Wyoming is a very beautiful state that boasts countrywide parks, inclusive of the well-known Yellowstone. There are many places to see here but people coming first time often ask what are the things to do in Wyoming.
Ley us tell you that Wyoming is a place which is rich in its scenic beauty. The natural scenery in the state includes towering mountain ranges, open plains, and sweeping deserts. The natural scenery isn’t all that is on offer in Wyoming however.
The state has some historic sites, specifically referring to the Old West. Indeed, Wyoming was the heartland of the Old West and a number of famous cowboys called the state home or visited.
This includes Buffalo Bill and the feared outlaw, Butch Cassidy. It is the most traditional western of the U.S. States and is a great way to experience the unique Western culture famous across the world. Here are our Top Ten Things to do in Wyoming.
10 Best Things To Do in Wyoming
1. Explore Grand Tetons National Park
The first of our national parks. This park is located south of Yellowstone and is famous for its range of mountains. The park got its name from a Frenchman who decided the mountains resembled a pair of bosoms.
Predictably, as it is a natural park, Grand Tetons features some breathtaking natural scenery. It is best to rent a car to drive around the park and the main trail features a number of scenic viewpoints where people can get out to experience the beautiful views. For hikers, there are a large number of trails to visit and explore.
2. Visit the Old West town of Sheridan
The first of the two historic towns to make our list. Sheridan is a lovely place to visit and is a town steeped in history. It started off as a cattle ranching town in the Old West. The town and surrounding area were the sites of a number of battles between the U.S. Cavalry and various Sioux, Crow, and Cheyenne tribes.
A must-see site in Sheridan is Mint Bar. Stepping foot in here is like stepping foot into the past. Open since 1907, it has long been the watering hole of cowboys and ranchers. The decor is excellent. Visitors to Sheridan must stop by and have a few beers at this amazing place.
Also in Sheridan are a number of museums relating to cowboy and western life. These include the Brinton Museum which brings to life a 1920s working ranch. This continues with a staggering number of artifacts and historical documents from the period. Inside the town is also the Don King Museum which is dedicated to Western and cowboy memorabilia.
3. Visit the fascinating Devil’s Tower
Movie buffs will instantly recognize Devil’s Tower from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”. This national monument is the core of an ancient volcano and is one of the most unique sights in the world.
The surrounding rock of the volcano has eroded to leave cooled magma which rises in a column 500 feet high. Seeing this fabulous place is amazing, it is a sight that people will never forget and is one of the world’s most recognizable landmarks. After visiting Devil’s Tower, there are a number of hiking trails nearby that are also recommended.
4. Discover dinosaurs at the Wyoming Dinosaur Center
This excellent museum is located in Thermopolis. The museum is one of the few which has actual excavation sites just a short distance away. As such it offers a “Dig for a Day” program where visitors can join in one of the nearby excavations. This costs just $100 a day for children, $150 for adults.
Visitors will be shown digging and excavation techniques and are then taken to a dig site to help excavate dinosaurs. If you are lucky enough to find a fossil, technicians from the museum will help you to document and preserve your find. Most fossils found are from Sauropods.
In addition to the dinosaur dig experience, the museum features a number of fossils. There are over 30 mounted dinosaur skeletons as well as a large number of other fossils, bones, and teeth. The collection includes the only Archaeopteryx fossil in America and a 106-foot-long Supersaurus skeleton.
5. Explore Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone is the most famous of America’s national parks and is a must-visit in the country. It has a number of the maximum splendid and delightful natural sites and surroundings withinside the world. The park covers nearly 3,500 square KM.
The park is famous for its geysers, there are over 300 located inside the park. “Old Faithful” is one of the most visited, it is one of the most active in the world and erupts every 44 – 125 minutes. Seeing a geyser in action truly is a memorable experience.
The tallest is the “Steamboat Geyser” which, if you are lucky enough to witness it, shoots streams of boiling hot water over 300 feet into the air.
As well as the amazing geothermal sites, Yellowstone National Park is full of some of the most beautiful natural scenery in the world. From lakes to valleys, from forest to mountains; Yellowstone is a hiker’s dream. There is no better way to spend a day than by exploring this wonderfully beautiful place for yourself.
6. Visit the historic town of Cody
Cody is a historic and charming town that is full of cowboy history and culture. It is a more authentic place than many of the cowboy towns and cities such as Jackson.
Inside there are a number of historical buildings and attractions relating to the history of the Old West. The town is named after cowboy “Buffalo Bill” Cody who played a key role in founding the town.
The main attraction is the famous rodeo, but as that features in the next entry, we will cover the museums. There are five main museums in Cody which all fall under the umbrella of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West.
The museums here include the Buffalo Bill museum which details the life of the famous Buffalo Bill Cody and the Firearms Museum which contains the largest collection of American firearms in the world.
Part of the center is also the Plains Indian Museum which focuses on the history of the Plains Indian people and details their history, life a culture. This museum is excellent and a must-visit.
In addition to the Buffalo Bill Center, there are a number of historical sites to see such as Old Trail Town which is a collection of historic buildings and artifacts from the Old West.
Included in the collection is a hut once belonging to “Curly”, a scout to General Custer. There are 25 historic buildings in the town. The town is steeped in history. The Sundance Kid used a cabin in Old Trail Town as a hideout and a cabin used by Butch Cassidy was transported to the collection from Hole-in-the-Wall.
7. See the Finest Night Sky in the World
Wyoming has stunning natural beauty, but what about the above? Wyoming Stargazing offers visitors a chance to see the beautiful night sky above Wyoming through their telescopes. The owners are very knowledgeable about the night sky and will point out different stars and constellations to see.
There are a number of programs on offer. The stargazing program is year-round. You will be taken inside Grand Teton National Park to a spot with high elevation which offers some amazing views. Wyoming Stargazing will provide a telescope for 2 hours. This is not to be missed and is a truly unique experience.
There is also the chance to rent one of their two inflatable planetariums. Their Dark Sky Pavillin is great for birthdays and sleepovers and has room for 30 people. Their digital planetarium system is an inflatable space theatre that brings the universe to life. Featuring moving constellations, visitors can explore the mysteries of space from within.
8. Watch a rodeo
Is there anything more Western than a rodeo? Wyoming is the most traditional western of all U.S. States and visitors can’t leave without watching a rodeo. A rodeo is an instantly recognizable part of American and, especially western American culture. It is the official state sport of Wyoming and rodeo events attract thousands of visitors.
The rodeo dates back to the Old West. In the 1820s and 1830s, they had been in large part casual affairs with cowboys checking out their talents in opposition to every other. After the Civil War, organized competitions started taking place with the first occurring in Wyoming in 1872. They are now very popular events bringing a taste of the Old West and cowboy tradition to the public eye.
We recommend visiting Cody Stampede Rodeo. The Cody Stampede Rodeo started in 1919 and is held every summer. it is considered the world’s most ancient and one of the most successful rodeos. This year, the Cody Stampede Rodeo takes place from July 1 to July 4 and is a great event to attend. This four-day tournament will feature over 800 contestants and tickers are just $20 each.
In addition to the 4-day tournament, the Cody Stampede Rodeo also offers the Cody Nite Rodeo. These take place every night between June 1st to August 31st. The events start at 8:00 PM lasting for 2 hours. This is the most long-lasting nightly rodeo on the globe and is a great event for all the family. It will allow visitors to get a great glimpse of Western American culture.
The events are fast-paced and exciting and tickets cost just between $10-$20. As it is located near the popular tourist spot of Cody, the Cody Stampede Rodeo is in a perfect location and is easy for visiting tourists to get to.
9. Enjoy fabulous views on the Chief Joseph Scenic Highway
This historic road is nearly 74 km long. It follows the direction taken via way of means of Chief Joseph as he led the Nez Perce Indians into Montana as he fled the U.S. Cavalry. The route is breathtakingly beautiful. Along its 74 km length, the highway passes through the Shoshone National Forest, the Absaroka Mountains, and the interestingly named Dead Indian Pass.
A road trip is an American tradition and there aren’t many ways to experience this part of American culture than by renting a car and exploring the Chief Joseph Highway. There are many twists and turns so despite being relatively short, it will take a while to drive its length. We recommend taking things slow. There is no rush. Cruise along this highway and marvel at the stunning scenery that you will pass.
10. Visit the Wyoming Frontier Prison
This historic prison was opened in 1901 and closed in 1981. During its time, over 13,000 people were incarcerated here. This includes the murdering of George Sabin who slays three sheep farmers in the Spring Creek Raid and Bill Carlisle, a cowboy and train robber in the Old West.
Now the jail serves as a museum. Guided tours are offered which take visitors through the prison. Visitors will see the cell blocks, the prison cafeteria, and also the Death House where executions took place. The friendly and knowledgeable staff will explain the prison’s history and the lives of the convicts incarcerated there.