicle collection.
20 Old Yellowstone Trail
Before you set out on your Montana museum tour, be sure to map out your trip and plan ahead. Some museums in the region are open seasonally and have limited hours, and a few are only open by appointment. Plan your time by getting a feel in advance for how long a self-guided or guided tour of each museum might be, and research ahead for fees—some museums offer free admission, others charge a fee, while others encourage a donation.
Check each region for more information:
Another great resource for history tour planning, the Montana Historical Society documents all the buildings in Montana that have been placed on the National Register of Historic places.
Lodging is part of the adventure, and Montana's western hospitality is second to none. From authentic guest ranches and mountain resorts to quaint bed-and-breakfasts and historic downtown hotels, there’s a stay that sums up your idyllic Montana getaway.
Montana is well-versed in the art of food and drink. Our top-notch culinary scene is on display throughout the region, where local chefs dish up creative genius no matter your taste. Our drinks are spot on, too, with breweries, distilleries, wineries and cideries crafting up works of fine art. You'll also find a number of historic, western bars in the region, brimming with authentic Montana character.