I’m back on the road, and this week I’m writing about the adorable town of Whitefish, Montana, just 26 miles from the West Glacier entrance of Glacier National Park. Sure, Glacier National Park is probably your final destination, but while you’re in the area, why not take a short detour into Whitefish? Well, what’s there to do? Glad you asked! Read on to find out!
But first, a bit about Whitefish….
Like I mentioned, it’s a short drive from Whitefish to Glacier, and the town is totally worth a visit! Besides, it’s home to the Whitefish Mountain Ski Resort. Yay! Skiing! Although it covers nearly 12 square miles, it’s home to less than 7,300 residents! Built in 1904 to accommodate the Great Northern Railway, Whitefish was originally named Stumpton because of the tree stumps that were left in the streets from the number of trees that had to be cleared to build the town. Initially, the railroad and logging industries were the main employers, but the creation of the ski resort helped Whitefish develop tourism.
So where’s the name Whitefish come from? Well, that would be from the nearby Whitefish Lake. The list of fish commonly found in Whitefish Lake include Northern Pike, Musky, Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Panfish and Trout. Oddly, Lake Whitefish don’t appear to be a common fish to Whitefish Lake!
The best thing to do in Whitefish (if you’re not skiing) is to stroll the streets. The buildings remind me of old western towns and I found it really charming, especially coming from the east coast. There aren’t any big box stores or fast food places in Whitefish, and that's part of its allure. It’s just quaint and laid back, at least from what I saw. So, what else is there to do?
Farmer’s Market: The Whitefish Farmers Market takes place on Tuesdays from May - September, which we sadly missed.
Chow Down: You know, I’m not one to pass up good food and the food in Whitefish was super yummy! Since we were heading to Glacier in the afternoon, we needed to fuel up, so we stopped at Amazing Crepes for a mid-morning “snack”. I had a banana Nutella crepe, because why mess with perfection, and Hubby had a strawberry chocolate crepe which is a close second! And you know we had to wash those crepes down with a tasty cappuccino!
Shop Til You Drop: There are interesting and funky shops, but unless you’re buying something small, you’re gonna have to figure out a way to get it back on plane. Hence, I did not get the large metal rooster you see in the picture!
Artistic Style: Besides great scenery, there's really cool street art (Whitefish style)!
Shred it: We were there well after ski season, but I would love to go back and try it out. There are also ski shops that look like they double as mountain biking shops where you can rent bikes if you’re interested…
Nighty Night: And if you’re looking for a comfy place to lay your head in Whitefish, we stayed at the Hampton Inn & Suites just outside of town center. The staff was very nice and we even got an upgraded suite (sweet!) which was totally comfy.
I would have liked to have spent more time in Whitefish, but we just couldn’t fit it into our schedule. We’ll have to save that for the next trip!
Have you been to Whitefish, Montana? What did you think? What did you do? I’d love to hear about it on Facebook or in Traveleidoscope’s comment section!